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ACME

Venue  |  Exhibitions  |  Reviews
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Passionista:The Inner Worlds of Martin Kersels

“I put it out there (as) an open-ended statement, like a question. It just is”, Kersels told the LA Times in 2008. “It just is”. The work in his current solo show, Passionista, at ACME gallery is a case in point. His series of drawings, featuring images of human skeletons overlapped by images of the natural world (i.e. galaxies, spider webs), ask the viewer not only to make profound connections between external and internal environments, but to think of the scope of what is “out there”.  Beyond “otherworldliness”, Kersels’s drawings speak of “inner-worldliness”; the quiet mysteries of the spaces... [more]
Posted by rosaboshier on 9/17/11
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Allison Miller’s Visceral Idiosyncrasy

by Sarah Lehrer-Graiwer
In trying to figure out why I feel this weird, instinctive pull towards Allison Miller’s paintings, why I like her newest exhibition of abstractions more than similar efforts by others (including those next door by Charline von Heyl, doyenne-ascendent of compellingly erratic and irregular abstraction), I ended up putting off words and turning to the act of painting itself. It opened something up, but not necessarily to words. The impulse did, however, clarify. What makes Miller’s paintings gratifying to look at is a feeling of satisfying some non-linguistic, optical craving—a craving that ha... [more]
Posted by Sarah Lehrer-Graiwer on 5/9/11
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Bad Form

Christopher Miles has been writing criticisms of artists in LA for over a decade. I often noticed he called himself an "artist"  and wondered how he reconciled this with his other title as a "critic". It can't be said that he is a great writer or that his criticisms have ever offered up any real insight into art. His writing is usually more of a general description of art work, followed by an often trite personal opinion that comes from his personal taste. His ceramic installation "Noggins" (cute!) at acme now reveals the full scope of his artistic abilities: His art is as weak as his wri... [more]
Posted by macpherson75 on 7/11/10
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Abstraction at ACME

by Ed Schad
  The front gallery of Acme’s somewhat recently enlarged space positively pops with abstraction at the moment with a curious little group show curated by writer and critic Jan Tumlir. Exhibition artists Alexis Harding, Robert Linsley, Michael Murphy, and Sasha Pierce came surprisingly together in a lab funded by a science grant in Canada earmarked for the interaction between science and painting. (When, oh when, will America be so generous.) Linsley and Tumlir, partially to lay out their intentions produced a small pamphlet of their many conversations leading up to the show, mostly deali... [more]
Posted by Ed Schad on 1/12/10
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"Perfumes, Sounds, and Colors Correspond"

by Ed Schad
Perhaps Aaron Morse’s proper province is somewhere in Europe near the conclusion of the 19th century, during that sustained burst of interest in the symbolic imagination. For a bevy of painters at that time and place, a belief in the mysterious world of symbols led to a remarkable synthesis of cultures and visual strategies. Paul Gauguin melded emotive, expressionist concerns with the solidity of Byzantine icons and tribal art. James Whistler’s famous interest in music led him to pitch a relationship between tones, symbols, and representation. Charles Baudelaire stated it best when he said th... [more]
Posted by Ed Schad on 8/18/09
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The Ballad That Becomes An Anthem

by Ed Schad
    A word often used to describe Steven Westfall’s painting is “destabilization.” He often takes his understanding of various modernist tropes like the grid, the stripe, or the chevron and configures the shapes and colors to promote unsettling or slightly out of kilter effects. Westfall’s are jarring but visually exciting works. His curating, judging from his current effort at Acme, lives in the same world, drawn to painters known for their casual, rough and tumble, or at times jokey approach to abstraction and painting. The show feels fresh, as if it gave birth to most of the painting found in... [more]
Posted by Ed Schad on 4/5/09
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Video Flow

by Ed Schad
Jennifer Steinkamp's video installations are unapologetically beautiful and fill the walls of Acme gallery with streams of digital flowers and undulating clouds of color. A former commercial animator, Steinkamp makes professional and seamlessly executed work, not seeking to disrupt the highly discussed "passivity" of video but instead use it to purely aesthetic ends. The waterfalls of images are therapeutic and pleasing. The viewer is so immersed in the constant flow and subtle movements of the flowers that they might think they are a poet watching grass blow in the wind, closely paying attent... [more]
Posted by Ed Schad on 6/8/08
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A Look at Justin Beal

by Catherine Wagley
Justin Beal’s first solo show at ACME gallery is sleek, minimal, excessively composed, and surprisingly guileless. Cast Pomegranate Juice bottles and stretch-wrapped plants could easily suggest a contrived attempt at cultural criticism, but in Beal’s work, the glass, stretch-wrap, and POM bottles instead suggest an endearing preoccupation with pretentious design and pop culture. Art making involves brutal honesty. Lucky for most artists, the honesty doesn’t necessarily have to be conscious. Those ugly clichés—“actions speak louder than words” and “an image is worth a thousand wo... [more]
Posted by Catherine Wagley on 4/6/08
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The Authority of Architecture by Nicholas Grider

by Nicholas Grider
For the past six years, Richard Ross has been collecting images of places of power - interrogation rooms, holding rooms, and isolation cells - as a kind of survey of the “architecture” of power and force. His current exhibition of these photographs titled Architecture of Authority is on view at Acme gallery through July 28, 2007. There are more than a few reasons why you should not miss this exhibition, but the three that come to mind are the timeliness of the subject matter, the intelligent way in which Ross has broadened the scope of his project, and the sheer, sometimes horrifying beauty of the images... [more]
Posted by Nicholas Grider on 7/10/07
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Working for the Man?

The Puritans – if only for a lack of a better term – were a little too puritanical for me. Here’s good old John Winthrop from 1630: “For we must consider that we shall be as a city upon a hill. The eyes of all people are upon us,” he says. I say that’s a lot of pressure, friend. According to Winthrop not only do we have to live respectably for ourselves, we also have to accept that everyone is watching. Now I’m not exactly sure as to how Winthrop conceived of his society’s ideals, a butter churn for every household maybe, but what if they were to materialize into nothing more than a pil... [more]
Posted by sara k on 2/19/07