I have been reading a lot lately, mostly non-fiction, and I want to recommend a book that I just finished about the artist, Ruth Asawa. Everything She Touched by Marilyn Chase is an extensive biography that is well-researched, poignant and revealing.
The local gallery scene is hit and miss with appointment only viewing at select galleries. However, there are many online exhibitions available to us in the art world. The limitations we are faced with also offer us places to visit virtually that we would not usually visit or have the opportunity to encounter.
I want to bring your attention to the So. California Women’s Caucus for Art’s current online exhibition, Pulse of LA in the Time of Quarantine. It is a member’s only exhibit and offers works in a variety of media addressing the mood of our time. The works range from a crocheted pair of healthy lungs by Ann Storc to an assemblage by Dwora Fried, to Carole Goldman’s charming portraits of people she has encountered on Zoom to Suzanne Pratt’s celebration of routine created with paper and map pins. A photograph of a string of bright pink flamingos on a fence in Venice by J.J. L’Heureux provides relief from the doom of the current situation. Overall the exhibit is outstanding and delights me to be part of this group of women artists. These are the participating artists: Nurit Avesar, Andree Carter, Vivian Wenhuey Chen, Debra Dobkin, Pam Douglas, Paula Dwyer, Cathy Engel-Marder, Marta Feinstein, Dellis Frank, Dwora Fried, Carole Goldman, Shelley Heffler, J.J. L’Heureux, Brenda Hurst, Yvonne Jongeling, Nancy Goodman Lawrence, Lynda A. Levy, Sandra Mueller, Suzanne Pratt, Sinan Leong Revell, Linda Roletti, Marleene Rubenstein, Seda Saar, Bonnie J. Smith, Kerrie Smith, Ann Storc, Barbara Tabachnick, Darylyn Susan Yee, and Stacey Zimmerman.
IN THE GALLERIES
KP Projects is offering a virtual exhibition of amazing oil paintings by Jennybird Alcantara. The title of the exhibition is Lullaby of the Bounty in Repose. Here are the artist’s words about this body of work: “…this has been, in part, an exercise in escape, a daily meditation on small pieces, pieces that would eventually grow into a whole picture. In the daily “meditations” painting a leaf or a petal, the curve of a line, lace pattern or patch of fur, a carefully placed freckle or drop of spilled milk – each of these was an opportunity for my mind to wander into a peaceful place away from cares…. I feel that at their essence these paintings are a love letter. Just as love letters are often replete with heartache, tenderness, and declarations of devotion, these paintings are a meditation on the endless bounty of Nature. A Nature that offers its copious riches even when pillaged; a Nature that offers inspirational beauty manifested in the gifts of rich fodder for allegories and storytelling. It is a Nature that reveals the curiosity and magic it contains, as well as the power to inspire ecstasy and dread in equal measure.” Click here to view the exhibit of these extraordinary neo-surrealist paintings. Thru July 11, 2020.
Corey Helford Gallery’s upcoming exhibition features the work of Tina Yu. A Journey is the artist’s newest series of epoxy and resin sculptures. She creates a fantasy world centered around her personal meditation on childhood and a celebration of growth. July 11-August 15, 2020.
Hauser and Wirth is offering an online exhibition entitled Louise Bourgeois: Self-Portrait. This presentation articulates the autobiographical metamorphosis of the artist through her 2009 textile work Self Portrait which depicts a 24-hour clock with its hands positioned at hours 19 and 11 – numbers that together form the year Bourgeois was born. and it’s a work that the artist used to take stock of her entire life—she was born in 1911 and passed away in 2010. “If you, like many others, are struggling to reorient your experience of time during quarantine, Bourgeois might help you to rediscover your center.” Click here to view. The gallery is also featuring the work of Sophie Tauber-Arp in the same manner: view by clicking here.
IN THE MUSEUMS
In our neck of the woods, I understand that the Bowers Museum in Santa Ana is now open.
The Huntington Library, Art Museum and Botanical Gardens, the gardens reopen to the public July 1; incremental reopening of indoor galleries however will not reopen until September.
The Laguna Art Museum is now open with many other local museums planning to reopen mid-July.
I recommend taking a look at the collection of the National Museum of Women in the Arts. One great example (see below) is work by one of my favorite French artists, Sonia Delaunay.
Learn about the early 20th c. Viennese photographer known as Madame D’ora in an online exhibition at the Neue Gallerie in NYC. Dora Kallmus (1881–1963), better known as Madame d’Ora, was an unusual woman for her time with a spectacular career as one of the leading photographic portraitists of the early 20th century.
You can also explore the fascinating exhibit online at the De Young Museum in San Francisco, Frida Kahlo’s Construction of Identity: Disability, Ethnicity, and Dress.
At the Philadelphia Museum of Art is a comprehensive exhibit of African American Art covering a period of 200 years. (I anticipate that the title will likely be changed.) This exhibition offers examples by black female artists including Barbara Chase-Riboud, Elizabeth Catlett, Faith Ringgold, Carrie Mae Weems, and more.
The Boston Museum of Fine Art recently underwent a reinstallation—or “takeover”—of Level 3 of the Art of the Americas Wing with the exhibit, Women Take the Floor . The exhibition challenges the dominant history of 20th-century American art by focusing on the overlooked and underrepresented work and stories of women artists. This advocates for diversity, inclusion, and gender equity in museums, the art world, and beyond. With more than 200 works drawn primarily from the MFA’s collection, the exhibition is organized into seven thematic galleries. Interactive programming creates a dynamic space that welcomes visitor participation, and new rotations of artwork introduced over the run of the exhibition ensure that new voices and perspectives are available on each return visit. The exhibition includes for example Louise Bourgeois, Elizabeth Catlett, Patty Chang, Ray Eames, Lalla Essaydi, Lois Mailou Jones, Alice Neel, Wendy Redstar, Cindy Sherman, Lorna Simpson, Sylvia Sleigh, and many more. You can enjoy a virtual audio tour as well.