Zoé Blue M.: Phantasmal
Anat Ebgi is pleased to announce Phantasmal, a solo exhibition by Los Angeles artist Zoé Blue M.. The exhibition will run from February 22 – March 28 at AE2 Gallery located at 2680 S La Cienega Blvd., Los Angeles. An opening reception will take place Saturday, February 22 from 5-7pm.
Blue M.’s work addresses the complexities of multicultural psychology, family history, and growing up with a mixture of backgrounds, resulting in a body of work that draws upon a constant amalgamation of references, icons, and images, from anime to ukiyo-e. Her recent paintings can be seen as fragmented scenes from an ongoing story or play, depicting a female protagonist wholly in her own element. A narrative emerges that runs between absurdity and sincerity, with the lyricism of dreams and the directness of reality. Never extending the gaze out to the viewer, an emotional vulnerability surfaces with equal shades of humor, contemplation, and bite, revealing—across the canvases—an evolving individual in the act of everyday activities: eating noodles, cooling oneself by a fan, and playing adolescent games. In My Own Backyard (2020) depicts a young girl holding a slingshot and dressed in a Boy Scouts uniform. Nodding to the Executive Order and internment of Japanese Americans during WWII, the uniform has the numbers 9066 rhinestoned on the sleeves. Blue M.’s grandfather was interned during this period; ironically, the United States government permitted Boy Scout troop activities to persist in the camps.
The paintings in Phantasmal are unified by their bright palette and juxtaposition of abstract and culturally referent patterns. In Bright Blinding Tan Lines (2019), a girl wearing red check buffalo plaid holds up a yellow bikini by French designer Ed Hardy, who consistently used Japanese-inspired designs and American Vintage imagery in his fashions, while more organic forms leaf and feather-like flutter around her. In It Tastes Better Burnt (2019), a three-armed woman, wearing a blue Seigaiha patterned jacket, grills sausages in front of a flaming chain-link fence. Seigaiha is a traditional Japanese scalloped pattern that resembles waves, fish scales, or clouds. Blue M. imbues her paintings with these rich and subtle layers of symbolism that are the result of personal experiences and familial memories, nods to her multicultural heritage, as well as ongoing research into portrayals of East Asian female bodies throughout time and their exoticization and stereotyping as either opportunistic sexual beings, cunning “dragon ladies,” or servile and submissive, as seen in traditional theater, folklore, fashion, and pop culture.
Zoé Blue M. (b. 1994, Los Angeles) Blue M. received a BFA from Rhode Island School of Design and has attended residencies at Vermont Studio Center and Anderson Ranch, Texas. Recent exhibitions include The Gallery @ (2019), and In Lieu, Los Angeles (2019) and group exhibitions include Another Scorcher, Martha’s Contemporary, Austin; Three Oh One, Memorial Hall Gallery, Rhode Island; and ZIP Art Show, New York (all 2019). Blue M. lives and works in Los Angeles.
Jovana Millay: Levitation
Anat Ebgi is pleased to announce Levitation, a solo exhibition by Los Angeles-based artist Jovana Millay. The exhibition will be on view from November 2 through December 14, 2019. An opening reception will take place at AE2 (2680 S La Cienega Blvd) on Saturday, November 2nd from 5-7pm.
Millay will present a suite of new paintings and sculptures. Eleven in total, a number signifying illumination, inspiration and spiritual enlightenment. Known for her hard edge abstractions and luminous surfaces, the artist uses a minimal aesthetic to explore material, line, and subtle shifts in color eliciting a kind of emotional lyricism and spirituality.
After developing a narrow set of formal parameters Millay uncovers limitlessness and new discoveries emerge from within each painting. Spatially constrained by an identical semicircular curve on either end, Millay playfully doubles, elongates, and rotates the repeated shape from picture to picture. The putty-colored ground expands and contracts around the obrounds adding a sense of movement. Her unique masking technique slowly builds up delicate ridges that outline and bisect the seductive pastel apertures with each coat of meticulously applied paint and are suggestive of landscapes, bodies, cells, pills, and architectural details.
Millay’s paintings offer viewers the opportunity to travel through portals, beckoning them to sink into the canvas and experience what she describes as “unknown spatial realms, endlessly deep, and meditative.” The wall-mounted and freestanding sculptures extend her painterly experiments; it is as if the forms literally leapt off the wall and began moving around the room, challenging conventions of two dimensional image making.
Jovana Millay studied at the Rhode Island School of Design and received her BFA from Wheaton College. She lives and works in Los Angeles.
Chris Coy: Jurassic
Anat Ebgi is proud to announce Jurassic, a solo exhibition of new work by Chris Coy. The exhibition will be on view at AE2 from July 20th through August 24th. An opening reception will take place at 2680 S La Cienega Blvd on Saturday, July 20th from 5-7pm.
For his second exhibition with Anat Ebgi, Chris Coy will present a body of work called the Transfermaster-C series, oil paintings first rendered with the assistance of an Artificial Intelligence program, then hand-painted on linen.
Working in partnership with this transfer program, Coy fed it images of excess and frivolity from the Rococo and Baroque periods. After engorging itself on a “decadent diet” of Jean-Honoré Fragonard and François Boucher images, the artist asked the program to map those images of superfluous pleasure onto Francisco Goya’s Disasters of War etchings. The results are troubling. They flatten histories and inherit both sets of imagery—luxury and playfulness as well as violence, rage, and human brutality—forming an aesthetic superposition that in Coy’s words “feel as if the soul of the world has been sucked into the vacuum of space.”
On one hand, the paintings vibrate between celebrating artificial intelligence’s gestural, “happy accidents,” not dissimilar to the Dadaist cut-ups; on the other, they serve as a reminder of its catastrophic potential. AI can be used to enhance our perceptions of reality, or distort it beyond recognition. Viewers might consider these works in light of how deep analytics and big data can be used to modify perception and stoke public sentiments to achieve targeted outcomes. Our old paradigms cannot comprehend the potential of these new technologies.
Of the exhibition title, Coy comments, “like Richard Attenborough’s character in Jurassic Park, I know there’s something untenable about what I’m doing, but the pace of the vanguard is never one for much caution, especially lately.” Like his peers of the Post-Internet generation, Coy embraces the unique conditions of present technological advancements, though their impacts may not be fully understood, exploring and championing them as powerful tactics for engaging the world.
Chris Coy (b. 1980, Provo, UT) received his MFA at the Roski School of Visual Arts at USC in 2012. He has previously exhibition work at institutions including the New Museum (New York, NY); Utah Museum of Contemporary Art (Salt Lake City, UT); Torrance Art Museum (Torrance, CA); the Netherlands Media Art Institute (Amsterdam, Netherlands); and the 5th Moscow International Biennale for Young Art. He has shown work at galleries including Johan Berggren (Malmö, Sweden); Michael Thibault (Los Angeles, CA); Honor Fraser (Los Angeles, CA); Import Projects (Berlin, Germany); and COUNTY (Palm Beach, FL). He is also a former member of the internet art collective Nasty Nets. Coy lives and works between Los Angeles, CA and Las Vegas, NV.
Alejandro Cardenas: Calusa Garden
Anat Ebgi is proud to announce Calusa Garden, the first solo exhibition by Alejandro Cardenas to be presented in Los Angeles. The exhibition will be on view at AE2 from June 8 – July 13. An opening reception will take place on Saturday, June 8 from 5-7pm.
The title Calusa Garden refers to a park on the island of Key Biscayne in Miami, where Cardenas grew up, and his memory of this park as an untamed mangrove wilderness—significant for both its unknowable past and its limitless paradisiacal potential. His newest suite of paintings takes pleasure in exploring such unknown dimensions, historic and prophetic.
Cardenas’s work depicts fluid and graphic characters populating verdant landscapes and dream-like interiors. Humanoid, at times monstrous subjects shapeshift, sublimate, and pose in various states of fluctuating energy—lounging on furniture, performing acrobatics, embracing one another.
Cardenas pays special attention to tangential lines, repeated angles, and tessellations of each evocative figure, producing iconic—almost hieroglyphic scenes. The artist grounds these figures within the impressionistic depth of his compositions, but by contrast, their silhouettes are bound in flat space, filled with undulating patterns, or an inky blackness.
The mysterious world depicted is simultaneously organic and cosmic, built up with layers of watercolor, gouache, and acrylic, heightening the sense of hybridity. Along with surrealist painters such as Max Ernst, Wilfredo Lam and Roberto Matta, Cardenas shares the desire to look inward—to collect drips of subconscious leaking through the cracks of dreams—collapsing past and future, flatness and dimensionality.
Alejandro Cardenas (b. 1977, Santiago, Chile) completed his BFA at the Cooper Union School of Art in 2000. Cardenas has exhibited his work in group and solo exhibitions at the Hammer Museum (Los Angeles), James Fuentes (New York), Daniel Reich Gallery (New York), Rivington Arms (New York) and Marc Foxx (Los Angeles). Reviews of his work have appeared in the New York Times, Vogue, and Dossier Journal. Cardenas lives and works in Los Angeles, CA.
Jo Ann Callis: Lighting Matches
Anat Ebgi is proud to announce Lighting Matches, a curated project with Los Angeles photographer, Jo Ann Callis. On view in the gallery’s AE2 space from April 27 – June 1. An opening reception will take place on Saturday, April 27 from 5-7pm.
Callis is known for staging curiously complex photographs, rich with visual metaphors, both menacing and humorous. The selection of works in this exhibition draw from three decades of art making, with the earliest dated 1976 and the most recent 1992.
Constraining her work to interior and domestic settings, Callis explores the pleasure of familiarity and intimacy. However, the resulting photographs disrupt what we come to expect from day to day reality. In Callis’s scripted, posed, and tightly structured universe, a pair of painted red toes smoke a cigarette, a raven descends upon a strawberry cake, and a woman the size of a lamp twirls with reckless abandon. The artist experimented with photography at the encouragement of her professor, Robert Heinecken, who she studied under at UCLA during the early 1970s. It was during this time Callis developed a distinct style of constructed compositions, as well as an affinity for working with color film before it widely was accepted in fine art contexts.
Without imparting judgement, Callis explores human interiority—states of mind, such as joy, fear, pleasure, loneliness, and anxiety. Obscuring her subjects’ faces through lighting, cropping or choreographic poses, Callis withholds individual egos and personalities from view, and it becomes the viewer’s job to add and interpret the emotional and psychological realities left in the wake.
Callis’s work leaves one haunted with the sense that they have seen something not meant to be seen: a daydream, a nightmare, a fantasy, and challenges one’s ability to distinguish between each. Clarity between stillness and motion, leisure and work, pleasure and pain evaporates.
Special thanks to ROSEGALLERY for their partnership in this exhibition.
Jo Ann Callis (born, Cincinnati, OH) moved to Los Angeles in 1961. She enrolled at UCLA in 1970. Upon graduating she began teaching at CalArts, where she remains a faculty member of the School of Art’s Program in Photography and Media. She has continued to photograph, draw, and paint, and her work has been widely exhibited in such venues as the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA); Hammer Museum; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and many others. In 2009 a retrospective of her work, Woman Twirling, was presented by the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles. Callis has received three NEA Fellowships and a Guggenheim Fellowship, among other awards and prizes.
All images: © Jo Ann Callis. Courtesy of ROSEGALLERY.
Sarah Ann Weber: Tropical Disease
Anat Ebgi is pleased to present Tropical Disease, featuring new drawings by Sarah Ann Weber, her first show with the gallery. The exhibition will be on view in AE2 from March 16 – April 20th. An opening reception will take place on Saturday March 16th from 6-8pm.
Combing through a deep fog, intricate flowers blanket dense landscapes. A gossamer of scribbles and other gestural markings dissolve into biomorphic abstraction, a whorl of yellows, pinks and greens as much whole petals, as simply lines. Sarah Ann Weber’s compositions are of un-specific locales, influenced in part by memory, family archives and the California terrain. A vivarium of simultaneous growth and decay, these exterior scenes unleash a feral interiority. Entwined vines abound, shoots and stalks sway in tune, while wilting leaves whisper softly amidst the posy, bathed in the soft moonlight peaking through the forest canopy. Weber’s surreal patterning blends flora with figure, suspending natural geometry and the artist’s hand. Think of the nightshade, the Atropa belladonna, poison begets enchantment through furtive ritual, Weber’s teeming compositions are the sun-kissed mirage of delirious hallucination.
Weber embraces the femininity and androgynous potential of her subjects. Working primarily with colored pencils on paper, alongside watercolor, each is imbued with a delicate materiality, hinting at the impermanence of these otherwise dazzling blossoms. Each landscape is made from the steady accretion of pigment. The importance of rot and decay is furthered through a saccharine color palette, combining sentimentality with the unavoidable entropy of organic matter and life processes.
Sarah Ann Weber (b. 1988, Chicago, IL) lives and works in Los Angeles. She received her BFA from the School of the Art Institute, Chicago and her MFA from the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. She has had solo exhibitions at venues including Club Pro, Los Angeles; Some Time Salon, San Francisco; The Franklin, Chicago and Rena Sternberg Gallery, Glencoe, IL. Selected group exhibitions include Minnesota Street Project, San Francisco; Brand Library & Art Center, Glendale; MAUVE Gallery, Vienna, Austria; Green Gallery, Milwaukee, WI; Greenpoint Terminal Gallery, Brooklyn; Hunter Shaw Fine Art, Los Angeles; Galerie Nord/Kunstverein Tiergarten. Berlin; Locust Projects, Miami and Andrew Rafacz Gallery, Chicago.
Epithalamium: Christine Brache and Brad Phillips
“One aspect of great pain – as acknowledged by those who have suffered it from the perspective of psychology, philosophy, and physiology, and, finally, as becomes obvious to common sense alone – is that it is to the individual experiencing it overwhelmingly present, more emphatically real than any other human experience, and yet is almost invisible to anyone else, unfelt and unknown.Even prolonged, agonized human screams, which press on the hearer’s consciousness in something of the same way pain presses on the consciousness of the person hurt, convey only a limited dimension of the sufferer’s experience.”
– Elaine Scarry, The Body in Pain, 1985
Anat Ebgi is pleased to present Epithalamium, a two-person show with Cristine Brache and Brad Phillips, organized by Blair and Eli Hansen. The exhibition will be on view at AE2, January 26 through March 9th, with an opening reception on January 26, 6-8pm.
Taking its name from the epithalamium, a poem written for a bride, Cristine Brache and Brad Phillips, wife and husband artists, examine the potential of marriage, allowing their lived experience to speak to larger narratives of bodily trauma and mortality, while alluding to the intimate qualities of a unique partnership.
Pain has exterior indicators we can all recognize, chiefly via language. Yet language is often insufficient to adequately articulate, or empathize with, another’s suffering. Brache and Phillips transmit these difficult and impossible positions inside the language-based programs of culture, allowing for moments of vulnerability.
Art is supra-integral. Art is supra-personal. Art, like pain, is supra-linguistic. Epithalamium is about the fracture of language as it relates to expressions of pain, and marriage as a coping mechanism.
– Blair and Eli Hansen, 2019
Cristine Brache (b. 1984, Miami, FL) lives and works in Toronto, Canada. She received her MFA in Fine Art Media at the Slade School of Fine Art, London. Solo exhibitions include those held at Fierman Gallery (New York and Puerto Rico); Essex Flowers (New York) and Guccivuitton at the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA), Miami. Her work has been featured in group exhibitions at Ritter Art Gallery (Boca Raton); Team Gallery (New York); the Museum of Contemporary Art (Miami); AA|LA (Los Angeles); Bow Arts, London; Glasgow Short Film Festival, Scotland; Quartier21, Vienna and the Museum of Moving Images, New York, among others.
Brad Phillips (b. 1974, Toronto, Ontario) is an artist and writer based in Toronto. Solo exhibitions of his work have been held at Allen & Eldridge, New York; Rod Bianco Gallery, Oslo; Harper’s Books, East Hamptons; 8-11, Toronto; Louis B. James Gallery, New York; Monte Clark Gallery, Vancouver; Groeflin Maag Galerie, Basel; and Andrew Kreps Gallery, New York. His work has been included in group shows at Galerie Sebastien Bertrand, Geneva; Signs & Symbols, New York; Jessica Bradley, Toronto; The Hole, New York; Galerie de l’UQAM, Montreal. Phillips’ debut story collection, Never Forget to Not Forgive, was published by Tyrant Books in 2018. His work has appeared in various publications including Purple Fashion Magazine, Mousse, Art Forum, Modern Painters, Hyperallergic, Bordercrossings, and Canadian Art.
Janet Werner: The Splits
Anat Ebgi is pleased to announce The Splits, the first major solo exhibition of Canadian painter Janet Werner in the United States. The exhibition will span the main gallery and our AE2 space.
Developed over a practice spanning thirty years, Werner’s figures revel in multiple, fragile personalities culled from fashion magazines, children’s toys and art history. Despite their representational qualities, each subject remains an ambiguous distortion of references, devoid of one, singular identity. Trading in the traditional “likeness” of naturalist portraiture, Werner focuses on gestural tension and the deceit of traditional beauty.
Flattened against tenebrous, watery voids or indeterminate architecture, women stare blankly into space, inviting one to look beyond the predicament of each character, mirroring the viewer herself. Empathy amongst emptiness, the work may appear abstract at close glance, yet taken as a whole, the figures become exquisite corpses self-referential in scale, violently rendered in pointed paint strokes suggestive of crisis.
This new body of work further reorients the intention behind the gaze, as Werner shifts from paragon to process directly. Now in situ, they peer out amongst the tape, folded and crumpled photographs and cut-outs which inform their creation in the artist’s studio. Rather than relying on the tropes of the feminine or portraiture at large, Werner subverts the figure further — it becomes arresting and abject, aware of its construction. The ingénue reclaims her body, as in the case of the fragmented, many-armed Spider, who rebukes the legend of the Black Widow temptress. In Table with Picasso, one model slyly peeks out from below Werner’s effortless rendering of a Picasso, challenging the latter artist’s insipid quip, “All women are machines for suffering.” Werner exposes the mechanisms of this misogyny, manipulating the act of spectatorship and myth of production. If there is suffering, trauma is situated in Werner’s formal consideration of the consumable waif. The smudged furrows, tears and creases anatomize the internal, asserting a worth to pain beyond the performance of gender or glamour.
Janet Werner (b. 1959, Winnipeg, Manitoba) lives and works in Montreal, Quebec. She received her MFA from Yale University in 1987. Solo exhibitions include Parisian Laundry (Montreal), Galerie Julia Garnatz (Cologne), Saidye Bronfman Centre for the Arts (Montreal), Whatiftheworld Gallery (Cape Town) and Plug Institute of Contemporary Art (Winnipeg). Group exhibitions include AXENEO7 (Gatineau), MASS MoCA (North Adams), Musée d’art contemporain (Montreal), Kenderdine Art Gallery (Saskatoon). A solo survey exhibition entitled “Another Perfect Day” organized by the Kenderdine Art Gallery, University of Saskatchewan, toured to five locations in Canada from 2013-2015, including the Esker Foundation (Calgary) ; the McIntosh Gallery, (Ontario); Galerie de l’UQAM (Montreal); and the Doris McCarthy Gallery (Toronto). Werner’s work is in the collections of the Musée du Québec, Musée d’art contemporain (Montreal), The Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO), Toronto, Owens Art Gallery (Sackville), the Canadian Embassy in Berlin, University of Lethbridge (Alberta), Winnipeg Art Gallery, the Mendel Art Gallery and numerous private and corporate collections.
Sara Berman: Double Entendre
Anat Ebgi is pleased to announce Double Entendre, a solo exhibition by London-based artist Sara Berman, curated by Tamar Arnon & Eli Zagury with an accompanying essay. The exhibition will be on view in AE2 from June 30th to August 11th. An opening reception will take place Saturday June 30th from 6-8pm.
Dense tessellations of gendered bodies recede into a mélange of harlequin diamonds and Vespasian checkerboards. Often comprised of several panels joined together, Berman’s practice embraces the architectural; ambiguous fusions of perspectives, patterns and appendages environ throughout the densely layered canvases. These collage-esque distortions produce a physiological tension which retain a loose and playful corporeality, amid contortions of limbs. Berman’s scenography of the domestic interior flattens the plane, compressing space in such a way that furniture, ornament and body seem to exist on top of one another, a somber non-hierarchy of rich colors punctuated by soft vulnerability.
The larger canvases which often incorporate textiles within their painted plains, are accompanied by collaged works on paper, freestyle embroidery studies on linen and a collection of Lint works, depicting utilitarian, genderless garments (sweaters). The latter works refer to the figure and the relationship between the body and the spaces it occupies through the material build-up of thread, hair and dust infused within, alluding just as much to bodily accretion as psychological accumulation.
Rich in geometric motifs, the embroidered works extend this tapestry of flirtation, potted plants and overturned kitchen chairs becoming the stage for cheeky innuendo and clandestine embrace.
Working across these various mediums of paint and textiles, the works are bound together by a commitment to the exploration of materiality and its corporeal possibilities in a considered investigation of the body and the spaces it occupies.
Sara Berman (b.1975) lives and works in London; she completed her MFA at Slade School of Art, UCL in 2016. From 1998 to 2012, Berman worked as a fashion designer, founding her eponymous fashion brand. Her work has been shown widely at venues such as the National Portrait Gallery (London), BAK Museum Utrecht (Netherlands) Galerie Huit (Hong Kong) and Sapar Contemporary (New York).
Gideon Rubin: Comrade
Anat Ebgi is pleased to announce Comrade, an exhibition by London-based, Israeli artist Gideon Rubin. Continuing his fascination with memory and history, Rubin uses found images as the armature for abstract portraits of the past. The exhibition is the culmination of a month-long residency at The La Brea Residency.
Often directly painting over source materials if not explicitly referencing them, cultural memory is revised and questioned through the historicized image. His broad, wet brush-strokes challenge the younger medium, photography, as much as it makes use of its conventions – specifically the idea that a picture tells a thousand words, or that that either can purport to be “truthful.”
A degree of anonymity shrouds much of Rubin’s human figures – faceless, they become surfaces for projection, no one and everyone, all at once. This obfuscation through overpainting and blending – in particular a composition of suited men who upon closer examination are the Hollywood Ten – allow the viewer to consider different versions to the familiar tales of history and popular culture. Whether painted on canvas, wood, cardboard or even the original photograph itself, Rubin’s varied sources directly inform the visage of the work, playing with the connotations of a glamour which has become disposable. A tousled lock of hair, clenched fists or the way a garment wrinkles falls on the body, these are the human impressions Rubin imprints upon the viewer. Without falling into the trappings of nostalgia, Rubin tackles this collection of headshots, print ads and family photos in such a way that blends time and spectatorship into ambiguous flux. Suddenly, everything is less specific, intangible, a barely-decipherable glimmer.
Gideon Rubin (b.1973) is an Israeli artist based in London. He received his BFA from School of Visual Arts in New York and MFA from Slade School of Art in London. He has been the subject of numerous international solo exhibitions, most recently at the Freud Museum, London, the Herzliya Museum of Contemporary Art Israel, San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art, Galerie Karsten Greve, Paris, Rokeby, London, and Hosfelt Gallery, San Francisco. He has been in numerous group exhibitions including Flag Art Foundation, New York, Klosterhaus in Magdeburg, Germany, Mackintosh Museum, Glasgow, Tel Aviv Museum of Art, the Jerusalem Biennial, the Beijing Biennale at the National Art Museum, China and the Israel Museum, Jerusalem. Rubin was a recipient of the ‘Shifting Foundation’ grant in 2014 and Outset residency program, Tel Aviv in 2013. He is represented by Galerie Karsten Greve (Paris, Cologne, St Moritz), Hosfelt Gallery, San Francisco and Alon Segev Gallery, Tel Aviv.
Robert Russell: Moore. More. Moore.
Anat Ebgi is pleased to announce, Moore. More. Moore., the gallery’s first solo exhibition of LA-based artist Robert Russell at AE2. A salon-style installation of paintings continue the artist’s interest in using the tropes of painting to critique contemporary culture.
Kellyanne Conway’s sullen face grimaces mid-sentence. A perplexed, prudish Charlie Brown looks out helplessly, trapped amid a mirage of panting dogs, a folle orgie of sweaty bodies entangled with rotting still-lifes, the old CalArts building in Valencia, and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Scenes of depravity rub against a sentimental use of color, breeding a hypertextual and media-saturated environment perhaps just as wet as Russell’s lavish use of oils. The conventions of self-presentation are explored in a succession of canvases depicting amateur webcam models mid-pose, recalling the traditional nude studies fundamental to any painter’s training.
Deconstructing how images are made and received, the romance of painting and art history are manipulated, collapsing the private and public through realism. Andy Warhol’s turtlenecked face stretched like a bad Photoshop edit, Michelangelo’s David swathed in a garish pink, and a nod to Pointillism with a “pixelated” Mussolini, appear alongside three small, “cropped” canvases, easily borrowed from Getty Image stock photography, of men’s slacks and dress shoes on a red carpet, their identities virtually indistinguishable save for the respective titles, George, David, and Leo.
The exhibition is accompanied by a collaborative publication by Russell and Carter Mull, materializing a deep social bond and investment in one another’s practices.Unapologetic in his politic, Russell’s work is still that of an earnest painter. The dark excess and volume presented in his sprawling installation is reminiscent of a Google image search cache, complete with the “cookies” of a viewer’s personal information, and the odd dick pic. A painterly accumulation occurs, questioning notions of value and media literacy.
Robert Russell lives and works in Los Angeles, California. He completed his MFA at California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) in 2006. Recent solo exhibitions include The Cabin LA, Burrard Arts Foundation (Vancouver, BC Canada), LA><ART (Los Angeles), François Ghebaly Gallery (LA), Big Pond Artworks (Munich, Germany) and Osmos (New York, NY). He has also been included in numerous group shows in Los Angeles including Roberts and Tilton Gallery, Material Press MOCA LA and M+B Gallery.
Being Like Water: Jen DeNike and Katherine Bradford
Waves lap, clairvoyant muses loosed upon with hatched resonance swing into the ether.
Swans gathering, apocalyptic dreams, deeper now hear the tide. Remember you are half water.1
She, swimming among pearls and old bones2, praying to reverent curves. Utopian refuge and secret conduits flood the invisible. Femme fatale fill my tilting horizon, your painted observations hold true.
Hypnotic rhythm, migratory birds shifting in the deep, a well, and oceans traversing, the landscape pulls. The velocity of my stars gather, escaping the core of that black hole, a daughter’s hope and recognition, only existence.
Eden slips, she tethers, angels provoke, wave jumper3 murmurs a slow refrain. Longing for holy water4, revolution come, future hither. My analemma looks for your moon, while Sirens shimmer in that mirage waxing with hope.
Internal voices lapping still, to the place in her, I, she, we, is it real or imagined?
Anat Ebgi is pleased to announce Being Like Water, an immersive site-specific installation featuring Jen DeNike and Katherine Bradford at AE2. The exhibition includes DeNike’s new film Queen of Narwhals with four new paintings by Bradford. This collaborative installation grew out of a dialog between the artists and their mutual interest in the universal and psychological quality of water as a prevalent element in both their work. An opening reception will be held Saturday Jan 13, 6-8pm and will be on view until March 10, 2018.
Jen DeNike‘s work is currently on view at Generation Loss a year-long installation of seminal film and video works at Julia Stoschek Collection Dusseldorf curated by artist Ed Atkins and at Beth Rudin DeWoody’s new private museum The Bunker, West Palm Beach. Her video work is in numerous private and public collections including The Museum of Modern Art. She has been exhibited internationally including; Participant Inc, KW Berlin, 54th Venice Biennale, Garage Projects Moscow, Eastman House, Franklin Street Works, Zendai Museum of Modern Art, Shanghai, MOCA Toronto, MACRO ROMA, Tensta Konsthall Sweden, MoMA PS1, CCS Bard Hessel Museum. Commissioned projects include; Bombay Beach Biennale, Capri by Night – Schauspiel Köln Opera house, LAND Los Angeles Nomadic Division, Creative Time, Performa Biennial, PopRally MOMA, FairPlay, and Miami Art Basel Film Program.
Katherine Bradford is a New York based painter who spends summers on the coast of Maine. In 2011 Bradford was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship, and in 2012 a Joan Mitchell Grant. Last year Bradford was Senior Critic for the MFA painting program at the Yale School of Art in New Haven. Her work is in several public collections, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Brooklyn Museum, The Hall Foundation, and the Portland Museum of Art (ME and OR). Recent exhibitions include a solo exhibition at the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, Fort Worth, Texas; Sperone Westwater, NY; Monica De Cardenas, Milan; CANADA, NY; Adams and Ollman, Portland, OR; and is currently included in Prospect 4, New Orleans. Bradford is represented by CANADA, NY and Adams and Ollman, Portland.
1 Atwood, Margaret, The Penelopiad, 2005.
2 Woolf, Virginia. The Voyage Out, 1915.
3 Drexciya, Aquatic Vision, Wave Jumper, 1994.
4 Didion, Joan. Holy Water, 1971.
The sound installation was generously supported by Wilson Audio, Mytek Digital, Transparent Audio Laboratory, and Audio Element.
Jordan Nassar: Dunya
Dunya presents a new series of hand-embroidered canvases. The works feature compositions of undulating fantastical landscapes in jeweled colors made from symbols adapted from traditional Palestinian embroidery. The new body of work presents the dialogue between the artist’s own embroidery and its connection to the place and history of Palestine. The histories of generations of Palestinians have been imbued into the handcraft of embroidery often featured upon traditional women’s dresses— the symbols worked upon the garb trace the familial records of transience and movement. The traditional embroidery is a skill that the artist has dedicated his time to learning in an attempt to connect with his heritage as a Palestinian-American. As a descendant of the Palestinian diaspora, the landscapes Nassar works upon the canvases are meditations on alienation and displacement.
The landscapes are at once the product of an inherited nostalgia, a desire to capture Nassar’s ancestors’ stories of an idyllic Palestine, and a projection of a utopian future where the conflicts are a distant memory. Each embroidery is an elegy for a Palestine, delicate and wondrous in its kaleidoscopic topography.
For the exhibition, Nassar has published a limited edition zine entitled “Dunya” featuring his essay on the works of the show.
To put it simply, Dunya is the whole world. In a religious context, it is This World, as opposed to The Next, but it’s more than that. Dunya is the world you swear by when you promise true love. Dunya is the world that is ruined when your heart is broken. Dunya is the earth, the dirt, the trees, the rivers, the oceans, the sun, the sky, the birds, the cats, the dogs, and the people.
-Excerpted from Jordan Nassar’s zine, “Dunya,” 2017
Nicholas Piltato: La Brea
A continuous line of cars and lights and exhaust. La Brea. A mix of concrete and oil mirror the mineral pitch of the street. Low grumblings over the din of traffic, it’s a cyclical process. The street is lined with the flowering jacaranda and oil well pumpjacks— Los Angeles’ flying buttresses. Hitting a road block is just a detour around the Tar Pits. Trying to paint the smell of the tar in the air is impossible.The oil seeps out to become a stain on the porous concrete, its pigment won’t stick to a layer of dust.
Surfaces are crystallizations of the organic. A process moving forward and backward in time, refining the crude into some beautiful aggregate. Like a conversation at a red light, the words are slow but end abruptly when the color changes. Stop then go. The road and much of the landscape [is] artificial. Everything along it has been reused. The asphalt bubbling up from cracks below the surface, the tangerine and lavender sunset glow on the buildings, the canvas scraped down and built up.
I’ve been here before.
La Brea is Nicholas Pilato’s second exhibition with the gallery. The show is comprised of works made in Los Angeles during his residency at La Brea Studio. Recent exhibitions include a two person presentation with John Roebas at Rose Gallery, NY, and group exhibitions including Michael Jon and Alan Gallery, Detroit; Gallerie Derouillon, Paris; Moulin du Roc, Niort; Brand New Gallery, Milan; and the Museo Britanico Americano, Mexico City.
Julie Henson: Total Knockout
Anat Ebgi is pleased to announce Total Knockout, the gallery’s first exhibition with Los Angeles-based artist Julie Henson opening April 28 and on view through May 27. The exhibition inaugurates Anat Ebgi’s extended space AE2 located at 2680 S. La Cienega Blvd that will host a concurrent schedule of exhibitions, projects and selections of work alongside the gallery’s main space.
Comprised of inkjet and wood sculptures featuring images mined from an archive of American magazines, Henson portrays gendered notions of strength, power and celebrity seen through the prism of mass media. Her works are structured around formal silhouettes that reference the visual syntax of magazine layouts, while working within the physical space of trophies or theatrical props. The flatness of her sculptures are accentuated by the flocking done to their surfaces, which, as a treatment process commonly used for upholstery fabrics and textiles, accentuates the tension between perception versus sensation.
Drawing on her experiences growing up in a religious family in South Carolina, Henson points to parallels between how religious iconography and cultural norms are reiterated and maintained. The sculptures become reference symbols of power and consider the performative nature of identity, competing with the images printed across their surfaces that conflate content and form. Henson delves into the syncretic nature of mass media, questioning the legibility of symbols outside their context and what is revealed through such displacement. The work in Total Knockout treats the celebrity icons of the last half-century of American media as contemporary saints, using their image as allegories that transfer meaning from one image to the next. The result is a combination of advertising images from the past and present, often featuring iconic figures like televangelists, celebrities, politicians and sports heroes.
Julie Henson (b. 1983 in Charleston, SC) lives and works in Los Angeles. Henson received her MFA in from California College of the Arts in 2011. Henson has had a solo exhibition at the Columbia Museum of Art, South Carolina. She has also participated in group shows at numerous museums and spaces including the Torrance Art Museum, Torrance; BBQLA, Los Angeles and the Visual Art Center at the University of Texas, Austin. Henson’s work has been reviewed in the pages of Elephant Magazine, Artforum and Hyperallergic and was a 2017 nominee for the Rema Hort Mann Foundation Emerging Artist Award.