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Kyle Riedel’s Log Pile At Daybreak

Kyle Riedel's Log Pile At Daybreak

I am stepping back in time—to the locus of art exhibitions past. Specifically, I recently traveled in my mind to October 2012 and revisited my experience at Jaus’ exhibition titled, Case Study Los Angeles II: On the Perimeter.

Encountering artist produced take a ways; posters, reams of paper stacked in a minimalist cube, stickers, candy and other ephemera, I gladly participate and complete the chain. At Jaus, I was initially thrown off by L.A. based artist Kyle Riedel’s gift-wrapped wood bundles; signed and numbered in an edition of 100. I had never seen anything like them. How pretentious I thought! How sly! How cynical! Then, How generous! What a gift! The pile of utilitarian sculpobjects served two months ahead of Christmas or other holiday observed in December or January lay stacked underneath Riedel’s deceptive image of crumpled papers that embodies photography, drawing, performance and sculpture in one fell swoop. I was overjoyed to pick out the bundle that I thought was the most glamourous, flamboyant and decorative of the bunch. Leopard print, silver, colorful polka dots and a Japanese inspired floral gave the logs a jubilant attitude of pride of place. The closing reception to the exhibit took place near Halloween. Hence, there were some attendees also wrapped in celebratory costume. I was wearing an apron with the likeness of a female in a bikini emblazoned on the plasticky surface that I borrowed from a friend. It was a weak attempt at gender bending I admit.

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Jay Erker’s The Humans Are Present

Jay Erker's The Humans Are Present

If I were to define the highest art form as a sensorial event that is like an electrical shock to your mind and body, then Jay Erker’s “social communication experiment” on December 9th would follow the entry “Art” in my self-published dictionary. Titled The Humans are Present(s) Erker’s foray into interactive performance served as a triumphant tweak in the cosmic universe to quell any humanoid disquietude with the coming Mayan calendar ending. Part of Dutch Door’s weekly, humorous, sarcastic, critical and serious Countdown Series, Erker’s personalized and therapeutic “reading” almost left me ready to die and jump on that asteroid.

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(C)overt, A Group Show Curated By 5790projects

(C)overt, A Group Show Curated By 5790projects

(C)overt, the group show recently on view at Synchronicity Space on Heliotrope and curated by 5790projects (aka Catlin Moore and Matthew Gardocki) left me vexed. In my rush to arrive to the opening on a rainy night from a figure painter’s open studio nearby, I forgot to use my aesthetic wiper blades (someone should pitch that product to a venture capitalist) to make a clean hole for my visual, intake valve. After dodging other reception cavorters in an effort to see the paintings, I thought, “What can I value from this not so overtly covert four person show?” A friendly war of aesthetics was being fought. I just needed to figure out if I believed the premise and to choose a side. The news release asserted that “…each artist grapples with (an) equilibrium of the hidden and unveiled—both aesthetic and conceptual attributes are strategically divulged, annihilated, obscured, and intimated.” While that description sounded open ended and apt, I wanted the how, the blood and guts of each artists’ mission. I emailed each artist that same question I asked myself when I encountered the works during those critical first moments of entry to the intimate, gallery space. Can we receive anything from looking and seeing art other than temporal terrors, slow burns of visual bliss or something neutral and leveling in between? Are those “psychological associations” something valuable? As a 6 year old I know likes to tell me, “Nothing IS something.” Three of the four artists graciously responded to my query with unique statements on where they stood on their art production and what they hoped viewers would see and gain from looking at their contemporary art spawn. Their words abetted my initial trepidations and stoked my thoughtful curiosity even more.

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Cirilo Domine’s In The Hyphen & Deborah Hede’s Material Measures

Cirilo Domine's In The Hyphen & Deborah Hede's Material Measures

If you were to walk through the current exhibition at Commonwealth And Council in the heart of Koreatown, without reading the layout guide nor the press release for the uncannily paired artists, you might guess that you were seeing the works of one artist. We are tempered by contemporary artists who employ a multiplicity of materials in 2 and 3 dimensional, hybridized forms. The L.A. based artists Cirilo Domine and Deborah Hede on the other hand are intensely devoted to exploring a focused examination in two very different modalities of our psyche’s interiority that are pressed upon by existing urban and natural scapes. The two artists have visually revealed the predisposed and happenstance routes that our bodies and minds are often forced to take in an ordered succinctness in daily life. Instead of feeling restricted by the represented gridded boundaries from the artists’ works, I felt opened up and a comfort that verged on gratitude. Their systemic and wondering portrayals of the orderly and bent possibilities of linear arrangements, has re-ignited the explorer in me. I can still fail in a series of dead ends, and continue to succeed in trying new routes within my mind and where I take myself physically.

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Ultimedia Theremin At REDCAT

Ultimedia Theremin At REDCAT

No doubt that the Theremin is a sonic instrument that has brought to mind horror and Sci-Fi film sound tracks and true wonder since it was first invented by Russian physicist Lev Sergeevich Termen in 1920. Having never seen or heard one in person, my curiosity was piqued when I read that the REDCAT was hosting the musician Eric Ross and video artist Mary Ross this past Friday night, November 2nd. In retrospect it was a propos to showcase such a tripped-out, dreamy and infectious performance on Day of the Dead 2. The Ross duo’s Opus’ could be viewed and heard as a stream of consciousness, visual and audio memorial or celebration to deceased loved ones. I felt possessively transported to another realm within Redcat’s black box and even changed by Mr. Ross’s ethereal and piercing, sound compositions.

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Newsbites

Ghana Must Go Fiber CAFAM Los Angeles

CAFAM is hosting a two day event called Ghana Must Go on November 1 and November 2. There will be a trunk show, West African inspired works, performances, and more.

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Fit, Form, Function Compton

Fit, Form, Function is a new (and first) Compton based arts journal. They’re hoping to explore a few things, their first issue specifically speaking to “objects we do not touch.” If you want to get involved, send in submissions by November 15.

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House Of Modern Horrors Alex Miller Los Angeles Halloween 2014

In case you need more frights this weekend, Alex Miller is bringing an immersive exhibition called the House Of Modern Horrors. It’s a cringeworthy event showcasing “nightmares that haunt our reality.” EEeEeEeeeEE. There will also be some comedians, too.

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