When Jacques de Beaufort debuted his latest project, Deep Inside the Man-Cave, the Lake Worth gallery owner opted to ditch the sparkling wine and violins we might normally associate with such high-brow pursuits in favor of drinks and music a bit more befitting of his subject matter: cans of PBR, Natty Ice, and Miller High Life paired with some heavy-as-hell thrash metal.
This past Saturday, the Jacques de Beaufort Studio/Gallery opened with Deep Inside the Man-Cave, a show that seeks to explore and celebrate the unheralded beauty of everyday masculinity. But this was by no means an event exclusive nor targeted to the XY chromosome. A collection of 44 portraits comprising some of the local scene's most recognizable male faces, the show offers a glimpse into all sorts of creative types, but particularly those hailing from Palm Beach: Mykel Morrison, a singer-songwriter and bouncer at Propaganda, Billy Schmidt and Sage Duvall of Raggy Monster, nearly all of the good-time-ska rudeboys of Spred the Dub, and Steev Rullman, owner and founder of Pure Honey Magazine.
In addition to lending his likeness to the project, the aforementioned Rullman also assembled the musical acts for the show, and that's where the evening revealed another kind of celebration, that of the little guy hustling to make a living with his — or her — art. Between de Beaufort himself, who works as an associate professor at Palm Beach State College during the day, the artists and musicians adorning the walls, and the pair of bands who both arrived to the show in cramped, sweaty vans, there was simply no ignoring how much local talent had come together in one space, sourced from our very own humble community.
That said, the first band up was very much not local. Psychomagic hail from Portland, Oregon, but they understand the struggle as well as anyone and would have no problem fitting in with the ragtag crew of the nearby scene. A quartet who seemingly traveled to Florida from a planet where only the Velevt Underground and doo-wop play on the radio, the psychedelic surf-rock outfit sounded like a meth-addicted Frankie Valli fronting a garage-rock version of the Doors.
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At one point at the close of a song, lead singer Steven Fusco commented, “That was some heroin shit.” And we were feeling its effects. Psychomagic were like a trippy drug that, underneath the purple glow from a pair of naked black light bulbs, took the gallery on a journey as surreal as the auras de Beaufort drew around many of his subjects. In short, Psychomagic are the group who would score the violent, weird-ass film Quentin Tarantino and David Lynch would make, should they ever decide to team up.
Between bands, guests enjoyed drinks, chatter, and of course, the main attraction, de Beaufort’s drawings. Realistic and filled with as much life as their flesh-and-blood counterparts, each portrait was imbued with interesting and curious details ranging from intricate tattoos to sentient glints in their pastel eyes.
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In the midst of all the good vibes, a police officer showed up regarding a parking complaint from a neighbor, but the issue was quickly sorted and the show went on as signaled by the evening’s second and final act, Snakehole, who nearly blew out their speakers while setting up shop.
The Miami-based art-rock two-piece of Autumn Casey and KC Toimil brought an unexpected cyclone of lady rage to de Beaufort's Man-Cave. Clad in rather unassuming and sensible-looking dresses, Snakehole descended on the gallery with their high-energy brand of squealing, heavy-metal riffs and black, fuzzy noise.
Toimil hit her drum kit so hard it almost looked like it was trying to run away from her in a vain effort to end the merciless beating. They unleashed a blistering hell on a room filled with drawings of men, a juxtaposition with which de Beaufort was absolutely thrilled. These daughters of Helmet and Headbanger’s Ball provided a wild and welcome balance to the gallery showing and helped to bring the circle to a close with their synergistic and intuitive style of performing. By all accounts, the night was a success and de Beaufort’s decision to showcase the face of creativity in all its forms yielded the greatest returns that went beyond the money made from the sales of his very manly, and heartfelt, art.