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Its Only Rock N' Roll – Guy Peellaert and Dominique Tarlé

Stephanie Wells writing for VINGT Paris


Picture_368Picture_369If only walls could talk. Fortunately Dominique Tarlé's photographs tell all. Through October 30th, the Galerie de l'Instant presents "Rocks Off", a collection of works by possibly the best rock and roll photographer you've never heard of.

Its 1971. A nubile Keith Richards, pajamas settled to the edge of suggestiveness, lights a cigarette from a mysterious unsmiling blond. Click.

Mick Jagger, half sober, lounges on a Louis XVI banquet table littered with glasses as a heavy lidded Richards strums his guitar. Click.

Roger Daltry, Marianne Faithfull, and the incandescent Jimi Hendrix are among the subjects of Tarlé's debut photography exhibit in France. All disheveled hair and lascivious torsos, Tarlé captures consciously cool rock icons from uncannily simple perspectives. His obvious ease and, not only physical but spiritual proximity to his subjects sets Tarlé’s photography apart; he is as if possessed by the same spirit.

Don't take my word for it. Ask him. Every Saturday from 14h-19h, Tarlé holds court in person at the Galerie de l'Instant, answering what we want…no. Need to know.

Tarlé's 1971 backstage sojourn with the Rolling Stones coincided with the recording of "Exile on Main Street". By happy accident, the Musée Maillol is showing works of Guy Peellaert, the legendary comic book illustrator, surrealist painter, fellow champion of rock n’ roll and friend of the Stones.

“Bye Bye, Bye Baby, Bye Bye” is a posthumous retrospective of Peellaert’s contributions to pop culture (the Belgian artist passed away in 2008). The exhibit contains the original cover artwork for the Rolling Stones’ “It’s Only Rock N’ Roll”, and searingly honest commentary on America’s first pop stars. Peellaert’s tribute to Jerry Lee Lewis is a retablo-style painting, plastering a jailbait bride next to the howling pianist - lest we forget Lewis’ scandalous second claim to fame (hint: it’s not “Great Balls of Fire”). Peellaert’s own success in the form of the 1973 rock-pop satire, “Rock Dreams”, (co-authored by Nick Cohn, and the cover of which John Lennon allegedly had framed) refocused his work from BDs to album cover design. Peellaert resisted turning rock starts into golden calves; rather he shot skeptical sideways glances at fame. Peellaert was in on the joke.

The Musée Maillol’s intimate homage to this huge contributor to pop culture has been extended until October 26th. Jonesing for some of that old time rock and roll? Dominique Tarlé and Guy Peellaert will sooth your soul.

Guy Peellaert “Bye Bye, Bye Baby, Bye Bye” Through October 26th

Musée Maillol

61, rue de Grenelle
75007 Paris Dominique

Tarlé “Rocks Off” Through October 30th

Galerie de l’Instant

46, Rue de Poitou
75003 Paris

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