ROCKCHICTM: The Life and Times of The Electric Guitar 1931-2006

All press / news


Set within a dynamic multimedia experience that captures the essence of a rock stage, RockChicTM: The Life And Times Of The Electric Guitar features more than 100 legendary, vintage, rare and customised guitars, in an exhibition which examines the electric guitar’s origins, and focuses on its evolution and influence on society over the last 75 years. Produced by BigTime.TV, RockChicTM is, essentially, a 'History Of Rock' multi-media experience, showcasing guitars and artists who have helped shape contemporary pop culture.

Visitors will embark on a journey that spans 75 years, starting with the ‘Frying Pan’, the world’s first electric guitar - never previously exhibited outside of the US - together with a remarkable display of vintage instruments, including a 1950s Silvertone guitar with an amp in the case, and an early Rickenbacker arch top. The collection also includes instruments associated with rock’s greatest icons, including the likes of Keith Richards, Bo Diddley, Jimi Hendrix, Carlos Santana, Van Morrison, and Phil Lynott, to name but a few, and an amazing collection owned by the legendary Rory Gallagher, alongside an extraordinary display of unique customised guitars.

A multi-faceted exhibition, the RockChic™ project has also invited a host of the world’s leading multi-disciplinary creators, from the fields of design, photography, architecture, music and visual arts, to take an electric guitar, and treat this emotive object as a blank canvas. Creators include Nick Rhodes, Patrick Cox, Christopher Bailey, David LaChapelle, Diane von Furstenberg and Dave Fanning. These resulting artworks, which feature in the exhibition, are as individual as the artists themselves, offering a unique insight into the Creator’s relationship with this iconic instrument. Using a variety of materials, from diamonds to snakeskin and photographic images, some have chosen to produce signature artworks, or tell a story, while others have used this project as an opportunity to pay homage to their own heroes.

Each of these customised guitars will, ultimately, be auctioned for charities nominated by the individual Creators, including Maggie’s Cancer Caring Centres, Amnesty International, Keep A Child Alive and the Irish Hospice Foundation.

Playing at the National Museum of Ireland’s Decorative Arts & History site at Collins Barracks, Dublin from 23 November 2006 - 21 January 2007, RockChicTM promises to delight fans of music, art and history alike.

Admission is free. This exhibit will be coming to London in January.