The Smiths Exhibit
25 years without The Smiths Exhibit
La Cova Lounge- El Cau Venue, Tarragona
27 july -16 sept
From Fnac Triangle (Barcelona) to La Cova Lounge, a venue from romanic times: First Century A.D.
The Smiths Exhibit of the first complete collection of The Smiths promotional posters, distributed as a limited edition in record stores at the time by the independent record label ROUGH TRADE.
This current exhibit is quite special because a part from being shown the posters, from tuesday to sunday, the lounge offers menus to have dinner while The Smiths songs will be played – from 20:00 to 00:00h.
The Value of the collection is priceless* and is the fruit over a decade of careful research.
The posters form part of the personal collection of a true Smiths’ fan, Marc Capella that likes to pay tribute to the band that believes has most successfully integrated graphic art, poetry, claim and music.
The Value of the collection is priceless* and is the fruit over a decade of careful research.
*In November 24th, 2008, Christie’s New York Art gallery sold at auction The Smiths first LP promotional poster reaching a winner bid of $563.
Click for auction details
The Smiths released their first single in May 1983 and broke up 4 years later in the summer of 1987. The summer of 2012 marks 25 years since their breakup.
Marc Capella confesses “*Hatful of Hollow” LP, especially the song “Heaven knows I’m miserable now”, caused a turning point from then on the way he have thought and the way he have acted lately.
1. La Cova Lounge – El Cau Venue, Tarragona, Catalonia
El Cau Venue it is located in a roman cave from the 1ST CENTURY A.D. This cave was projected as a part of the structure of the Roman Circus of Tàrraco.
In the course of time, in Midde ages, used to be a familiar house.
In the 18th and 19th century was reconverted in a coal cellar. By the year 1969 it opened its doors as a nocturnal venue where were realised performances of Flemish.
To the 1992 reopened as El Cau, one of the first venues where to realise concerts in Tarragona. El Cau has held gigs of bands such “La Habitación Roja”, Tachenko, Macaco, Sidonie, Dorian, Chucho, Miqui Puig, MAGA, “DOCTOR EXPLOSION”, The New Raemon or the well-known Love of Lesbian, among others.
2.The exhibition includes:
- 20 posters promoting singles.
- 5 posters relating to the 4 studio albums (one showing members of the band with the famous image of the Salford Lads Club)
- 3 posters promoting compilation albums
- 1 poster for the only official live concert
- 1 special poster produced by Marc Capella for this exhibition
The sleeves of The Smiths discs, illustrated in the posters, refer to the world of cinema, literature or music: including the appearance of icons such as James Dean, Alain Delon, Truman Capote, Terence Stamp, Shelagh Delaney, Elvis Presley or Viv Nicholson.
Gallery of The Smiths promo posters – LA COVA
3. Information on posters exhibited:
1. Hand in Glove (May 1983) Unknown male model photographed by Jim French, taken from Margaret Walters’ book The Nude Male published in 1978.
2. This Charming Man (October 1983) The French actor, Jean Marais, in a scene from Jean Cocteau’s film Orphée in 1950.
3. What Difference does it Make? (January 1984) British actor, Terence Stamp, in a photograph taken while filming The Collector (1965) directed by William Wyler.
4. The Smiths album (February 1984) The American actor and sex symbol, Joe Dallesandro, in a scene from the film Flesh, directed by Paul Morrissey in 1968.
5. Hand in Glove (with Sandie Shaw) (April 1984) Rita Tushingham in the film adaptation of a play by Shelagh Delaney called A taste of honey, directed by Tony Richardson in 1961.
6. Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now (May 1984) Viv Nicholson became famous after winning 152,000 pounds in the football-pools in 1961 and then later went bankrupt. She went on to write a book on the experience titled Spend Spend Spend.
7. William, it was really nothing (August 1984) Photograph of a male model sitting on the edge of the bed, taken during the making of an ad for ADS speakers in 1982 (the sleeve of the single shows a speaker on the bed behind the model).
8. Hatful of Hollow (Compilation of singles and versions) (November 1984) Photograph by Gilles Decroix of male model, Fabrice Colette, showing a tattoo of a Jean Cocteau’s drawing from book Le livre blanc.
9. How Soon Is Now? (February 1985) Sean Barrett, British actor. The photo is a scene from the British film Dunkirk, directed by Leslie Norman in 1958.
10. Meat is Murder album (February 1985) Image from the American documentary In the Year of the Pig, about the causes of the Vietnam war and directed by Emile de Antonio in 1968.
11. Shakespeare’s Sister (March 1985) Famous British actress, Patricia Phoenix, in her role as Elsie Tanner in the British soap opera Coronation Street.
12. That Joke Isn’t Funny Anymore (July 1985) The same image as the Meat is murder album but up closer, with yellow background and an insert of image from sleeve of single – the only one that is different from poster.
13. The Boy with the Thorn in his Side (September 1985) The American writer, Truman Capote, photographed by Cecil Beaton in 1949.
14. Bigmouth Strikes Again (May 1986) Photo of James Dean taken in 1948 by his friend Nelva Jean Thomas in his home town (Fairmont, Indiana).
15. The Queen is Dead LP (June 1986) The French actor, Alain Delon, in a scene from a 1964 film called L’insoumis.
16. The Queen is Dead (distributed in the USA) (June 1986) Showing members of the band with the Salford Lads Club in the background.
17. Panic (July 1986) Richard Bradford, a Texas born actor and star of the British TV series The Man in a Suitcase (1967).
18. Panic “B” (July 1986) Version featuring Morrissey’s hand-written lyrics.
19. Ask (October 1986) The British actress, Yootha Joyce, in a still from the film Catch us if you can (1965).
20. Shoplifters of the World Unite (January 1987) The first official photo of Elvis Presley.
21. The World Won’t Listen LP (Compilation of singles and others) (February 1987) Cropped photograph from book titled Rock`n`roll times by Jürgen Vollmer (1981) taken in the early 60s.
22. Louder Than Bombs 2 LP (singles and others) (March 1987) Shelagh Delaney, British playwright. The photo was taken in Manchester in August 1961 by Arnold Newman.
23. Sheila Take a Bow (April 1987) American transsexual model, Candy Darling, in film Women in revolt, directed by Paul Morrissey and produced by Andy Warhol in 1971.
24. Girlfriend in a Coma (August 1987) (green) The playwright Shelagh Delaney who wrote the play A taste of Honey.
25. Girlfriend in a Coma (August 1987) (grey)
26. Strangeways, Here We Come LP (September 1987) Richard Davalos in the film East of Eden, directed by Elia Kazan in 1955.
27. I Started Something I couldn’t finish (November 1987) Avril Angers from the film The Family Way (1966), directed by Roy Boulting.
28. Last Night I Dreamt (December 1987) Billy Fury, British singer.
29. Rank live album (September 1988) Alexandra Bastedo, British actor. Photo taken from Birds of Britain, 1967 collection, by J. D. Green.
4.The Smiths, the band
Vocals and lyrics: Morrissey
Music: Johnny Marr
Bass: Andy Rourke
Drums: Mike Joyce
The Smiths was one of the most prolific bands in the history of music during the time they were together, from 1982 to early summer 1987. The band was led by the song writing partnership of Morrissey and Johnny Marr, and was signed up to the independent record label, Rough Trade Records. Together with other independent labels across the UK, Rough Trade set up a distribution network called “The Cartel” to provide better access for their bands to the record market in the face of the powerful “major” distributors (EMI, Warner, etc…).
At that time, the group was particularly notorious and revolutionary for two reasons: the profound lyrics by Morrissey (unusual, poetic, poignant, ironic and controversial) and the musical composition by Marr which brought the guitar back into centre stage in the charts. Following the punk years of the 70s, the emergence of The Smiths in Great Britain was like the eruption of a volcano at the epicentre of the post-punk era, with stinging lyrics and the presence of flowers (chrysanthemums and gladioli) in any public appearance of the band.
The Smiths albums are found in most top 100 discs of all time, particularly “The Queen is Dead”.
5. Acknowledgements: “25 years without The Smiths” Exhibition
I would like to thank:
My cousin Teti, for kindly designing the web-page free of charge, and simply for being the “best” person I’ve ever known.
My brothers, Jordi and Antoni Capella: the former for being my “Jordian” angel and the latter for being my preferred reference point, without whom this exhibition would not have been possible.
My parents, Antoni Capella and Eugènia Puig, for their love and respect for me as the person I decided to be.
My friends, Montse Masdeu and Mercè Farrés, for their support from day one and because “they are what they want to be”.
Telm Costa, for the time taken to educate me emotionally, time he didn’t have. Madame Arnoux, who helped me grow and overcome my own limits. Without her, it would not be as I am now.
Imma Aguas and Santi Garriga, who grabbed my hand and pulled me out of the deep blue sea, enabling me to see the sun.
The family at Bar Blau in Cambrils, for their patience and help.
Xavi Bofarull and Núria García, Dani Codorniu and Jeannet Masdeu, for giving over and above the call of friendship.
My cousin, Mònica Capella, as someone who also believes in her dreams.
Adrià Garreta, who personally delivered 2 posters from Edinburgh (not forgetting his wife Toñi).
LUMARC Cambrils, for the attention received, their professionalism and the care they took when framing the posters.
Caryn Gough, designer of The Smiths’ posters, for her great kindness whenever I needed to talk to her.
And a very special thanks to Jordi Domingo. I hope my dream reaches you. I still remember, as if it was only yesterday, the Sunday evenings of 1989-90 when you and my brother Jordi took me to La Cage while on our way to it by car you discover us the unknown The Stone Roses.
I would also like to thank: Flavio Santanna, Richard Engler, Stephane (Passions Just like Mine), Ale Kapacevich (Typical Smiths), Albert Puig i Cros (No Sonores), Alessandro Pecchia, Stephen Tait, Martyn and Tim (Movie Poster Art Gallery), Marta Vallverdú i Pujol, Deborah (Morrissey Madness), Elena Cavero, Abigail Ward, Debi Jacobson (Limagerie Gallery), Jeff Gold (Records Mecca), Bernd Spanner, César Hernáez, Arturo Cercadillo, Steve Nice, Pep Escoda, Joe Moss, Ángeles Matesanz and Octavio Botana.
I would like to dedicate this to all those who believe that dreams DO come true, for otherwise they are not dreams.
For the rest, regrettably majority, the Nightmare on Elm Street saga.