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Kate Wolf

20121005001608-_rvd9533-1 Office Art: Tif’s Desk @ Thomas Solomon Gallery   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Becky Kolsrud at Thomas Solomon Gallery August 11th, 2012 - August 18th, 2012
Posted 10/2/12

Not unlike an inner matryoshka doll, Tif’s Desk is a distant and less neurotically secluded relative of Bartleby’s hermitage: a play on the custom of showing artworks in a gallery office, a site-specific installation; a discreet displacement of assumed business bureaucracy that instead makes a designated place of work into a further vortex of exhibition space. For the last few months, Tif Sigfrids, an artist and the director at Thomas Solomon Gallery, has been staging art shows from her desk in the... [more]

20120401172707-d Proud Flesh   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Herb Ritts at Getty Center Los Angeles April 3rd, 2012 - September 2nd, 2012
Posted 5/14/12

For people of a certain age, much of the imagery of photographer Herb Ritts is ubiquitous, if not iconic. From album covers (Madonna, with her head thrown back in rapture on 1986’s True Blue) to music videos (Chris Isaak crooning into a smoky cloud abyss and embracing a mermaid-like, sand-specked Helena Christensen as the waves wash over them in Wicked Game) to celebrity portraiture (k.d. lang in a barber’s chair being mounted by a negligee-clad Cindy Crawford, playing the dom) to countless prin... [more]

20120310154509-eladlassry1 En Pointe   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Elad Lassry at The Hayworth Theatre March 2nd, 2012 8:00 PM - 10:00 PM
Posted 3/10/12

For the various spectacles conjured by a bright marquee on Wilshire Blvd. and promise of ballerinas from the New York City Ballet, Elad Lassry’s performance, Untitled (Presence 2005), which took place last Friday at the Hayworth Theater near MacArthur Park in Los Angeles, was surprisingly succinct. Six very young looking dancers, three men and three women, performed in monochromatic pantsuits (the woman in lilac, the men in emerald) against a moveable set, designed by Lassry, for about twenty minute... [more]

20120207190000-rainydaycanapethumb Muse in the Mirror   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Louise Bourgeois, Leonora Carrington, Maya Deren, María Izquierdo, Frida Kahlo, Jacqueline Lamba, Helen Lundeberg, Lee Miller, Kay SAGE, Janet Sobel, Dorothea Tanning, Bridget Tichenor, Remedios Varo at LACMA - Los Angeles County Museum of Art January 29th, 2012 - May 6th, 2012
Posted 2/7/12

A painter, draftsman, sculptor, and later, a writer of fiction and poetry. The accomplished Dorothea Tanning, before her death at the age of 101 last Tuesday, saw the success of the suffragists, the emergence of the avant-garde, the fall-out of two world wars, the civil rights movement and just perhaps, the slow transformation in the world at large of her obligatory title as a “woman artist”—a moniker she reportedly detested—to simply, “artist.” Currently at LACMA, the exhibition In Wonderland: The Surrealist Adventures of Women Art... [more]

20120118143305-blackboxglynn012 Liz Glynn: Black Box; 8pm - 2am each night of the PST Festival   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 1/18/12

On the horizon as a part of the Pacific Standard Time Performance and Public Art Festival, a project orchestrated and constructed by Los Angeles artist Liz Glynn, Black Box, will open. Black Box is a series of performances, screenings, music and social gatherings, that will take place each evening at a warehouse location on Highland Avenue, a kind of party after the party for the Festival’s full list of events. Glynn, who has staged performance series everywhere from the hills of Lincoln Heigh... [more]

20111220095111-img_decker_08 Sitings 8: Thrift Store Materials   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 12/20/11

It wasn’t until I ran into a friend, the artist Michael Decker, the other day at St. Vincent De Paul Thrift Store in Lincoln Heights, that I really started thinking about how many other artists I know in Los Angeles whose practices involve significant time combing through thrift stores. They usually seek specific items: one friend spent the better part of a year looking for brass and fake brass plated bed frames and knick-knacks; another must have bought a least a hundreds pounds of used candles... [more]

20111219211047-web-1_michael-asher Poised, Cleverly   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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at REDCAT November 20th, 2011 - January 15th, 2012
Posted 12/19/11

The Experimental Impulse is an exhibition cleverly poised as an archive, while the room itself looks a little like a leftover political campaign office. About a dozen tables covered in plain brown cardboard are set up in the gallery space, each with an array of pictures and documents, newsprint, old dial telephones, typewritten scraps of paper identifying the material and paint splattered school chairs whose seatbacks are tagged with their original locations from both the Art Department and Cri... [more]

20111122001707-occupylosangeles-awake Sitings 7: To the Barricades   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 11/22/11

Last week I got to see a longstanding idol of mine, the author Joan Didion, when she appeared in conversation with writer and editor David L. Ulin, as part of the ALOUD series for the Los Angeles Public Library. Though I realized, waiting in line, that I probably wouldn’t be able to help myself from being disappointed, no matter how good the talk was (the whole experience promising to be a little like the disconnect of seeing a favorite band live in concert and despite the physical proximity, actually... [more]

20111121234951-golden_nightgallery_02 How Deep is the Ocean?   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Samara Golden at Night Gallery November 15th, 2011 - December 8th, 2011
Posted 11/21/11

The interconnection between trauma and its aftermath—a resulting, unwieldy jumble of repeating memories and substitutions that morph the present and rearrange the past—is just one way inside understanding the artist Samara Golden’s arresting, dramatic and complex new installation, Rape of the Mirror, currently on view at Night Gallery. In this work, Golden has transformed the space almost unrecognizably: the gallery’s walls, normally black, are painted a light pastel blue and matching patches o... [more]

20111017174523-string_chair The Constructions of Sam Maloof   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Sam Maloof at The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens September 24th, 2011 - January 30th, 2012
Posted 10/17/11

Though “The House That Sam Built,” also a part of PST, at the Huntington, is more ordered than the Wood show and displays not only Maloof’s own furniture but also his personal collection of ceramics, painting and sculpture from other Pomona Valley contemporaries, it too gives a vision of the environment that influenced Maloof’s life and work. Maloof was a great minimalist, as well as a technical innovator who, like other mid-century furniture makers, built many of his pieces ergonomically. His Occa... [more]

20111017173959-beatrice_wood The Long and Ranging Career of Beatrice Wood   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Beatrice Wood at Santa Monica Museum of Art September 10th, 2011 - February 25th, 2012
Posted 10/17/11

It’s hard to imagine that during the sixty-eight years Sam Maloof and Beatrice Wood both lived in Southern California, the two would have never met. Their list of commonalities was long: both were native Californians who came to their chosen profession later in life, were primarily self-taught and survived and worked way into old age (Maloof passed away at 93, Wood at 105); both lived in rural settings and were a part of academic communities—Wood taught and built her home on site of the Happy Vall... [more]

20110830065712-enlarge_instant_mural Sitings 6: It’s Almost Time!   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 8/30/11

Yaw—yippee—woo! These are words of genuine excitement. Because I don’t know what else could make me disregard the end of summer quite like the promise of the citywide, historically driven, mind-swervingly giant event that will be Pacific Standard Time, starting in earnest this fall. In fact it’s already happening, with shows currently open at Pepperdine University and opening today, Pomona College Museum of Art’s It Happened at Pomona: Art at the Edge of Los Angeles. The Pomona exhibition wil... [more]

20110830063902-slide1a A True California Scenario   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Isamu Noguchi at Laguna Art Museum June 12th, 2011 - October 2nd, 2011
Posted 8/30/11

Noguchi: California Legacy currently on view at the Laguna Art Museum, presents two projects created by famous modern sculptor and designer Isamu Noguchi in Southern California during the early 1980’s (a third installation, What is Sculpture?, the artist’s “Akari” series made for the ‘86 Venice Biennale, seems to have been thrown in willy nilly). Of the California works, the most compelling is certainly California Scenario, a sculpture garden Noguchi completed in 1982 on 1.6 acres in Costa Mesa ne... [more]

Interview with Luke Fischbeck of KChung Radio  
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7/2/11

Los Angeles, July 2011 - Luke Fischbeck is an artist and musician living in Los Angeles. Along with his partner, Sarah Rara, he has performed and recorded music as Lucky Dragons since 1999. In 2005, Fischbeck and Rara also founded the Sumi Ink Club, a drawing collective that “uses group drawing as a means to open and fortify social interactions that bleed into everyday life.” In both ventures, Fischbeck has toured the world and been a part of numerous shows, including the 2008 Whitney Biennial. ArtSlan... [more]

20110620180902-greaterla-install "Greater LA" in New York   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 6/20/11

“The 2,800 miles between the West and East Coasts and the expenses of transportation—have combined to make California painting and sculpture less well known to the East and the Midwest than it deserves to be.” That’s a quote from the introduction to the catalogue Fifty California Artists, an exhibition put on by the San Francisco Museum of Art that toured the Whitney and the Walker in 1962-63, despite the time passed, it still (if distantly) reiterates the premise—to showcase Los Angeles art’s ... [more]

20110516155422-bernstein-panel Sitings 5: War’s a Dick   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Judith Bernstein at The Box April 2nd, 2011 - May 21st, 2011
Posted 5/16/11

“I consciously wanted to make the ugliest paintings I could. I wanted them to be as ugly and horrifying as the war was,” said artist Judith Bernstein during an informal panel last weekend at Chinatown’s The Box, in honor of her current show there, “Fuck Vietnam.” Comprised of a series of explosive, explicit paintings Bernstein made between 1966-67, the works are being exhibited only now for the first time, almost fifty years later. In the hour-long discussion between Bernstein, her gallerist Mar... [more]

20110516152747-eisenman-seance2011 Nicole Eisenman's Human Touch   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Nicole Eisenman at SUSANNE VIELMETTER LOS ANGELES PROJECTS April 30th, 2011 - July 16th, 2011
Posted 5/16/11

In her current solo show at Susanne Vielmetter, Nicole Eisenman continues to prove herself as a prolific and humorous artist, one whose blend of social commentary and human grotesquerie makes for a world edged in a slightly hallucinatory light. The hands on Eisenman’s subjects are bloated and awkward or sometimes ghoulishly slim, in one case, claws: they grope, they draw, they text, or they span out across a table in a circle as in her work Séance, 2011, attempting to make connections despite themsel... [more]

20110425230630-murmurs-agnes_varda Sitings 4: The Walls of Los Angeles   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 4/25/11

Are there many other documentarians more puckish or thoughtful than Agnes Varda? In films like her well known Gleaners and I, Varda seems to combine humor, introspection and devote observation in striking balance; it’s never the last word on a subject but always a guileless conversation, ambling between lyrical essay, reportage, epistolary and visual free verse. Why there isn’t a box set of her documentaries available in the US, I’m not sure. And why her wonderful film Mur Murs, is not more readily av... [more]

20110425163059-artinthestreets1 What is Street Art?   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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at MOCA Geffen Contemporary April 17th, 2011 - August 8th, 2011
Posted 4/25/11

Like the notorious Banksy, it was an Englishman, Winston Churchill, who once said, history is written by the victors.  Wandering through “Art in the Streets” currently on view at MoCA’s Geffen, this old saying seemed especially relevant.  In just over a week, this retrospective of loosely defined “street art” that spans over forty years, is already experiencing record attendance, intense publicity, and, along with its very existence at a major contemporary art museum, it might all conspire to prove... [more]

20110228224742-larry_finkobamatex Metamorphic Rock   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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LARRY FINK, Alex Prager, J Patrick Walsh III at Actual Size Los Angeles February 12th, 2011 - March 6th, 2011
Posted 2/28/11

What a nice surprise to see Larry Fink’s name included in the line-up at Actual Size’s current show, “Angle of Incidence.” Fink, who also just had an exhibition open at LACMA, is a well-known photographer but the type, like William Eggelston even, I tend to think of as getting sectioned off and left out of multiple artistic contexts. And that’s part of the strength of looking at Fink’s photographs outside of the photo ghetto and alongside the sculpture of J Patrick Walsh III. There’s a marked, fo... [more]

20110228152019-henry_matisse Sitings 3: French Cemetery   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Henri Matisse at The Museum at Forest Lawn, Glendale January 28th, 2011 - May 8th, 2011
Posted 2/28/11

In “Matisse: A Celebration of French Poets and Poetry” the current exhibition at the Forest Lawn Museum in Glendale, Stéphane Mallarmé is quoted on one of the placards as believing that “only after death does the poet become one with poetry.” In his writing, Mallarmé  quested to invoke the otherworldly—quotidian trappings were anti-inspiration. What better place, then, to view Matisse’s exquisite etchings accompanying a 1932 Skira edition of Mallarme’s poems than at the cemetery? It’s all the more intriguing... [more]

20110201102554-vcv_amphitheater Art Los Angeles Contemporary: The Fair in Three Parts   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 2/1/11

Nothing Just Disappears Art Los Angeles Contemporary seemed to put a welcome emphasis this year on organizing a variety of talks, readings and performances, mostly by way of asking local artists and artist-run spaces such as Human Resources (formerly in Chinatown) to suggest and organize events. The artist Liz Glynn was responsible for a large swath of these, inviting musicians such as Anna Oxygen and Corey Fogel to perform mornings in the Barker Hanger’s makeshift amphitheater—it had a horde... [more]

20110104002103-denniscooper Sitings 2: DC in Paris   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 1/4/11

Dennis Cooper lives in the 10th arrondissment of Paris, in the north of the city, near the surge-and-grind of two big train stations, the zipper-width waterways and iron, aquamarine bridges of the Canal St Martin (an intensely cute area Parisians call “bobo,” as in "bourgeois-bohème"); a short walk from the African hair salons along Rue Magenta, a gay bar called Le Moustache, a strangely upscale McDonalds with plush violet banquets and an outdoor soup kitchen, set up a couple of times a week, wh... [more]

20110104000734-denniscooper Sitings 2: DC in Paris   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 1/4/11

Dennis Cooper lives in the 10th arrondissment of Paris, in the north of the city, near the surge-and-grind of two big train stations, the zipper-width waterways and iron, aquamarine bridges of the Canal St Martin (an intensely cute area Parisians call “bobo,” as in "bourgeois-bohème"); a short walk from the African hair salons along Rue Magenta, a gay bar called Le Moustache, a strangely upscale McDonalds with plush violet banquets and an outdoor soup kitchen, set up a couple of times a week, wh... [more]

20110103235448-denniscooper Sitings 2: DC in Paris   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 1/3/11

Dennis Cooper lives in the 10th arrondissment of Paris, in the north of the city, near the surge-and-grind of two big train stations, the zipper-width waterways and iron, aquamarine bridges of the Canal St Martin (an intensely cute area Parisians call “bobo,” as in "bourgeois-bohème"); a short walk from the African hair salons along Rue Magenta, a gay bar called Le Moustache, a strangely upscale McDonalds with plush violet banquets and an outdoor soup kitchen, set up a couple of times a week, wh... [more]

20110103225312-analiasaban-tandf Alternative Space   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Analia Saban at Light & Wire Gallery December 5th, 2010 - January 5th, 2011
Posted 1/3/11

For over two years now, Light and Wire Gallery, a project founded by artists Gladys-Katherina Hernando and Jessica Minckley, has existed almost only (so far, they’ve one done physical show) on the Internet. Currently run solely by Hernando, Light and Wire seems like the right forum for video art and work of a more conceptual variety that doesn’t necessarily need to figure out how to use (and could even benefit from not using) an analog space for its illumination. I like their concept and many of the... [more]

Interview with Emi Fontana  
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12/28/10

Los Angeles, Dec. 2010 - Emi Fontana is the Executive and Creative Director of West of Rome, a nonprofit arts organization launched in 2005 that functions without a permanent exhibition space. Instead, West of Rome uses the varied geography of Los Angeles as an ever-rotating location for its artists’ often site-specific work. Recent events include “Eternity Forever,” Marnie Weber’s performance and exhibition of a new film and collage at The Mountain View Cemetery and Mausoleum in Altadena, and Je... [more]

20101123010939-lin-gheb3 Looking into L’Origine Du Monde   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Candice Lin at François Ghebaly Gallery November 6th, 2010 - December 11th, 2010
Posted 11/23/10

Despite its heavily researched investigation into the various branches of post-colonial thought and theory, there’s still actually a great amount of black humor, however uncomfortable, in the work of Candice Lin. At Lin’s current solo show at François Ghebaly Gallery, I entered the gallery to see a white ceramic sculpture of the bottom half of a female form sitting on a platform, The Moon, 2010. You must look directly into the genitalia to see the video playing inside, literally pu... [more]

20101026013610-engagedobservers1 The Photo Essay as Art at the Getty   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Mary Ellen Mark, Leonard Freed, Lauren Greenfield, Philip Jones Griffiths, Susan Meiselas, James Nachtwey, Sebastião Salgado, W. Eugene and Aileen M. Smith, Larry Towell at Getty Center Los Angeles June 29th, 2010 - November 14th, 2010
Posted 10/26/10

Ezra Pound once wrote, “poetry is news that stays new.” Art photography was once used as a pejorative for pictures of things that were based on composition rather than content, while real photography was the result of an adventurer and war-chaser setting out to document the truth. Now, after a long century of shifting photographic mores, the question is: when does reporting slip into reportage and once it does, what makes it art? Currently on view at the Getty, Engaged Observers... [more]

20101026011834-siqueiros-tropical2 Sitings 1: America Tropical   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 10/26/10

Los Angeles, with its lines of jacaranda trees like Capetown, its Mediterranean climate like Tangier, its corridors of empty space like Berlin, sometimes still reminds me most of Rome, a cityscape wherein one metaphysical glance can encompass thousands of years. In Rome you see time elapse from top to bottom, with current excavation sites openly on display, appearing like a kind of deep time, evidence of a city cutting closer to the origins of its past. In the spra... [more]

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