January 23, 2010
Art and then some Re "An eye for art — and opportunity," Column One, Jan. 19 The Times' article about Jeffrey Deitch, the Museum of Contemporary Art's new director, compared him to Andy Warhol, mentioning his suit and his hangers-on. A better comparison would have been to Warhol's deep and honest cynicism, exemplified by his well-known line: "Art is what you can get away with." Deitch is fortunate that these are troubled economic times. He should have no trouble filling MOCA with many more beer- and urine-soaked shredded phone books for far less money than he installed at his SoHo gallery.
January 16, 2010 |
I'm always flabbergasted by the foaming fury with which some people regard the painter and guerrilla poster artist Robbie Conal. Over the years, letters-to-the-editor writers have said, "Conal is a cancer on society" and, "He should be behind bars, not in an art gallery." They were mad mostly because of what wasn't in an art gallery. For a quarter of a century, Conal has slapped the powerful in the face by slapping up grotesque caricatures of them in public places. Both George Bushes, Ronald Reagan, Robert McNamara, Al Gore and many more are in Conal's rogues gallery of evildoers.
December 16, 2009 |
Robbie Conal is known for his darkly satiric illustrations of politicians and public figures, often seen as posters slapped up in Los Angeles' public places. When he perceives an abuse of the democratic process, he says, "It's like the thermometer in the cartoon. When the mercury hits above a certain level, above boiling, I pick up a paint brush or a piece of charcoal and I get to work." But another side of him is revealed in the new book "Not Your Typical Political Animal" (Art Attack Press)
October 18, 2008
WHY DOES The Times again give publicity to so-called artist Robbie Conal ["Poster Boy for Mischief," by Irene Lacher, Oct. 13]? Over the years, he and his crew have engaged in the illegal activity of plastering posters on utility boxes, poles, fences, etc. throughout the L.A. area. Government agencies have spent considerable sums of taxpayers' money on the poster removal from public property. He should be behind bars, not in an art gallery. Donald McPoland Glendale
October 13, 2008 |
The MAN in the two-tone Ray-Ban glasses looked familiar, but Lawrence Shapiro couldn't place him. He was cheerfully holding out a box of Italian cookies to anyone walking through the door of Bergamot Station's Track 16 Gallery -- which was where Shapiro happened to find himself -- and his shock of gray hair and youthful bounce twanged something in Shapiro's memory. The cookie bearer introduced himself as Robbie Conal.
October 2, 2003 |
On a wall in Culver City's Overtones Gallery hangs a series of charcoal on canvas portraits of the famous, ranging from former Florida Secretary of State Katherine Harris to Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld to Microsoft's Bill Gates. Walking in there is not unlike entering "an evil steakhouse," cracks artist Robbie Conal. "I had to restrain myself from taking a marker and inscribing 'Dear Toots, loved my prime ribs ...