Women Around Town, February 2023
Reminder: The Frieze Art Fair is at the Santa Monica Airport, February 16-19, 2023. Interesting article: “10 Emerging Artists to Watch at Frieze Los Angeles 2023.”
IN THE GALLERIES
Re-iterate is the current noteworthy exhibit at Launch Gallery. It is curated by Lorraine Heitzman. The work here is by 3 distinctive artists, Raghubir Kintisch, Monica Wyatt and Lorraine Heitzman who all explore mystical, natural and psychological worlds through reiteration, and each finds meaning in the process. “The impulse to reiterate is fundamental. Repetition creates rhythms, lending emphasis to amplify and clarify; it is a way of making sense of something, just as it is a tool for learning. In Reiterate, Heitzman, Kintisch and Wyatt show us that contrary to the common idiom, more is sometimes more. Kintisch paints vivid images on paper that can be construed as an alphabet for a spiritual language drawn from her Kundalini practice. Her process involves reimaging and reconfiguring her paintings as her understanding has evolved through introspection and reinvention. Some of her paintings honor gurus and deities, while others approach divination and mysticism in more abstracted ways, in the manner of mandalas and other forms of spiritual art. Each painting is self-sufficient, but the installation emphasizes her repeated use of religious elements, adding to an intensified, immersive holistic experience. Wyatt finds beauty in the cast-off detritus of manufacturing. With an eye towards the idiosyncratic, she repurposes zip-ties and bobbins into elegant hanging sculptures that belie the humble origins of her materials. Her woven sculptures assume organic forms like hanging bird nests or cell structures that are devoid of color, but ooze with texture. In Wyatt’s hands, the industrial by-products and incidental hardware are given a new life. Her imaginative use of materials is both convincing and fantastical, balancing between the wonder of natural structures and inventive facsimiles.” (LG) Thru February 18, 2023.
Wilding Cran Gallery presents Fran Siegel, Chronicle, curated by jill moniz. Siegel is a mixed-media artist suing porcelain, paint, fabric, scrim, vellum, string and other materials in her three-dimensional works. Chronicle is the culmination of recent works that express Siegel’s contemplation of place, dreams and perspectives. Wonderful work and excellent essay by moniz on their website. Thru March 4, 2023.
I was fortunate to view work by Alison Saar: Uproot, the current exhibit at L.A. Louver Gallery. In this presentation, Saar employs historical memory and media as a lens through which to view the contemporary and delves deeper into the realities, histories, and layers of Black womanhood in the United States. “Titled Uproot, this exhibition excavates the intersection of racialized gender inequity and reproductive rights, taking as inspiration images of the Sable Venus and the use of herbal abortifacients as a means of resistance and revolution.”(LA) Her sculptures and accompanying hanging painted canvases are spellbinding! Here is a link to a video of Saar at work in her studio. Thru March 11, 2023.
Luis De Jesus Gallery. is exhibiting Mimi Smith: Head On. Sculptures, paintings and drawings by the Feminist Artist demonstrative her experimental foray into a variety of media. “For nearly six decades, Smith has created objects that simultaneously engage the personal, domestic sphere and the larger socio-political context of our time. Smith is often regarded as a feminist artist avant la lettre—ahead of her time—creating work that forecasted the Feminist Art Movement of the 1970s. Here she “navigates womanhood, identity and history, and the use of her body as ‘the armature for a worn environment.’” Thru March 4, 2023.
Janet Werner: Call Me When You Start Wearing Red is the current exhibit at Anat Egbi Gallery examines ideas of being divided, dualities of human nature, and inner multiplicity. Werner externalizes these psychological splits within her ‘broken pictures.’ Side-stepping narrative, her subjects present more as ideas—vessels for viewers to pour themselves into. We relate to them through their disruptions—shrinking heads, contorting bodies, flipping figures upside-down, or partial obscuration. Thru February 25, 2023.
Walter Maciel Gallery presents Newtro by Los Angeles artist, Dana Weiser. This new body of work includes large-scale ceramic vessels with surfaces ranging from traditional glazes to fitted silk coverings with handmade embroidery. The show will also include a series of drawings made from scratched surfaces on black coated holographic paper. Newtro culture was derived in South Korea and combines modern trends with retro eras, creating new cultural constructions within media, music, food and fashion. For this body of work, Newtro acts as a paradigm for Weiser’s identity as a Jewish Korean adoptee and Asian American with a focus on conventional techniques, Hanbok fabrics and historical ceramic vessels inspired by the Goryeo Dynasty (918-1392AD) pottery.” (WM) Thru February 25, 2023.
Whitney Bedford: Vedute is a continued exploration of the affective possibilities of historical landscapes at Vielmetter, L.A. She uses scale and repetition to mine the experiential possibilities of painting the land in the twenty-first century. A monumental painting by Bonnard via Bedford is repeated four times. Each repetition refers to a time of day: mid-morning, mid-afternoon, evening. The passage of time is reflected in a shifting palette, the compositions and confrontations between present and past in each work changed only in their color. Ink and oil on linen. Whitney Bedford and Jori Finkel will be in conversation about Bedford’s recent works at the gallery on Saturday, February 18, 2023. Thru February 25, 2023.
IN THE MUSEUMS
If you have not seen Joan Didion: What She Means at the Hammer Museum, note that it closes February 19,2023.
Next up at the Hammer is Bridget Riley Drawings: From the Artist’s Studio. Drawing has remained a crucial part of Riley’s practice for more than six decades. This is the first and most extensive museum exhibition dedicated exclusively to the artist’s drawings in over half a century and the first major exhibition of her work at a West Coast museum. This exhibition presents approximately ninety sheets and covers the full range of Riley’s career, from her student days in the late 1940s, when she dedicated herself exclusively to drawing courses at Goldsmiths College in London, through her groundbreaking black-and-white optical works of the early 1960s, to the innovative color studies she has undertaken from the late 1960s to the present day. February 4-May 28, 2023.
Craft Contemporary is featuring works by Alicia Piller in an exhibition titled Within curated by jill moniz. This exhibit features an installation of multimedia works that investigates the relationship between macro and micro perspectives of knowledges, meaning, and bodily form. Piller uses resin, latex, xeroxed imagery, dried plants, stones, and found objects to create cosmic and biological landscapes that are an invitation for viewers to visually connect abstracted form with the complexities of human experience. The artist pulls apart and reconfigures mundane materials into a rich and deep form of visual storytelling that bridges time and place, reminding us that internally and externally we are part of fantastical worlds shaped by necessity, emotion, and wisdom. Also at Craft Contemporary is Strings of Desire. The exhibit features thirteen artists who employ embroidery as a medium in their work. “The assembled artists have embraced needle and embroidery floss to connect with and integrate their non-Western cultural heritages, their queer identities, and their fantasies. Strings of Desire sets forth artists who have created a hybrid aesthetic that conflates embroidery, painting, sculpture, and architecture to explore personal identities that, like their art forms, are not solitary.” Exhibition artists: Diem Chau, Jenny Hart, Kang Seung Lee, Aubrey Longley-Cook, Carmen Mardónez, Erick Medel, Ken Gun Min, Sophia Narrett, Jordan Nassar, Miguel Osuna, Ardeshir Tabrizi, Chiffon Thomas, 25 Million Stitches/Jennifer Kim Sohn. Both exhibits run thru May 7, 2023.
Portraits, a juried exhibition of artist members of Women Painters West at the California Heritage Museum. I was able to see the exhibit last Saturday and so enjoyed the wide range of media and approaches to this historical genre. One fine example seen here is by Nancy Goodman Lawrence. Thru May 7, 2023.
At the end of this month, Barbara T. Smith: The Way to Be opens at the Getty Research Institute at the Getty Center. “Since the 1960s, Barbara T. Smith (b. 1931 in Pasadena) has been at the forefront of artistic movements in California. Her work explores concepts that strike at the core of human nature, including sexuality, physical and spiritual sustenance, technology, and death. This autobiographical exhibition with an accompanying publication explores the artist’s first 50 years, which were marked by dramatic upheavals in her personal life as well as the development of her most pioneering works, including her Xerox art and radical early performances.” (GM) February 28–July 16, 2023.
Ilana Kuyt says
Your posts are so interesting and well done-I learn so much🙏