Apparition

Greg Ito

October 2 - November 20, 2021

Fossils

Faith Wilding

October 2 - November 20, 2021

Under The Palm Tree Leaves

Christopher Udemezue

September 25 - November 6, 2021

Apparition

Greg Ito

October 2 - November 20, 2021

Anat Ebgi is pleased to announce Apparition, an immersive exhibition by Los Angeles artist Greg Ito. On view at 6150 Wilshire Blvd, opening Saturday, October 2, 2021. This is Ito’s first solo exhibition with the gallery and follows up The Arrival of Spring, a solo presentation at Art Basel Hong Kong earlier this year.

In six new paintings Ito deep-dives into his expansive cinematic compositions. These works contemplate themes of new life, metamorphosis, and the ghosts we live with—personal history, generational trauma, and the invisible weight of being alive. Among Ito’s subjects are flaming hillsides of Southern California, sprawling city streets surveilled by helicopters, and smoky sunsets; this darker imagery is contrasted by blooming poppies, flittering ginkgo leaves, and butterflies.

In his largest painting to date, a five-paneled work titled Motion Picture, Ito depicts a dramatic and layered landscape framed by arched floor to ceiling windows and billowing burning curtains. Fundamentally a storyteller, the artist is driven by the momentum of narrative and repeating motifs—moons, suns, flames, keyholes, clocks, teapots, and horizons—that operate with a dreamlike logic that is playful with scale, superimposition, and silhouettes.

Prominent in a corner of the gallery is a large house with a pristine facade that visitors can enter. Once inside, it is revealed to be damaged and burned out. The house on fire is a recurring symbol for Ito and functions conceptually as a self portrait. It speaks not only to his grandparents’ experience as Japanese-Americans during World War II and their forced removal to internment camps, but also his own experience as a fourth-generation Angeleno with immigrant roots. For immigrant families, home is both where you are and elsewhere; it is a fleeting and fragile refuge from the outside world, where connection to the past is preserved and hopes for the future are nurtured. The idea of home also takes on a new profound meaning for Ito, who became a father earlier this year, speaking to his desire to build a secure and stable life for his new family.

Two sculptures in the exhibition underscore spiritual and mystic elements of Ito’s practice. Placed outside the house is a floating teapot fountain that appears to be infinitely pouring itself into a stone wishing well. Inside the house, a bowl of ramen with a pair of hashi suspended midair, spin clockwise infinitely on a table. Both works draw attention to metaphysical and oppositional forces—presence and absence. 

Greg Ito (b. 1987, Los Angeles, CA) earned his BFA from San Francisco Art Institute in 2008. His work has been exhibited widely in group and solo exhibitions at galleries including Maki Gallery, Tokyo, Japan; Anat Ebgi, Los Angeles, CA; Division Gallery, Montreal, QC; Arsenal Contemporary, Toronto, ON; Jeffrey Deitch New York, NY; Andrew Rafacz Gallery, Chicago, IL; Shulamit Nazarian, Los Angeles, CA; Et al, San Francisco, CA; and Yerba Buena Center for the Arts – YBCA, San Francisco, CA. A forthcoming solo exhibition at the new Institute of Contemporary Art San Diego will open in 2022. Ito lives and works in Los Angeles, CA.

Fossils

Faith Wilding

October 2 - November 20, 2021

Anat Ebgi is pleased to announce a solo presentation by Faith Wilding. On view at 6150 Wilshire Blvd, opening Saturday, October 2, 2021. This is Wilding’s second solo exhibition with the gallery. 

This exhibition presents a series of graphite works on paper collectively called ‘Fossils,’ that continue the artist’s explorations of emergence, transformation, renewal, rebirth, potential, and possibility. Wilding began working with graphite drawings in the 70s, focusing on nature-infused imagery such as petal shapes, shells, vines, and other botanical forms. Her current body of work presented here, revives and furthers this focus replete with allusions to the body—capillaries, limbs, and sex organs. Together the drawings serve as a warning and mournful requiem for the vanishing beauty of this earth.

As an avowed ecofeminist, Wilding’s work addresses the deterioration of the natural world in her lifetime, specifically in South America and her native Paraguay. With her meticulously rendered compositions, the artist depicts dualities: up and down, in and out, open and closed, evoking mystical, personal, and esoteric narratives. The works express interconnectedness and spiritual exuberance, while exploring visionary iconology of energy and force of growth.

Wilding’s practice emerged at the forefront of Feminist Art in Los Angeles during the late 1960s and 1970s. For the last 50 years, Wilding has lived as an activist and artist, with a fierce commitment to ecofeminism. Wilding was a co-initiator of the Feminist Art Programs alongside Miriam Shapiro and Judy Chicago. Fueled by the explosion of female-focused work and research, these artists sought to move beyond the predominantly male-centric art history. Wilding’s work continues to interrogate societal narratives, challenging the status quo in art-making, life, and politics.

Faith Wilding (b. 1943, Paraguay) has exhibited extensively over the last five decades at Reina Sofia Museum (Madrid); Centre for Contemporary Arts (Glasgow); Bronx Museum of Art (New York); the Whitney Museum of American Art (New York); the Hammer Museum (Los Angeles); the Drawing Center (New York); Documenta X (Kassel) and the Singapore Art Museum. Wilding was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2009 and has been the recipient of two individual media grants from the National Endowment for the Arts. In 2014, she was awarded the prestigious Women’s Caucus for Art Lifetime Achievement Award. Her work is in many important public collections including the Hammer Museum, The Art Institute of Chicago, Minneapolis Institute of Art, Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) Museum, The University Club of Chicago, and the Marciano Art Foundation Collection. Wilding lives and works in Rhode Island.

Under The Palm Tree Leaves

Christopher Udemezue

September 25 - November 6, 2021

Anat Ebgi is pleased to announce Under the Palm Tree Leaves, an exhibition of photographs by New York artist Christopher Udemezue. On view at 2660 S La Cienega Blvd from September 25 – November 6, this is the artist’s first solo exhibition in Los Angeles. A public reception with the artist will be held on Thursday, October 7 from 5-7pm.

Working with all queer models, Christopher Udemezue’s photographs reframe Caribbean and African American history through poetic explorations of historical events, folklore, and oral histories interweaving them with his own dreams and imaginings. The scenes and stories depicted traverse historical and geographic borders while addressing questions of political resistance, trans-cultural entanglement, liberation, and the black diaspora. Lovers, dreamers, friends, family, healers, worshipers, are seen alongside historical figures, leaders who played brave and significant roles in the liberation of enslaved persons throughout Caribbean history.

Queen Nanny or Nanny of the Maroons (c. 1686 – 1733) is portrayed in Untitled (Down by the Spanish River, stained in sugarcane). According to legend Nanny had magical powers and could catch bullets and redirect them toward the people shooting at her. Her portrait is now featured on the Jamaican 500 dollar bill. Another work, Mother & Child (Victoria “Abdaraya Toya” Montou & Jean-Jacques Dessalines) is a tender portrayal of a young man kneeling with a woman warrior. One of the few women who commanded soldiers during the slave rebellions, Montou is also remembered for her role in raising and teaching Dessalines, the first ruler of an independent Haiti under the 1805 constitution. An untitled work (Taken by the loa with a knife in her hand, she cut the throat of a big and they all swore to kill all the whites on the island,) depicts vodou priestess Cécile Fatiman (1771 – 1883) presiding over a ceremony at Bois Caïman (‘Alligator Forest’), which is considered to be one of the starting points of the Haitian Revolution.

The works act as a conversation through time, connecting present day pain and anxieties to the suffering and triumphs of those who came before. Through dramatic lighting, styling, casting, and photographic and theatrical techniques Udemezue reimagines, uncovers, and queers historical moments of healing and rebellion through dreamy imagery. His lush and mysterious compositions use layered visual rhetoric to signal the heroic, powerful, majestic and sublime. Each element combines to meditate on care, intimacy, beauty, and resilience through spiritual practice. The exhibition raises questions of portraiture and self-representation in contemporary art and affirms, with urgency and eloquence, the importance of history, hope through spirituality, and power of love.

Christopher Udemezue (b. Long Island, NY) received his BFA from Parsons School of Design in 2008. His work has been exhibited in museums and galleries including the New Museum, Queens Museum of Art, MoMA, Bruce High Quality Foundation, and Envoy Enterprises. As the founder of the platform RAGGA NYC & CONNEK JA, he completed a residency with the New Museum “All The Threatened and Delicious Things Joining One Another” in June 2017. Also being the lead organizing member of the art collective House of Ladosha, Christopher has shown recently in the New Museum’s “Trigger: Gender as a Tool and a Weapon” 40 year anniversary show and he was apart of the chosen artists in The Shed’s Open Call grant program and exhibition that was on view in the new Hudson Yards Shed gallery, NYC in June 2019. In 2021 he was elected to be Co-Chair of the board at Recess Gallery, Brooklyn NY. Udemezue lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.