A few weeks ago, my husband Greg and I met up with a friend of ours, local Detroit author Zig Zag Claybourne (check him out!), at the Cranbrook Art Museum for their current exhibit, Too Fast to Live, Too Young to Die: Punk Graphics, 1976-1986. It leaves on October 7th, so if you want to see it, GO NOW.
First off, I was surprised at the size and scope of this exhibit. Not only were there posters in shockingly pristine condition, but traditional punk clothing, buttons, matchboxes, handmade zines, TVs playing music videos, record players stationed throughout with crates of records, and more.
All three of us wandered the halls both delighted and a little weirded out because, to varying degrees for each of us, we remembered watching these videos when they debuted, going to see these bands live, buying these albums, and wearing these clothes! I'd wear the clothes now, and Greg has gone to several concerts in the past few years. When a museum guide led a group - mostly comprised of people in their 20s by the looks of them - past us, explaining the historical significance of different display pieces, Zig Zag wanted to turn to them and yell, "I lived this!!"
Few things in life make you feel older than a museum tour analyzing your past.
Still! We did enjoy the exhibit, and were glad we went. There were so many songs and bands that I had somehow forgotten about, possibly because my brother (almost four years older than me) was the one who collected the albums and went to concerts, and I just collected songs and borrowed his tapes and CDs. I did watch Mtv religiously, though, back when it embodied the name music television.
After the exhibit, we wandered Cranbrook's ground, Greg giving us a tour and showing us the places he used to hang out as a student. We had a lot of rain prior to that day, and mushrooms of all stripes had sprung up everywhere. The gardens were still very much in bloom, and in the Asian garden, the maples had begun to change to red.
Cranbrook is a lovely school that sometimes reminds one of Hogwarts, and I am a little sad that I hadn't known about its existence when I was a high school student. I definitely would have investigated attending, even if it meant living in a dormitory (I was/am far too in love with The Worst Witch to not relish living in a creepy old world-style dorm.) Alas! I will just have to use my imagination.