Opening reception: Friday, October 27, 7-11pm
Keith Boadwee and Steve Hurd first met in 1987 at UCLA. Boadwee was a student in Paul McCarthy’s class and Hurd was the teaching assistant. I’d like to imagine it was art love at first sight. They shared a mutual admiration for German Expressionist painters and an affinity for provocation, a desire to milk a reaction out of their classmates and the world at large. These traits, along with an unflinching respect for each other’s art practice, would be the glue to bind them together for decades to come.
For their two person exhibition at City Limits, Keith Boadwee will be showing a table overflowing with hundreds of unique drawings that viewers will be able to handle themselves. Some of the drawings are studies for larger paintings, but the majority function as discrete objects. The table serves to map Boadwee’s brain, and subsequently, his art practice. In Boadwee’s world, the drawings may depict a scatalogical vignette, an erotic encounter between mythical beasts, or a combination of both. They are funny, irreverent, and full of just enough mordant humor to make one laugh and cringe with delight.
With a series of new sculptures and paintings, Steve Hurd continues his practice of using found images and objects to decipher the American experience of mass culture. For Rolling Rock, a new sculpture, Hurd has assembled beer cans into the form of a peace sign. The sculpture probes the psyche of not only the American hippie, but possibly that of beer drinkers and militant recyclists. The sheen of nonviolence is not unlike the cans’ aluminum exterior, but beneath it, we find a bubbly, highly carbonated mixture of thoughts and emotions. In Kingdom Under Attack, Hurd has made a painting with a substrate of broken egg shells. The painted image, rendered as expertly as one could on such a precarious, uneven surface, is derived from a medieval woodcut print of a castle under siege. The painting seems allegorical, perhaps a reference to the fragility of the male American ego? I suppose you have to break a few eggs to make an omelette.
Keith Boadwee (b. 1961 Meridian, MS) lives and works in Emeryville, CA. He received a BA from UCLA in 1989 and an MFA from UC Berkeley in 2000. He has had solo exhibitions at Shoot the Lobster (New York), Brennan and Griffin (New York), Salzburger Kunstverein Austria (a collaborative project with AA Bronson), Hacienda (Zurich), Paradise Garage (Venice, CA), ROCKSBOX Fine Art (Portland, OR), White Columns (New York), and Peres Projects (Los Angeles), among others. This summer he had a solo exhibition at Atelier 34 Zero Museum (Brussels). Boadwee taught at California College of the Arts from 2004-15 and San Francisco Art Institute from 2005-16 and in the coming year will be teaching at Maine College of Art and UC San Diego.
Steve Hurd (b. 1956 Washington D.C.) lives and works in Los Angeles. He received his Bachelors of Fine Arts from the San Francisco Art Institute in 1979 and later came to Los Angeles where he studied with Chris Burden, Paul McCarthy, and Mike Kelley at UCLA. There he received a Masters of Fine Arts in the New Genre Department in 1988. He has shown individually at Galerie Vedovi (Brussels), Jack Tilton Gallery (New York), Dan Bernier Gallery (Los Angeles) and Rosamund Felsen Gallery (Los Angeles.). He was the recipient of the Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Fellowship in 2005 and the Los Angeles Artist Fellowship Laboratory and the City of Los Angeles Individual Artist Fellowship in 2012.