Weekend of March 30(ish) through April 3(give or take)
Good Lord my friends, I feel out of sorts. No real reason, just existential… ennui??? (Is “existential ennui” redundant or a is it double negative?) Returning from vacation, transitioning from colder to warmer weather – all my clothes are fitting funny and so are habits and ideas. Eek.
Hah! Once again things to which I may look forward are appearing in my mind’s eye. (In the interest of revealing my sources, I must tell you that some of what I am mentioning – with such a breathless delivery – I picked up by checking Artcards LA. THEY have direct links outside of their own website. I appreciate this.)
The above-mentioned Zachary Leener is showing “New California Pieces” at Iko Iko Space in Silverlake. Leener’s ceramic sculptures will be paired with sculptural furniture by Waka Waka. It my good fortune to have visited Zach’s studio at UCR in January. Were I the clever puppy that I wish, I would have taken photos and notes. Um, I didn’t – and perhaps how awkward if I had. (Maybe experiences are essentially unshareable) …..but if you come to Iko Iko on Saturday (or in any clearly defined but unknown to me period after this date) you’ll be able to share a similar experience with Zachary Leener’s pretty wonderful art.
So okay, a few things about Zachary Leener’s work that I can relate: see those sculptures in the photo above? Yes, they are small enough to hold in your hand but they are also deceptively heavy and solid to the touch. And yes, these sculptures are full of personality. If you’ve ever seen Leener’s drawings then these will feel nicely familiar to you. Also, yes these do occupy a space within and among artwork, functional objects, toys and totems. BUT there is no question of permission being asked by these…. ceramics, and they do not employ strategies for being defined in tried and true art-familiar terms. Rather, these potent little sculptures require you to deal with them on new terms – ones that you learn during your experience with them. Or indeed you may want to make up your own way of dealing with this experience – and how nice will that be?
Zachary Leener, New California Pieces, Iko Iko Space 1298 Sunset Blvd, LA 90026. Saturday, April 2, 7 to 10 pm.
I also now know that Sarah Rara Anderson has her MFA Thesis exhibition A Ray Array, at the USC Roski Gallery. Congratulations Sarah!!! Hard on the heels of one of last week’s heroines-of-thesis-presentation, Onya Hogan-Finley, the surprisingly to me still in school Ms. Anderson offers us a new video and a gallery space (occupied by wooden bleachers which are a co-design of Michael Parker and the artist in question. Sarah.)
Why my surprise? Hem, well, Sarah Rara is a star. Plain and simple. Lucky Dragons, Sumi Ink Club, Glaciers of Nice, Luke Fischbeck, concerts around the world, always giving away music and always, always, always giving an audience something more to do than simply listen and watch.
Being called a star will probably creep Sarah out, if it does then I stand ready to retract the statement. Allow me to express myself in real, rather than manufactured, terms. Sarah Rara does things. Among other pursuits, she makes music and she has been creating opportunities for social exchange for… years. Activities such as this draw my admiration. I am famously not timid about calling attention to those whom I admire. Attention has been drawn. If an otherwise nice word has had the meaning drained of it by overuse and PR related hyperbole then damn us all for fools. Consider for a moment the simplicity of a sparkly point of light in the dark sky. Now take a deep breath. Aaaah. That’s better.
May I quote the pair (Anderson and Fischbeck) discussing a mutual aesthetics from a March 2, 2009 Etsy Blog post? “Our aesthetic plays with ways of connecting high and low technology as a means towards fostering creative social equality — as well as the mystical power of everyday people, places, and things.”
Sarah Rara Anderson, A Ray Array at UCS Roski MFA Gallery, March 28 through April 1, 2011. Reception on Friday, April 1 at 7 pm.
I find it interesting and remarkable that Daniel Joseph Martinez has a show opening at the Pasadena City College Art Gallery this coming Monday, April 4 at 7 pm. Martinez’ art is powerful medicine for Pasadena and for a community college. Hey – I find this exciting, too! I had the dubious pleasure of enrolling for and not attending classes at PCC several years running in the late 1970s and early 1980s, and have only visited since for the swap meet. It’ll be nice to see the old place again.
Daniel Joseph Martinez, “through the wormhole…” Pasadena City College, 1570 East Colorado Blvd, Pasadena 91106. Reception Monday, April 4 7 to 9 pm.
I note that Brian Tucker is Gallery Director, thanks Brian for what will probably be an exquisitely discomfiting exhibition! I also see that Martinez is the Pasadena City College 25th annual artist-in-residence. Sweet – this means that there will be permanent work somewhere on campus by this master.
By the way, I performed a similar non-attendance routine at nearby Glendale College during the same time frame. At that noted and stellar college gallery you will currently find the group exhibition “Becoming Animal,” with work by Sonja Gerdes, Fette Sans, Natascha Snellman, Josh Mannis, Ethan Greenbaum, Candace Lin, Bas Louter. Try Harder has more pix. Becoming Animal at Glendale College Art Gallery, at the corner of Verdugo Road and Mountain Street in Glendale, open Wednesday through Friday noon to 6 pm. You better check the Parking and Directions site for clear, ticket-free info on visiting.
Not a week goes by that I don’t mention Workspace. I haven’t got a choice, their programming is that good. The Great Lakes, with work by James Anderson, Neal Bashor, Brianna Gorton and Zachary Leener and with a special screening of new video work by Maya Gurantz. Another Friday option this is!!!
Because I feel empowered to do fairly invasive things like write about friends, hyperlink, pull images and call people stars I’m going to share a few images from the The Great Lakes artists. Dig in and enjoy.
I am somewhat dismayed. I am able to find websites with images galore for Brianna Gorton but it is my misfortune they are all Flash based and do not allow grabbing of images. This is a challenge I have faced before and am usually able to find a way around; but I have tried everything I know, even the old “right click/view source” then jump on anything with the suffix “(dot)jpg” or prefix “http” trick. All this brought me are 100×100 postage stamp size thumbnails of Gorton’s work. For Maya Gurantz I have found three performance images from the GLAMFA 2010 site, which I will share one. You do have Gorton’s own website above, and you are encouraged to check it out for a look. Good images there! The only Zach Leener images I can find are included above in another post.
Here goes with the more and then I’m off to email dreamland. Bye!
But before I go, and speaking of music and people we admire: The Stephanie Taylor Songbook was published several months ago, to much acclaim. SASSAS, the venerable sound and social explorations organization founded by Cindy Bernard, has announced the will, the desire, the mandate to present Stephanie Taylor’s songbook in performance as part of their annual summer MAK Center event series. This summer being the tail-end of the longest recession in any of our lifetimes SASSAS and Taylor indeed wield the talent and the desire and lack only funds to pay the musicians for rehearsals. Sad are the musicians, those who are counting on this experience. Bereft will be an audience of cheerful and discriminating taste-makers in the music world. Leading you, I am, to Taylor’s Kickstarter page. Go for it.
GOOD LORD!!! Steven Bankhead Saturday 6 or 7 pm at Emma Gray Headquarters on La Cienega. Too good not to see, golly – Malcolm McLaren memorialized by one of the knife-sharp wielders of art-making rock n roll in LA.
Bankhead and McLaren. Iko Iko. All the other stuff, too. MAKE YOUR CHOICES SATURDAY OR DRIVE LIKE A BAT OUT OF HELL.
Steven Bankhead, Sex: A Monument to Malcolm McLaren, Emma Gray Headquarters, 2600 La Cienega, LA 90034.