“The members of Bobo have become possessed by a psychotic spiritgod from the Hellverse that has turned the art group into Evil Bobo,” Andrew Gillespie, who’s a member of Bobo, told me this week over email.
Tonight, the group, which is both a band and an art collective, will premiere a new performance, nicely timed for Halloween, at Marinaro Gallery in Lower Manhattan. It is called “HellBox.” Gillespie described it as “essentially a Horror Experience that you walk through, while being blindfolded and listening to an audio track on a media player.” The installation is part of a larger exhibition curated by the artist Nathaniel DeLarge called “Fear Faire.”
Formed in 2006 in Philadelphia but now based in New York, Bobo currently consists of Gillespie and the artists Phil Cote, Nick Payne and Chad. They have performed within the East Coast music underground and engaged as well in a variety of more contemporary art-centric activities, working with galleries like 247365, Foxy Production, and Knowmoregames, and collaborating with artists including Ryan Trecartin and Lizzie Fitch.
But back to “HellBox.”
“The interdimensional spiritgod Hozana uses the vital energy of the art collective to assume a fixed form within their mental plane of existence,” Gillespie told me, as a way of providing a bit more context for tonight. “Assuming the form of an over-muscular steroids cow, Hozana has hijacked the servant vessels of the Bobo members via a gateway portal to the Hell Dimension. The art collective bait art-goers into their art space with Instagram promotional material only to torture them with Bobo culture (horrendous music and art), and eat them whole.”
“Stab out your vision and step inside Bobo’s shared mindscape as they get ravaged by an insatiable hunger for human meat,” Gillespie added. “HellBox is a portal to a realm of new carnal pleasures. A tactile Horror Experience. A sensation space in total darkness.”
Though they have played Halloween shows in the past, “HellBox” represents a step into the unknown for Bobo. “We’ve never played a show or made art in total darkness so working in this way is totally new for us,” Gillespie said.