Isaac Cruikshank, "Raising Evil Spirits" (1795), pen and watercolor over pencil, 6 5/8 × 9 1/8 in, The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens (image courtesy the Huntington)

Isaac Cruikshank, “Raising Evil Spirits” (1795), pen and watercolor over pencil, 6 5/8 × 9 1/8 in, The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens (image courtesy the Huntington)

There’s so much good stuff happening this week, it’s almost hard to keep track. Among our picks are two intriguing performances by three up-and-coming Los Angeles artists, two shows devoted to 20th-century artist pioneers, and a discussion of art and political activism. And don’t forget about Halloween — we suggest you celebrate with a demonic display at the Huntington.

 What Does Art Practice Have to Do with Political Activism?

When: Tuesday, October 28, 7–9pm
Where: Armory Center for the Arts (145 N Raymond Ave, Pasadena)

Oh, the eternal question: where do art and politics meet — or, rather, collide? Yet another panel discussion will take up this issue tonight, with politically minded artists Danielle Bustillo, Willem Henri Lucas, and Chandler McWilliams weighing in, and artist and writer Johanna Kozma moderating. The conversation marks the end of Kozma’s tenure as the inaugural writer-in-residence at The Project X Desk at the Armory, during which time she organized another panel on hacktivism and worked on “a mythico-political novel that proposes Snowden and Manning as contemporary versions of Icarus and Dedalus.” We can’t wait to read it.

 Emerson Woelffer

When: Opens Wednesday, October 29
Where: Manny Silverman Gallery (619 North Almont Drive, West Hollywood, Los Angeles)

A work by Emerson Woelffer (via (click to enlarge)

A work by Emerson Woelffer (via (click to enlarge)

Though he may not be a household name, first-generation Abstract Expressionist Emerson Woelffer had an impressive career: The artist attended the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, worked for the WPA Arts Program, taught at Black Mountain College, and lived out much of his adult life working and teaching in Los Angeles. There’s no available information about this show on Manny Silverman’s website, but since the gallery represents Woelffer’s estate, you can expect a strong offering of the artist’s vibrant work. And if you want to learn more about Woelffer, check out this oral history interview conducted by the Smithsonian’s Archives of American Art.

 The View

When: Saturday, November 1 through Monday, November 3, 11am–5pm
Where: Ernest E. Debs Regional Park (enter at 4248 Roberta Street, Montecito Heights, Los Angeles)

Dwyer Kilcollin, "The View" (via

Dwyer Kilcollin, “The View” (via

It’s hard to resist a good scenic view, and if it includes art, even better. For her project with LA><ART and M + B gallery, Dwyer Kilcollin has created an outdoor installation atop a hill in Ernest E. Debs Regional Park. The work includes a freestanding fence made by the artist, as well as a series of relief sculptures on the fence. The press release explains:

Developed from a process that begins with the translation of a two-dimensional image manipulated through an algorithm, Kilcollin’s work encapsulates a fluency in the virtual that is subsequently rendered materially — cast by hand using a gestural application of crushed rock and resin. Many of the works evoke familiar forms: a sweater, a book, a backpack, a pair of binoculars, their forms pigmented by the view beyond the fence.

The installation will move to M + B on November 5, remaining there for a month, but we suspect it won’t be the same without its namesake view.

 The Fence Mechanisms

When: Closes Saturday, November 1, reception 3–6pm
Where: Commonwealth and Council (3006 W 7th Street, #220, Koreatown, Los Angeles)

We don’t know much about this “performance installation” beyond the fact that it delves into “childhood triumphs and traumas … in an attempt to better understand the difference between self-care and self-defense.” But we do know that EJ Hill is an artist who’s built up a reputation for compelling durational performances, including crawling around the gallery at his MFA open studios with his tongue against the wall and standing as still as possible for three hours at a Chicago art fair. You won’t want to miss this one.

 Betye Saar

When: Opens Saturday, November 1, 6–8pm
Where: Roberts and Tilton (5801 Washington Boulevard, Culver City, Los Angeles)

At this point, it’s not like we should have to say much beyond the name Betye Saar to make you want to go see this show. But it’s worth noting, too, that this exhibition, On the Shelf, features fresh work by the pioneering artist: a site-specific installation involving six assemblage pieces from a new series. Saar is still going strong at 88 — what have you been up to lately?

 Kind of Blue

Work by Michelle Andrade (via

Work by Michelle Andrade (via

When: Opens Saturday, November 1, 7–10pm
Where: Charlie James Gallery (969 Chung King Road, Chinatown, Los Angeles)

Michelle Andrade makes drawings and paintings that, with their bright colors and bubbly lettering, appear cheery; but their texts are often-funny notes of despair and existential angst. Her new show sees her moving from her trademark notebook drawings to “acrylic-on-linen paintings that extend … into new figural ground,” according to the press release. Given the dearth of humor in the art world, we’re excited for this one (plus we appreciate the appropriation and kind of literalization of a Miles Davis album title).

 Cosmo[il]logical I

When: Saturday, November 1, 8pm, & Sunday, November 2, 5pm (RSVP to
Where: Redling Fine Art (6757 Santa Monica Blvd, Hollywood, Los Angeles)

Like quite a number of event in this week’s roundup, we don’t have much to go on with this one. A listing in ArtSlant proclaims:

For vs. Against
Matter vs. Anti-Matter
Models vs. Experience
Abstraction vs. the Real
Potentiality vs. Probability

Glynn vs. Kasper

Those last two are the artists: Liz Glynn and Dawn Kasper. And they’ve both got such good track records, we’re willing to go on faith.

 Wrestling with Demons

When: Ongoing through December 15
Where: The Huntington (1151 Oxford Road, San Marino)

This small show didn’t open recently and doesn’t close anytime soon, but this week is the perfect time to see it. Wrestling with Demons: Fantasy and Horror in European Prints and Drawings from The Huntington’s Art Collections is a slim but lively selection of works on paper from the institution’s collection that depict “death, witchcraft, and the demonic in European art.” That means monsters, spirits, and much more — a perfectly art historical Halloween.

Jillian Steinhauer is a former senior editor of Hyperallergic. She writes largely about the intersection of art...