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"Why Are You Doing This To Me?"
Philip Monaghan and David Trinidad

October 2 – December 13, 2015

Main Page | "The Late Show" | Films of "The Late Show" | Monaghan Statement

Exhibition Related Events

“Why Are You Doing This To Me?” Film Series
October 19th – November 15th at Alamo Drafthouse Cinema

Press Release:
June 5, 2015

LUBBOCK: Texas Tech School of Art proudly presents an exhibition of paintings by alumnus Philip Monaghan in the exhibition entitled “Why Are You Doing This To Me?” Philip Monaghan and David Trinidad. The exhibition will be presented in the Landmark Gallery from October 2 – December 13, 2015. An opening reception for the exhibition will be held on Friday, October 2nd from 5:00-7:00 PM. Philip Monaghan and David Trinidad will be in attendance.

“Why Are You Doing This To Me?” is a visual statement that lifts the scenes from David Trinidad’s poem “The Late Show” revealing the films referenced by the poem. The paintings portray the mock pathos and camp qualities the nineteen films embody. According to Trinidad, the result is sublime. The scenes unfold as the poem does, each frame delivered like a film spools through a projector, capturing the staccato rhythm of the poem. An often horrific quality prevails as each actress’s circumstance and character flaws result in them becoming victims, once again. Holland Cotter reviewing Monaghan’s previous exhibition of paintings based on a poem by Tim Dlugos wrote, “Mr. Monaghan is admirably faithful to the poem’s text. His layering of painted and printed images reflects its fractured structure. His light-touch, straight-faced brushwork is perfectly suited to its plain-style language and affectless, though dimly forbidding tone.”

Trinidad’s “The Late Show” is an elegy to his mother and the bonding experience they had watching 1950s and 1960s “women’s movies” together. For Monaghan, the references turned toward his life as a gay man: as Caroll Baker lies dying in an oxygen tent in Harlow, Monaghan recalls visiting friends in the hospital during the AIDS epidemic. Lana Turner playing Lora Meredith who with and her daughter, played by Sandra Dee, are in love with the same man in Imitation of Life is a scenario that plays out constantly in gay life. Struggles with alcoholism, betrayal, controlling partners, and suicide, are all part of the experience gay men share with the women in these films.

This exhibition will travel to the Fales Library at New York University where it will be on display February through May.

Philip Monaghan is a New York based alumnus of School of Art (BFA in studio art 1976) who has led a distinguished and successful career as a freelance art director in New York and Milan. After receiving an MFA from Pratt in 1979, he was art director for Fiorucci in the early 1980s. From 1986 Philip held a variety of posts at Limited Brands, involved in brand positioning and creative direction for Express, Bath & Body Works, Henri Bendel and New York & Company. During this time in the fashion industry his creative career was highlighted by collaborations with artists, designers and photographers such as Andy Warhol, Francesco Scavullo, Antonio Lopez, Steven Meisel, Patrick DeMarchelier, Bruce Weber, Peter Arnell and Peter Lindbergh. He retired in 2001 to devote himself fulltime to art. His first major exhibition was presented in 2011 at the New York University Fales Library. The exhibition entitled “At Moments Like These He Feels Farthest Away” was reviewed by Holland Cotter of The New York Times.

David Trinidad is known for his masterful use of popular culture in his poems. The poet James Schuyler wrote, “Trinidad turns the paste jewels of pop art into the real thing.” His work is also associated with the innovative formalism of the New York School. About The Late Show (2007), The New York Times Book Review wrote that Trinidad’s “most impressive gift is an ability to dignify the dross of American life, to honor both the shrink-wrapped sentiment of the cultural artifacts he writes about and his own much more complicated emotional response to them.” Trinidad, currently on the Creative Writing faculty at Columbia College Chicago, is the author of thirteen books of poetry, collaborator with other poets on several projects, and editor of several volumes of poetry, including A Fast Life: The Collected Poems of Tim Dlugos, which garnered Trinidad a Lambda Literary Award. He has numerous other awards and his work has been published extensively. His personal papers are archived at Fales Library at New York University.

The exhibit runs through Sunday, December 13, 2015. Art building gallery hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, and noon to 4 p.m. Sunday. The Art building is located at 3010 18th Street (near the corner of 18th St. and Flint Ave.). On Mondays through Fridays, paid parking is available on the fourth floor of the Flint Avenue Parking Facility. Parking is free on weekends. Admission to the School of Art galleries is free.

Exhibitions and speaker programs at Landmark Arts and the Texas Tech University School of Art are made possible, in part, by a generous grant from the Helen Jones Foundation. Additional support comes from cultural activities fees administered through the College of Visual & Performing Arts.

For more information contact:
Joe Arredondo
Director of Landmark Arts
(806) 742-1947