Daniel Johnston exhibit opens Saturday at downtown museum Jones Center
Saturday brings the opening of "Daniel Johnston: I Live My Broken Dreams" to The Contemporary Austin's downtown museum space the Jones Center.
The exhibit connects the late former Austinite's music and artwork through a mix of "concert posters, hand-made tapes, and Johnston’s notebooks to vinyl records, comics, and toys from his vast collections," according to the museum's website. Also included is a piano that Johnston owned.
The exhibit's opening date marks the second anniversary of Johnston's death at age 58 in a Houston-area assisted-living facility. Johnston lived in Austin in the 1980s, gaining notoriety when he appeared on a 1985 MTV special filmed here after he'd made connections with many local musicians by passing out crudely recorded cassette tapes of his songs.
Organized by TCA chief curator Heather Pesanti and associate curator Robin K. Williams, the exhibit will remain on display through March 20, 2022. Also in the works are "collaborative public programs and performances" to be announced, as well as a separately organized exhibit of drawings by Johnston and his sister Marjory Johnston coming to the Bale Creek Allen Gallery in East Austin at an as-yet unspecified date.
(Full disclosure: I loaned the exhibit my copy of the 1983 cassette "Hi, How Are You?" with Johnston's handwriting on the label, without compensation.)