Notes on Looking, April 29, 2010
Hello friends and Fellows,
Let’s call this issue of Notes “An Occasional (but hardly comprehensive) Guide to LA Artists Who are Spreading the Good Word by Showing Their Work In Various National and International Venues” If I miss something you know about don’t get crabby, just shoot me an email and smile at my ignorance. (Note that the color purple in the Notes on Looking color key reference guide denotes Olympian superiority of quality and superhuman conceptual and aesthetic powers, of LA artists that is. Cheers world!)
Tam Van Tran, Mind is a Pure Expanse of Space at Anthony Meier, 1969 California St., San Francisco, 94109
Closing May 14.
Amanda Ross-Ho, Somebody Stop Me, Mitchell-Innes and Nash, 534 W. 26th St., New York, 10001.
Closing May 1st so hurry. By the way, nice mention of Amanda in the current New Yorker. And no news on that website project of hers. (The hardest working artist in Los Angeles is clearly spending more time making work than typing code and uploading images.) For more Ross-Ho relentlless-osity here’s an interesting interview btwn Ross-Ho and Elad Lassry posted in Bomb Magazine in Feb 2010.
Chris Lipomi, Interactive Visual History Compression (The Ks), Michael Lett Gallery, 478 Karangahape Rd., PO BOx 68287 Newton, Auckland, New Zealand, 1145
Closing May 15.
In this show Lipomi continues his typological survey of contemporary art using the alphabet as his organizing principle. (And why not? It’s as valid an organizing method as abstraction or figuration or… anything else.) Alice Könitz, Kieran Kinney, Martin Kippenberger, Michael Kreber, George Kuchar and himself Chris (k)Lipomi all have work in the show. I say “have work in the show” so casually! Were I just in the Antipodes I would be rockin in Auckland with this big hit of Special K.
Matt Lipps, Home, Silverman Gallery, 804 Sutter St., San Francisco, 94109
April 30 thru June 5.
If you hurry you’ll be able to see the Luc Tuymans show at SFMOMA until May 2.
SFMOMA, 151 Third St., SF 94103
We Have as Much Time as It Takes will be another SF show you want to see. Curated by 12 Curatorial Studies Masters candidates and takes its title from (come on, you know this) the film 12 Angry Men. You remember Lee J. Cobb or Henry Fonda coaxing his co-jurors with that hopeful (and also potentially threatening) statement. There are 3 reasons I want to see this: Joanna Szupinska (formerly of Susanne Vielmetter Gallery) is one of the student curators, David Horvitz has work in the show (Horvitz is an artist I return to time and again for heady doses of fascination and delight) (and he’s quite possibly the bastard child of or reincarnation of Bas Jan Ader – check the birth and death dates! Who can tell?) and finally: this is a totally compelling strategy for presenting an exhibition! What an opportunity for learning this is!
Opens May 6 from 6 to 9 pm. Wattis Institute, 1111 Eighth St., SF CA 94107
Sonja Gerdes (adopted Angelena), Luna / Proxy / Fire / Snow #1, group show at Galerie Gebr. Lehman, Görlitzer Strasse 16, 01099 Dresden
Closing May 29 You’ll need to sort of click around: first click Enter, then Current Show Dresden, then scroll through the images to find Gerdes’s work. It’s worth the trip!
Hello again friends, now I’m talking to you in real time. Last night we attended Harawi with piano by Vicki Ray, vocals by Elissa Johnston and video by Lars Jan. Um, words fail me. (long contemplative moment) Many times I’ve read in considerations of Messiaen’s love song masterwork that it “requires the most advanced playing from incredibly accomplished musicians.” Anyone who listens to art music in Los Angeles knows already that Ray and Johnston are such beings so let me instead phrase it that “Messiaen’s love song masterwork allows supremely talented musicians to achieve a perfection only possible through very human interpretation.”
Jans’s video, commissioned by Piano Spheres for the performance, is an unsettling combination of clips from Arnold Franck’s silent film The Holy Mountain (with Leni Riefenstahl starring) and Alejandro Jodorowsky’s Holy Mountain. My first glance at the screen rewarded (cursed?) me with a view of Riefenstahl capering and dancing in the waves and then the snowy heights of Franck’s holy mountain. Jans’ use of Riefenstahl’s Alpine Triumphalism as a trope for love and obsession was weird and even disturbing considering Merssiaen’s German prisoner of war camp history and his writing of The Quartet for the End of Time during his imprisonment. Clips from Jodorowsky’s Holy Mountain included reptiles dressed in Aztec garb moving among pyramid model-scapes, various scenes of bloody sacrifice, breathtakingly beautiful moments such as smsll birds flying out of a mans gaping chest wound. My initital resistance to the film disappeared in a kind of haze and when I could tear my eyes away from Johnston’s beautiful acting and Rays heartstopping playing I watched, rapt, wondering what might come next and thrilling as much to the intensely disconcerting visuals as to the also intense music.
A four minute clip from Jodorowsky’s film here, and another site here with what appears to be the entire surrealistic film, should you have 112:47 to spare. Here you have an extremely rough cut of Jans’s film at Zipper Hall. Enjoy good people.
Lane Relyea wrote about the notion of Alpine Triumphalism some years ago. I thought I could find the magazine. I came home Wednesday night and started with old issues of Artext, then moved to Art Issues and then to X-TRA to no avail. I can picture a bony faced icy looking duchess-type woman with aristocratic garb and bearing in the picture. Oh dear. It was a great essay.
Never Very Far Apart, a group show at Redcat opened on Wednesday. This is Ryan Inouye’s (Ryan’s the Curatorial Assistant at Redcat) first (and very impressive) exhibition. Sorry if you missed the opening, there was an interesting artist/curator talk. Inouye spoke of getting his title for the show from an LA Times Sports section (found by a colleague in the basement men’s room at Disney Hall facilities). The gist of it, as I understand, is that there were two school football players who grew up on different sides of an artificial political dividing line and were as brothers – except the dividing line effectively separated their loyalties. Beginning with that thought, Inouye invited artists whose work is derived from “real” relationships to things (or people or ethical stances, etc.) in their own lives which may not be readily available for understanding by the viewer. But which may be discerned by a close reading and, I would think, a certain amount of research.
There’s a lot of made-ness to what I saw in the show. RJ Messineo’s paintings certainly have as part of their essence a quality of physical assembly, the several films and videos each allowed one to imagine an artist working on the ideas and the body of the film and Adriana Lara’s position as editor of Pazmaker allows her to gather artists from around the world to publish in the Spanish/English tri-fold of dialogue.
Go see Never Very Far Apart. I need to return to see and hear the films. Well done Ryan Inouye.
I still have not made my way to LA Louver. I’m not even sure I remember where Venice Blvd ends. Eek. I do know, however, that Frank Navarro and Art-Gate are hosting a conversation with artist Olga Koumoundouros and also a study of Charles Garabedian’s paintings this Saturday. I’ve not had any experience with Art-Gate’s organization, but Navarro is an interesting speaker and, well you know how I admire Koumoundouros. As a way of endeavoring toward enlightenment (wow – is that like the antithesis of slouching toward Bethlehem?) I offer you for homework a fascinating 2007 interview with Olga and Todd Bourret on Bourret’s website and a 2003 oral history interview Anne Ayers did with Charles Garabedian on the Smithsonian Archives of American Art.
LA Louver Gallery, 45 N. Venice Blvd., LA 90291
Human Resources at 510 Bernard St. Opens this weekend on May Day with a special convocation by the magical shamans of performance, music and video My Barbarian, music by Mad Gregs, Corey Fogel and Wounded Lion, performance by Dawn Kasper, Sharon Hayes, Lucy Indiana Dodd and New York advocacy group W.A.G.E. Human Resources as a space will seek to close the gap between visual art spaces and performance spaces. Yay!
Next door Francois Ghebaly has Philip Loersch and a project by Heimir Björgulfsson and down Chung King Road in the Kunsthalle space Marie Jaeger, The Big Nowhere.
Human Resources and Francois Ghebaly, 510 Bernard St. and 932 Chung King Rd., Chinatown, 90012
Apartment 2 has two projects by Eve Fowler opening on May 2, Hustlers and Books From “The One Institute” Click through and read, I’ve seen Fowler’s Hustlers photographs before and the One Institute work sounds lamentably fascinating. Let’s hear it for disappearing sub-cultures.
Apaartment 2, 2317 Merton Ave., LA 90041
Good Lord my friends once again I’ve had a blast! Thanks for spending time with me. Go see a few shows and on your way across whatever part of town you’re driving, let yourself be taken away by the just damn amazing city we all live in. If you’re on a bike count yourself lucky you can hear it and smell it too.
Cheers until next week,