Patti Smith Discusses Her Toronto Photography Exhibition, Dedicates Show to Robert Mapplethorpe
Though she's perhaps better known to Exclaim! readers as a musician, Smith has always been a poet first and foremost, and her photos demonstrate this. Alongside the more patently personal photos — those of her family and the places and objects that evoke them — are those whose subjects evince a similarly intimate connection to Smith's muses: the graves of Susan Sontag, Walt Whitman, William Blake and Percy Shelley; the vacated beds of Virginia Woolf, Victor Hugo and John Keats; Arthur Rimbaud's fork and spoon, letters and atlas. She plans, during her stay in Toronto, to photograph Glenn Gould's chair.
On the walls of the exhibition space are quotations from Smith herself. "I have a strong relationship with the dead," one reads, "even a happy one." The intimacy of her diminutive, often out-of-focus ("atmospheric," she corrects) polaroids validate this notion; they suggest reverence for her loved ones, both past and present. That thread that will continue into her recently added concert at Toronto's Queen Elizabeth Theatre on March 9, which, Smith asserts, will pay tribute to her departed friend and famous photographer Robert Mapplethorpe.
"So many people complained that they couldn't get tickets to our [AGO] event, and it just so happened that March 9 is the day of Robert's passing," she explained. "I usually always do a performance in memory of Robert on March 9, so because I was [in Toronto], I decided to do it here.
"I've done it all over the world. It's very simple: I might be reading from Just Kids; singing some of the songs Robert liked; there are many ways I can connect Robert the human being with my work. I'm just saying that it won't have much to do with his photography. It'll be about Robert the human being: the boy I loved, the boy I worked with, the boy I knew."
The rest of Smith's touring schedule is visible below. To browse a gallery of photos from the press conference, click here.
3/7 Toronto, ON - Art Gallery of Ontario (7:30 show)
3/7 Toronto, ON - Art Gallery of Ontario (9:45 show)
3/9 Toronto, ON - Queen Elizabeth Theatre
4/13 Rome, Italy - Sala Santa Cecilia (Parco della Musica)
4/14 Rome, Italy - Sala Santa Cecilia (Parco della Musica)
4/17 Burnley, UK - Mechanics ^
4/19 Haworth, UK - Brontë School Rooms ^
4/21 Scarborough, UK - Scarborough Spa ^
4/30 Austin, TX - Stubb's Waller Creek Amphitheatre
5/2 New Orleans, LA - Jazz Fest
5/6 Chicago, IL - Vic Theatre
6/18 London, UK - O2 Shepherds Bush Empire
6/19 London, UK - O2 Shepherds Bush Empire
6/24 Brussels, Belgium - Ancienne Belgique
6/26 Bruges, Belgium - vzw Concertgebouw
6/27 Amsterdam, Netherlands - Paradiso
7/2 Berlin, Germany - Zitadelle Spandau
7/4 Leipzig, Germany - Werk 2
7/6 Hamburg, Germany - Stadtpark
7/8 Tampere, Finland - Tampere Hall
7/9 Helsinki, Finland - Music Centre
7/11 Rattvik, Sweden - Dalhalla
7/12 Upsalla, Sweden - Botanical Gardens
7/13 Gothenburg, Sweden - Tradgardsforeningen
7/15 Copenhagen, Denmark - Falkoner Theatre
^ with Tony Shanahan
NewsDec 19, 2014
R.I.P. Ardent Studios Founder and Big Star Producer John Fry
John Fry, acclaimed producer and founder of Ardent Records, has died. Fry founded Memphis institution Ardent Records in 1959. In add...
NewsDec 18, 2014
Lust for Youth Bring 'International' Tour to North America
Lust for Youth promised they would be going International with their album of the same name. True to form, they've been travelling the world...
NewsDec 18, 2014
Dave Sitek's Federal Prism Label Launches Online Pop-Up Shop
A while back, TV on the Radio member and busy production guru Dave Sitek started his own label called Federal Prism. Now, the company has la...
NewsDec 18, 2014
TOPS Take 'Picture You Staring' on 2015 North American Tour
Montreal's TOPS still have a pair of performances to get themselves through 2014, and don't expect the onset of 2015 to stop the band from p...