Discussion of hip-hop art and design draws crowd

Cey and BillIt was standing-room only at Rush Arts Gallery in New York City for Cey Adams' and Bill Adler's slideshow and discussion of their book DEFinition: The Art and Design of Hip-Hop last night (Feb. 26). Hip-hop culture and art fans packed the Russell Simmons-owned gallery to hear Adler and Adams discuss the art featured in their book. [Read my review of the book HERE.]

Adler and Adams provided biographical information on the artists in their book, discussed the impact of street culture to the art world, and shared anecdotes of the artists and their subjects. The gallery audience was rewarded with stories about Mary J. Blige, Mohammed Ali, Chuck D, Spike Lee, Dave Chappelle, Sean Combs, and many other hip-hop luminaries.

Several of the artists whose work is featured in DEFinition: The Art and Design of Hip-Hop were in attendance, including photographer Janette Beckman, who shared a memory of a photo session with Slick Rick. "The gold and guns were his idea," she laughed. (Beckman has several photographs of the Beastie Boys in their early years at her web site.)

Discussing his work with the Beastie Boys, Adams revealed that they are one of his favorite musical artists with whom to work because they have a clear vision of what they want design-wise or -- as Adams corrected himself -- what they do not want. Adams, who has not yet heard any of the new Beastie Boys album, said he looks forward to hearing what they've come up with.

To view photos from Adams' and Adler's talk, visit our Flickr photostream.

As a postscript to the event, I'd like to give a shout-out to Derek from Manifest, who came to the talk wearing a custom-made "Listen to Paul's Boutique" t-shirt. Check out the t-shirt -- available to purchase -- at his web site devoted to hip-hop culture.


10:46 PM funkyfour said...

i'd love to hear those stories

10:57 PM Fittonia said...

The Paul's Boutique tshirt is awesome! I must have it.

It's never been clear to me if everybody is cool with Russell or not. Does anyone know?

11:23 PM Kevin said...

I was under the impression everyone was ok with Russell except Yauch. I don't remember what I read to give me that impression.

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