An Avalanche Of Awesome


I've been kind of busy, and I didn't want to get fingerprints all over the signed edition, and my few original issues are in storage somewhere, so I'm really only now getting a look at Primary Information's beautiful facsimile copy of Avalanche magazine. I'm on page nine and I'm tempted to blog my way through the whole thing. Just so much going on. Here's a taste from Avalanche No. 1, Fall 1970, from Rumbles, the front-of-the-book, which reads like the alumni news section of Conceptual Art University:

James Turrell, 27-year-old LA sculptor, who has not formally exhibited since his only one-man show of projected light works organized by John Coplans at the Pasadena Art Museum in 1967...In April 1969, Turrell and Sam Francis made a sky drawing using two World War I biplanes, radio-controlled from the ground, as part of Easter Sunday in Brookside Park organized by Oliver Andrews, Judy Gerowitz [!] and Lloyd Hamrol, who participated with elemental outdoor projects...


Work began this summer on Paolo Soleri's Arosanti, a rural housing complex for two thousand inhabitants on a seven acre site seventy miles north of Phoenix, Arizona...


The Museum of Conceptual Art opened on Wednesday, March 18 in San Francisco's Market Street district with a participatino piece in which buckets of paint were given to the guests to paint the walls white....MOCA's latest show, Sound Sculpture As a one night presentation of successive sound events by ten Bay Area artists, was held on April 30...Allan Fish's piece was performed by Tom Marioni. Perched atop an eight foot ladder, he pissed into a galvanized washtub. As the tub filled, the sound dropped in pitch. He was followed by Terry Fox, who scraped a shovel across the linoleum floor and vibrated a thin plexiglas sheet very fast. Jim McCready paraded four girls wearing shiny nylons down a 3x9' long rug. As they rubbed their thighs together a swishing sound was heard....


Andy has financial backing for his first Hollywood-based film, Specimen Days, the story of Walt Whitman's experiences as a Civil War male nurse. With shooting set to begin around mid-October in New Orleans, the regulars are ready but the lead is still to be cast. Allen Ginsberg, Mick Jagger, and John Lennon have all turned it down.


After his recent New York visit, LA based artist Terry O'Shea has returned to California and plans to execute a large-scale ecological project involving fast-growing plants.


The Japanese police detained San Francisco artist Paul Cotton for wearing a pink bunny costume to the Pepsi Pavilion at Osaka's World's Fair. John Perreault gave Marjorie Strider his old Iowa summer teaching job so that he could concentrate on his first book for Abrams, Andy Warhol

Ooh, an ad for 9 at Leo Castelli, the seminal show Robert Morris curated at Castelli Warehouse--which was not the Castelli Warehouse from which Jasper Johns' Short Circuit flag painting was taken, but still.


Ooh, a big picture of the misty Pepsi Pavilion surrounded by moving sculptures in the ad for Robert Breer's show at Galeria Bonino? Where is Robert Breer these days, btw? That's not a rhetorical question, either.

The trade edition of Avalanche is under $100 at Amazon. The first nine pages, at least, are highly recommended.

Since 2001 here at, I've been blogging about the creative process—my own and those of people who interest me. That mostly involves filmmaking, art, writing, research, and the making thereof.

Many thanks to the Creative Capital | Warhol Foundation Arts Writers Program for supporting that time.

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greg [at] greg [dot ] org

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first published: January 28, 2011.

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