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Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The filth and the fury

What insights to the early days of punk — or the artist-manager relationship — might music historians glean from this caricature of Malcolm McLaren?

University of York archeologists have given the graffiti-covered walls of the Denmark Street flat once occupied by the Sex Pistols' John Lydon the Lascaux cave treatment:
'The tabloid press once claimed that early Beatles recordings discovered at the BBC were the most important archaeological find since Tutankhamun's tomb.

'The Sex Pistols' graffiti in Denmark Street surely ranks alongside this and - to our minds - usurps it.'

The researchers refer to the site as 'anti-heritage', because it contradicts what agencies and heritage practitioners typically value.

They say: 'We feel justified in sticking our tongues out at the heritage establishment and suggesting that punk's iconoclasm provides the context for conservation decision-making.

'This is an important site, historically and archaeologically, for the material and evidence it contains. But should we retain it for the benefit of this and future generations? In our view, with anti-heritage, different rules apply.'

Jukebox Jury 1978