AO On Site: Deitch Projects Book Launch at Santo’s Party House with the Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black

September 22nd, 2008

Dash Snow, Brian McPeck (of A.R.E. Weapons) and Kembra Pfahler at Santo\'s Playhouse
Dash Snow (co-author of NEST), Brian McPeck (of A.R.E. Weapons) and Kembra Pfahler (of The Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black and author of Beautalism) at Santo’s Party House; photo taken by Bijoux Altamirano

Last Monday night, September 15th, AO was on site at Santo’s Party House for Deitch Projects’ book launch. Deitch Projects has released two new books, NEST by Dash Snow and Dan Colen and Beautalism by Kembra Pfahler. The celebration was kicked off by performances by The Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black, led by Kembra Pfahler, the author of Beautalism and frequent collaborator of Deitch projects, and a short set from TV Baby.

CURRENT READING: Nest: Dash Snow Dan Colen: Deitch Projects [The Imagist]
Nest and Beautalism Book Launch at Santos Party House [The World’s Best Ever]
Deitch projects book launch [ArtLoversNewYork]
Hint Tip: Deitch Projects [Hintmag]
Nest: July 26, 2007 to August 18, 2007 [Deitch Projects]
The Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black [MySpace]

The Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black playing at Santo\'s Playhouse
The Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black, performing at Deitch Project’s Book Launch (at Santo’s Playhouse); photo taken by Bijoux Altamirano

NEST records the work of artist Dash Snow and Dan Colen from when they transformed the space at Deitch Projects into a giant ‘hampster nest’ by filling it with shredded phone books. They would then host drug-fueled overnight events in it, all the while documenting the making of the installation and the performances and parties that took place in it.

Beautalism catalogues Pfahler’s most recent projects, both solo and with The Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black, named after a counterculture and horror movie actress from the ’70s with a cult following. Notable outtakes include her performance at the 2008 Whitney Biennial at the Park Avenue Armory, as well as “sewn vagina” and “wall of vagina.” Pfahler includes shocking and intentionally repulsive portrayals of nudity and femininity in all of her performances, an aesthetic she calls ‘anti-naturalist.’ The book includes the artist’s drawings, sculptures, and installations, as well as explicit photographs that document the performances from beginning to end.

Scene from The Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black\'s performance at Santo\'s Playhouse
Kembra Pfahler, author of Beautalism, and lead singer in The Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black, at Santo’s Playhouse; photo taken by Bijoux Altamirano

Andrew W.K. watching The Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black perform at his club, Santo\'s Playhouse
Andrew W.K. watching The Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black perform at his club, Santo’s Playhouse; photo taken by Bijoux Altamirano

NEST, an installation by Dash Snow and Dan Colen
NEST
, an installation by Dash Snow and Dan Colen, via Deitch Projects

NEST, an installation by Dash Snow and Dan Colen
NEST
, an installation by Dash Snow and Dan Colen, via Deitch Projects

Cover of Beautalism, by Kembra Pfahler
Cover of Beautalism, by Kembra Pfahler, photo by ArtObserved

Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black performing at Santo\'s Playhouse
Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black performing at Santo’s Playhouse, photo by ArtObserved

Kembra Pfahler of Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black performing at Santo\'s Playhouse
Kembra Pfahler of Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black performing at Santo’s Playhouse, photo by ArtObserved

Attendees at Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black performing at Santo\'s Playhouse
Attendees at Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black’s performance at Santo’s Playhouse, photo by ArtObserved


Cover of NEST, by Dash Snow and Dan Colen, photo by ArtObserved


Attendees at Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black’s performance at Santo’s Playhouse, photo by ArtObserved

Attendees at Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black\'s performance at Santo\'s Playhouse
Attendee at Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black’s performance at Santo’s Playhouse, photo by ArtObserved