Outsider Art describes the DIY folk-art of artists with no formal academic training, connection to the artworld/gallery scene or expectation of fame or fortune. Often naive, crude and profoundly inspired, Outsider Art is invariably the provenance of the terminally-obsessive, the clinically-insane or the feverishly religious — or some combination of all three. GREAT AND MIGHTY THINGS, now in its final week at The Philadelphia Museum of Art, is a great introduction to the genre and we three pairs of tickets to give away to the lucky Phawker readers that can answer this question. Howard Finster is the most high-profile outsider artists represented in the show (that’s his “Words Of Jesus Only” above). In the early 80s he became something of a cause celebre amongst the artsy wing of the American indie rock underground, and his work graced the covers of albums by REM and The Talking Heads. The first three Phawker readers to email us at FEED@PHAWKER.COM with the titles of those two albums wins a pair of tickets. Please include your full name, a mobile number for confirmation and a mailing address (these are hard tickets). Good luck and godspeeed!
This was filmed at Howard Finster’s Paradise Gardens behind his house in Rome, Georgia. So taken with REM at the time, I drove down to Athens, GA — which then served as REM HQ — over Christmas break in the hopes of running into them. Never happened, but did take a side trip out to Finster’s place in Rome, GA. Back then you could just show up, knock on the door, he’d invite you in to chat and sit a spell and then he’d enourage you to walk around The Paradise Gardens for as long as you’d like. Those were the days.