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Amanda Palmer Visits L.A. & Gets Naked at a Musical Art Party

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Palmer flexes her muscles during last night's performance. Photo by Richard Lowe via the LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr
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Singer/songwriter Amanda Palmer, well known for her dramatic, over-the-top performance style, graced Los Angeles last night with a special show at the Pop tART gallery in Koreatown; she was accompanied by her new band, The Grand Theft Orchestra, as well as a collection of art inspired by her music and created by the likes of Shepard Fairey, Molly Crabapple, and Frances Cobain.

It was an intimate gathering; the audience was largely made up of only those fans who contributed $300 or more to Palmer’s astounding and record-shattering Kickstarter campaign. In a matter of months it raised over $1 million dollars, and the funds will be used to pay the high costs of recording and distributing the group’s forthcoming juggernaut of an album.

For their high-priced pledge, supporters were handsomely rewarded with a NC-17 rated show so Palmer-esque they’ll most likely be talking about for years to come. After highly entertaining sets by indie/punk duo Die Roten Punkte, bellydancer Super Kate, and Jherek Bischoff, Palmer emerged for her first number in a cream, floor-length negligee and wielding a giant kitchen knife. As the song progressed in tempo and volume, Palmer proceeded to pound the knife against a knife sharpener to create some of the song’s backbeat and she belted out her lyrics sans microphone. The knife was a reoccurring instrument throughout the night, later used to cut a beet, point at audience members, or be whacked against a metal fry pot lid. You wouldn’t dare pull your eyes away for fear of missing some exquisitely theatrical detail as the show continued.

After a collection of emotional numbers and a closing of "Ukulele Anthem," Palmer’s stage face dropped away to reveal a mischievous, delighted grin. Plates of paint suddenly appeared in the audience as Palmer stripped and declared “You’re going to paint me naked!”

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And so it went. Streams of supporters started smearing her body with colors as she laughed with happiness and chatted as they worked. Some just watched the scene, while others took the time to peruse the art in the gallery before the crowd came in.

Though you won’t catch Palmer herself in L.A., the art based on her tunes will remain at Pop tART until July 26. Go and find your own inspiration - that’s what the collection, and Palmer’s music, are intended to do.