I've Seen the Future and I'm Not Going: The Art Scene and Downtown New York in the 1980s


Product Details

$29.95  $27.55
Pantheon Books
Publish Date
6.6 X 1.3 X 9.1 inches | 1.5 pounds
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About the Author

PETER McGOUGH is an artist who has collaborated with David McDermott since 1980 as McDermott & McGough. They are known for their work in painting and photography. McGough divides his time between Dublin and New York City.


"If one ever wanted to eavesdrop on the meetings, parties, and art openings of the 1980s, McGough's memoir accomplishes that feeling in a frenetic style that leaves the reader dizzy after every outrageous story...McGough offers a personal view of New York's prominence in the art world in tales that are gritty, frustrating, and filled with laughter, some tears, lots of yelling, and love."--Michael Ruzicka, Booklist

"McGough offers a warm and witty account of his exploits with McDermott, recalling a conspiratorial atmosphere of profligate recklessness...Unlike many memoirs by well-known artists, there is no self-aggrandizement here, no unattractive score settling, no claims laid to misbegotten legacies, no tedium. McGough is a delightful raconteur. His conversational style translates real life into literature effortlessly. Crack open the tome and let Peter regale you."--Sam McKinniss, Bookforum

"[An] engrossing debut...This provocative account offers an idiosyncratic examination of gay pride and the 1980s art scene."--Publishers Weekly

"Peter McGough has written the most authentic, tragic, and inspiring memoir of the 1980s art scene ever: a tale not merely of death and rebirth but of re-death and re-rebirth. It's beautifully wrought with amazing detail, names named, twists and turns, and recollections of twentieth-century New York City, worthy of a nineteenth-century novelist."
--Isaac Mizrahi, author of I.M.: A Memoir

"A rags-to-riches story of some of the most uncompromising artists you've ever encountered--a gay couple full of charm and heroism. This is essential reading for every aspiring creative nonconformist."
--Edmund White, author of City Boy: My Life in New York During the 1960s and '70s

"A Manhattan feast of artists, eccentrics, oddballs, users, queens, collectors, grifters, and saints. The witty, wily McGough captures the highs and lows of New York City in its gritty, everything-goes prime while painting the story of a young misfit artist in search of himself."
--Christopher Bollen, author of The Destroyers

"McGough has painted a profoundly honest and affecting portrait of the downtown New York art world in the 1980s, when the excitement of creative and sexual freedom was shadowed by the agony and destruction of AIDS."
--Bob Colacello, author of Holy Terror: Andy Warhol Close Up