No Laughing Matter: Art and Humor in Southern California (a Modest Sampling)

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Pinkie, 1979 Photograph © Courtesy of Jancar Gallery, Los Angeles
No Laughing Matter: Art and Humor in Southern California (a Modest Sampling)
Curated by: DENNIS REED

5800 Fulton Avenue
Art Building
Valley Glen, CA 91401
February 24th, 2010 - April 15th, 2010
Opening: February 24th, 2010 7:00 PM - 10:00 PM

san fernando valley
Monday through Thursday, 11 am to 2 pm; evening hours are also available Monday through Wednesday, 6 to 9 pm.
Los Angeles Valley College
digital, conceptual, pop, figurative, modern


No Laughing Matter: Art and Humor in Southern California (a Modest Sampling)


An artistic pun can be very amusing, whether based upon clever wit, farcical satire, or fanciful whimsy. This show is a sampling of works that use such potentially droll approaches, from artists who make humor the central theme of their work, to those who only occasionally decide to tickle our funny bone.


There was the time, in the 1970s, when artist Jeffrey Vallance buried a frozen chicken in a pet cemetery. In the 1960s, Richard Pettibone pulled off one of the great art stunts by making miniature copies of famous works in prominent LA collections, then selling the works to the same collectors.  Today Stephen Berkman produces new photographs using antiquated processes to tease our sense of history, such as his image of a 19th century woman knitting a condom.  And who does not know about William Wegman’s dog, Man Ray?  These are a few of the artists and artworks in No Laughing Matter. Please don’t dismiss this art as lightweight fluff unworthy of sober consideration. This art is seriously funny.


Sixteen artists, some emerging, some veterans, are represented in the exhibition: Michael Arata, Walter Askin, Merwin Belin, Stephen Berkman, Jim Eller, Walter Gabrielson, Doug Harvey, Richard Pettibone, Pierre Picot, Erika Rothenberg, Ilene Segalove, Mahara Sinclaire, Dave Smith, Masami Teraoka, Jeffrey Vallance, and William Wegman.

Special Opening Night Program – No formal, boring discussions of esoteric art trends.  Instead, you can join an audience participation, mock game show with the artists and win a fabulous prize (OK, a T-shirt).

Artist’s Reception & Program

Wednesday, 7 pm

February 24, 2010


Open February 25 through April 15, 2010

Monday through Thursday,


11 am to 2 pm and 6 pm to 9 pm

Saturday, 10 am to 1 pm

(Closed for Spring Break, March 29 – April 5, 2010)


Enter the campus at Oxnard Street and Campus Drive.  Please park in one of the lots (C, D or E) north or east of the Art Gallery – no permit is required during Gallery hours.  The Art Gallery is located in the Art Building.


All events are free to the public.