Bettie & The RamonesA Miller Ringma Hoppe Collaboration

Bettie Ringma and Curt Hoppe with watercolor study for the Bettie & The Ramones painting
Bettie Ringma and Curt Hoppe with watercolor study for the Bettie & The Ramones painting
The finished painting<
The finished painting
Curt poses with the painting.
Curt poses with the painting.

Curt Painting Bettie & The Ramones

Curt Hoppe poses with the painting in its early stages.
Bettie and The Ramones painting in its early stage
Curt Hoppe working on the painting.
Close-up of Joey Ramone in the painting
Curt Hoppe painting Tommy Ramone.
Bettie and The Ramones painting near completion

The Ramones And Bettie Sign The Painting At CBGB

Joey Ramone poses in front of signed painting.
Joey Ramone
DeeDee Ramone signing the painting.
DeeDee Ramone
Johnny Ramone poses in front of signed painting.
Johnny Ramone
The Ramones watching Tommy sign the painting.
The Ramones watching Tommy sign the painting.
Tommy Ramone poses in front of the signed painting.
Tommy Ramone
Bettie Ringma signing the painting.
Bettie Ringma

Our "Bettie Visits CBGB" project achieved grandiose new dimensions when Curt Hoppe, our downstairs neighbor at 98 Bowery, asked to join the Miller & Ringma collaboration. A talented photo realist painter searching for the right subject to launch his career, Curt had watched enviously as Bettie and I grabbed a piece of the CBGB spotlight and began appropriating Punk’s visual side by first exhibiting our snapshots at art galleries and then organizing the world's first "Punk Art" exhibition. Curt’s painting of "Bettie and the Ramones" was completed just in time for the exhibition opening in Washington DC in May 1978. Our art world credentials had originally gotten us into CBGB; now Curt's large, impressive painting earned us a command "signature" performance by the scene’s signature group. While many might view the painting as the ultimate fan tribute to the trail-blazing Ramones, we saw "Bettie and the Ramones" as a work of fine art, and were pleased when a reproduction of the painting appeared in the magazine Art in America. The Miller Ringma Hoppe collaboration would continue for the next year and a half with new celebrity subjects.