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FREE
Running time: 94 minutes

Desolation Center is the previously untold story of a series of early 80s guerrilla music and art performance happenings in Southern California that are recognized to have inspired Burning Man, Lollapalooza and Coachella, collective experiences that have become key elements of popular culture in the 21st century. The feature documentary splices interviews and rare performance footage of Sonic Youth, Minutemen, Meat Puppets, Swans, Redd Kross, Einstürzende Neubauten, Survival Research Laboratories, Savage Republic and more, documenting a time when pushing the boundaries of music, art, and performance felt almost like an unspoken obligation.

Directed by Stuart Swezey, the creator and principal organizer of these unique events, Desolation Center demonstrates how the risky, and at times even reckless, actions of a few outsiders can unintentionally lead to seismic cultural shifts. Combining Swezey’s exclusive access to never-before-seen archival video, live audio recordings, and stills woven together with new cinematically shot interviews, verité footage and animated sequences, Desolation Center captures the spirit of the turbulent times from which these events emerged. 

Director Stuart Swezey will participate in a Q&A session following screening.

 

Seating for this program is first-come, first-served.

This film is presented in partnership with the Smithsonian Year of Music for the Music Movie Mondays series

Smithsonian Year of Music logo

Details

Date:
November 4, 2019
Time:
6:00 pm–8:00 pm
Event Category:

Venue

Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden
Hirshhorn Museum, Independence Ave SW & 7th St SW
Washington, DC 20560 United States
Phone:
202-633-1000
View Venue Website

Organizer

Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden
Phone:
202-633-1000
Email:
HirshhornExperience@si.edu
View Organizer Website

Other

Location detail
Ring auditorium