Beastie Boys exhibition drawn from the band’s archive to open in LA in December

Beastie Boys fans looking to immerse themselves in the world and ethos of the seminal rap band will have a chance in Los Angeles next month.

Beginning Dec. 10, street art gallery Beyond the Streets will mount an exhibition of archival items and memorabilia spotlighting the raucous hip-hop group, which became the first rap act to score a Billboard-topping album with 1986’s Licensed to Ill, which included the songs “Brass Monkey” “, “(You gotta) fight for your right (to party!)” and “Girls.”

The exhibition, which will be free to the public and open until Jan. 23, is set to include a host of items from the personal collections of Adam “Ad-Rock” Horowitz and Michael “Mike D” Diamond. (After the death of third member Adam “MCA” Yauch in 2012 from cancer, group disbanded.)



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Titled Exhibit and presented in collaboration with Goldenvoice (the promoter behind most of the band’s California shows), the exhibit will feature everything from original handwritten lyrics and clothing worn by the Beastie Boys in their music videos to musical instruments, such as an 808 drum machine, and vintage merch. There will also be a “handwritten note from Madonna from when they were on tour with her,” says Beyond the Streets founder Roger Gastman.

Many items in the show, which will cover around 4,000 square meters of the gallery, have never before been seen by the public.

“We’re not only honored to be a part of Beyond the Streets, we’re excited that someone besides us appreciates all the weird shit we’ve been collecting and making music over the past forty years that will be on display ,” Horovitz says in a statement.

Gastman — who also co-founded the adjacent Control gallery with Sky Gellatly — tells The Hollywood Reporter that he was inspired to continue creating the exhibit after reading the Beastie Boys Book, Diamond and Horovitz’s 2018 history of the band and seeing images inside some of the ephemera associated with the group’s history.

Gastman got in touch with the band’s management and asked, “‘Where’s all this? You know, where’s the lyrics? Where’s this flyer? Where’s this t-shirt?'” he recalls. “And they’re like, ‘We have bits and pieces of it. It’s in guys’ houses. It’s in a storage unit. It’s in an old apartment. Some of it is in this office. It wasn’t centrally located, and archived is a nice, clean way of saying it on.”

Eventually, Gastman visited Diamond and Horovitz—“I went right over to their houses and did a handwritten inventory,” says the gallerist—and over the course of months worked with the band and their management to sort items and curate the show. (The band was also the subject of the 2020 Spike Jonze/Apple TV+ documentary History of the Beastie Boys.)

“The Beastie Boys were a part of so many people’s lives. It was hard to be anywhere in the 80s through the early 2000s without seeing, hearing or having something to do with the Beastie Boys. We are thrilled to tell their story in an authentic, real way that the fans can relate to,” Gastman says, adding, “I remember when License to Ill came out — watching the videos on TV. I was in grade school. I probably still have the cassette tape at home at my mom’s in storage. And then I remember Paul’s Boutique came out and so many people didn’t like it at first. And then the next record [Check Your Head] come out. I was like, ‘Holy shit, this is amazing!’ And then I listened to Paul’s Boutique again and I was like, ‘Roger, you’re an idiot. This is one of the best records.’ They have just continued to be so relevant in my life.”

While items in the exhibit will not be for sale, Beyond the Streets (located at 434 N. La Brea Ave.) will debut exclusive new Beastie Boys merchandise in its gift shop, including zines, collectibles and clothing.

Timed admission tickets for the show — which Gastman curated with Michael Delahaut and Tim Conlon — are available now available via AXS.

This article originally appeared in

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