Monday, October 29, 2012

Let's Do Something Cheap and Superficial

Detail of Let's Do Something Cheap and Superficial (2012) by Molly Jo Shea
59 X 24.5 inches

Well, we're entering our final week of The Subterraneans here at the TAM.

I figure we can wrap up the show with a few more exhibition spotlight posts. Today, we're looking at the humorous and satirical work by Molly Jo Shea, Let's Do Something Cheap and Superficial. Taking as inspiration the 1972 iconic nude Burt Reynolds centerfold, published in Cosmopolitan magazine, Shea transformed the image through yarn into a shag rug.

It's an interesting examination of sexual objectification. Back in 1972, the image was intended to posit "eye candy" for women, an act of "sex positive" feminism. Although contemporary marketing of such sexuality towards women is still alive and well, as this year's movie, Magic Mike, demonstrates with impressive box office earnings, the overt "beefcake" approach of 1970's "sex positive" feminism seems a bit vulgar, awkward and humorous.

Therefore, the transformation into a shag rug feels appropriate. The discomfort induced by the image's now inappropriate sexuality is softened into a funny textile cartoon, draining it of all erotic expressiveness. But it raises the question as to what exactly is "cheap and superficial." Is it the original centerfold with its overt appeal to female carnal desires? Or is it the modern sensual sensibility that rejects the exuberance of yesterday's sexual revolution?

Here's a vid:

Let's Do Something Cheap and Superficial by Molly Jo Shea

The artist-run space that Molly Jo Shea helps run is RAID Projects, located at 602 Moulton Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90031. Check them out!!!

And, we can't end the post without listening to Burt Reynolds singing.

"Let's Do Something Cheap and Superficial" performed by Burt Reynolds

Now, don't delay!!! We close up the show this upcoming Saturday, November 3rd.

We're looking forward to seeing you at the TAM, 'cause "This might be the only chance we get." ;-)

Thursday, October 18, 2012

The Darkroom Presents: Yoshie Sakai

Image from Come One Eat All (2007) by Yoshie Sakai

The Torrance Art Museum has long been a proponent of video art, but displaying it has always been complicated. In setting up an exhibition space, should the videos be intermingled with the paintings, photos, sculptures, and installations? If so, should there be seating and headphones? Alternatively, should the videos be separated into their own video space, with dedicated seating and sound system. Each of these approaches and all the others in between have their advantages.

However, the TAM has decided to open up a new space, The Darkroom, dedicated to exhibiting video art. Yes, our other exhibitions will still continue to include videos, but there is now an exhibition area purely for the showcasing of videos. In our first exhibit, we are featuring the works of Yoshie Sakai.

Humorous, witty, and socially relevant, Yoshie Sakai puts a critical eye to topics as diverse as body image, familial expectations, and mass media concepts of beauty. Combining these satirical critiques with influences from Japanese aesthetics, her videos are engaging, provocative, and entertaining.

Here's one of the works on view in the exhibit:

Come One Eat All

We're looking forward to seeing you at the TAM!!!

Saturday, October 6, 2012

XYZ: The Geometric Impulse in Abstract Art

Detail of SWB #1 (2012) by Linda Besemer

Gallery Two is currently hosting "XYZ: The Geometric Impulse in Abstract Art." Organized by Jessica Halonen and Emily Joyce, this exhibit seeks to showcase contemporary works that explore non-objective abstractions, utilizing the design and analytical techniques of geometric structure.

The artists featured in this show are:

Linda Besemer
Claude Collins-Stracensky
Krysten Cunningham
Mark Hagen
Jessica Halonen
Hadley Holliday
Emily Joyce
Dennis Koch
Jessica Mallios
Brad Tucker

It's an engaging exhibition ranging from the subtle to the clamorous, across media from sculpture to painting to video. Exploring concepts from the material to the noumenal, this show raises interesting questions regarding perception and awareness.

View of Gallery Two from behind Jessica Halonen's Rx Garden: Sticky Ends (6)

Here's a video walkthrough of the exhibition:

"XYZ: The Geometric Impulse in Abstract Art"

This show runs until November 3rd.

Don't delay!!! Come by and check it out. ;-)

View of Gallery Two from behind sculptures by Krysten Cunningham.

We're looking forward to seeing you at the TAM!!!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Matt MacFarland: Clusterfuckwich

Clusterfuckwich (2012) by Matt MacFarland
tinted resin and assorted trash
5 x 6 x 4.5 inches

Here's a spotlight post on one of the works currently displayed in "The Subterraneans: The artists behind LA's artist-run spaces." Matt MacFarland's resin sculpture of sliced bread, into which various bits of trash are embedded, is part of the contingent of art works from Elephant, an art space in Glassell Park.

Although a colorful and humorous piece, Clusterfuckwich plays with the serious emotional contrast between that which is wholesome, such as a loaf of bread, and that which is repugnant, such as discarded trash. Placed in conjunction, it leads one to consider how that which we blindly accept as desired commodities actually contain interior pollutions, hidden within a pleasing presentation.

When we ask for our "daily bread," are we aware of the "trash" inside?

Sideview of Clusterfuckwich (2012) by Matt MacFarland

Elephant is located on 3325 Division St., Los Angeles, CA 90065. Check out the website to find out about the many exciting events that they host.

And here's a video of Matt MacFarland's Clusterfuckwich:

Fun stuff!!!

So,come on by and check out this interesting work for yourself. And, if you're near Glassell Park, pay a visit to the fine folks and Elephant. In either case, it'll be a fun time. ;-)

Clusterfuckwich (2012) by Matt MacFarland

We're looking forward to seeing you at the TAM!!!