David Lynch and his Phila. links in 2014 PAFA show

Filmmaker David Lynch says "the biggest influence in my whole life" was his time in Philadelphia.
Filmmaker David Lynch says "the biggest influence in my whole life" was his time in Philadelphia.
Posted: November 17, 2013

David Lynch, best known for his often-enigmatic and quirky films - think Eraserhead (1977), Blue Velvet (1986), and Inland Empire (2006) - and television shows ( Twin Peaks), launched his career as a visual artist in the late 1960s at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts.

Though he was not from Philadelphia, Lynch fell in love with the city during his years here as a student artist.

"There was violence and hate and filth," he once said. "But the biggest influence in my whole life was that city."

Now, the academy is acknowledging its famous progeny with a retrospective exhibition scheduled to run Sept. 5 through Jan. 4, 2015, in the historic Frank Furness building at Broad and Cherry Streets.

The show will comprise about 75 drawings and paintings, academy officials said. Details of the show are in flux, but Lynch's first movie, Six Men Getting Sick (Six Times), a short made in 1967, will be shown.

Lynch made the film in an abandoned room of the Furness building. Six Men Getting Sick, played on a loop at the academy's annual student show, shared first prize with a painting by Noel Mahaffey.

Despite his celebrity as a filmmaker, Lynch has never stopped painting and drawing. He has incorporated the Internet into his work, made animations, and composed and recorded music.

The show will be Lynch's first major survey in the United States, academy officials said, and will draw on works owned by the artist and those held in European and American collections.

An academy statement said the exhibition would present works from different periods "unified by recurring themes often using the house as a site of violence, memories, and passion." There will also be a section exploring Lynch's early work and its origins in Philadelphia from 1965 to 1970.


ssalisbury@phillynews.com

215-854-5594 @SPSalisbury

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