27 years old is a tricky age for Rock stars. And Kurt Cobain proved it once more by joining the selective club of rock stars who died at the age of 27. Like Jim Morrisson, Jimmy Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Brian Jones or recently Amy Winehouse, Kurt Cobain died at the top of his glory. Probably that is why he became a sort of symbol and rock legend. It’s been 20 years now and in order to remember his disappearance, there is a new photo exhibition in Paris that will take place from March 25th to June 21st 2014. And it is called: “The Last Shooting”.
Kurt Cobain, Desperate Rock star or the symbol of a lost generation?
The end of the 80’s, beginning of the 90’s was a complex moment. After all the exaggerations of the past decades, the world engine was slowing down because of economic crisis, Aids devastating regions and countries and unemployment just beating the scare out of people and especially young people. A full generation of people completely lost in a social transition. From the end of colonialism period towards the end of the cold war, the world has changed and unfortunately it did not give the keys to understand this new future. That is why we called the entire generation born between 1961 and 1981 the Generation X. X for unknown or undefined. This period was also the moment in which Grunge also bursted in to the world of music. Considered as a sub-genre of Alternative Rock, Grunge was also called the “Sound of Seattle” where the movement firstly started. Inspired by the Hardcore Punk and Heavy metal, Grunge got its first roots mid-80’s. But the world waited until beginning of the 90’s and the global successes of Pearl Jam’s Ten and of course the worldwide blockbuster Nevermind by Nirvana. Thanks to this album, an entire lost generation found its voice. The suffering and the edge often translated into the songs, reached a great number of people. With more than 30 million copies sold with Nevermind, Nirvana brought Alternative Rock to the mainstream. Probably that was also the problem. How to remain faithful to an ideology as Alternative rock if you become mainstream and even perform in MTV? All the pain expressed by Kurt Cobain in his song writing was probably too heavy to bear while success, fame and celebrity were being given to the group. Track after track, single after single, the growing success of Nirvana was not helping the leading voice of the group to get better. The downside was also the consumption of heroine that takes you to a deadly ride, never positive. Probably the hardest thing for Kurt Cobain was the unbearable fact of feeling alone in the middle of all this. Nobody could really understand what he had inside of him. And the more you feel lonely, the more you think that nobody can really understand. And if you had success into the situation, even worse. “Why should you complain about? You have everything”. Human beings are not made to be alone. It is proved, so what happens when someone is completely lonely? Well, nothing good. Kurt Cobain would probably have needed some help, meaning professional help, in order to face his demons. But no one could have helped him without his authorization. Now it is too late.
Last week, the farewell letter that he left behind, was published in many media, which frankly I found pretty much immoral from these media. The last words of a person should have remained private to the people he was talking to. That is why you will not see it here.
Kurt Cobain, The Last Shooting with Youri Lenquette.
Some people see the last photo session with Youri Lenquette as a premonitory message. It happened in Paris in February of the same year, so 2 month before Kurt Cobain death. Youri Lenquette had the privilege to do a series of photos of the prince of Grunge. The most disturbing point is that the photo shooting had as one of the main topics a revolver gun. Knowing the facts that happening 2 month later, we wonder how connected coincidence was, but according to the photographer, Youri Lenquette, using a gun as a topic for a rock star photo shoot was a very common theme. Here are some of the pictures you can see in the exhibition.
Youri Lenquette – “Kurt Cobain – The Last Shooting” 20 years…
14/16 rue de Thorigny
75003 Paris France
20 years after Kurt Cobain death, we should probably think of him as the rebel he was, provocative, understated and probably genius. The photos exhibited in Paris will present you a singular Kurt Cobain, almost already absent from the world he was living, more like the vision of a thought or a feeling. An advice to visit this exhibition? Come as you are.
Info sourced at the gallery official communication release, wikipedia, Nirvana official website, Telerama and FranceTv info.