Jack Smith’s "Normal Love," Introduced by Matt Saunders

July 29, 2023

Register here

Jack Smith’s Normal Love (1963–65)
Introduced by Matt Saunders 

On the occasion of Gallery Weekend Los Angeles and Matt Saunders's exhibition The Distances, Blum & Poe is pleased to present a rare screening of Jack Smith’s underground cult classic Normal Love (1963–65). The film will begin with a video introduction by Matt Saunders, followed by a screening on 16 mm film. 

Matt Saunders describes the current exhibition on view, The Distances, as an “introspective retrospective” or a “sentimental education”—mining themes the artist focused on early in his career, such as the performativity and fluidity of gender as manifested through various generations. 

Jack Smith, an American filmmaker and artist (1932–1989), skillfully blended the glitz of Hollywood's Golden Age with the raw essence of underground culture, making him an enduring icon for future generations. In 1963, Smith created Normal Love, a captivating feature-length film that drew inspiration from horror movies of the 1930s and 40s, as well as the work of Maria Montez, a B-movie star of Dominican origin. Normal Love weaves an imaginative narrative with an ensemble of extraordinary characters, such as a mermaid portrayed by Mario Montez, who fittingly adopted the stage name as a tribute to the renowned actress. Members of the New York underground, like experimental filmmaker and avant-garde musician Tony Conrad and the Velvet Underground's Angus MacLise, bring life to enigmatic characters. The film was a visual feast, filmed in vibrant colors with elaborate sets, featuring a remarkable giant cake designed by Claes Oldenburg. 

This event is free and open to all. Registration is required to participate. 

Limited parking available. Rideshare highly encouraged. 

Click here to register. 

Saturday, July 29
3pm
at Blum & Poe, Los Angeles 

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BLUM Los Angeles will be open for extended hours during Frieze Los Angeles. Visit the gallery Monday, February 26–Sunday, March 3, 10am–6pm.