Alternative Press 25th Anniversary Art Show

by Nathan SpoorPosted on

This last weekend saw the opening of the groundbreakingCleveland-based youth culture magazine ALTERNATIVE PRESS (AP)’sstar-studded art exhibit at the prestigious Merry Karnowsky Gallery inLos Angeles. Currently on display through July 24, the exhibit featuresselections from AP’s vast archives of photos and covers as well asoriginal works from musical icons and renowned visual artists such asMarilyn Manson, Black Francis (The Pixies), Liz McGrath & MorganSlade (Miss Derringer), Tara McPherson, Shirley Manson (Garbage),Shepard Fairey, Adam Jones (Tool), Tim Armstrong (Rancid) and many more.

Beginningin 1985, AP made its way from a sought-after fanzine to a glorious fullcolor international contemporary magazine with a ravenous following.Functioning prominently in the alt-music and punk scenes as “the”independent music voice for the generation, AP has weathered 25 yearsof the publishing scene and remains an industry standard for breakingnew talent and introducing the latest trends and hottest bands to itsworldwide audience.

“Alternative Press were early believers in Garbage and played a large part in carving out a loyal following for us over the years. When they approached me about taking part in an exhibition to celebrate their 25th anniversary, it would have been exceedingly churlish to refuse. I am not a visual artist in any way, shape or form but I am a lover of the arts so I gleefully embraced the challenge of creating something. I tried to think of an opposite to “alternative” which led me to consider knitting something. I then decided to subvert the medium completely thus producing “Peking Noodle (Ode to Louise Bourgeois)”. Maybe it’s an all seeing eye – fortune teller to the world, maybe it isn’t. Art, as they so often say, is in the eye of the beholder!”

–SHIRLEY MANSON, musician/artist (of the band Garbage), title of piece “Peking Noodle (Ode to Louise Bourgeois)”


“The inspiration is the invention of the LP cover.  The 12inch format is something that is not seen a lot anymore and the connection with the vinyl record and packaging is something that strongly affected me as a kid and I’m re-presenting with these pieces.”

–SHEPARD FAIREY, artist, multiple pieces.


“A lot of my work deals with the observation of people’s relationships and the struggles that the individual encounters in their love life. Also, I have a huge fascination with astrophysics, which is fun for me to incorporate into my work. The idea behind this specific piece was to show the similarities between the macro and the micro, showing that the laws of physics that rule the behaviors of even the tiniest of particles is akin to even the most complex of human emotions shared between two people. The simplest of actions spans all levels of our being, from our emotions down to the very atoms that make up our hearts.”

–TARA MCPHERSON, artist, title of piece “The Attraction and Repulsion of Particles”

Gerard Way (My Chemical Romance)

Tim Armstrong (Rancid)

“Art and music for me go hand in hand-Music enables me to reach into the far corners of my imagination, itfeeds my motivation and my muse – AP is like my creative food source!!!Ive found out about so many great bands through their magazine whichhas kept me working late into the night!”


– LIZ MCGRATH, musican/artist, (of the band Miss Derringer and also a very well respected fine artist)

Liz McGrath (Miss Derringer) work and fantastic outfit (can’t beat that owl purse, go Liz!)

Adam Jones (Tool)

Marilyn Manson

Cool photo of the Beastie Boys

Awesome Marilyn Manson shot (apparently these potty shots were REALLY popular, too many to share)

OG shot of Perry Farrell of Jane’s Addiction circa 1987

First issue of AP

Second incarnation of AP

Old skool flyers for AP shows

Glossy modern state of magazine

Magazine mockups and layouts

Just a sample of the amazing photography on exhibit that my blurry ass photo won’t be doing justice

Fans love the photos!


This crazy chupacabra thing was waiting outside for us, what??
Thinking about it, the long line WAS keeping to the left and minding the velvet rope situation. Job well done.

Greg Escalante showing off the latest natural beverage to make the rounds at the shows

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