Kim Anno, "Sway," oil on wood,
Marie Thibeault, "Reservoir," 90 x 76", o/c.
Co-curators Jay Belloli and Jeff Nathanson pooled their respective
love of painterly painting and their specific geographical expertise
to put together a North/South exhibition with some sumptuous results.
In Practice and Process: New Paintely Abstraction in California,
color and painting are celebrated along with the deftness in brushwork
that comes from a commitment to the craft. There are many works
here that merit attention. Lavi Daniel coaxes softly painted quasi-geometric
form from amidst a swirl of pale ochre, whites and yellow tints.
Marie Thibault's thick, gutsy oil surfaces pulse and swirl with
multicolored pockets and pools of excitement that alternate with
dreamy doodles that seem to be resting after the fray. Kim Anno's
mute painterly icons have a quiet, dignified poise, allowing the
brushwork to be admired from the depths of the scumbled zones.
Currently less critically favored than its cerebral cousin, the
word-made-art, painting continues to act as a pole of attraction
for the viewing eye and the thinking mind. Feeling may be difficult
to describe, but it is equally as hard to forget (Armory
Center for the Arts, Pasadena).
Dinh Q Le, "Mother and Child," c-print/linen tape, 30 x 44.5".
Dinh Q Le is a Vienamese photographer who has been living in Los Angeles for a number of years. In his work he combines Eastern and Western traditions, making beautiful works that juxtapose images from both cultures. Each photograph is constructed as a weaving. The original photograph is cut into strips, and elements from other pictures are woven into the final work. For this exhibition, entitled The Headless Buddha, Le combines images of religious icons--the Buddha as well as Christ--in addition to images of Cambodian prisoners, making both color and black and white works that allude to the horrors of war as well as the notion of salvation (LACPS, Hollywood).
Last Dreams of the Millenium: The Reemergence of British Romanticism presents paintings by seven British artists that are collectively genuine and dramatically direct. Bruce McLean's Big Night Out on Frankfurter Strasse is a large triptych depicting red-orange figures on blue and green fields in celebratory interaction. David Olivant's Time Laid Bare is a graphite on paper narrative with a Biblical, Medieval look of swirling figures and knarled trees that signifies a dream of pleasure and pain. A reclining figure, arms open to another's embrace, rests in the lower right of Simon Edmondson's A Hundred Ardent Lovers Fell Into Eternal Sleep. Above him, in alternating dark and light dream-like clouds, are the heads and faces of those lovers, a romantic revery (CSU Fullerton Art Gallery, Orange County).
William Wendt, "Bluffs on Pt. Dume," o/c, 18 x 28", 1897.
Frederick Rindge purchased Malibu Rancho in 1892, naming it
"Laudamus" (Latin for "We praise the Lord").
He commissioned artists William Wendt and George Gardner
Symons to paint his glorious hillsides, canyons and woods
as if they were God's first church. Sixteen of the seventy-six
works painted by Wendt and Symonds form the core of Historic Landscapes
of Malibu, a collection of some forty paintings by some of California's
best known landscape artists that depict the charms of nature
in the region between Topanga Canyon and Point Mugu from the late
19th- through the mid-20th Centuries. Emil Kosa, Jr.'s theatrical
painting pretty well sums things up: Wonder of it All--Malibu
Canyon (Frederick R.
Weisman Museum, Pepperdine University, Malibu).
Acme presents the work of Uta Barth. Barth photographs exterior spaces that appear to be beyond the plane of focus. It's as if the subject has been removed and all that is left is the out of focus background. Enlarged to an enormous scale and printed on canvas by an ink jet printer, Barth's new works feel more like Seurat's paintings than photographs.
Dan Bernier presents the work of Martin Kersels. Kersel's work is concerned with movement and displacement. In his photographic series Friend Smacking Me a number of people are depicted 'smacking' the artist in front of the camera. In addition to the photographs Kersels has created a large installation work entitled Loud House. This sheet metal structure comes alive with sound. Although no-one is inside, the accompanying video-tape depicts musicians practicing, giving the illusion that the house is alive with sound.
Marc Foxx presents the work of Francis Stark. For a number of years Stark has been using carbon paper to make tracings of language. In these works fragments of literary works and random snippets of text are hand copied onto large pieces of paper that casually hang on the gallery wall. Each work is a formal composition, as Stark plays with color, line and shape, as well as a poetic presentation of language fragments (Dan Bernier Gallery, Marc Foxx Gallery, and Acme Gallery; West Hollywood).