Currently reading : Genesis P-Orridge: S/HE IS HER/E Exhibition

Genesis P-Orridge: S/HE IS HER/E Exhibition

6 July 2013

Author : joseph-delaney


The Andy Warhol Museum
117 Sandusky Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15212-5890


Pittsburgh’s Andy Warhol Museum sees the first solo museum show of the art practice of avant-guarde musician and performance artist Genesis Breyer P-Orridge.

The exhibition shows selection of the pandrogyne polymath’s influential and boundary pushing range of works, from pioneering industrial band Throbbing Gristle to his commitment to the pandrogyne project in which s/he and wife Lady Jaye Breyer P-Orridge sought to evolve into a new gender; undergoing a range of body modification and adopting plural/gender neutral pronouns (S/he, we/us) as a means of a radical transformation of identity, to become a singular being embodying them both known as Breyer P-Orridge, which, since the tragic death of Lady Jaye in 2007, Genesis continues to represent to this day.

An icon of the London avant-guarde in the mid seventies saw early work with collectives such as COUM Transmissions, dubbed (by a Tory member of parliment) the ‘wreckers of civilisation’, early collaboration with body modification movement ‘Modern Primitive’ and pioneering the industrial music genre with Throbbing Gristle, P-Orridge continues to question conventions and test the boundaries of identity, “re-directing the way other people encode their expectations and their needs [onto] you”.

The timing of the exhibition coincides coincidentally, and somewhat poignantly, with a resurgence of media focus on the trial and incarceration of child killer Ian Brady, which Throbbing Gristle referenced in an, until 2001, unreleased track Very Friendly; to the sound of pounding static audio, P-Orridge tells the tale of murderer Ian Brady and accomplice Myra Hindley in a harrowing dead-pan tone, highlighting the mundane details of their activity, which Brady recently referred to as merely an “existential experience”.

In this 2008 documentary by Eline Jongsma & Kel O’Neill, s/he explains the nature of the Pandrogyne, “a third kind of being that only exists because of the merging of us…Lady Jaye represents the Pandrogyne in the immaterial world, in another dimension of space and time, and we [Genesis] represent it here”.

The exhibition of over 100 works, dating from the mid 1970s to the present, ends September 15, 2013.

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