54 STUDIO
Art Market|Issue #45, January 2020
THE BROOKLYN MUSEUM ANNOUNCES STUDIO 54: NIGHT MAGIC, THE FIRST EXHIBITION TO EXPLORE THE TRAILBLAzING AESTHETICS AND CONTINUING IMPACT OF NEW YORK CITY’S LEGENDARY NIGHTCLUB

HIGHLIGHTING THE REVOLUTIONARY CREATIVITY, EXPRESSIVE FREEDOM, AND SEXUAL LIBERATION CELEBRATED AT THE WORLD-RENOWNED NIGHTCLUB, THE THE EXHIBITION WILL PRESENT NEARLY 650 OBJECTS RANGING FROM FASHION, PHOTOGRAPHY, DRAWINGS, AND FILM TO STAGE SETS AND MUSIC.

Following the Vietnam War, and amid the nationwide Civil Rights Movement and fights for LGBTQ+ and women’s rights, a nearly bankrupted New York City hungered for social and creative transformation as well as a sense of joyous celebration after years of protest and upheaval. Low rents attracted a diverse group of artists, fashion designers, writers, and musicians to the city, fostering cultural change and the invention of new art forms, including musical genres such as punk, hip-hop, and disco. In a rare societal shift, people from different sexual, sociopolitical, and financial strata intermingled freely in the after-hours nightclubs of New York City. No place exemplified this more than Studio 54.

Though it was open for only three years—from April 26, 1977, to February 2, 1980—Studio 54 was arguably the most iconic nightclub to emerge in the twentieth century. Set in a former opera house in Midtown Manhattan, with the stage innovatively re-envisioned as a dance floor, Studio 54 became a space of sexual, gender, and creative liberation, where every patron could feel like a star. Studio 54: Night Magic is the first exhibition to trace the groundbreaking aesthetics and social politics of the historic nightclub, and its lasting influence on nightclub design, cinema, and fashion. The exhibition is curated and designed by Matthew Yokobosky, Senior Curator of Fashion and Material Culture, Brooklyn Museum.

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