One might experience a nostalgic twinge for the 1980s at the Visual Art Institute’s Garfo Gallery with the exhibit “1982: Let’s Start Here.” The title references the birth year of the Institute. Notables such as Trent Call, Brian Patterson and Gentry Blackburn are just a few of the artists whose paintings and sculptures appropriate the touchstones of the ’80s and bring them to garish life for this exhibit. Blackburn’s densely painted “Michael Jackson” or “My Little Pony” represent the lighter side of the decade, while Patterson’s video installation serves up pure political irony.
It’s meaningful in its nostalgia, as well as provocative in evoking a sensibility of the recent past. The exhibit reflects on an era that already seems relegated to history books but can be looked at once again through a pastiche of art objects that are as varied and vibrant as the decade and the year itself. There will be an artist’s lecture July 1 at 7 p.m. (Ehren Clark)
1982: Let’s Start Here @ Garfo Gallery, 1838 S. 1500 East, through July 3, VisualArtInstitute.org.