Articles
FEBRUARY 2016

 

 

 

Our current Previews feature our editors' and contributing writers' evaluations of exhibition that open or continue into the current month, so as to provide you with the opportunity to view those that are of interest to you.

 

To look up past articles you can go to our archive of Articles forward from April, 2010; or the ArtScene Articles Archive prior to April, 2010 will be called up from a database separate from those starting April, 2010, so you will experience differences in appearance and navigation.

 

Here are our Previews and Recommendations for February, 2016.

 
BRUCE COHEN

 

Bruce Cohen, “Interior with Glass of Water and Picasso Collage,” oil on canvas.

 

 

February 20 - April 2, 2016 Leslie Sacks Contemporary, Santa Monica

by Elenore Welles

 

 

Although art designated as Realism is rife with art historical precedents, Contemporary Realism emerged during the late 1960's and early 70’s, a reaction, at that time to the popularity of abstraction and hard-edge paintings. The movement drew the interests of artists such as California based Bruce Cohen. Differentiated from the American Social Realism movement of the 1930s, this was a tendency characterized by the distinctive blending of realism with surrealism. Cohen’s paintings maintain hard-edge techniques that are characteristically fundamental to his vision.

 

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BILLY ZANE and DENNYS ILIC

 

Billy Zane, “Rock, Parchment, Scissors”

 

 

January 23 - February 29, 2016 at Leica Gallery, West Hollywood

by A. Moret

 

 

The mystique of Hollywood has long been an alluring subject of public fascination. The stories that take place beyond the veneer of the silver screen are of particular interest to actor and visual artist Billy Zane and professional photographer Dennys Ilic, who have each documented behind-the-scenes moments of feature films and captured raw, soulful portraits of actors. Both storytellers create a narrative through a Leica camera lens.

 

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“ACROSS THE PACIFIC”

 

Tang Wei Hsu, “The Moment 2”

 

 

January 16 - February 27, 2016 at LAM Gallery, Hollywood

by Molly Enholm

 

 

This past fall, the traveling exhibition titled “My Generation: Young Chinese Artists” completed its three-and-a-half month run at the Orange County Museum of Art. Among the stated goals of curator Barbara Pollack was to counteract expectations surrounding the style, subject and even mediums utilized by contemporary Chinese artists, and to do so through the work of those born after 1976 — the year of Chairman Mao’s death and, accordingly, the final year of the Cultural Revolution. While the parameters of “Across the Pacific" include no such age requirement — dates of the five Taiwanese artist’s birth on view range from 1955 to 1990 — there exists a similar drive to urge viewers to let go any preconceived notions.

 

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JEAN and BARBARA EDELSTEIN

 

Barbara Edelstein, “Nature-Reflections #76,” 2015, photograph on watercolor paper, 22 x 30”.

 

 

January 16 - February 27, 2016 at Ruth Bachofner Gallery, Santa Monica

by Betty Ann Brown

 

 

Jean Edelstein and her daughter Barbara Edelstein are accomplished artists who create beautiful objects. Jean's preferred format is the Asian accordion-fold book. (An alternative to the scroll, such "Scholar Books" were invented in China during the Tang Dynasty and called orihon in Japanese.) Each page — that is, each rectangular panel — can be viewed separately. Alternatively, the book can be unfolded to reveal a long horizontal band punctuated by the contrast of drawn forms and open spaces, producing an almost musical progression of imagery. The musicality enhances Jean's ink depictions of dancers and musicians, some of which were executed in the dark (when the lights were down during performances), so the artist was drawing “blind.” The results lend testimony to her mastery of line and space. The musicality also works well in Jean's landscapes, where clusters of trees establish emphatic chords, while voids echo in counterpoint.

 

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TARA DONOVAN

 

Tara Donovan, “Untitled”

 

 

February 6 - March 5, 2016 at Quint Contemporary Art, La Jolla

by Scarlet Cheng

 

 

Tara Donovan is one of the most surprising of contemporary artists. Based in New York, she is predictably unpredictable in taking the most humble objects of daily life and transforming them into monumental works of art. Styrofoam cups, drinking straws, buttons, rolls of paper tape — she uses them to create installations that suggest entire environments and unearthly creatures. Often the process is pure simplicity, although putting together the installations is usually very labor-intensive and requires a small team. For example, she has piled hundreds of thousands of drinking straws horizontally, setting them at slightly varied distances from the wall, an effect that makes us believe we are looking at billowing cloud formations. Bunched together Styrofoam cups hanging overhead puts us under the clouds or a neo-Baroque chandelier, and irregular stacks of buttons became a coral reef wonderland.

 

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CONTINUED AND RECOMMENDED, FEBRUARY 2016

 

Kori Newkirk, installation view with “Republic” in the foreground, 2015, is currently on view at Roberts & Tilton.

 

 

Kori Newkirk's installation of objects and images intrigues and bewilders with equal intensity. The show's centerpiece, “Republic," consists of two rows of 20-odd bicycle wheels conjoined on long poles pierced through the centers, most with tires but several without, their spokes threaded with variously colored compact discs, like the decorative affectations of a bicycle messenger. The installation is rounded out by an array that includes: a single bicycle wheel set apart on its own; a stack of empty aluminum cans facing out horizontally and climbing the wall from floor to ceiling; a cryptic group of mixed-media pigment prints; and two large clear vinyl wall pieces minimally effaced with graphite-colored arcs (made from a combination of particulate and acrylic binder), which can be read as some kind of tire-tread imprints. The small room of the gallery is composed of three off-sized triptychs, each a pigment print of the same urban intersection with the traffic lights alternately in yellow, red or green modes, along with slivers of mirrored mylar cut into carwash-like ribbons, collaged onto the photos as if hanging from the traffic lights. There's a tremendously forceful invitation to interpret the puzzles and/or solve the mysteries that have been provoked, but they're messages whose resolutions remain just out of reach. Firmly seducing the viewer with viscera and keeping us on a conceptual edge, Newkirk successfully leaves us to project our own answers onto his straw man narratives, of which there are ultimately none … only questions (Roberts & Tilton, Culver City).

Michael Shaw

 

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JANUARY 2016

 

 

 

Our current Previews feature our editors' and contributing writers' evaluations of exhibition that open or continue into the current month, so as to provide you with the opportunity to view those that are of interest to you.

 

To look up past articles you can go to our archive of Articles forward from April, 2010; or the ArtScene Articles Archive prior to April, 2010 will be called up from a database separate from those starting April, 2010, so you will experience differences in appearance and navigation.

 

Here are our Previews and Recommendations for January, 2016.

 
MICHAEL C. McMILLEN and REBECCA CAMPBELL

 

Michael C. McMillen, “The Pequod II,” 1987, wood and metal kinetic sculpture, 96 x 77 x 206”.

 

 

January 13 - February 13, 2016 at L.A. Louver Gallery, Venice

by Suvan Geer

 

Pull aside the blackout curtain and enter a darkened realm of theatre and deepest space. In Michael C. McMillen’s latest exhibit “Outpost” the simple act of entry launches a cosmic voyage into time, space and fading collective memory. One that bounces weightlessly between history, make believe and all the other stories we tell ourselves about what human life amounts to.

 

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TIM HAWKINSON and PATTY WICKMAN

 

Patty Wickman, “Forty Days,” 2015, paintings.

 

 

January 15 - March 11, 2016 at Azusa Pacific University, Duke Gallery, San Gabriel Valley

by Jeanne Willette

 

 

They seem to be the oddest of odd couples in Los Angeles, a marriage of the sacred and the profane, the spirit and the body, sincerity and irony. But Patty Wickman’s deeply spiritual paintings are the necessary counterpart to Tim Hawkinson’s convoluted examinations of the corruptible human body — one cannot understand the purity of the soul without acknowledging the ungovernable flesh. Because Wickman is a painter whose works array themselves neatly and modestly on the gallery walls, while Hawkinson is an installation artist whose works tend to gobble up any proffered space, the underlying connection between this well-known couple is easily lost. But the oscillation between their polarities shows the conceptual inter-dependence between their twenty-year oeuvres. Despite revolving fads, each has stayed true to their proscribed course, as “Starting Off in the Same Direction” demonstrates.

 

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