Francine Hunter McGivern - "Rough Cut" Screening

“ROUGH CUT” | a video screening  from the  Jungle Red Studios Archives | FREE | Sunday September 2,  from 4 - 7pm |hosted by Second Ward |71 Third Street Hudson, NY | The event is in collaboration with Francine Hunter McGivern’s  40 year survey |  “Episodic Memory 1977- present” | currently on view at Hudson Hall thru September 9th.


      Beginning in 1977, the artist’s creative practice was “performative" and staged only in Francine’s Tribeca Jungle Red Studios and underground NYC downtown nightclub venues.  Her first live performance was in “Sleazy Living” (1978) at Mudd Club; a burlesque show, created by fashion designer Honey Wolters. She played Mrs. Front Porch. Her costume of   kitchen chore maids and handi-wipes was designed by her creative partner, Ken Angelico (RIP) and she stripped to the  James Brown’s soundtrack,“ Sex Machine”.  A young teen crawled out from a large TV set on stage. The show was not captured on video, but the experience propelled a decade of the artist’s continuous collaborations with other legendary downtown artist friends and club owners where Francine wrote, directed, staged, and performed her notorious provocative & witty theatrical visions.  

     The Legendary “Night School: a performance designed to teach you a lesson” (April 1979 at Mudd), starred many “Legends” from the era: Cookie Mueller (RIP), Ken Angelico (RIP), Gennaro Palermo (RIP), Greer Lankton (RIP), David Armstrong (RIP), Anthony McCall, Max Blagg, Nan Goldin, Susanne Fletcher, Dovanna,  Juan Sanchez,  Millie Iatrou, and many other notable “Downtown” luminaries. The show was taped on reel to reel by a friend. The black and white documentary has been transferred and digitized and will be shown for the first time at Second Ward. A few acts from the play are missing in the reel to reel tape but the slide show of 250 images shows ALL and will be projected to the soundtrack, (1986) “Do You Belong To The Nightclub" from Francine’s, “TO RULE TRULY IS TO SERVE” a limited edition CD produced for Episodic Memory. The slide show documents both onstage and backstage and features Night School photographs by Nan Goldin, Roxanne Lewitt, Kevin Higgins (RIP), and Joshua Green as well as the audience attendance of luminaries such as John Waters, Danny Fields, Rene Ricard, Sven Lukin, Betsey Johnson and many others.

      Having been immersed in film and photography since she was a young teen obsessed with documenting and archiving her life and experiences, Francine purchased her first video camera in 1979: the Panasonic first Low Light camera.  This low light camera allowed many “Rough Cut” performances to be filmed. Few in the downtown scene documented this content. This was the beginning of the artist’s life long interdisciplinary practice where both performative and installation works were created in part for the archived documentation. The “Jungle Red Revue (1988) was the last time Francine performed live and this classic Burlesque revue pays tribute to her roots in performance.

      Selected digitized files of selected performance tapes from the artist’s extensive video archive of Jungle Red Studios, staged at Mudd Club, Danceteria, Jackie 60, and Mother (to name a few) between 1979 and 1992, will be debuted at Second Ward Foundation.

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