2000      2001      2002      2003      2004      2005      2006      2007      2008      2009
Todd Bourret
October 27, 2001 - December 1, 2001

Todd Bourret reconfigures traditional notions of abstraction and representation by using "tasteful" design schemes and building materials to paint the areas in between and on the edges of office parks and housing developments. By collapsing abstraction into the landscape, he gets at a more critical and complicated representation of these places. The sheer materi ality of built up and textured passages of paint (with joint compound, ceiling texture, foam insulation), metonymically replaces the details of the foliage, detritus and architecture that delimits the boundaries of the sites represented. Each tree, bush and rock is just another “specific object” piled on to the monochrome of the vacant lot. Bourret uses the materials, colors and techniques usually associated with the architecture on the edges of these landscapes. He uses the very same off-whites, beiges, grays and pale greens that are so tasteful in the home or the office as substitutes for dead grass, dirt, alienating architecture and shrubbery. The language of of formalism - fields, edges, self-referentility, flatness and the delimiting of flatness - and the way its utopian ambitions have been degraded into formulaic, conservative, and uninspired repetition, relate directly to the sites he chooses to paint.

Adam Chodzko
September 7, 2001 - October 10, 2001

Adam Chodzko’s work is a highly process-oriented documentation of his extensions into the public arena, typically culminating in video, photography, installation, and/or drawing. Most often he begins by casting a point of reference—such as a question, or an artifact—into contemporary society, then letting chance circumstances and willing participants discover and interpret it on their own. Documentation of the response is the final product, although it is hardly “finished,” since upon its presentation it reverberates—acting as an outward facilitator by evoking the personal fantasies and narratives of the viewers. The viewer is ultimately inserted into a social narrative, and becomes part of an ever-evolving network of connections, made up of striking similarities and differences. The structure is determined by the question, and the response Chodzko garners blurs the lines between fact and fiction, success and failure.

Summer Show
July 14, 2001 - August 25, 2001

The show will include new work from well-known Los Angeles artist Carl Bronson and a new, large, multi-panel painting from New York painter Cadence Giersbach, who recently had a solo show at Roebling Hall in New York and will be showing at the Rufino Tamayo Museum in Mexico later this year. Judy Glantzman, who has shown extensively in New York, will be showing one of her exquisite large-scale figurative paintings for the first time in Los Angeles. Argentinian painter Diego Gravinese’s vibrant and figurative piece is saturated with images borrowed from both the personal and the public realms. Marilyn Minter, who is widely known for her paintings, will be showing exceptional new photography. New York-based painter Carolanna Parlato will be debuting her lavish abstract paintings for the first time on the West Coast along side Texas-based painter Chris Kysor’s clean, restrained canvases. Recent Yale photography grad Lisa Roy’s large scale photographs are sticky-sweet architectural images that reveal the rampant fake beauty that surrounds us. The discrepancies between fiction and reality are explored further in the work of Athens-based artist Vangelis Vlahos, co-founder of the artist-run Project Space in Athens. His exceptionally technical architectural drawings and water colors explore how functional domestic spaces are objectified and aesthetisized through lifestyle magazines and the association with their users/owners.

Ghost Stories
May 12, 2001 - June 23, 2001

Ghost Stories is a preliminary exposition of some of the work that will be included in a magazine projected for release in the fall. It will be the third in a series of art/literature magazines that I have published over the course of two years. Each magazine has a specific theme, exists for one issue, and then is killed. The first magazine was titled Animal Stories, the second Mall Punk, and the third will bear the same name as this show.

Casey McKinney writes:

When I first came up with the idea to make Animal Stories, I had no idea of what I was getting into. I printed business cards, made a crappy web site and went to everyone I could think of, from friends and relatives to galleries in Atlanta and Europe, and asked them if they would contribute to this hypothetical thing. I became sort gibberishly obsessed with the idea, grandiosely formulating in my head a business plan and manifesto to rival the late JFK JR's, while relishing a kind a perverse pleasure whenever people I solicited laughed at the thought of writing an animal story. How boring and cute it all seemed. But the final product I believe was quite different. Not boring, I would like to think, and certainly not cute. With the help of the faithful, those who contributed and those who aided in design and distribution, a real magazine emerged. A full color, completely non-commercial, almost fiscally viable, magazine. A rarity it now seems.

Mall Punk was the second project and was originally intended to be a kind of sappy, nostalgic eulogy to a certain period of life, while simultaneously serving as an aggressive critique of consumer culture and the apparent futility of rebellion in an age of hyper-commodification (yes I was freshly, abashedly, brimming with school damage at that point). But happily the idea soon morphed as contributors inserted their own meaning into the concept, and it blossomed into the beautiful and gory thing that it is.

And so we enter Ghost Stories, something which, once again, I know nothing about. It just seems like the logical next step if you consider the three magazines as a temporal triptych. Animal Stories representing the primordial past, Mall Punk the incendiary immediate, and Ghost Stories, the dreaded posthumous, err… Future (which for someone like me suffering from abulia, is always frightening). So there you have it. Past, Present, Future. Kind of like the Bosch painting, The Garden of Delights (ok here I go, speaking out of my ass now, so I'll stop. It will all come together when the magazine is done). I have no idea what is going on, but the very capable and highly talented young artists seem to get it, and that's all that matters. I would like to thank the formidable artist, three-time magazine contributor and all around nice person Sue de Beer for inviting me to curate this show. (You know it's funny, like a geographically reconciliatory rap album, the line-up for this show is split down the middle, half hailing from Brooklyn, NY, the other half from Los Angeles. Let's hope no one gets shot.)

Lorenzo De Los Angeles is a draughtsman from Brooklyn who has recently shown at Exit Art, Feature Inc, and Andrew Kreps. He will be presenting a small drawing titled "Obvious Poltergeist." In his description of the piece, Lorenzo lays it down beautifully and thusly (I shall not edit): "Still life not based on an actual physical arrangement but is entirely fictitious is my preferred pictorial game. My approach is traditional in using metaphorically coded objects that comment on human existence rooted in anxiety and desire. These however, are carefully rendered and situated in ambiguous space and relationships. As a result, fractured narratives occur in the same manner as the constructed drama within a film still. Photography and cinema has been an unavoidable influence in this regard. For my contribution to this exhibit, I chose to focus on the false pretense of most 19th and 20th century spirit photography and paranormal horror films such as Poltergeist or The Changeling. In these instances, there is constant struggle between the rational and irrational that is blurred by typical or basic emotional tendencies to impose logistic order. An example such as this contains the multi-layered shifting of ideologies and oppositions of cultural signifiers within the rigid constructs that ultimately governed this drawing and that relates to my body of work as a whole."

Banks Violette, also from Brooklyn, preternaturally talented, recent recipient of the Rema Hort Mann grant, and a big fan of Burzum, is doing two interrelated pieces for the show, a sculpture and a painting. Ultimately the two pieces tell the story of mass teenage suicide in a conversion van in Bergen, NJ. The suicide took place in a garage, the show takes place in a garage, Banks reminds me. "Haunt the chapel, haunt the garage," is Banks' motto. Feel the electricity if you dare.

Jesse Bransford, yes, also from Brooklyn and a big old nerd (J/K Jesse), is contributing a piece based on the mythology of master horror author H.P. Lovecraft. Jesse's work for the past few years has consisted of large wall drawings that combine imagery of fringe pop culture, scientific formulae, alchemical and other symbols, that produce a sense of metaphoric vertigo for the viewer. He was recently in the PS1 Greater New York exhibit and his next vast mural will be developed and featured at the UCLA Hammer Museum this summer.

Matthew Greene, insider to the stars (LA dude), productionist extraordonaire, has created a rather large shingle of a very pale girl in a wedding dress who looks like she has seen a ghost. Matthew Greene moonlights as editor of Goth Slut magazine and his work has been shown at Richard Telles Fine Art and Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions.
Unocorocopia is a band spear headed by the super good fiction writer, Trinie Dalton. Every song they write is about unicorns. They swear that their performance will have something to do with ghosts, even if the have to play the set with white sheets on.

Naomi Uman lives in LA half of the time, the other half she spends in Mexico City "where she makes films at a small table, always accompanied by a very small dog." Her film removed involved three years of painstaking editing and lots of bleach to successfully "remove" a sexually charged woman from a voyeuristic scene in a 70's foreign porn movie. The result is rather chilling.

Gregg Einhorn is a Los Angeles based sculptor and filmmaker and an influential figure in the new Los Angeles sculpture movement. He has just returned from a group show in London, curated by Dennis Cooper. His work has been described as being often sincerely melancholic, while tweaked with a wry irony. He will be showing a film of a lamppost.

Joel Westendorf is a Los Angeles based artist, musician, photographer, and graphic designer. His art work has been exhibited in Los Angeles and New York, and his design and photographic work has appeared on a number of book covers, in magazines such as Index and Spin, as well as in several feature films. His computer generated art combines eerie, precise, sometimes mindbending abstraction and a savvy, unusual understanding of the complex simplicity of pop culture iconography. For this show, Joel has turned a Chinese ghost boxer doll puppet thing-a-ma-jig into an object of sheer terror.

Adam Putnam, rounding out the Brooklyn crew, is a Yale graduate and a recent alumnus of Sandroni Rey (as well as the Walker Art Center, Richard Telles, etc). Inspired by horror literature and movies, Putnam makes sculptures that seem to literally explode within the gallery space. Unseen forces, secret societies, these things do exist for Putnam and his job is to capture the evidence three dimensionally. Only for this show, Putnam is going 2D.

Sue de Beer
New Photographs
May 12, 2001 - May 23, 2001

A friend of mine described working next door to my studio as sounding sort of like this: Quiet. Music Intro. Blood curdling scream. Shatter sound. Quiet. Music Intro. Blood curdling scream. Shatter sound. And so on. The quiet is the sound of me rewinding the tape. The music intro is probably the director’s set up to a shot. The screaming sound is someone dying. The shatter sound would be when their body falls through something. Like a table. And then the repeat is me rewinding and watching the sequence over again.

This friend said something like “That is so macabre” or “that is so morbid to watch that guy dying” over and over, something like that. Which was sort of incorrect. Even though it sounds correct. What I was looking for in the rewinding was not the thrill of watching GLEN die over and over, but I was looking for how the shot was put together. Specifically how the bed was made, had they turned the room upside-down, were they using a viscous material for the blood or was it red water. How did the blood get from the center of the bed to the ceiling fixture. And I was also falling in love with the image. That beautiful, loaded image of a bleeding bed. So funny, and so sad. Like a period stain that had taken on supernatural powers.

One of the reoccurring elements in this new work is the architecture, either of the rooms or of a body in the room. If a person is cut in half, or hollowed out, it has as much to do with the way that bodies occupy space as it does any kind of horror or death relationship. In fact, in all of the images, the ones which are the most moody or tense to me do not have bodies in them. SASHA, the girl who has been cut in half, is sort of waiting and bored. TWO GIRLS, which is a fused image from the Dennis Cooper novel Frisk and the Peter Jackson movie, Bad Taste, does not seem to be dead, and is just patiently hanging out. DOOR & MIRROR, the image with the door pulled off the hinges, is morbid in comparison. But in all of them, the architecture has been violated, either in the way that the room has been constructed, or in the way that the person has been constructed.

All photographs lie, and are a construction of reality, everyone knows this. If you have a tiny room, you can put a wide angle lens on the camera and make it larger. If you have an ugly person, you can Photoshop them and make them look more attractive. Film people usually do it by cutting (GLEN’s exterior shot is a good example). One thing I have become interested in with these pictures is what we expect as viewers – what our eyes are accustomed to seeing. And how if you rephrase that in a subtle way, how disorienting that can feel as a viewer. Like, instead of using a wide-angle lens, build a wide-angle set (PRACTICE ROOM).

Part of implementing this is discarding the idea of a photograph (or a two dimensional image), and treating the photograph as if it was a sculpture. As if you could take that GLEN scene, and walk around in it like a three dimensional space. What parts of its original narrative context does it hold onto, and what parts does it relinquish? What new things does it yield up? And the give and take between what the scene originally meant, and what it means in its new, disconnected, sculptural format, is really fascinating to me. Because it is always different, in a funny way. Like GLEN’s death, a male’s scene, with a boy dying in a bed, made two potential images: an exploding period stain, or an exploding virginity stain. A beautiful, resonant, and totally self-contradicting image.

That is the nature of much of the material I am pulling from – self-contradictory. Self-contradiction creates unease on the part of the viewer, which is why horror movies employ it so much. So in an occult movie, the men will get pregnant, or in a slasher film, it will be up to the defenseless girl with no weapons to kill the murderer.

But instead of solving these contradictions with a rush of adrenaline and terror, and a plot to resolve and explain, I have simply stopped things in the middle, built them three dimensionally, and photographed them. Compressing those impossible things we imagine with an actual object in space.

- Sue de Beer, March 2001

Lynn Aldrich, Soo Kim, John Pearson, castaneda / reiman
New Work
March 10, 2001 - April 28, 2001

Lynn Aldrich will present a new sculpture entitled “water table”. “water table” is a furniture-scale floor piece constructed from colored, translucent corrugated plastic panels. The resulting piece is a ‘coffee table’ referencing the solid aspects of water. The piece reflects Aldrich’s uncanny ability to transform banal materials from everyday life into magical, playful work. Aldrich’s recent sculpture, “Breaker”, was acquired by the Los Angeles County Museum Art and is included in their “Made in California” exhibition,

castaneda/reiman, the critically praised artist team from San Francisco, will be presenting new work since their recently finished headlands fellowship. Their new domestic-scale floor sculpture and wall pieces utilize their signature building materials (drywall, 2x4’s, plywood, carpet, insulation) to formally organize and reference the structural, functional, architectural and decorative elements of domesticity and construction.

Soo Kim will be showing a selection of new photographs in which she continues to explore the transitory aspects of travel and the individual moments that combine to create memories. Her emphasis on shifting light and movement weave together familiar yet dreamlike journeys for the viewer. Kim’s work can currently be seen in the “Double Vision” exhibition at Cal State Long Beach.

John Pearson is a recent Cal Arts graduate whose work has been receiving much critical attention since his debut exhibition at Sandroni Rey last year. In his new work, Pearson continues to pursue his fascination with light and its ability to alter and distort the perception of our surroundings. Pearson chases light in its multiple forms, from white hot to black, searching for the moment when our surroundings become clear.

Mara Lonner
The Sunset Series
January 13, 2001 - February 17, 2001

Mara Lonner produces site specific installations which confound our notion of ornament, architecture, and place. Through her work, decoration becomes structure, structure becomes location, and location becomes material. Simultaneously, her painting doubles as sculpture and her sculpture is fused with the architecture. The result is a clean and methodical disassembly of art historical definitions and categories.

In her latest work, Lonner has extended her investigations beyond the theme of place, into the specific concept of "home." Lonner recognizes an instinctual desire at the root of the matter, and probes the circulation and confirmation of this desire via mass media, specifically the homeowners' magazine Sunset. She compounds the glossy images and idealistic suggestions presented in the last six years of the magazine's publication, providing a unique take on the human desire for a home and its physical manifestation.

Adam Putnam
New Work
January 13, 2001 - February 17, 2001

Adam Putnam’s work with sculpture, photography, and projected image focuses on the body, as viewed through tenuous movements which appear to deteriorate into architecture. In Putnam’s recent work the room has replaced his body as the central focus of investigation. By pushing the limits of his body in space, he has been incorporated into it. The best way to describe this phenomenon, says Putnam, is in terms of the supernatural/paranormal. The room and everything in it has become “animated.” Chairs spontaneously come apart at the seams, disintegrating into piles of rubble; objects get spun around as if caught in a whirlpool, or stacked in perfectly symmetrical piles from floor to ceiling. Walls decay and crumble from within revealing the dark spaces that exist just under the surface-skin of the room. Occasionally, Putnam will reemerge in the work, less as an active participant and more as an unwilling victim of these strange forces. It is now he who has become bisected by the space of the room. Surrounding all the work, there is a nagging sense of horror, as seen from the various tropes which inform the work, from Edgar Allen Poe and H.P. Lovecraft, to films like "Halloween" and "The Shining."