Background: Web Museum and Curio Center


The Underground National Archives (originally Hotel National Archives) was founded 1973 by artists, musicians, poets, and dreamers. It it to serve the entertainment, philosophical, and spiritual needs of lost hippies, baby boomers, the aristocratic ignorant, and the low rent intellectual - anyone sickened by the falsehoods in modern society. Out of a gift collection of tapes known only as the "Comet File" came the music and sketches - the base for an archive. Other donations were made to this unique pool of subculture art as it slowly drew the attention of the gaga underground. Many of the original recordings have been re-mastered and yet some have faded with time or become lost. Still, this raw cross section of time and place - culture past and present is preserved as a vivid account of today's need for genuine detour. This quest for alternative divergence may be due to a recoil effect created by the VCR implosion, the desensitization of emotions by video games, computer overexposure, the hollow racket of super-produced rock music, or the frantic and blustering MTV. There came a time to say no to Ozzie and Harriet, no to Elvis impersonators, and hell no to disco. America homogenized by the TV set is detribalized and confused, finally revolting against Madison Avenue's pre-packaged set of ideals; it's transparent status quo designed for impressionable minds and control over the flock's spending habits. An example is the dirtclod fashions associated with Seattle's Grunge movement. For many, the window of the TV screen has become a two way mirror whereupon one's reflection is altered by the wizards on the other side of the glass. Entranced by the box, dazzled by the flashes of light, many surrender and become zombies to air fresheners, hot butter guns, and toilet bowl dyes. Magazines offer the way to be at a price: directing interests and effort into personal adornment. Commercial radio as a medium has become the biggest loser of all, an electronic Chihuahua chasing it's tail, repeating songs, bragging, and injecting into the air an intense riot of commercials. Some of us have imagined a better life on our terms, a more potent meaningful entertainment where you control the flashes of light, adjust the levels of ignorance. A place where one gets the first and last laugh, that is at the center of the Curio~Center of The Underground National Archives.    Curator: haw