John Geary, A Touch of Evil
PPS Performative (Outside of the Gallery) Touch of Evil
- PPS Exhibit (Inside the Gallery) Devil Sightings
PPS Performative (Outside of the Gallery) Untitled Rain Work
Materializing along the sides of freeways and on rooftops… he startled the bejeezus out of unsuspecting passers-by.”1
While perhaps best known for his meticulous drawings – his current series of ape portraits in particular – John Geary is also an inventor, a photographer, a performance artist and a designer. In 1994 he designed a devil costume. Based on historic imaginings and reportage, it came complete with a horned mask, wings, a pitchfork and an erect phallus secured with velcro.
Wearing the costume the artist appeared to startled reaction in public areas across the United States, including in New York and Los Angeles. The project concluded in Santa Monica when Geary was arrested for walking on the edge of the 405 Freeway and filming in the city without a permit. (Having detached the phallus immediately before apprehension, he was not cited for obscenity).
In addition, offering a fascinating complement to Devil Tour, which utilized public performance to intersect a narrative that has lived long in public consciousness, Geary has also designed a walking aid. Unfettering the concept of performing public space from its cultural context, the Geary Support System G-crutch provides citizens with a very literal means to traverse space of all (earthbound) kinds.
Drop the pitchfork!” 2
1: Night+Day, San Francisco Weekly, 10.22.97. 2: LAPD to John Geary as told to Owen Driggs, 1.10.10.
Visit John Geary’s website
Read more about the G-Crutch