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Inside the Artists Studio—Sean Duffy

Inside the Artist’s Studio is an-ongoing series exploring issues  on contemporary art through direct encounters with the artists themselves.  Dude-entity – Consider the American garage. Besides its primary purpose as storage for automotive maintenance supplies and providing year round protection for our economy’s most important commodity, the 21st century garage might be analyzed in the same manner as Walter Benjamin examined the deteriorating 19th century Parisian arcades. According to Benjamin, the 20th century was foretold in the demise of the 19th century shopping malls with its often absurd contents. Catacombs of surplus and obsolete consumer items, like the arcades, the garage reveals the fashions, … [Read more...]

Immensities and Infinities

Further Specimens from the Flowerbank World, Tom Wudl, L.A. Louver Gallery, June 2 through July 9 2011 – Immensities and  Infinities: Further Specimens from the Flowerbank World is the artist Tom Wudl's continuing investigation of the Avatamasaka Sutra (or Flower Ornament Sutra), a revered scripture of Huayan Buddhism. Earlier works by Wudl inspired by the sutra were first exhibited at L.A. Louver in Specimens from the Flowerbank World, November-December 2009. Read here the Artforum review by Annie Buckley. There was a time when the world was small and man knew his place in it....Today, space is expanding beyond the reaches of the imagination....we inhabit immensities and infinities that also inhabit us. I have … [Read more...]

Cutting Up the Beat

George Herms: THE ARTIST'S LIFE, REDCAT February 3, 2011 - February 5, 2011 – "Loving everyone. Knowing nothing." —George Herms, on himself In this joyously messy, shambling show, jazz fan and beat generation icon George Herms put together a happening/opera, framing his assemblage art with an all-star ensemble of L.A.'s jazz legends, the Bobby Bradford Mo'tet and  the Theo Saunders Group. Herms tuned in to the audience with bat-like radar, waiting for the last program to cease its rattling and the last guy to stop chattering to his girlfriend, then announced that we had just experienced The Afterparty (listed as the first piece in the program) in the lobby beforehand. Indeed, I reflected, my lobby experience had been really fun and … [Read more...]

Origin Stories

Cheryl Ann Thomas, New Work, Frank Lloyd Gallery, January 8-February 5, 2011 – The suite of porcelain and bronze pieces by Cheryl Ann Thomas that comprise her latest show at the Frank Lloyd Gallery seem to find their locus as “objects” neither in the art world proper – the province of museums, educators and critics, nor in the decorative arts – where we find the beyond-functionality of material beauty.  The interest of these works exists in the space between these often mutually exclusive domains – worlds with their own historical lineages and arbiters of taste. These objects seem to exist independently of any progenitors, their origin story elusive and mysterious. Thomas terms these works “artifacts” and “relics,” and there is a … [Read more...]

Tom Wudl, LA Louver Gallery, November 2009

Specimens from the Flowerbank World These paintings and drawings were inspired by the Avatamsaka Sutra. The English translation of its title—Flower Ornament Sutra—discloses the obvious relation between text and image. It would however be inaccurate to view these works as illustrations of the book, since they do not coincide with any specific descriptions of imagery in the sutra. It might be more appropriate to say that the images reflect the very rich content of the book. Inexhaustible Benefit, 2009, Oil on linen, 4 3/8" x 4 3/4" For instance, the proliferation of the tiny club motif is representative of the elaborate descriptions of phenomena so characteristic of the book’s literary style. “The finest jewels appeared spontaneously, … [Read more...]

What is there There

Nature Morte, paintings by Constance Mallinson Pomona College Museum of Art, through October 18, 2009 As a fiction writer, you learn first that as it addresses narrative, a great piece of fiction is like a path into a forest that never shows the way out. The same is true of poetry as it addresses the act of thought, or of painting as it addresses the act of seeing. (Such desultory ambulations are the crucial difference between these forms and the theory or philosophy that swarms around them, maybe with the exclusion of Derrida.) Woodland Seen, Oil on Paper, 54x96 inches, 2009 In this new work of Constance Mallinson, the act of seeing goes into an imaginary forest from which an essence has been gleaned and transmogrified, but never … [Read more...]

Tom Wudl, 3 New Works – Preview, LA Louver Show, November 2009

A preview of artist Tom Wudl's work for his upcoming solo exhibition opening November 12th at LA Louver Gallery, Venice CA. "My current interest is not the universal application of symbols, but the language of art itself. Where paint and image with their infinite malleability, their capacity for nuance, their challenge to mastery, beckon, beguile, and seduce into a labyrinth of mystery where I find refuge from the savagery of the world and where my inclination towards the sacredness of life is confirmed." — Tom Wudl Study for Flower Ornament Sutra 5, 2009 Oil on Paper Image: 4 1/2" x 5 1/8", Paper: 7 1/2"x 8 1/8" Study for Flower Ornament Sutra 4, 2009 Graphite on Paper Size: 9 1/4" x 13" Study for Flower Ornament Sutra 3, … [Read more...]