“Confessions” From New York’s Downtown 80’s Art Scene – New York News

“Confessions” From New York’s Downtown 80’s Art Scene – New York News

Michael Holman. Rob Northway photo

By Michelle Trauring

New York, circa 1984, was like Paris of the 1920s. The downtown art scene and the uptown hip-hop scene were on fire at the same time, and not only did Michael Holman live through it, he helped shape it.

“It was the zenith of our own Belle Epoch. One hundred years from now, that time will be compared to the Italian Renaissance and every other Belle Epoch the world has experienced,” said the filmmaker, artist, writer, and musician who co-founded the band Gray with painter Jean-Michel Basquiat; created, managed and choreographed the New York City Breakers; and made the first nationally broadcasted hip-hop television show, “Graffiti Rock,” a reality in 1984.

Through Mr. Holman’s spoken word performance piece, “Confessions of a Subculturalist,” he brings this era back to life, as well as the years before and after, through his personal experiences and his archives.

“It’s taken all my life, almost up until the present moment, to collect and tell these stories,” he said.

When pressed for details during an interview with The Sag Harbor Express, he was tight-lipped. But this is what he did say.

When was the first time you came out to the Hamptons?

I first started visiting Sag Harbor in the mid-1990s when I found opportunities to sail at the Sag Harbor Yacht Club. Then, my good friend, [artist] Sabina Streeter moved to Sag Harbor and she would invite me to visit often. We both go back to the…

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