Artists Take On Detroit - Projects for The Tricentennial
Destroy All Monsters

Strange Früt: Rock Apocrypha

The "noise" band Destroy All Monsters—including Mike Kelley, Cary Loren, Jim Shaw, and Niagara—formed in the 1970s; the current members (Kelley, Loren, and Shaw) work as artists both individually and as the Collective. Strange Früt: Rock Apocrypha consists of a video and four mural-sized images painted on canvas in the manner of classic freak-show banners. The paintings, created by Kelley and Shaw, focus on entertainment and subculture personalities associated with the Detroit area in the late 1960s and 1970s. At that time, the city was renowned for its alternative hard rock scene, and syndicated network programming was eclipsing local television fare. The designers hint at their "take" by adding symbols or unlikely context to the portraits.

For the video, director Loren mixed tapes of local music promoters with archival footage of television programs aimed at young viewers. The recording also features reenactments of period rock-oriented urban myths, with a soundtrack by Destroy All Monsters. Strange Früt: Rock Apocrypha is the first part of Loren’s "Detroit Culture Trilogy."

> Downloadable QuickTime Version of Video (18.7mb)

Project Image

Destroy All Monsters Collective
Strange Früt: Rock Apocrypha
Installation, 2001

> Installation Slideshow
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> Excerpt from Installation Video
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> Artist’s Statement/Mike Kelley