Southeast Photography Museum: Michael Grecco: Days of Punk
punk daysLos Angeles-based photographer and filmmaker Michel Greccothe multimedia solo exhibition celebrating punk music and culture, will open its doors on August 30 at the Southeast Photography Museuma service of Daytona State College, in Daytona Beach, Florida. The show is presented in partnership with production company Terra Esplendida, based in Lisbon, Portugal. It will run until December 17 and marks the first time ‘Days of Punk’ will be shown in the United States – it premiered last fall with a special public installation at the Photo London international photography trade show.
On August 30, the Museum will host an opening reception for “Days of Punk” from 6-8 p.m., including an artist talk by Michael Grecco at the Madorsky Theater. Copies of his book Punk, Post Punk, New Wave: Onstage, Backstage, In Your Face, 1978–1991 will be available for purchase and signing in the museum’s gift shop.
The more than 100 photographs on display date back to the late 70s through to the early 90s, when Grecco documented the nightclub and concert scenes in New York and Boston as punk roared across the United States. He worked as a photographer for the Associated Press, and a lens for legendary rock station WBCN-FM, and was a self-proclaimed “club kid” who had a unique opportunity to fit into this revolutionary scene both as as columnist and participant. Grecco captured for posterity a period of outspokenness in pop culture history, with all of its raw energy and outrageous antics.
Punk artists seen through Grecco’s lens include Adam Ant, Billy Idol, Buzzcocks, The Clash, Dead Kennedys, Elvis Costello, Joan Jett, Aimee Mann, the Ramones, Siouxsie and the Banshees, the Specials, Talking Heads, Wendy O. Williams, and many more. In addition to the photographs, visitors to the exhibition will experience soundscapes specially created for ‘Days of Punk’ in collaboration with Roger Miller and Peter Prescott of the cult band Mission of Burma. The video component was put together in collaboration with Jeremy Troy and includes stock footage that Grecco himself shot during the punk era. Additionally, posters, magazines and other memorabilia from the era – all from Grecco’s personal collection – will be on display.
In addition, the Museum intends to encourage public participation by inviting guests to sign or “leave their mark” on a faux brick wall designed to immerse visitors in the action, and reinforce the performative aspect and the spirit punk community.
These photographs, which are the centerpiece of the exhibition, had remained dormant in Grecco’s flat files until his archivist offered to revisit this set of unpublished works. After delving deep into the past, their efforts culminated in Grecco Punk’s book, Post Punk, New Wave: Onstage, Backstage, In Your Face, 1978–1991 (Abrams Books, 2020), which premiered these images time. . In addition to the 162 photographs, the book includes a foreword by Fred Schneider on the B-52s, an essay by veteran rock journalist Jim Sullivan, and concise personal anecdotes from Grecco about his time with the musicians he toured.
The images then became available for the first time as limited edition prints – on Ilford Gold Fiber Gloss paper – for collectors, and plans were launched for the inaugural “Days of Punk” exhibition at Photo London in collaboration with Iconic Images of London. Currently, the exhibition is on view at La Termica Museum in Malaga, Spain, and Blindwell Gallery in Barnstaple, in the North Devon region of England.
Upcoming exhibitions are planned for the Lancaster Museum of Art and History in Lancaster, CA (February 2023), the Howard Yezerski Gallery, and a return to Europe in the spring of 2023. Going forward, “Days of Punk” will continue to tour the world. Admission is free for “Days of Punk” at the Southeast Photography Museum. Museum hours are Tuesday through Friday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.
About Michael Grecco (b. 1958 -)
Michael Grecco is an award-winning fine art and publicity photographer and director based in Los Angeles. He is internationally recognized for his elevated conceptual imagery, mastery of lighting, and powerful connections to his subjects in a huge body of work that spans fine art, celebrity portraiture, music, commercial and editorial photography. . Born in New York, Grecco attended Boston University, where he began his professional career touring for the Associated Press and covering the music scene for legendary FM radio station WBCN. Unpublished photographs from his time as a music photographer include his last book, Punk, Post Punk, New Wave: Onstage, Backstage, In Your Face, 1978–1991 (Abrams), and the accompanying multimedia exhibition Days of Punk, which premiered at Photo London in 2021 and now travels the world.
Grecco moved to Los Angeles in the late 1980s when he was invited by People Magazine to come out west to be a celebrity photographer for them. He has continued to create new work ever since, and his images have also appeared in publications such as Time Magazine, Vanity Fair, Esquire, The Boston Globe, The Guardian, and Rolling Stone, among others. He is represented by Atlas Gallery and Iconic Images in London, The Howard Yezerski Gallery in Boston, Modern Rocks Gallery in Austin, TX, and The Photo Gallery, Halmstad, Sweden.
A father of three, he lives and works in Santa Monica with his wife and their two Russian Blue cats. In his spare time, he can be seen exploring the diverse neighborhoods and subcultures of his adopted hometown on his Triumph Bonneville, with a favorite camera in tow, ready to find, capture and inspire.
About the Southeast Photography Museum:
The primary objective of the Southeast Photography Museum is educational outreach. As a department of Daytona State College, the museum sits at a cultural intersection between the campus and the surrounding community and strives to provide educational opportunities for both. The Southeast Museum of Photography exhibits, collects, preserves, and interprets photography to facilitate teaching and learning at Daytona State College, and enhance understanding and appreciation of culture, history, art, and photography by the community. A division of Daytona State College, the museum is located at 1200 Int’l Speedway Blvd. Daytona Beach, Florida 32114.
About Terra Esplendida:
Founded in 2006, Lisbon-based Terra Esplêndida (TE) specializes in cultural projects and is able to present a diverse portfolio of events and exhibitions. The company is made up of experienced professionals in areas such as the production, promotion and management of cultural events, as well as in communication, marketing management, design and advertising. TE works in an integrated way and has a dynamic network of contacts and partners including museums, universities, foundations, associations and municipalities, among other public and private entities at the international level.
About ILFORD:Founded in 1879, ILFORD is one of the oldest photographic brands in the world. With a proud history that spans over 140 years, ILFORD is synonymous with professional quality photography, from traditional analog film, paper and chemistry to providing the best in class professional inkjet paper for today’s photo and fine art printers.
About the book and the publisher: Punk, Post Punk, New Wave: On Stage, Behind the Scenes, In Your Face, 1978–1991 By Michael Grecco Introduction by Jim Sullivan; Foreword by Fred Schneider Abrams / November 10, 2020
United States Founded in 1949, Books was the first company in the United States to specialize in the publishing of art and illustrated books. The company continues to publish critically acclaimed and best-selling books in the fields of art, photography, cooking, crafts, comics, home and garden design , entertainment, fashion and popular culture.
A chronicle of PUNK MUSIC’s first explosion in the United States, the multimedia exhibit premiered at the 2021 PHOTO LONDON International Photography Fair.
“The spirit of punk was extraordinary. It marked me forever.
Looking at these images, I hope you will also be touched by his contagious freedom.
– Michel Grecco
The days of punk by Michael Grecco
until December 17, 2022
Southeast Photography Museum at Daytona State College
1200W International Speedway Boulevard
Daytona Beach, Florida 32114
Opening on August 30 with a welcome of artists from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
The opening event is free and open to the public, but reservations are encouraged; To register, please visit Eventbrite on the museum’s website or call the museum’s front desk at 386-506-3894.