The Artists' Hands Continuum

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Robert Rauchenberg, 1998 Silver Gelatin Print 21 X 16 © Rena Small
The Artists' Hands Continuum
Curated by: Caspar Martin

2754 S. La Cienega Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90034
March 1st, 2014 - April 12th, 2014
Opening: March 1st, 2014 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM

Closed since January 31st 2015
Art History Series, hands, photogrography, photography
Free and open to the public


Angles Gallery is pleased to present, in collaboration with Hinge Modern, THE ARTISTS' HANDS CONTINUUM by Los Angeles artist Rena Small. This is the first full-scale presentation of her project, which has been in progress since 1984, and was first exhibited as an installation in 1996. The exhibition will be on view at Angles Gallery from March 1st through April 12th with a reception for the artist on Saturday, March 1st, 6-8 PM. 

Part tribute and part collaboration, Small began to photograph the hands of her friends and colleagues as an alternative to traditional portraiture. Unencumbered by the self-consciousness a sitter might experience when staring into the camera lens, The Artists' Hands Continuum reveals another reservoir of personal expression, and a deeper form of portraiture. The artist has described the project and her process as follows: 

The project has also become an ode to the often-neglected (and sometimes debated) truth of the importance of the artist's hands to the creation of their work. Accepted practices of the artist's 'concept' being as, if not more, important than the work involved in its creation has overtaken the essential value and necessity brought about by every artist's physical involvement in making their work. Some of the tools available to us, as artists, today have put a notable distance between the creator and the creation. That space has grown cold and, to me, has often drained the passion and immediacy from the visceral experience of art. 

A unique freedom from the burden of identity can be felt in the absence of the weight of politics and religion, gender and race, age, status and geography. Without the immediate knowledge, or uncanny assumptions, afforded the viewer when confronted with the subjects' faces, the conversation can be directed at the more central themes of the role of the artist in our society; the relationship between the maker and the object; and even the power of the work to be passionate, immediate, and visceral.


For more information about Rena Small, click here


Rena Small's works have been exhibited locally, nationally and internationally. Her works are included in the permanent collections of the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles; the Norton Simon Museum, Pasadena; the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City, Missouri; Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, Texas; George Eastman House, International Museum of Photography and Film, Rochester, New York; UCR/California Museum of Photography, Riverside, California; and WestLicht.Schauplatz für Fotografie, Vienna, among others. Critical reviews have been published by the Los Angeles Times; the New York Times; Flash Art International; Artforum; Art in America; and the Wall Street Journal. The artist's works have been published in folios and catalogues by Taschen; The Polaroid Corporation; Albright-Knox Art Gallery; and the Guggenheim Museum. Small earned MFA and BFA degrees at the California Institute of the Arts, Valencia, and lives and works in Los Angeles.
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