Notes on Looking, September 9, 2010 (with correction re: La Luz de Jesus and/or Luis de Jesus)
Dear friends of Los Angeles art,
Many are the shows opening over the next three weeks. I suggest you put on nice clothes, comfortable shoes, a cheerful smile with which to greet friends and a good spritz of that perfume named “Patience and Forbearance” as this is going to be a marathon. Cheers. Friday, September 10 from 5 to 8.
First on my own list is Artist Curated Projects which opens from 4 pm to 7 pm on Saturday, September 11 (thereby beating the evening reception crush) with a large group show of pretty incredible works of art by many of the (also incredible) artists ACP has been associated with over the years. Shannon Ebner, Anna Sew Hoy, Rico Gatson, Lucas Michael, Sam Gordon, Yunhee Min, Dawn Kasper, A.L. Steiner, Pearl C. Hsiung, Zackary Drucker, these are but one quarter of the artists offering work. I say “offering” because of course all this work is for sale and the sale of these modestly priced works of art will support ACP in it’s effort to achieve 501(c)3 status and thereby bring to all of us who look and think (and make art) more and deeper opportunities for exploring these passions.
Um, (the question one rarely gets to ask in a gallery) how modestly priced are these works, Geoff? $300.00 and under. Go to town.
For those among us who don’t troll the Internet for back up I’ll link to the Press page of ACP website where you may read the thoughts important writers on ACP past projects: T.J. Carlin in Art in America; Erika Vogt in Art Forum; unnamed scribe in WhiteHot Magazine; Danny Juaregi also in Art in America.
So, to all of you who email me asking, “Where can I start out buying art? I really love some of the work I see but so much is beyond my spendable income?” or alternately, “Wow – this recession just doesn’t quit! I’m working half time and my spouse is out of work. I really want to buy something that I’ll look at and think about forever by an artist whose work is important to me. How do I do this?” May I suggest that you visit Artist Curated Projects this coming Saturday?
ACP 5152 La Vista Court, LA, 90004
If you’re anything like me you’ll start going out on Thursday after work. (Unless otherwise noted the receptions for exhibitions listed below will be on Saturday, September 11 variously from 6 to 10 pm.) Here’s my plan so far:
6150 Wilshire Blvd.
Acme Los Angeles – Carlee Fernandez, World According to Xavier. Sculptures and photographs deriving from Fernandez’ continuing explorations into identity and formal aesthetics. It’s been since Man at Acuna-Hansen in 2006 that we’ve seen an exhibition of new work by Carlee Fernandez. Ambition plus mastery plus significant spaces to fill with work. It’s nice how things work in an artist’s career sometimes. Go see the show at Acme then look for Fernandez in Sarah Bancroft’s upcoming 2010 California Biennial in October.
Also at 6150, Marc Foxx Gallery has Slide Paintings by Richard Aldrich. The website states September 9 through October 16 and doesn’t offer any information about the reception, nor are there any images. Trolling around the web I find a curious peek into Aldrich’s studio courtesy the fashion source and blog Opening Ceremony; Nora Griffin’s February 2009 review of Aldrich’s show at Bortolami Gallery in the Brooklyn Rail; a review of the same show by Roberta Smith in the NY Times; and finally a cheerfully befuddling mention of his 2010 Whitney Biennial work in Contemporary Art Daily. Call the gallery for information: 323-857-5571.
Further on up the road, Marc Selwyn opens his season with a solo show by Mimi Lauter. (The Bobby Blue Bland song I linked to under “Further on up the road…” has no bearing on Lauter’s show nor on Selwyn’s program. It’s just the blues.) Reception for the artist Friday, September 10 from 6 to 8 pm.
Marc Selwyn Fine Art 6222 Wilshire Blvd., LA 90048
Steve Turner Contemporary, 6026 Wilshire Blvd., LA, 90036
Right next door to Turner is Edward Cella with new work by Deborah Ascheim: Nostalgia for the Future.
Edward Cella, 6018 Wilshire Blvd., LA, 90036
Those of you reading the blog will have a sense of time progression. Later on I may edit out the references to gaps. To put it another way: Later….
In case you think nothing happens on Labor Day but barbecues, this evening we visited Liz Glynn’s pyramid on a hilltop in Lincoln Heights to hear (blindfolded) a discussion about finance. We got to handle snakes, too. Oh – and drink moonshine provided by Adam Janes and Erick Pereria. (I swear the evening just gets better and better! Walking along the street to the hilltop venue I saw four dusty but perfect 1940s Chevrolet’s and one really awesome and pretty cherry classic 1992ish Mazda RX-7. Yes the blood thickened in my veins.)
The particular corner of finance that we heard about is that corner which is totally inscrutable to many of us – hedge funds and algorhythmic investing. Investment strategies for billionaires, fools and the rest of us and the potential for (nay the actuality of) fraud.
In the past Glynn has staged at Machine Project and other venues the life cycle of Rome from Romulus and Remus and the wolf mama through all the glory of Empire (and occasional decadence) to the Visigoths and wanton destruction. In a brief audio on the New Museum website Glynn talks about coming to her Rome project by way of considering ideas of futility and agency, researching utopian architectures and then confronting what was a common notion at the time – when discussing New Orleans after Katrina and the war in Iraq – “Rome wasn’t built in a day.” To refute this she did in fact cause Rome to be built, lived in and ruined over a 24 hour span. In the audio she calls this experience one that “… shows the potential of effort and creative capacity as well as the (brutal) capacity for destruction” in all of us.
Moving onward and backward and continuing her exploration of the ever human traits of wishful thinking, self deception, grandiose plans gone awry and our occasional triumph over entropy Glynn offers us Egyptian pyramids as lenses through which we see… us. Glynn’s pyramid has served as a clandestine performance space making use of the structure of a “pyramid scheme” to organize the audience invitations – sort of bringing multi-level marketing to the art world. (Hey – wait a minute. Does this presume some sort of legitimacy of the art markets “don’t-look-behind-the-curtain” finances?) Several iterations of performance have taken place.
The physical structure is beautiful – the pyramid rises from its hilltop, catching light all day; breezes and sunshine carry through the open pallets to the interior. Sorry I have no images – there are several available from a previous event on Marianne Williams’ Half a Second Flickr page.
Returning to upcoming.
Back in Hollywood Overduin and Kite opens Sunday, September 12 from 6 to 8 pm with Geometric Persecution, work by Erika Vogt. I’d keep checking the Overduin and Kite website for images and press release – this promises to be a great show.
Overduin and Kite, 6693 Sunset Blvd., LA, 90028
Khastoo Gallery website promises to be back online after September 13 so I imagine their opening show won’t be for a week or two. Same with neighbors Benevento, Ltd., and Eighth Veil.
Ah, ooh. I find by searching that Ltd is opening with Kalup Linzy: Fantasies, Melodramas, and a Dream called Love on September 20. Mark your calendar. A certain handsome actor, Ph.D, MFA may well be in attendance. Fingers crossed!
Geographically close and also calendrically appropriate Martha Otero opens her season with a show by Jeff Sonhouse – “‘Better Off Dead’ Said The Landlord,” September 11 from 6 to 9 pm.
Martha Otero, 820 Fairfax Ave., LA, 90046
You’ll note that I’m simply listing what I know nothing about and elaborating when I’m able. Stick with me.
Bang a quick right from Fairfax onto Melrose and head west to Regen Projects (at least if today is Saturday September 11 btwn 6 and 8 pm ) to see Lari Pittman’s new work and also (this is how we benefit from Regen’s two site acreage) a selection of thirty years of paintings in Regen Almont. One hardly knows what to say about this embarrassment of riches except maybe “Thank you Lari and the nice people at Regen!” Also thanks to Rachel Kushner who scribed this loving tribute to Pittman in Sunday’s LA Times magazine. (Does it deny the possibility of editorial objectivity to call this text a “loving tribute? I dunno. Maybe I’ll go with “thoughtful tribute” and call it a day. Whatever – nice stuff Rachel. And those of you who missed the Times… get real. Subscribe.)
Regen Projects, 633 N. Almont Dr. and 9016 Santa Monica Blvd. (conveniently at Almont), West Hollywood, 90069
Without even moving your car you may next visit:
M+B, which is now host to Kunsthalle LA and presents the work of Robert Fry curated for this exhibition by British independent curator Jane Neal. About this show I know only what I’ve already told you. Francois Ghebaly and Kunsthalle LA have proven to be pretty reliable so I’d say go. While there you may also see the work of Massimo Vitali in the M+B main space.
M+B and Kunsthalle, 612 N. Almont Dr., West Hollywood, 90069
Manny Silverman Gallery, 619 N. Almont Dr., West Hollywood, 90069
Now not giving you any geographic coherence I ask that you travel to Culver City.
And therefore you’ll stop at Susanne Vielmetter to see what Ruben Ochoa and Yunhee Min have each been making this summer. Friday, September 10 from 6 to 8 pm.
On the other hand if today is Thursday and it’s 8 pm go to Honor Fraser Gallery (in point of fact Country Club at LAB – Honor Fraser’s back room experimental performance and exhibition space) to see Dawn Kasper and many musicians perform Music for Hoarders.
Some circuitous details: I got a Facebook announcement for Kasper’s event and when I searched for it outside of the sheltered and pristine territory of fb I came first upon a mention in the Hustler of Culture blog. H of C offers a variety of art news that I somehow miss. Check it out. New Image Art for instance, at 7908 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood, 90046. Unless I’m mistaken this is nearby where Rhonda Saboff used to have DiRT Gallery. Website’s still there, don’t know about the space.
Honor Fraser Gallery and Music for Hoarders, 2622 S. La Cienega Blvd., LA 90034
There’s more in Chinatown, Downtown, Claremont, Pasadena and Santa Monica but lest I forget I want to skip ahead to Five Points and Katie Ryan at Workspace. Just had to get this in before I call Wednesday morning done. More later.
Back to lack of geography. I guess since conceptually speaking we’re on the west side netx on the list is Santa Monica:
Luis de Jesus has new paintings by Heather Gwyn Martin in a show called Recreational Systems opening (again) on Saturday, September 11 this time from 5 to 8 pm.
(btw my friends – previously in the above sentence every link and mention was to the venerable Los Angeles gallery La Luz de Jesus Gallery. Legendary institution it is, but currently LLdJ Gallery is showing Nathan Ota and Yumiko Kayukawa NOT Heather Gwyn Martin. Apologies to Heather Gwyn Martin, Nathan Ota and Yumiko Kayukawa.)
Rosamund Felsen is opening with Nancy Jackson. Gouaches and sculptures in a distillation and intensifying of Jackson’s familiar dreamy, somewhat Jungian materials-based work.
Lora Schlesinger has two solo shows, Ron Rizk and Cindy Kane. I don’t know much but there are images on the website.
Um, you’re gonna have to visit on Friday if you want to make the opening of Ewerdt Hilgemann at Samuel Freeman. Vacuum compressed metal sculptures.
Ultrasonic V at Mark Moore. The “V” denotes a fifth iteration for Moore’s offering young and new work. Dave Deany, Andrew Guenther, Carrie Moyer, David Rathman, Colin Roberts, Brion Nuda Rosch and Dani Tull. I only linked where I’m sure.
The description in the press release of these artists as “emerging” confuses me. I recognize several of the names and as I Googled I found more and more examples of wonderful work, strong histories and powerful exhibitions by each. Emerging? What does this mean anymore? Emerging into what? Is there some established (or establishment) art world judging, accepting and processing artists based on objective (or any) criteria?
Beautiful Decay online magazine has a lot going on. Including an Interview With 7 Artists who inhabit Moore’s Ultrasonic V. Hmm. It looks like B/D interviews every artist on earth – scroll around in the site.
Travel with me to the east and Chinatown. Stuff happening there, too.
John Pearson’s show opened at WPA last week, which is no reason not to visit this Saturday. The show – titled )black( – features photographs and a film all taken around Griffith Park and the Observatory. The photographs are silver gelatin prints on fiber print paper and are all fairly small. Is it redundant for me to tell you the photos are black and white? (Probably yes if you know more than I know about the technical aspects of photography.)
Each of these modest-sized prints is framed in a thin dark wood frame with a deep reveal. Another matching frame is inside the first one and holds the print tight against the backing. Nothing between one’s eye and the photo but air and the light waves that carry the image. One can see the light reflecting off the paper but this doesn’t read as glare – it alerts us to the nature of the material. It’s really nice being so close to a photograph.
So then when I started looking I thought that the white areas of these photographs represent areas where light is most clearly depicted (and therefore totally exposing the film) and the darker or black areas in fact reveal less the light and more what the light reflects off. I know from grade school science that vision is all about light – I understand that photography is, too. The fact of this is made wonderfully clear here. Pearson’s film too focuses on light and the many ways it’s translated into information for us. Shots of telescopes, distant stars, people looking, then clips from the movie that made the Observatory famous – Rebel Without a Cause – James Dean drinking milk then blinking his eyes sort of furiously and apparently unselfconsciously. Pearson shows a quick minute or two of a strobe light flashing in relation to the Dean clips which got me fancifully pondering the nature of stardom and how it vibrates rapidly then disappears.
Brad Eberhard: New Paintings opens at Tom Solomon Cottage Home space on Saturday 6 to 8 pm. Organize your day so you make it or go by during the afternoon. Only one image online and you’ll see it when you click through. As you should.
Cottage Home, 410 Cottage Home St., Chinatown, 90012
Krysten Cunningham 3 to 4 is at Solomon’s other space. The press release promises a video and textile paintings. It’s likely the press release is correct. Go see.
May I declare that I’ve saved the best for last?
Steve Roden In Between: A Twenty Year Survey at the Armory Center for the Arts.
Steve Roden when words become forms at the Pomona College Museum of Art.
Two compelling reasons to get on your bad motor scooter and ride.
First read again from the LA Times, Holly Myers’ wonderful essay The Shifting, Architecural Art of Steve Roden.
As you see in the photo above Roden’s sculpture bowrain (at Pomona) is large enough to walk into and expansive enough to get lost in. Fascinatingly weird (or “wonky” to quote Myers quoting Roden) the wood and metal wire structure grew out of lumber yard visits and subsequent discussions between Roden and Preparator Gary Murphy.
In keeping with the following passage I quote from Myers’ essay, “I (Roden) want to have these pieces formed from three different things: my own intuition, the information and the thing that’s being made,” he says. “So all three of us are kind of conversing at the same time. My voice is clearly present, but the other two things have a voice as well.” Roden allowed his source material (a drawing by Buckminster Fuller); his intuition; the film, sound, and wood pieces that he choose to work with and also the intuition of Murpy – whose lifetime expertise working with wood informed many decisions made during the building. ‘Open is the path’ Roden’s process and this sculpture seem to say.
I sat in several places inside and outside the sculpture – listening to the sounds and looking at the light, looking at and smelling the wood structure, noticing other viewers moving around the room. I’m still thinking about the experience.
(You kind of need to read the essay as well as the press release to understand. I’m not going to imagine you know nothing about this show – to recap would take too long.) Pomona College Museum works as a teaching museum. The installation of the paintings generously offers us Hammersley’s original postcards in a vitrine, Steve Roden’s twenty paintings grouped in twos. threes, and fours around two walls and Michael Ned Holte’s texts printed on placards hung between the groups of paintings.
I keep wanting to veer into hyperbolic consecration of two fairly modest people who totally blow me away. Roden with sound, paintings and sculptures and Holte with words and curating open my mind and gratify my soul. Thanks Steve and Michael.
My friends do make your way to Claremont, Pasadena, Chinatown, Hollywood and other of LA’s neighborhoods and visit this work by artists whose curious endeavors push our thinking into places where understanding hasn’t gone yet. It’d be a shame to miss it.