All Under One Roof: A Selection of LA Artists
Guest curator: Yasmine Mohseni
Artists: Amir H. Fallah, Carrie Jardine, Claressinka Anderson, Doug Busch, Gabriela Anastasio, Irving Greines, Kimberly Brooks, Kristin Jai Klosterman, Roya Falahi, Susan Anderson
Exhibit Runs: April 10 - May 8, 2009
Reception and Two Year Anniversary Party: April 10, 2009, 7 - 11pm
Tarryn Teresa Gallery is pleased to present a group exhibition by guest curator Yasmine Mohseni. The themed exhibition examines interpretations and representations of homelands. Adopted homes. Native lands. New homes. Temporary homes. The 10 exhibiting artists of varying ages and backgrounds examine this personal theme in different media and aesthetics. Where we are and where we are from are inextricably linked to our identity and the way we see the world. And all these artists live under one roof, the city of LA.
Roya Falahi, an Iranian-American photographer working in downtown LA, draws upon unique facets of identity and culture. In her technically stunning portrait series, Camo Tactics (Smells Like Blood), Roya adopts military tactics of camouflage to create phantasmagorical scenes. The disguised and veiled woman is further obscured by the all-red composition; all vestiges of her individual identity are removed. The viewer is left wondering if this woman is a victim of religious fundamentalism or if she’s toying with the portrayal of Iranian contemporary culture by western news media. In Irving Greines’ Working Girls photos, there is no veiling or obscuring; the mannequins’ faces are wholly visible. Irving has humanized these inanimate objects and pulls the viewer into their sad world. The layers of meaning attached to these 2 photos reflect the dichotomies of the artist’s native LA. At the height of their glory, these women may have graced the windows of high fashion stores on Rodeo Drive. Now they are old and broken with flaking skin. Found in the boutiques of Central LA, these working girls are not your typical mannequins: they raise issues of gentrification and class disparity in this decentralized sprawling city. Evoking differences between rich and poor, youth and aging, they suggest the often overlooked beauty that can be found amidst urban blight and ugliness.
Venice-based painter Kimberly Brooks’s representations of LA focus on the light and color of landscape. In her series Technicolor Summer, she melds compositional and thematic influences from David Hockney’s Los Angeles with the bold and decorative style of French Nabis artists like Pierre Bonnard and Edouard Vuillard. Kimberly paints scenes from a summer experienced in high definition. California becomes a living and breathing entity pulsing with vivid color, where the human figure is secondary to the landscape it inhabits. It is a life lived in technicolor. Multi-media artist Kristin Jai Klosterman captures a different aspect of California landscape. Images of oil jack pumps and windmills underscore a harnessing of Southern California’s natural resources. Kristin’s application of oxidized iron to the canvas heightens her work’s industrial aesthetic. And, while her subject matter deals with heavy industry, she unearths an unexpected rhythmic grace and beauty from the machinery that dots the Southern California landscape from the coastline to the wind farms of Palm Springs.
A recurrent theme in Culver City-based artist Amir H. Fallah’s work is transient homes. In his series, I Put You on a Pedestal, he draws inspiration from diverse sources such as tree houses, tent cities, Al Qaeda bunkers and refugee camps. In these multi-media works on paper, the child-like innocence of the tree house coexists with ominous Al Qaeda bunkers. Tent cities and refugee camps address a nomadic existence, for both the willing and the unwilling participant. His theme is inclusive in that transience is a reality for a large part of the world’s population. Yet, his compositions seem to focus on the individual within the greater collective. In all 3 works, a single structure climbs vertically up the paper as though to reflect an individual’s solitary trajectory. Conceptual artist Gabriela Anastasio broaches a similar topic in a very different way. With her two monumental installations Cubiculum and Archetype, Gabriela considers the concepts of the individual and the collective. In her flagship piece, Cubiculum, the New York transplant handcrafted 402 individual wood cubes which she stacks and balances differently each time, depending on the space it inhabits. A process she documents in short tightly edited videos that demonstrate the delicate process of balancing and stacking each cube. Cubiculum bring to mind dichotomies of the individual and its place within a greater collectivity. Furthermore, the uniformity of the cubes emphasizes the notion of one among many. Her second installation, the monumental Archetype, explores the individual. This delicate skeletal armature is reinforced by bands of knotted cloth, the structure’s skin. Through its inanimate forms, the restrained elegance of Archetype emanates visual cues of human individuality. Archetype is an exploration of the individual within the greater context of Cubiculum’s collectivity.
About the Guest Curator
Yasmine Mohseni is a Los Angeles-based arts writer and independent curator. Her articles have been published in magazines such as BlackBook, Discover, Newsweek, and Whitewall. She is the U.S. correspondant for the Dubai-based arts magazine Canvas and is a contributing writer at Artworks and ForYourArt.com. Yasmine has an M.A. in Art and Design History from the Bard Graduate Center in New York City, a B.A. in Art History from Occidental College in Los Angeles, and a diploma from Christie's Education in Paris. She has worked at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, Christie’s New York, and the Musée d’Orsay in Paris.
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