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Peter Plagens

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December 1, 2004 | David Pagel, Special to The Times
In an age of impatience and immediate gratification, it's heartening to see 3 1/2 rooms filled with paintings, drawings and collages Peter Plagens has made over the last 30 years. At USC's Fisher Gallery, these 44 abstract pictures consistently serve up quiet excitement that's easy to miss because it's simultaneously sophisticated and inelegant.
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ENTERTAINMENT
September 18, 2011
1945: Alfred Hitchcock's psychological thriller "Spellbound" opens, with memorable dream sequences by Salvador Dalí. 1946: Bassist and composer Charles Mingus, who grew up in Watts, records with his band the Stars of Swing. The recordings, now lost,anticipated the next decade's influential West Coast jazz sound. 1946: Theodor Geisel, who writes children's books under the pen name Dr. Seuss, moves to Hollywood to work for Warner Bros. 1947: Beginning of organized resistance to Modernism and abstraction in art as well as the beginning of "the painting witch hunt," in the words of art historian Peter Plagens.
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MAGAZINE
August 3, 1986
The following, by Peter Plagens, an expatriate L.A. artist, was first published in L.A. Style. 1986 by Peter Plagens. Say what you will about New York (that no matter how bad your neighborhood is, you can take comfort in the fact that someone else's is worse), it has not only circles of artists, but circles of circles, and more circles within these circles. While artists in L.A. talk constantly about the vicissitudes of being an "L.A.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 9, 2005 | Peter Plagens, Special to The Times
I live in New York -- downtown Manhattan -- and whenever I'm out of the city in some smaller, slower, easier and more humane place for more than 48 hours, I start to worry about getting too soft to return to it without psychic trauma. Two days away from crowded subways, sidewalk garbage mountains and surly deli clerks and I start to fear that my reflexes have grown a tick too slow, my streetwiseness a bit dumber, and my art-world acumen a shade too naive for life in Gotham.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 15, 1988 | SUZANNE MUCHNIC
In his heart, Peter Plagens has always wanted to be a painter. A confirmed formalist, he writes--in a statement prepared for his current show--of pursuing an "elusive grail" for 25 years. But the former Los Angeles artist, now living in New York, had such a flair for writing that he became best known as a controversial critic.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 9, 2005 | Peter Plagens, Special to The Times
I live in New York -- downtown Manhattan -- and whenever I'm out of the city in some smaller, slower, easier and more humane place for more than 48 hours, I start to worry about getting too soft to return to it without psychic trauma. Two days away from crowded subways, sidewalk garbage mountains and surly deli clerks and I start to fear that my reflexes have grown a tick too slow, my streetwiseness a bit dumber, and my art-world acumen a shade too naive for life in Gotham.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 18, 2011
1945: Alfred Hitchcock's psychological thriller "Spellbound" opens, with memorable dream sequences by Salvador Dalí. 1946: Bassist and composer Charles Mingus, who grew up in Watts, records with his band the Stars of Swing. The recordings, now lost,anticipated the next decade's influential West Coast jazz sound. 1946: Theodor Geisel, who writes children's books under the pen name Dr. Seuss, moves to Hollywood to work for Warner Bros. 1947: Beginning of organized resistance to Modernism and abstraction in art as well as the beginning of "the painting witch hunt," in the words of art historian Peter Plagens.
NEWS
December 20, 1999 | MERLE RUBIN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
We examine the dust jacket. No blurb on the front flap. A bold refusal to offer any kind of come-on, summary, or explanation of the book's contents? Not quite: The back of the dust jacket has the usual praise and precis, in this case inviting us to compare the book with "Gravity's Rainbow" and "Slaughterhouse Five."
ENTERTAINMENT
May 25, 1993 | BARBARA ISENBERG, Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press
Cultural Politics: A legal affair that has stunned the art world will be the subject of "The Politics of Culture" today at 12:25 p.m. on KCRW (89.9 FM).
ENTERTAINMENT
July 31, 1994
I have always enjoyed Peter Plagens' fanciful and witty writing. But I have never considered his opinions the definitive statement of contemporary art history. I'd like to expand on his use of the theater, cast-of-characters and basketball metaphors in his article on Bruce Nauman ("An Artist and His Roots," July 17): The first act of my play would be over in an instant. Donald Judd and Ed Kienholz would be dead. Bruce Nauman, his retrospective over, would fade away and disappear in a neon-lit stage.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 1, 2004 | David Pagel, Special to The Times
In an age of impatience and immediate gratification, it's heartening to see 3 1/2 rooms filled with paintings, drawings and collages Peter Plagens has made over the last 30 years. At USC's Fisher Gallery, these 44 abstract pictures consistently serve up quiet excitement that's easy to miss because it's simultaneously sophisticated and inelegant.
NEWS
December 20, 1999 | MERLE RUBIN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
We examine the dust jacket. No blurb on the front flap. A bold refusal to offer any kind of come-on, summary, or explanation of the book's contents? Not quite: The back of the dust jacket has the usual praise and precis, in this case inviting us to compare the book with "Gravity's Rainbow" and "Slaughterhouse Five."
ENTERTAINMENT
January 15, 1988 | SUZANNE MUCHNIC
In his heart, Peter Plagens has always wanted to be a painter. A confirmed formalist, he writes--in a statement prepared for his current show--of pursuing an "elusive grail" for 25 years. But the former Los Angeles artist, now living in New York, had such a flair for writing that he became best known as a controversial critic.
MAGAZINE
August 3, 1986
The following, by Peter Plagens, an expatriate L.A. artist, was first published in L.A. Style. 1986 by Peter Plagens. Say what you will about New York (that no matter how bad your neighborhood is, you can take comfort in the fact that someone else's is worse), it has not only circles of artists, but circles of circles, and more circles within these circles. While artists in L.A. talk constantly about the vicissitudes of being an "L.A.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 17, 1994
In Los Angeles, art's first generation spanned the late 1950s to the early 1970s. First there was Assemblage, Pop and the Light and Space artists in Venice. Then there was Bruce Nauman. The first group included many artists--among them Billy Al Bengston, Ed Ruscha, Robert Irwin and James Turrell--who defined a clean, serene image of their city. Nauman, in reaction, made art that questions everything, from space, to light, to words to the meaning of life.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 9, 1998
In conjunction with "Sunshine & Noir," UCLA is sponsoring the three-part symposium "From the Beat Generation to the Millennium: Conversations on Art in L.A.," including some of the key figures from the Los Angeles art scene of the '50s through the '90s. All three evenings will take place at the Geffen Playhouse, 7-10 p.m., 10886 LeConte Ave., Westwood, and are free to the public. (310) 443-7000. * Oct. 26: "The Beat Goes On: L.A.
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