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belgian waffles
questionable feminist? bored suburban haus frau? "just another cunt from connecticut"? famous for losing an NEA grant because the content of her work was deemed pornographic and obscene. i have great respect for filth, as buddy from KiTH would say, but one could evoke this tirade from the average street person with a stick and a 40 ounce. emotionally damaged white people from the upper middle classes having their ' art' subsidized by my tax money always annoyed me as i struggled to stay in art school and then struggled to be creative and work a full time job. still it was amusing at the time and was sampled many many times especially the ' drop that ghetto blaster' line.

karen finley and tales of taboo. sex express had a major hit sampling this unstable rant:

sex express. theme from sex express:

another karen sample and huge new beat hit black kiss, the orgasm:

almost forgot mr big mouse:

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Karen is not that. When she made this record she was living in a shithole apartment on the lower east side of manhattan; before it became a high rent district. She was also tending bar at a NYC club, Danceteria. She was not a middle class snob. Her rage is real.

i knew she worked at danceteria but not much else, especially about her early life pre NEA fiasco . i just know her from her work, basically, and i am not especially fond of it because to me it's not effective, although to some it may be and to the artist it may be cathartic.

the ' cunt from conn' i think even karen would appreciate- it's a quote from archetypical downtown down and out nyc 80s scene film' liquid sky'. you'll note all my descriptive terms came with question marks because frankly i don't know the person karen finley.

her rage may be real but that doesn't mean i have to like or appreciate her performance art. the rage of people on the street, dumped out of institutions and left to implode or of violent criminals is real too and no one's giving them public monies to act out. mind you i don't care who may opt to do so as art as long as i don't have to fund it . i don't find her work pornographic.

plenty of people, white people, the children of the amazing affluence of this country drop out and live in shit holes by choice so that's no indication of a person's origins necessarily.at that time it was very easy to live on the east side as you of course know with little or no money.there's no place like that in nyc now- it was such a specific point in time.

i have heard similar rage filled rants from the floors of mental hospitals, in person, so to me the whole mental pain as performance piece 80s tableaux was obnoxious from the get go. tax money should go to helping those people in dire need not to the insular self absorbed, largely white, largely of the middle class and above nyc art world.

i think the john waters film ' pecker' sums up my feelings about this.

How do I know this? I know her.

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