Rob Forbes Selects

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Untitled Bowl Ceramics © Courtesy of the Artist and Frank Lloyd Gallery
Ed Moses on a bike © Photo by Samantha Thomas
Rob Forbes Selects
Curated by: Rob Forbes

Bergamot Station
2525 Michigan Ave., B5B
Santa Monica, CA 90404
July 16th, 2011 - August 20th, 2011
Opening: July 16th, 2011 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM

santa monica/venice
310 264 3866
Tues-Sat 11am-6pm


Rob Forbes Selects opens on Saturday, July 16. That’s one of the days the 405 will be closed between the 101 and the 10. It’s true. So, do we pack it in and miss the opening? No - there’s a beautifully appropriate solution: ride a bike to the opening. What could be more perfect than arriving on a bike to see the ceramics show chosen by Rob Forbes, the founder of PUBLIC bikes, and a big advocate for sustainable design in living. So, hop on your bike and pedal on over to Frank Lloyd Gallery to the opening of "Rob Forbes Selects."

Just in case you didn’t hear, let’s make it clear: the 405 will be closed between the 101 and 10 freeways, starting July 15. Some are calling it “Carmaggedon,” but take a look at this photo of painter Ed Moses. Does Ed look worried about a total car impaction?

Need more motivation? The first 100 people will get free tacos and beer! Still traveling by car? Then take a look at the detour maps provided by L.A. Metro, and start a little early. And remember (if you’re old enough), how easy it was to drive across town during the LA Olympics of ’84 when everyone else was cowering at home avoiding the traffic.

The opening of the ceramics show will be from 5 to 7 PM, Saturday, July 16.

The Frank Lloyd Gallery is pleased to announce its second annual ceramics exhibit selected by a guest curator. Worldwide design maven Rob Forbes has chosen this year's group exhibit. Last year's selections were made by renowned architect Frank Gehry. Rob Forbes, the founder of PUBLIC Bikes and Design Within Reach, has something in common with Gehry: both have a background in ceramics. Gehry's unexpected connections to the medium were the story of last year's show. This year, Forbes reveals his background as a refined potter and ceramic designer, and chooses the extraordinary group show for the gallery's summer months. The exhibit opens July 16th and continues through August 20.

Forbes' selections vary in this exhibit, as he extolls the virtues of the humble pot and the design of functional vessels. Revealing a refined eye and an ability to point out relationships between disparate elements, Forbes also relies on his knowledge of ceramic history and technology. He has chosen Mark Pharis, a ceramic artist who often works in series, for instance. Pharis, based in Minnesota, makes simple hand-built work that belies an intelligent design background.

At the request of gallery owner Frank Lloyd, a small group of Forbes' work is included in the show. The design community of Los Angeles is sure to welcome the opportunity to view Forbes' ceramics, just as architects flocked to the gallery last year to see Gehry's own pottery. "The gallery program was enriched by the expansive vision of Gehry", says Lloyd, "and we expect that Forbes' way of seeing will demonstrate a new view, as well."

Rob Forbes has a reputation in the design community as a man with a vision. He sees the world of design as part of everyday life, and accessible in common objects, patterns, color and juxtapositions. Rather than characterize himself as an aesthete, he says he is "really a streetwalker", humorously referring to his habit of taking photos of the urban landscape when traveling. His viewpoint is typified by a project of re-publishing George Nelson's Ways of Seeing, a classic modern discourse on the designer's aesthetic. He is also an advocate for communities based on human needs and interactions, facilitated by intelligent and sustainable design. Honored by many design organizations worldwide and chronicled in publications from the New York Times to the Los Angeles Times, Forbes has gained a reputation for bringing design to the masses.

Less known is Forbes' background as a potter, ceramic designer, and professor of art. After an apprenticeship to British potter Michael Cardew, and studies in art and aesthetics at the University of California Santa Cruz, Forbes graduated from Alfred University in New York with an MFA in ceramics. He has a significant resume as an exhibiting artist, as well as a background in teaching at the Philadelphia College of Art. All of this precedes his founding of Design Within Reach. Established last year, Forbes' new company is the rapidly growing PUBLIC Bikes.