past Exhibition


Location marker iconUltimoTime icon2022
Having worked around small clubs and the local music scene long enough to know I didn’t have a musical bone in my body but I could sure as shit organise things, I began to dream. As far as I knew the music business had no rules except the ones you made up and I was about to make up a whole lot of them.
Stephen ‘Pav’ Pavlovic


Unpopular drew on the never-before-seen archive of music promoter, record company founder, and entrepreneur Stephen 'Pav' Pavlovic to take audiences behind the scenes of the alternative music scene in the 1990s.

Unpopular stemmed from the idea that the scene began as a movement that deliberately avoided the mainstream and anything popular. Ironically, it became a dominant cultural movement of the 1990s as artists who helped define the genre rose in fame, including Sonic Youth, Beastie Boys, Mudhoney, Nirvana, Bikini Kill, Fugazi, Pavement, The Lemonheads and more.

Visitors saw more than 200 objects from Pav's extensive collection, including footage of live performances, previously-unheard music demos and live recordings, photographs, original graphic art, posters, and fanzines.

The exhibition also featured Kurt Cobain's Martin guitar plus new commissions by artist Lillian O'Neil and artist/filmmaker Julian Klincewicz.

Powerhouse presented a series of programs alongside the exhibition including a music photography masterclass with Sophie Howarth, analogue art workshops led by designers Ben Brown and Paul Curtis, and a music documentary film program.

Trailer for Unpopular with footage from Summersalt Festival 1999

Project Team

Major Partner