current exhibition

May 20 - July 1

Erin Courtney

Artist Statement:
My life as a visual artist and a playwright has been intertwined with Clubbed Thumb for the last twenty-one years! In 1996, I made a small drawing for the postcard for the very first play produced by Clubbed Thumb, Marie and Bruce by Wally Shawn. The little ink drawing is just to your left there.

The next year, 1997, Clubbed Thumb produced my play Pricked. Over the years, I had four more plays produced by Clubbed Thumb (Summer Play, Downwinders, Demon Baby and Alice the Magnet) and worked with a stellar group of directors, Maria Striar, Pam MacKinnon, James Hannaham, and Ken Rus Schmoll.

A lot of the art in this room was made in conversation with the Clubbed Thumb community of artists and other downtown theater makers. I used to gather my friends together and make them put on wigs and costumes and I would photograph them dancing and smoking and laughing and hugging. Then I would paint and draw these images, Frankenstein-ing them together with old time Hollywood stills of Judy Garland and Darla of the Little Rascals and family photos of female poets and their children. I also collected photos of my friends from their adolescent years, team sport photos and awkward prom photos. I make paintings and drawings that feel like plays and plays that feel like paintings and drawings.

The work in this room was made mostly from 1997 to 2001, the early years of Clubbed Thumb when we were all in our twenties rushing around the East Village, flipping the bird to the camera, dancing in giant grandma underpants and making sweaty, funny, raucous theater. I may not be in my twenties anymore but I still crave work that provokes and gives us a space to commune with the funny and the strange. I thank all my lucky stars that Clubbed Thumb exists and that I get to be a part of it.

exhibition archive

2016 2015 2014 2013
2011 2010 2009 2008