CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 11, 2013 |
Richard Artschwager, an artist who turned his apprenticeship as a cabinetmaker into a distinctive approach to making sculptures and paintings that defy easy categorization, died Saturday in Albany, N.Y., following a brief illness. He was 89. A retrospective of Artschwager's work, which travels to the UCLA Hammer Museum in June, closed Feb. 3 at the Whitney Museum of American Art in Manhattan. It was the Whitney's second Artschwager retrospective and will be the third to be shown in Southern California.
February 11, 2013 |
Surrealism never took root in America. When the visual arts came into their own in this country around the middle of the 20th century, the most prominent movements steered clear of Surrealism's embrace of life's unconscious underbelly. Pop, Minimalism and Conceptualism dispensed with the irrational messiness of inner lives in favor of easy-to-read emblems, squeaky-clean surfaces and brainy language games. The pivotal year was 1958, when Jasper Johns first exhibited what would come to be known as his trademark works: juicy pictures of targets, flags and numbers made of torn newspaper, fleshy wax and dripping pigment, some with 3-D objects attached and others with built-in boxes, their hinged covers lifted to reveal life-size faces.
February 1, 2013 |
Otherness and psychic disorientation have long been fertile themes for Blue McRight, and never more so than in her newest body of work at Samuel Freeman. Based in L.A., McRight spreads her energies across multiple media -- painting, sculpture, installation and public art -- and her work's emotional spectrum stretches as well, from whimsical to tantalizingly dark. The darker, the more heft and mystery. In her last show at Freeman in 2009, McRight let loose a flock of black, bandage- and thread-wrapped bird figurines in a side gallery, infusing the space with a haunting, spectral presence.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 24, 2013 |
Paul Conrad's anti-nuclear war "Chain Reaction" sculpture in Santa Monica is out from under a cloud -- at least temporarily. The City Council voted Tuesday night to authorize funds to patch and secure the deteriorated sculpture and agreed to give admirers until Feb. 1, 2014, to raise funds to rebuild it. "We've now got the city on board with us," said David Conrad, son of the late sculptor and political cartoonist for the Los Angeles Times....
December 25, 2012 |
ATLANTA - Travelers often race through airports with barely enough time to check luggage, but the busiest airport in the world invites them to check out something altogether different. "Mammatus," the latest art installation at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, is inspired by mammatocumulus clouds that form in severe storms, swelling into smooth round puffs the artist likens to a woman's breasts. Christopher Moulder, an Atlanta-based sculptor, said there was no message to his abstract piece, fashioned out of a metal bead chain into a pendulous ceiling fixture that changes color according to date and time.
December 23, 2012 |
In a sunny, wood-paneled, south-facing room on the second floor of the Huntington Art Gallery, visitors who've come to peruse the Flemish Madonnas and Constable landscapes, the cases of stately British silver and florid French porcelain, will happen upon something a little unusual over the next couple of months. It's not obvious at first. At the end of a hallway at the top of the staircase, a tall, slender sculpture appears framed in a window. It has a delicate and graceful mien, not dissimilar from those of the 18th century ladies in the portrait gallery downstairs.
December 13, 2012 |
Do-it-yourself bronze sculpture? The Arts Refoundry of Los Angeles has packaged the idea cleverly in gift form. Metalcast Kits include two double-ended carving tools; two small sheets of the super-hard wax used by pros; an abrasive pad for smoothing and finishing; and prepaid shipping to get the carved creation to the foundry, where it will be cast in bronze and returned as finished artwork. The Metalcast Kits come in two versions: belt buckle ($110) or flat sculpture ($130).
November 15, 2012 |
Abraham Cruzvillegas's first exhibition with Regen Projects builds on the story of a Mexican jazz musician - apparently based on the artist's great-uncle - who travels the world playing the trumpet in the height of the swing era. A pachuco who dresses in flamboyant suits with broad lapels and baggy pants, he lands in L.A. in time for the Zoot Suit Riots, drifts through Cab Calloway's New York and the heated clubs of Nazi-occupied Paris. He gradually crumbles into alcoholism and returns to his native Michoacán.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 11, 2012 |
When the sculpture outside the Salinas rodeo arena was unveiled in 1982, bands played, Boy Scouts led a salute to the flag and the mayor presented sculptor Claes Oldenburg with a commemorative salad bowl. "Hat in Three Stages of Landing" was more than a monumental work by the world-renowned Oldenburg and his wife Coosje van Bruggen. It was a point of civic pride, a way to let the world know that Salinas was a place where art and culture thrived along with endless acres of lettuce and broccoli.
November 8, 2012 |
In "Deodorized Central Mass with Satellites" (1991-99), an exceptional installation sculpture made from untidy clusters of plush toys suspended from the ceiling and sleekly lacquered reliefs attached to surrounding walls, the only element that stands on the floor is the viewer. Los Angeles artist Mike Kelley (1954-2012) had a way with upending expectations, and manipulating audiences into his artistic projects was a common gambit. The sculpture, shown in earlier and slightly different iterations in several European venues, is having its West Coast debut at Perry Rubenstein Gallery.