Rich Howells

Infamous ‘Party Monster’ artist Michael Alig returns to Analog Culture in Scranton on Jan. 5

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While the First Friday Scranton art walk is typically quieter in January, with many downtown venues not participating due to the cold and snowy weather, Analog Culture will shake things up this Friday, Jan. 5 by featuring the work of controversial New York City club promoter and artist Michael Alig.

As the co-founder of the Club Kids, a group of colorful NYC dance clubbers in the late 1980s and early ’90s, Alig and others like James St. James made a name for themselves by throwing popular parties and creating flamboyant costumes and personas, all fueled by excessive drug use and media attention.

This culminated in 1996 when Alig and his roommate, Robert “Freeze” Riggs murdered fellow Club Kid Andre “Angel” Melendez after an argument over drug money and dismembered his body to cover up the crime. After pleading guilty to first-degree manslaughter in 1997, Alig and Riggs were sentenced to 10 to 20 years in prison. Riggs was released on parole in 2010, with Alig following in 2014.

The headline-grabbing story received even more attention after St. James published the 1999 memoir “Disco Bloodbath” detailing the events, which inspired the 2003 film “Party Monster” starring Macaulay Culkin as Alig and Seth Green as St. James.

Since Alig’s release from prison, he has returned to the New York club scene and has become a writer, YouTube talk show host, and painter, displaying his pop artwork at the grand opening of Analog Culture last February. While he did not attend last year, he is slated to appear in person with his work on Jan. 5, and Analog Culture CEO Jeremiah Carmody will play a DJ set as K.A.N.O.B.I. during the First Friday opening, which will run from 5 p.m.-10 p.m.

Analog Culture (349 N. Washington Ave., Scranton) is a specialty shop that carries designer vinyl toys, limited edition apparel, graffiti paint and markers, and has on-site 3-D printing. The store is open Tuesday-Thursday from noon-6 p.m. and Friday-Saturday from 1 p.m.-8 p.m.

For more information on the art exhibit opening, see the Facebook event page.