From streets that lead to the pacific ocean and my round-a-bout sense of direction, I finally, coincidentally found Emma Gray’s humble and almost secretive “Five Car Garage”. Literally, a garage that used to store the five machines of the previous car enthusiast owners, now hosts the projects of Los Angeles based curator and consultant, Emma Gray.

For the first showing, collectors, writer and Los Angeles sweethearts Geoff Tuck and David Richards are showing a portion of their art collection along with a statuesque canvas by artist Jennifer Boysen. The  sales will benefit the artists residency they’ve both founded in Parkfield, California.You might be familiar with the young project through an invitation to Parkfield or by skimming through one of the Parkfield Review publications that have come out of the residencies.

In Santa Monica

As I entered Emma Gray’s space, after a long corridor of stairs, all I could think of was how strange and peaceful the pieces looked when given their space to breath.  Jim Shaw’s piece stood out due to the recent news of Shaw’s involvement with the upcoming Venice Biennale. Florian Morlat’s unison of textile and wood, almost infinite, stood as a flag of declaration. Martin Durazo’s piece hid curiosities that were visible through peeking sides, like a neon sign full of histories. The works all carried a documentation  of Los Angeles artists of the past 15 years – the span that David and Geoff have been collecting art.

I’ve visited Dave and Geoff’s home and had the pleasure to curiously meander through their space as I tried to identify the artist’s in their collection. The works are intricately given their place, surrounded around a special mysticism, you get that art is what they breath. I mean, it’s no secret that Geoff and David contribute and endlessly support the creative community of Los Angeles and for them to seek out to sell a small portion of their collection to continue the foundation of their artist residency, to me, sounds like the best contribution going in and about the city, at the moment..

On View until: April 2, 2013 – 6pm

Contact Emma Gray:

310 497 6895
info@emmagrayhq.com

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  messy/ order : my desk

So, I FINALLY have my own laptop !!

It’s going to be a bit over a month since I was able to purchase it. Sadly, I’ve been too busy seeing and experiencing than silently contributing via this blog.

My absent nature for the past year was due to completely loosing full access to a functioning computer. A whole year of slowly loosing the friction you experience while typing on a keyboard. Though, it was nice to pick up a pen more often and become infatuated with the quality of the notebooks I will write in.. No, I never stopped looking at art nor did I stop the critical process which comes naturally when swimming in such waters. However, in the last year, I’ve grown to fully appreciate Los Angeles architecture and history (with a broader spectrum, instead of becoming trapped in one origin). As, it’s easy to forget when you’re a native to this city, you forget the escaping adventures of not the tourist, but a beginner in our town. The exploration of many histories, architectures, cultures; all seemingly claiming myths!– but rather, all read differently, according to it’s landscape and well, if you live in Los Angeles, you know the landscape was not made for the tourist, but for the beginner who is willing to delve.

ABOUT THE THE CHANGE OF TITLE: Inspired by Richard Serra’s “black drawings” series. Specifically, from “L.A Hinge”, a work which used to be housed in the first floor of LACMA’s BCAM building; tucked in the center of the back gallery. Literally serving as a hinge to both of his architectural/sculptural work ( Band,2006). The change of title comes with my recent inclination to Los Angeles architecture but overall, Los Angeles sprawling history as a calling to the land of many labyrinths.

*I liked the title Serra used for his piece. It spoke to the layout of the city for me. Having outgrown the previous blog, it was only natural to start from the beginning, again. I mean, I really can’t stop seeing and wanting to write that which I find an interest in. After all,  I tried…

Los Angeles has been enjoying the whirlwind of attention with initiatives as The Getty’s Pacific Standard Time which is a ten million dollars/ ten years event in the making. So it might be of no surprise that this attention has been circulating and growing and is finally at its out most peak.

The tired ideology of the art world market to define a city and its status of an “art capital” based around an art fair falls short for a city like Los Angeles. Stephen Cohen used to be the lone wolf of the game for over two decades, but the boundaries and real works started happening since Tim Flemming of Art Los Angeles Contemporary debuted his fair in early 2010.

I wrote this short review of the second year of ALAC awhile ago… clearly, but as confidence and the constructs of language have been battling the self, I decided to never publish it. However, to take notice that things really aren’t so quiet in the western front, I’ve decided to once and for all publish it to put in retrospect the art fair concept which is fairly new to Los Angeles.. Not to mention the two new art fairs from the east coast which will debut their first year in Los Angeles this week. The heads behind Art Platform Los Angeles are most known for organizing The Armory show in New York amongst others. The same pattern is visible in those behind PULSE L.A. which are known to host art fairs in New York and Miami.

Personally, I’ve enjoyed the past two years of Art Los Angeles contemporary for I was introduced to several galleries I had only heard of but had never actually trekked to mostly those in the west side and panels that proved ALAC was the leading fair in Los Angeles. The second year of ALAC focused to bring the more vibrant and strongest side of Los Angeles art with a presence as Liz Glynn, Human Resources, and Dan Graham gallery, including Dan Graham himself in conversation with artist Aaron Wrinkle. Though, Art platform has not fallen short on the discourse of local art spaces and panels something that PULSE L.A. lacks… Well, at least in its first year.

Co/Lab promises to be the event to be given attention as it rounds up a large portion of the local artist run spaces that are amongst our favorites while it echoes the strong sense of community, we hope it evolves to a greater result. Pulse L.A. does share a small portion of these spaces, which includes Human Resources, Commonwealth and Council amongst others, but it clearly can’t compare to the strong sense of progressive community that Co/Lab echoes.

 While the concept/ ideology is tiredsome and it’s importance matters and doesn’t matter to the development of art one must pay attention to the currents brought to our city. I will try my best to find the time to attend the art fairs this weekend.

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Art Los Angeles Contemporary 2011: at The Barker Hangar

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Fair Grounds

Art fairs are synonymous for they mark any given city’s relationship with a local art community and the international art world market. Los Angeles is fairly new and in the rocky path towards the art fair staple. Lately, the landscape is shifting for better or worse. A city widely known in the art world for the freedom it offers to artists which often turns into a mystical freeway bound metropolis. Surprisingly luring (young) talented artists, but i should not use such a term as “surprisingly” for Los Angeles its no surprise, as cynical as I may sound… In LA, it seems that the notion of endless sun, the beach, it’s palm trees, the dessert, after all it’s many landscapes and moods offer such freedoms for those that choose to live here.

As artist Dawn Kasper expressed the initial muses that brought her to our city, during a panel, you got the feeling that Art Los Angeles Contemporary might be the last piece to the puzzle, but as the latter confirmed, it’s merely the beginning.

Thursday’s opening was accompanied by a cacophony of voices linking all in unison. At first sight I greeted Kathryn Brennan, former Chinatown gallerist who was in town from New York. Pace-fully, I traverse my way through the still rather small in scale labyrinth that is Art Los Angeles Contemporary. The roster of galleries grew, as over 70 galleries were scheduled in the roster, with both returning and new contenders in a rather new art fair scene. I was particularly drawn to Liz Craft at Patrick Painter’s booth, but as soon as movement climbed the hierarchy over visualization, Liz Glynn’s Amphitheater / performance piece rose my enthusiasm.

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Aaron Wrinkle and Dan Graham

As expected, Saturday attracted quite a crowd, but the environment couldn’t compare to Thursday night. The highlight of the day, and one I was looking forward to a month prior, involved artists Aaron Wrinkle and Dan Graham in conversation. The impulsive conversation made a memorable one, but specifically Graham’s recollection of artist, girlfriend Lee Lozano. Sharing that Lozano never showed him her work. It was only after her death that he discovered she was a great artist. He went on to acknowledge the problem of women artists and their unrecognized histories as artists. After the talk, my guest and I stuck around, seemingly with a lost look in our eyes. Luckily, we had the chance to ask Aaron Wrinkle of a large Ziploc bag full of metaphorical connectivity in the form of coins, all from the same year — 1966 as I can recall (?). We also spoke to Graham of New York City, and as quickly as his mind made a connection, he shared a recent conversation he had with friends at The New School. Graham is silently impulsive and that might just be one of the main reasons I have always silently admired his work and persona.

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Human Resources Gallery

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Dan Graham Gallery

Attraction to these events (art fairs) comes from the variety of scheduled panels and not so much the logistics of art being sold… However, visualization can’t be ignored… And some of my local favorite spaces were showcasing their work. Human Resources displayed work of artist Gustavo Herrera along with two mounted televisions on top of each other with projected videos of documented performances at their space in Chinatown, and what seemed like a music video. Newspapers advertising The Collective Show, Chinatown 2011 and another explaining their mission laid in the floor. Dan Graham’s booth was a graceful communion of artists as their booth constantly changed; the adding of a newspaper or the floor plan of Dan Graham gallery, a space which was run by artist Aaron Wrinkle. Night Gallery shared a booth with Eight Veil showcasing the sultry darkness of Paul Heyer’s work.

I found Richard Jackson’s paintings to be more rich than his sculptural work displayed in David Kordansky’s booth, though if compared next to each other, the paintings are deaf and the sculptures well, they’re loud.

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Standard Oslo Gallery

I noticed that Standard Oslo displayed the same particular work from last year, but as I remember they were quite popular for their minimalism and repetition. The dry wit of Standard, Oslo Gallery attracted Jeffrey Deitch, a certain piece with and air of American artists Justin Lowe and Jonah Freeman, but I did not catch the artist’s name ( a photograph of the work is shown above!.)

Luke Butler’s contemplation of Star Trek characters at Silvermann gallery from San Francisco were one of my favorite works in the fair, with a contemplation that troubled me at either spectacle or dry humor.
At Jancar gallery I was pleasantly surprised to encounter works of artist Dawn Kasper.

“Everybody knows her as the girl that hurts herself, but she’s also a photographer”, Tom Jancar expressed. Touching on Kasper’s history/practice with performance art in Los Angeles.

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Dawn Kasper photographs/ performance documentation at Jancar Gallery


When Sunday rolled around the Californian sun and airport stage worked well, but the scene was rather different. Once again, as mere spectator, one can only look and at a day’s end I gravitated towards John Espinosa at Annie Wharton’s booth. The dark architectural Espinosa was the last glimpse, one that quite nicely connected with the skeletal framework of the fair. As crates moved in to do their jobs, to decentralized the structure of the art fair, a yet unfamiliar air to the landscape of Los Angeles, but one that is slowly becoming more familiar.

John Espinosa
John Espinosa sculpture at Annie Wharton Gallery

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For More Information on the current currents of art fairs in Los Angeles: 

Art Platform Los Angeles at The LA MART

Co/Lab as part of APLA at The LA MART

PULSE L.A. at the deck at L.A. Live

A new endeavor arouse when Happy House founder and overall art supporter, Karyn Kohl brought to my attention the possibility of writing for LAist. The popular Los Angeles blog was looking to further expand their art coverage and so I jumped aboard.

The monster we call time has already eaten up three months since I first started writing a quick column, “The Weekly Art Round Up: Art in LA” for LAist, if you did not already know, please, keep your eyes open for the next one.

I know, my blog has been neglected for quite a while now… with my nose deep in books and knees deep in art, I find myself coming back …

My pre- Art Los Angeles Contemporary write up followed by a post fair review in the coming days.

see you in ondas!

The current shifts of Art History are visible yet untraceable in a sense. Technology’s importance in the context of art is not new, but the impact of the inter-web, internet, social network, and every other name communication traveling at the speed of light goes by these days… is one that has been given attention, but it’s complex system

Yes, artists use the internet as a medium. Take for instance the fact of artists using Twitter as a medium of ranging a wider audience, but most significantly as a new source open for dialogue.

However, Bring Your Own Beamer promotes artists through beamers (projectors!) for one night only. The on going series has taken place in Portland, New York, Berlin, as well as other locations and going strong.

The work presented in a series as BYOB deserves further discussion, but as stated, the connection of artist–> social media —> interaction —> physicality —> public/spectator realm is hard to trace.

For now, one night shows of random spontaneity and artistic communion sounds about right…

It was hard to try and identify each individual artist, as projections took hostage of The Roski School gallery walls and ceilings. However, I did recognize some works. If you find your work below, please send me a quick email so, I can add your name.

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Fernando Sanchez
Frenando Sanchez

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make faces

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thumb down

move(s)

morrisa maltz

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up^

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Eugene Klotyarenko

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Pascual Sisto (?)

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Pascual Sisto

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theendexit

The use of space is an interesting topic in Los Angeles. Many artists hone the city’s vast free space with their ability to get lost and go unnoticed. Others question the use of space for better relationships with nature and the environment of a car driven city. I’m most interested in the use of space and these seemingly characters it creates– galleries in unusual spaces.

I talk about space because I find it fascinating that in Los Angeles certain galleries have found creative use of space, not to mention location. Night gallery is one of those spaces that has found that wave of in depth creativity, by opening a gallery in a Lincoln Heights strip mall. What used to be a party supply store now caters to artists and serves as an art gallery. However, Night Gallery is not the only space to follow these steps but neighboring Workspace Gallery, run by artists Paul Pescador and Daniel Ingroff, was the first to create this use of space in the Lincoln Heights neighborhood.– (form follows function).

Night Gallery was a name I heard quite often, a visit had long been over due. To spark my curiosity artist Alex Staiger invited me to tag along one Tuesday night. It was a school night, past ten pm, I had homework to be completed, and had to wake up early the next morning, but this was my opportunity, to finally fully embrace Night Gallery.

Literally, in simplest form Night gallery is only open at night, with black colored walls that shake off the florescent lighting coming from a small room in the further back right corner of the space.

On this particular night artists Charles Long and Justin Beal took Night Gallery hostage for the opening of, In The Hall of Pure Intimacy. A crowd swarmed the parking lot, while inside, one was forced to make eye contact with one another in hopes to avoid heads to bump.

Charles Long
Charles Long

Charles Long, a current professor at The University of Riverside and represented by Shoshana Wayne Gallery in Santa Monica displayed the painting above. After moving from New York City, Long was quickly intrigued by the running industrial river we call, the Los Angeles river or the LA River for short. A river that plays a huge roll in our city, from humorous banter in it’s usage of location to a landscape far too unfamiliar to those who were not raised in this city. Long’s recent works, as already noted, retain inspiration from the Los Angeles River, through the collection of the river’s debris– Later, to be transformed into works.

An uncanny, nostalgic, relationship of the physical and the metaphysical resonates in Long’s work. A reality or mirage we can all relate to.

Justin Beal
Justin Beal

Justin Beal’s sculpture in the other hand, blows an air of a dark Warhol. We can simplify Beal’s work, or rather categorize it within the conceptualist bubble. One with consumerism (?), one that gets old, but retains it’s shine. Don’t get me wrong!, I’m a fan of Beal’s work, as I find the boundaries he pushes rather humorous– when installed for a public/spectator.

Several individuals are doing an amazing job and I often find those individuals are small galleries. Perhaps it’s the hype of the new kid on the block, but I venture that’s not the case. Innovative ideas at small scale entities have a stronger backbone of self creativity than those working towards commercialist driven goals. I found that strong backbone at Night Gallery, I’ve found that in Chinatown and I yet have to explore other corners of Los Angels to better understand the comical ways of a freeway bound city.

That being covered, Tuesday nights are usually for new openings. As I hear, every other day, a crowd may show up and it’s a party, or no one will show up, but it’s still where you want to be in Los Angeles!.

Night Gallery
Tuesday- Thursday: 10pm – 2am
204 south, Avenue 19
646 717 4925