Beloved Los Angeles artist Clare Graham’s first solo exhibition recreates his iconic MorYork Gallery inside the Craft & Folk Art Museum
LOS ANGELES -- The Craft & Folk Art Museum (CAFAM) presents the first solo museum exhibition of acclaimed Los Angeles craft artist Clare Graham.
Clare Graham & MorYork: The Answer is Yes highlights nearly 40 years of Graham’s obsessive collecting habits integrated into a rich process of art production. The exhibition simulates Graham’s tremendous 7,000 square foot studio and gallery MorYork, itself a living installation that represents the density of Graham’s collection and artworks. The exhibition has been curated by Brooks Hudson Thomas and will be on view from September 14, 2014 through January 4, 2015.
Graham’s compulsion to collect and categorize wayside materials into large-scale sculptural objects stems from his frugal childhood. The economics of the small Canadian town where he was raised necessitated reuse and dovetailed with Graham’s innate desire to explore and chronicle the world of objects. Channeled by his study of sculpture at California State University Long Beach, Graham’s practice has steered his fervent accumulation of “stuff” towards the construction of artworks made from singular materials. By Graham’s own estimation, he has recycled close to 4 million buttons into his sculptures.
Graham’s refined touch has transformed staggering quantities of dominoes into cabinet doors, soda-cans and their pop-tops into furniture, Scrabble tiles and puzzle-pieces into architectural forms, and buttons into organic sea-form chandeliers. With a fantastical design sensibility that resulted in a long and storied career as Disneyland’s Senior Art Director, Graham is expert in creating otherworldly environments, which he demonstrates at the Craft & Folk Art Museum.
Aside from being Graham’s own studio, MorYork has served as a gallery performance space, and gathering point for other artists, makers, and cultural producers. Graham’s collaborative impulses have also generated bodies of work with community groups such as L.A. Goal, an organization that provides services and art programs for adults with developmental disabilities. Through a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, Graham and L.A. Goal artists have created new artworks for a portion of this exhibition.
An opening reception for Clare Graham & MorYork: The Answer is Yes will take place on Saturday, September 13 from 6:00 - 9:00 p.m. The reception is open to the public for a $12 admission fee. CAFAM members will be able to preview the exhibition on Saturday, September 13 starting at 12:00 p.m.
Supported in part by the Department of Cultural Affairs, City of Los Angeles and the National Endowment for the Arts.
Saturday, September 13
12:00–6:00pm: Members Only Preview
6:00-9:00pm: Opening Reception
$12 entry/Free for Members
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