Articles
JUNE, 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 June, 2016.

 
CINDY SHERMAN

 

Cindy Sherman, “Untitled #205”

 

June 11 - October 2, 2016 at The Broad, Downtown

by Elenore Welles

 

 

The theatrical impulse to assume a variety of personas go at least as far back as the gods and goddesses who populated Greek, Norse and Hindu mythology. Those impulses continue to remain relevant, brought into the present era with actors and musicians such as Lady Gaga and Beyoncé. However, starting in the 1970s, innovative photographer Cindy Sherman preceded them with provocative self-portraits of female clichés. Throughout her career as a conceptual artist, Sherman has not only posed questions of identity, but also how it is viewed through the lens of 20th and 21st centuries pop culture.

 

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PATRICK GRAHAM

 

Patrick Graham, “Table”

 

 

May 21 - July 30, 2016 at Jack Rutberg Fine Arts, Miracle Mile

by Simone Kussatz

 

 

Patrick Graham is one of those exceptional artists who has the ability to create works that derive from his own turbulences and connect them to the collective experience. Born in the idyllic midlands of Ireland in County Westmeath, where he felt one with nature and God, he describes it as a place of silence “with an orchestra of beautiful sounds — buzzing, chirping, flitting.” His paintings echo how this tranquility was ruined by circumstances that were out of his control.

 

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SKYLAR HUGHES

 

Skylar Hughes, “Grey One”

 

 

June 4 - July 16, 2016 at The Lodge, Hollywood

by Andy Brumer

 

 

The mythic sounding, rough hewn alliteration of this show’s title, “We’re All Stone Raising,” belies the effortless elegance, smoothness of style and gentle demeanor of Skylar Hughes' paintings. The name comes from a song lyric written by the artist, a native of Connecticut now living in Los Angeles. Each small oil on canvas presents a flowing, lyrical and/or dreamlike abstraction of forests, trees, light, lakes, rocks, waves and clouds. Speaking of the work in a statement, Hughes says that the works' basis lies “... in the landscape tradition and use of representational imagery [that] serves as a ground for abstraction and suggestion ...”

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CLAIRE FALKENSTEIN

 

Claire Falkenstein, “Flora (Topology)”

 

 

April 16 - September 11, 2016 at the Pasadena Museum of California Art, Pasadena

by Scarlet Cheng

 

 

Sculptor Claire Falkentstein is included in Hauser Wirth and Schimmel’s landmark exhibition “Revolution in the Making: Abstract Sculpture by Women, 1947–2016,” but the selection of included works hardly suggest the breadth of her output. For that, one must turn to “Claire Falkenstein: Beyond Sculpture,” a lively survey that includes paintings and prints, with various sculptures interspersed, many more beautiful than the Hauser Wirth and Schimmel selections. Curated by Jay Belloli, the show begins with such early work as a self-portrait and a landscape. The self portrait, “Skeptical at Nineteen” (1927-28), presents the young artist in a three-quarters pose, looking out at the viewer with an intense stare. In its color palette and evident brushstrokes it is of the period. Soon after that, however, she is experimenting — “Cellular” (1941) in the same gallery is an abstract painting of biomorphic shapes set within a custom-made parallelogram frame.

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CONTINUING AND RECOMMENDED, JUNE 2016



Robert Mapplethorpe, "Lisa Lyon," 1982, gelatin silver print. Promised gift of The Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation to the J. Paul Getty Trust and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. © Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation


Whether the subject is portraits of celebrities or personal friends, nudes, floral still-lifes or his controversial “X Portfolio” depicting the gay S&M community, Robert Mapplethorpe’s photography is dominated by formalism — the sculptural nature of forms and an obsessive attention to detail. His highly prolific art career was cut short at age 46 due to complications of AIDS, but his mostly black and white photographs, as seen in this joint retrospective “The Perfect Medium" at two of L.A.’s premier museums, are stunningly distilled images that retain their capacity to mesmerize, shock and amaze us. His work reflects American cultural markers of the 1960’s, 70’s and 80’s — the sexual revolution and those marginalized by it, queer and gender issues, fashion and music and art icons. The subjects of his photographs were always people in his own personal world, starting with the long-standing friendship with Patti Smith; his long-time lover, patron and curator Sam Wagstaff; and himself. His photographs of African-American men in both portraits and nudes are posed to remind us of finely chiseled classical nude sculptures. Mapplethorpe's collaboration with female body builder Lisa Lyon challenged the era's notions of ideal female beauty.

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MAY, 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 May, 2016.

 
DAVID MICHAEL LEE



David Michael Lee, “Successions”


Jamie Brooks Fine Art, Orange County

by Roberta Carasso



David Michael Lee’s 15-year retrospective “Successions” spans from graduate school to the present. The artist explores in a variety of stimulating ways the formal building blocks of shape, space, colors, lines, and patterns, mostly working on a rough hemp fabric. Lee tackles each challenge with vigor, filling the gallery with multiple series, but not presented in chronological order. The mixing of order provides a meaningful clue to Lee’s art; no matter the timeline, the work is consistently expansive.

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CARMEN ARGOTE



Carmen Argote, “Tías”


 

Shulamit Nazarian, Venice

by Scarlett Cheng

 

 

In dream analysis, the house generally represents the self, and all the things that occupy the rooms of the house are occupying your subconsciousness. This body of work by Carmen Argote reflects three months she spent in the grand, Neoclassical Mansión Magnolia in Guadalajara, Mexico. Over that period she took carefully composed photographs of different spaces and rooms, focusing on elements and juxtapositions that manage to capture both what was taking place in the house and her feelings about the house. She came to the project with some baggage, as the building had long belonged to her family. Growing up in Los Angeles, she had heard wonderful stories about it from her father. It is poignant that he suggested the family might one day return, and it would be home again. However, today the mansion is an events space for hire, a venue for concerts, parties, and banquets.

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BATES



Bates, “Alphabet Soup — Better B — Blue”

 

Buckshot Gallery, Santa Monica

by Jeanne Willette

 

 

If there is an international language for the visual arts, it is graffiti, the language of street art. One can travel the world and encounter, on any given street, on any available wall, the distinctive graphics of the outlaw artist. Over four decades, the typography of the streets has become codified into instant recognizability, universal linguistics for artists who prize their freedom as outsider artists. One of the veterans of street art, Bates, who hails from Copenhagen, has been painting the walls of the world since 1971. This spring he is having his first solo show in America, where we can see his distinctive signature Wildstyle, translated from the wall to canvases, bearing titles such as "Once in a Blue Moon." The status of the graffiti artists in Europe is very different from that of American artists. European street artists receive commissions, invitations to enrich blank walls; while American counterparts are frequently regarded as vandals. For a European, remaining unknown is a choice. Bates is always photographed from the back, keeping his face hidden, mainly for privacy purposes. Where he comes from street artists are celebrities and he is a rock star.

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