ARTSLANT'S SPECIAL EDITION No. 2
Los Angeles Art 2012
more L.A. with the ArtSlant Team
Call the boss and tell him you will be out of the office for the rest of the week! There's art to be done. With premiere parties for LA Art Show and Affordable Art Fair on Wednesday Jan 18th, and the gala bash for Art LA Contemporary on Thursday Jan 19th, there's simply no time for punching that clock. In typical LaLa style, we've got miles to go, galleries galore and many stages to perform upon. So rev up the roadster and let's hit the pavement, ArtSlant style.
Judy Chicago, test run for Disappearing Environments. Courtesy of Art LA Contemporary
Los Angeles - land of ice and fog? Not usually unless you're Judy Chicago. For her opening reactivation of Disappearing Environments (originally performed in 1968) at Art LA Contemporary, Chicago will be bringing in 25 tons of dry ice to shroud the affair in misty whiteness. Don't miss the performance at dusk (Thurs, Jan 19 - free admission)!
If it's painterly you're after we suggest seeking out these artists at ALAC: Caitlin Lonegan at ACME, Eli Langer at Annie Wharton, James Hayward at China Art Objects and Marius Bercea at François Ghebaly. For a more ephemeral selection, try Alexandra Grant at Honor Fraser or Steve Roden (or Edgar Arceneaux) at Susanne Vielmetter. If it's a weightier choice you're wanting, definitely consider Nathan Mabry's new work at Cherry and Martin or Anthony Pearson at David Kordansky. And if it's street you truly hanker for then head downtown to the Affordable Art Fair and catch Max Neutra LIVE hosted by C.A.V.E., or visit the crew at Skotia, and don't, don't miss the DABS MYLA mega-mural and Thinkspace at the fair entrance. Lastly, we recommend a tour of the downtown galleries and especially to Jancar Jones's new Chinatown space for David Berezin's first solo LA show, and to CB1 where Lorenzo Hurtado Segovia is opening.
Nathan Mabry, Amulet (A-O-K/Rabbit Hole), 2011, Steel, 42 x 98 x 67 inches, 106.68 x 248.92 x 170.18 centimeters. Courtesy of the artist and Cherry and Martin. Photography by Robert Wedemeyer
See you in L.A.!
--the ArtSlant Team
L.A. PERFORMANCE - Ten Days & Ten Events with Andrew Berardini
The climax of all this Pacific Standard Timing is here. Funded (like much of PST) mostly by the Getty, the PST Festival of Performance and Public Art stretches an official ten days (January 19-29) from the beach to Pomona and many environs in-between. Like all festivals, there’s always more than you could possibly see. And like all festivals the demand to make a schedule is paramount and declaring it to others helps ensure that wants and wishes become reality. So here’s a bit of a curated schedule, a few things this writer is actually going to see.
First of all, the things I can't or won't do: I really, really want to go to Hirokazu Kosaka’s performance of Kalpa at the Getty but to get there from downtown where I live might take two hours during Friday rush hour traffic on January 20. Ditto to the Channa Horwitz choreographed performance in Santa Monica at 7pm on Monday, January 23. Is this laziness? Possibly. I may have sacrificed a life to art, however there is very little in this world for which I’ll sacrifice two hours in traffic. I also love the idea of seeing Lou Reed and his installation for Metal Machine Music at Cal State Long Beach, but there’s something gross about 45 bucks to see him have a staged conversation. I’ll just check out the installation after Lou has left the building.
So as much as I may enjoy going to many or all of the performances, I’m only listing the ones that I’m actually going to try and go to. A potpourri, a sampling, an honest schedule. Perhaps I will see you at some, or maybe you'll tell me about the great thing I missed. Here's the plan:
John White, Preparation F performance at Pomona College, 1971. Photo courtesy of the artist
Saturday, January 21, 2012: 5:00-7:00 p.m. in Pomona
(1) Liz Glynn: No Second Troy at Pitzer College. Opening from 2:00-5:00 p.m. (get there at 4:45 p.m.)
(2) Preparation F, by John White -A re-staging of White’s 1971 performance with the Pomona College football team, at 5:00 p.m.
(3) A Butterfly for Pomona, by Judy Chicago -A new pyrotechnic performance inspired by Judy Chicago’s 1970 Atmosphere performance at Pomona College, at 6:00 p.m.
(4) Burning Bridges, by James Turrell - A recreation of Turrell’s 1971 flare performance, at 6:45 p.m.
(5) Clay’s Tectonic Shift: John Mason, Ken Price and Peter Voulkos, 1956-1968 at Scripps College. Opening and live music, at 7:00 p.m.
Five Events in two hours. Three Performances and Two Openings. There’s something about this that has a lovely simplicity, the schedule is from 5-7, two easy hours. Alone I’m not sure any of these events could get me to Pomona, but with five at once it seems fulsome, satisfying, to have the critical mass to make one feel that you’re actually at a festival. All three performances have a great frisson of violence: indoor football, pyrotechnics, flares. And though not performances, the two openings are for exhibitions that I’m really looking forward to seeing: one for three wonderfully weird ceramicists, John Mason, Ken Price, and Peter Voulkos, all of whom, and especially in the 60's, made incredibly stronge, trippy and sometimes downright libidinal ceramics; and the other for Liz Glynn, the grand dame of Black Box.
I think this series of events, like the ongoing exhibition curated by Rebecca McGrew and Glenn Phillipps, It Happened at Pomona, that kicked off Pacific Standard Time and which the three performance are associated with, will be the gem of this particular series.
Saturday, January 21, 2012: Late night in the Black Box
(6) Liz Glynn: Black Box at 830 North Highland Ave., LA. 8:00 p.m. - 2:00 a.m.
Admittedly I am a fan of Liz Glynn’s, having written a ton about her work, its collapsing of the Rise and Fall of civilization and material, her modern, makeshift ruins, and I will be doing a panel in Pomona in February for her exhibition. Black Box, her late-night speakeasy impromptu performance space off Highland during the ten-day PST festival, will find me in attendance at least two times, if not many more (but two works nicely to make the roughly ten of the title of this piece).
Richard Jackson, Untitled, 2002, Oil and acrylic paint on Mylar. © Richard Jackson
Sunday, January 22, 2012: 4:00 p.m. in Pasadena
(7) Richard Jackson: Accidents in Abstract Painting
Admission: Free; open to the public.
Location: Rose Bowl Stadium, Area H, Seco St. and N. Arroyo Blvd., Pasadena 91103
There will be a plane laden with paint crashing into forty foot canvas. Jackson takes automatism, sculpture, abstract expression, and painting to the next messy level.
Thursday, January 26, 2012: 8:00 p.m. in West Hollywood
(8) The Particles (of White Naugahyde), a three-act play written by William Leavitt
Admission: Free; reservations required.
Location: The Annex (of the Margo Leavin Gallery), 817 North Hilldale Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90069
Though there was a performance of one of Leavitt’s plays during his retrospective last Spring at MoCA, I was stupidly out of town and thus missed it. Ever since his e xhibition, I feel more and more that I live in Leavitt’s Los Angeles and that his work captures the permeability of fiction and fact, theatricality and mundanity that defines the city.
Bob Wilhite in concert, A Telephone Concert, 1975. Photo by Gary Beydler/Jerry Byrd
Sunday, January 29, 2012: 4:00–10:00 p.m. in Eagle Rock
(9) Welcome Inn Time Machine, six-hour event featuring experimental music originating in Southern California between 1949 and 1977. Organized by The Society for the Activation of Social Space through Art and Sound (SASSAS)
Admission: Free; no reservations required.
Location: Welcome Inn Eagle Rock, 1840 W. Colorado Bl., LA
Sometimes re-engaging the historical avant-garde can feel like a pretty boring history lesson. The class taught by Ben Stein in "Ferris Bueller’s Day Off" with its humming fluorescents and droning voice effectively sucks all the energy out of something that’s really fucked-up, exciting, and relevant. And vanguardism, usually cooked up by weirdos in back rooms suffers the worst when its re-presented through the venues and the methods of the mainstream (though admittedly Minimalist Jukebox at Disney Hall was pretty incredible). There’s something about this event's set up at a motel and the ability to potentially wander from room to room that suggests more in the spirit of the thingwithout makin g it seem like a dramatic re-enactment or spirit-sucking history lesson. It hits the sweet spot and will be a beautifully strange and fitting conclusion to Los Angeles' first city-wide performance festival since 1980.
Sunday, January 29, 2012: Back to the Box
(10) Recap and night cap in the Black Box.
TALK OF THE WEEK - Back to the Box with Kate Wolf
On the horizon, as a part the Pacific Standard Time Performance and Public Art Festival, is Black Box, a project orchestrated and constructed by Los Angeles artist Liz Glynn. 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 Heights (where actions took place around a large-scale pyramid built of reclaimed wood pallets) to more institutional settings such as her MOCA Engagement Party this past fall, says the inspiration for the Black Box event was Public Spirit, Los Angeles’s first major performance art festival, organized by LACE in May and October of 1980. She became familiar with the festival while doing research for another project currently underway at LACE. Glynn was struck by the similarities between the way Public Spirit was organized and the way other artist-run spaces and artists-initiated projects she’s been involved with are run today, finding that things h adn’t changed very drastically. This led her to the premise for her own project, one that is less concerned with restaging performances of yesterday and instead, more interested in highlighting a continuum and creating dialogue between the past and the present.
Liz Glynn, Black Box. Courtesy of the artist and Pacific Standard Time: Performance and Public Art Festival
"The idea was to create a temporary warehouse space similar to the spaces that had been used during the first festival and do a series of performances there,” Glynn says. “A mix of some that are loosely based on or inspired by the original festival and others that are by new, younger artists, as well as conversations and other actions by some of the artists from the original.”
Thirty plus artists will take part in Black Box though Glynn is trying to keep the list of participants secret for the time being. The space on Highland, which she noted is reminiscent of DTLA, a warehouse venue formerly in Little Tokyo that was used by artists in Public Spirit, will be open late into the evening each night, with one scheduled video screening going into the next morning. Glynn constructed a main performance area, as well as a private loft arranged for smaller, more intimate performances and a bar that will serve cheap drinks in hopes of encouraging people to stay around. Of the venue’s design she says: “There are a lot of things that create different side spaces or different types of social environments and the space is meant to orchestrate a certain variety of social dynamics but it’s not fascist architecture. It’s open to be claimed and taken over and used in radically different ways by different people.”
"There’s a lot of chance involved, which is kind of terrifying but instead of stepping in and fixing it halfway or trying to have control over it if someone gets up and does something totally insane, I generally try just step back and let It unfold,” she says of the general ethic in overseeing performances in the environments she creates. “Because the projects are kind of social and anarchic, if I’m responding a certain way to something, there’s usually someone else in the space who wants to step in. It often happens if I have the thought, someone else will jump over me and do it. I will probably not be anywhere near the stage though; that’s my usual mode of operation.” Black Box opens January 19th.
Thank you to all of the art fairs, galleries, organizations, institutions, curators and artists who bring us this Los Angeles extravaganza.
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