Too Fast to Live, Too Young to Die: CA '70s/'80s punk/hardcore photography + art

Jello Biafra of the Dead Kennedys with his home made anti-Reagan t-shirt, circa 1980, shot at the backstage toilet at The Whiskey-A-Go-Go, Hollywood, California, by Glen E. Friedman.

Opening tonight at Shepard Fairey's Subliminal Projects gallery in Echo Park, Los Angeles, "Too Fast to Live, Too Young to Die," a retrospective of punk/hardcore photography and related art, featuring Edward Colver, Shepard Fairey, Glen E. Friedman, Jenny Lens, Dave Markey, Raymond Pettibon, Jordan Schwartz, and Winston Smith.

[A] selection of photography, art and ephemera from the California Punk & Hardcore scene with an emphasis on the explosive period of the late 70's and early 80's. This exhibition features both photographers and artists who were present for the detonation of the Southern California scene and whose imagery helped capture and craft it's angles, attitudes, music, fashion and sub-culture. Reflections of other punk scenes throughout California are included as well as contemporary collaborations inspired by one of the most potent and important periods of free expression in the California story.
Opens tonight, Friday, February 25th, 2011 7-11PM, with a musical performance by OFF! and The Nichemakers at 9PM.

The exhibition continues through March 26th, 2011, and is curated by Katherine B. Cone and Jon Cournoyer. Press release (PDF)


  1. I always find the Punk Era photos interesting (sometimes edgy or goofy), especially since that period still involved film: math calculations in exposure, and a ‘blind raw artistic eye'(no digital preview). Anyway, they might want to post them online for those of us on the east coast who have no hopes of flying west? Please.

  2. I was just thinking the other day that everyone still knows what Jello is, but who the hell remembers Biafra? What was once a pretty edgy name has become merely odd.

    1. Jello Biafra grew up to eventually rip of his bandmates, with-holding their royalties. So sad.

      It’s a little more complex than that, don’t you think?

    1. That’s cleaner than the bathrooms everywhere I’ve ever worked. I’m guessing it was taken before the show.

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