Cherokee Street Gallery


Patti Astor Takes Over

Patti Astor and Benjamin Lowder 2017 NYC, Urban Art Fair, “Fun Gallery Flash”

Patti Astor and Benjamin Lowder 2017 NYC, Urban Art Fair, “Fun Gallery Flash”

Patti Astor is taking over Cherokee Street Gallery to share her incredible journey through the formation of the Hip Hop, Punk Rock, New Wave and Underground Film scenes of the late 1970’s to early 1980’s New York City. Astor will be at Cherokee Street Gallery on Friday, October 12th for an opening reception at 7:00 pm to present her personal collection of artifacts and ephemera from her legendary Fun Gallery days as well as her career staring in landmark art films. She will also share her amazing first hand experiences in a talk at Cherokee Street Gallery on Saturday, October 13 beginning at 6:oo pm.

Through her film career Patti Astor earned a reputation as the "Queen of The Downtown Screen" acting along-side people like Rene Ricard and Debbie Harry from the band Blondie. She appeared in early and influential art films by directors such as Jim Jarmusch, Eric Mitchel, Amos Poe and Charlie Ahearn. Astor is most well-known, as an actress, for her starring role in Charlie Ahrean’s 1982 movie Wildstyle, which was the first feature film to document Hip Hop culture.

Along with her film career, Astor opened Fun Gallery, with Bill Stelling, in the desolate East Village neighborhood of New York City. Through her pioneering efforts at Fun Gallery, from 1981 to 1985, Astor curated what has become the most important roster of American artists in recent history including Jean Michel Basquiat, Keith Haring, Jane Dickson, Kenny Scharf and “Dondi” White among others. Astor serves as a Curatorial Advisor for Cherokee Street Gallery, a role that grew out of Astor’s inclusion of the gallery’s founder and artist Benjamin Lowder in her roster of contemporary artists that she calls her “Fun Gallery Crew.” Lowder says, “Patti Astor is one of a very small group of individuals who were at the creative nexus in New York City that yielded a globally transformative American cultural movement not seen since the Jazz age. This is an important opportunity for St. Louis to witness living history.” 

Ben Lowder