It’s been a decade since the Niagara-turned-punk rocker had a solo show in Detroit, and the last time she showcased local work was when she was dirty showFeatured artist in 2020. Then the pandemic hit, and Niagara contracted COVID-19 before most of them knew the disease. I freaked out for six months, and couldn’t do anything. I was like, “What’s going on?” Metro Times. “I didn’t know it was the flu, I just thought what my life was like.”
However, the prolific illustrator—whose work often depicts many murderous women in a pop art style that is both subtle and far from quality—says she was grateful for the rare hiatus, which gave her a renewed sense of inspiration and urgency. . “I thought, ‘I should paint this in case COVID kills me. I have to paint this before I die,” she says of a picture featured in Stopan exhibition of new, never-before-seen paintings and prints that opens Saturday at the Royal Oak Edo Gallery.
The show’s title comes from a new photo depicting Diana Ross from the Supremes; Niagara, who starred in Destroy All Monsters in the ’70s and ’80s, says she also found new appreciation for hit makers while revisiting the sets of Motown.
“I hated hearing it again. It was putting me down. It’s mostly about whining and things about girls,” she says. “I couldn’t handle it until I got the Supremes compilation. Every song was so good, I haven’t heard it in a long time… It was such a shock that they were so hopeful, even when they were whining, they were whining about love in an optimistic way.”
Niagara will be present at the inaugural print signing reception, including a new collaboration with Shephard Fairey, and will be Danny Kroha (from Gories) and DJ Alr! ght also on decks that revolve around rock and roll. “It’s different than being in a band, where you work out every day, and then you go to work, you stand on stage, and you try to be dumb, dumb cool, for an hour,” she says of her performances. “With art, you’ve done all your work, and all you have to do is go to the show, meet people, and throw a party.”
The Opening Reception will be held from 7-11 PM on Saturday, July 9 at Edo Gallery, 4313 W. 13 Mile Rd., Royal Oak; edoramenhouse.com; 248-556-5775. Reservations encouraged.
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