"A Trip Down (False) Memory Lane"

Curator Jessica Silverman taps into legendary queer bar history
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PREVIEW The Lexington Club is an underground landmark of San Francisco. If you're queer, and especially if you're a lesbian, the bar has probably played a role in your life at one point or another, and something important probably went down there, by the jukebox or in a graffiti-lined bathroom. In "A Trip Down (False) Memory Lane," curator Jessica Silverman of Silverman Gallery taps into the Lexington's importance and its history through an ambitious but also human-scale group show that's been more than a year in the making.

The Lexington has hosted some excellent art at times (I've seen paintings by Alicia McCarthy there, for example), though you might not know it. "About a year ago, I was there and I asked [some bar-goers] what show was up, and they didn't know," says Silverman. "No one was looking at the art. That was bothersome to me. I also wanted to do a show that addressed the space."

Silverman has brought together an array of local and international artists — including Susanne Winterling, Bruce LaBruce, and Slava Mogutin — to create individual works for the exhibition and smaller works for a limited 50-edition box set. Some people, such as New York's Daphne Fitzpatrick, have never been to the Lexington, even if they have friends who work there — in such cases, they create works that imagine the site, or forge a connection to it. I'm looking forward to seeing Luke Butler's collages, photographer Job Piston's sculptural piece, and Tammy Rae Carland's c-print. Some other potential highlights: Brandon Herman's jewelry box containing a lighter — which overtly plays off of the ritual of smoking a cigarette in front of the bar — and a postcard invitation from Danny Keith.

A TRIP DOWN (FALSE) MEMORY LANE Reception: Tues/13, 7–9 p.m. 3464 19th St., S.F. (415) 863-2052, www.atripdown-false-memorylane.blogspot.com

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