December 15, 2008 |
The first few times I took my kids to the Museum of Contemporary Art, the visits weren't completely successful. Both children loved the Grand Avenue building, with its pyramid top and the exciting descent down the stairs into the museum. But looking at the art was another matter. My daughter was an adolescent and had learned her museum manners. Her younger brother had not.
March 13, 2007 |
Thanks to an impressive display of trans-institutional organizing, feminist fever is sweeping the Southland this season, with female-centered exhibitions and events cropping up all over town. "Multiple Vantage Points: Southern California Women Artists, 1980-2006," at Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery, is one of the largest, after "WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution" at the Museum of Contemporary Art, and essential viewing for anyone inspired by what they see there. Taking up where "WACK!"
August 22, 1998 |
During some four decades as an increasingly major center for contemporary art, Los Angeles has had its share of talented dealers. Their galleries have provided essential public platforms for artists and their work. This week, the city lost one of the most gifted when Stuart Regen succumbed to the ravages of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. Regen was barely 39, but in slightly more than eight years' time his West Hollywood gallery had assumed a critical position in L.A.'s burgeoning art-ecology.
October 2, 2001 |
Ayear ago, the Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego, launched a nationally touring exhibition titled "Ultrabaroque: Aspects of Post-Latin American Art." (Currently it's on view at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.) The thesis of this savvy and absorbing show is that established multicultural ideas about Latin American identity as represented in art no longer hold.
January 28, 1992 |
Aggressively titled, "Helter Skelter: L.A. Art in the '90s" exploits a proven method for getting attention. At the Museum of Contemporary Art's warehouse facility in Little Tokyo, the newly opened exhibition reaches for the spotlight simply by playing against type.
August 25, 1991 |
A status conference will be held Wednesday in the continuing litigation surrounding the Boyle Heights mural, "Ancient Energies," which was painted in 1980 by three members of the East Los Streetscapers muralist group. The 1,200-square-foot work, commissioned by Shell Oil for a gas station at the corner of Soto and 4th Street, was bulldozed by Shell in 1988 to make way for a parking lot.
May 15, 1990 |
Suppose you decided to visit a remote outpost in a country whose language was utterly foreign to you. If you hired a guide, you'd surely want this person to be able to communicate with you, even if only in rudimentary sign language. For most viewers, conceptual art is about as "foreign" as art gets. It's one thing for a commercial gallery exhibit to murmur inscrutably to a coterie of knowledgeable followers.
August 30, 1987 |
Dana Friis-Hansen's biggest challenge came concealed in "three huge boxes." The Massachusetts curator recently accepted an invitation to put together this year's "Annuale" exhibit for Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions (LACE). His initial charge was to select 25 Los Angeles County artists from among 300 who sent LACE documentation of their work.
June 20, 2010 |
When John Baldessari's retrospective "Pure Beauty" opens at the L.A. County Museum of Art on June 27, expect to see several generations of artists on hand for the opening-week events. For as long as he has been making art in Los Angeles, Baldessari has also been, in a less tangible way, making artists: offering suggestions, encouragement and above all conversation to twenty-something students eager to follow in his footsteps by living a life of art. Follow they did, with their own gallery shows, museum shows, teaching gigs, and some commercial successes that have at times even surpassed their teacher's.
June 28, 2000 |
The mammoth entry hall at London's new Tate Gallery of Modern Art features a monumental bronze sculpture of a spider--a classic subject for octogenarian artist Louise Bourgeois. Poised on spindly legs, the august arachnid is ready to deposit its elegant gift of Brancusi-like marble eggs, becoming a surreal metaphor for the darkly personal nightmares that lurk within industrious creativity.