June 11 - September 25
reception: OPENING RECEPTION Saturday, June 11, 5-8PM
Image: Team Jogging Shoes,
1983-2017. Altered tennis shoes. Courtesy of Sam Parker
Immaculate Misconceptions is a career-spanning exhibition of work by the prolific and
polymathic artist and inventor, Pippa Garner (b. 1942, Chicago suburbs, lives and works in Long
Beach, CA). Interest in Garner’s work has been steadily increasing in recent years, and this exhibition seeks to provide context to her overall practice, life, and manner of playful social critique.
Garner began her career studying car design at ArtCenter in Pasadena in the 1960s. She was living at that time as Phil Garner before transitioning to Pippa Garner in the late 1980s and early 90s. The 1960s era was the era of the muscle car, and she spoofed these macho machines and their base aesthetics with a mad magazine style wit before expanding her critique to domestic home goods. With an absurdist, arch humor she both predicted and satirized domestic trends, in her two self-published books Philip Garner’s The Better Living Catalog and Utopia — or Bust! Products for the Perfect World.
Many objects such as the Electrolux Having a Smoke, a retro Electrolux vacuum cleaner smoking a cigar, and the Genderometer, a desktop gadget with a dial that vacillates between masculine and feminine, were technical drawings of prototypes created now for the first time alongside this exhibition. Verge is also publishing Garner’s “Beauty 2000”, a previously unpublished manuscript from 1992 which playfully mocks trends in the beauty industry, suggesting new styles such as “pig burns,” men’s sideburns grown long enough to braid.
Accompanying the exhibition Verge is assisting in the production and completion of a documentary on Garner’s life titled PIPPA: Queen of the Future (2021). This documentary was co-produced by JOAN, Paralucent Pictures, Verge, and Tinker Tantrum Productions, and directed by Jeff Johnson and David Matorin.