Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Karen Cope: A Symphony of Mankind

Karen Cope, Yoda, One Gross Face, Torrance Art Museum, Symphony of Mankind
Yoda, part of Karen Cope's installation, A Symphony of Mankind

With under two weeks left until the Torrance Art Museum wraps up the current exhibits, I figured that it would be a good idea to spotlight Karen Cope's exhibit, A Symphony of Mankind, which is featured in our installation hall. In this exhibition, numerous distinct faces, sculpted out of pigmented gypsum, are arranged together along the walls in a manner that blends the vast array into a harmonic unit.

Although each is a unique caricature, with individual quirks and expression, Cope's technique and material creates an underlying sense of commonality. It's quiddity versus essence. The visage is individual, but the core is universal.

Alfred Hitchcock, Karen Cope, One Gross Face, Symphony of Mankind, Torrance Art Museum
Hitchcock, part of Karen Cope's A Symphony of Mankind

But these words and photographs are not sufficient in expressing the sensation of walking among the works themselves. To see them simultaneously as both a whole collection and as individual pieces is an engaging experience, as your eyes scan over the installation, pausing or being arrested by distinct features and the trace of the sculptor's touch.

It's definitely something to check out before the show closes. Karen Cope's A Symphony of Mankind will be running until March 9, 2013.

Karen Cope, Symphony of Mankind, Torrance Art Museum
Karen Cope's A Symphony of Mankind at the Torrance Art Museum

And here are a few videos showing Karen Cope's practice:

"Constructing the Portrait"

"On Sculpting Eyes and Hair"

"Demonstration at the Brentwood Art Center"

Karen Cope, One Gross Face, Symphony of Mankind, Torrance Art Museum
Karen Cope's A Symphony of Mankind at the Torrance Art Museum runs until March 9, 2013

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

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Talks, Discussions, and Demonstrations

Jasom Ramos, Catlin Moore, Grant Vetter, Torrance Art Museum, Painting in LA
Jason Ramos (left) moderates a panel discussion on painting in Los Angeles, with Catlin Moore and Grant Vetter

We had a very eventful day at the Torrance Art Museum on Saturday, February 9th. The afternoon started with a sculpture demonstration by Karen Cope, providing information as to technique and context to her works currently on view, One Gross Face. Then, Grant Vetter gave a talk on his book, The Architecture of Control, discussing the influence of ideology on a wide array of subjects.

Our "main event' was the "Painting in Los Angeles" panel discussion. Moderated by Jason Ramos, the panel was comprised of Catlin Moore, Christopher Pate, Max Presneill, and Grant Vetter. Conversation ranged among various topics, from questioning why art critics recurrently claim that "Painting is Dead" to considering the role that commercial pressures, specifically when establishing gallery representation, plays in how a painter approaches the art of painting.

Yeah, the panel had a lot of "artist's art talk" but it was a lively conversation and presented many engaging opinions and compelling observations.

Karen Cope, One Gross Face, Torrance Art Museum
Karen Cope demonstrated her sculptural technique in Gallery Two.

It was a good time. The TAM thanks all of you who came out to participate in the events, artists and art lovers alike. ;-)

For more information on this panel discussion, you ought to check out "Panel and Paradox at the Torrance Art Museum" at the Painting In L.A. site.

Although the talks and demonstrations are past, the shows continue. Paradox Maintenance Technicians, Theatrical Dynamics, One Gross Face, and Dark Room Presents: McLean Fahnestock, these exhibits all continue until March 9, 2013. So, there are a few more weeks left to come check them out.

Don't miss 'em!!!

Christopher Pate, Max Presneill, Painting in LA, Torrance Art Museum
Christopher Pate (l) and Max Presneill (r) were panelists at "Painting in LA"

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

Monday, February 4, 2013

Torrance Art Museum: Paradox Maintenance

Torrance Art Museum, Paradox Maintenance Technicians
The Torrance Art Museum will be exhibiting Paradox Maintenance Technicians until March 9, 2013.

The TAM's annual survey of contemporary painting from Los Angeles (and beyond) is now on exhibit. This year, we're calling it Paradox Maintenance Technicians. Yes, there are a whole lot of abstract works on display. ;-)

We have twenty-six paintings on view. It's hard to lump them together into a tidy thesis statement, but we wouldn't be too far off track to say that these works are expressions of the aesthetic conflict which a painter faces in transforming a noumenal inspiration into a manifest phenomenal communication. The vague idea takes shape through the craft of painting into an artistic statement.

It is an interesting concept, which is examined with great variety and distinction by the works collected into this exhibition.

Esmeralda Montes, Formation of Crag, Paradox Maintenance Technicians, Torrance Art Museum
View from the back of Gallery One, featuring Esmeralda Montes' The Formation of Crag

Artists included in Paradox Maintenance Technicians are:

Kent Familton

Paradox Maintenance Technicians, Trine Wejp-Olsen, Sarah Awad, Summer Wheat, Torrance Art Museum
Works by Trine Wejp-Olsen, Sarah Awad, and Summer Wheat

Marcus Perez

That's a good survey sample by my reckoning. ;-)

Paradox Maintenance Technicians, Juan Carlos Quintana, Marcus Perez, Nicholas Aguayo, Laura Krifka, David Leapman, Torrance Art Museum
Gallery view of work along the inner wall facing the rear

So, come on over to the TAM to check out Paradox Maintenance Technicians and experience the paradox for yourself.

Moreover, we'll be having a panel discussion about the state of contemporary painting in Los Angeles this upcoming Saturday, February 9th, from 3 to 5 pm. The scheduled panelists are Kevin Appel, Catlin Moore, Max Presneill, Christopher Pate, and Grant Vetter.

There will be much to discuss.

Paradox Maintenance Technicians, Tyler Vlahovich, Helen Garber, Christopher Kuhn, Torrance Art Museum
Works by Tyler Vlahovich, Helen Garber, and Christopher Kuhn

Remember, this exhibit runs until March 9, 2013. Don't delay!!!

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