LOS ANGELES — This week, queer cinema godfather Bruce LaBruce gets a retrospective, the first Los Angeles Public Art Biennial kicks off, a longtime Echo Park art space holds an auction to raise money for relocation, and more.
Faggotry: Bruce LaBruce Retrospective
When: Opens Friday, July 15, 8pm
Where: Lethal Amounts (1226 W 7th St, Downtown, Los Angeles)
Since the late 1980s, Bruce LaBruce has been at the forefront of transgressive queer cinema, making films that depict pornography, BDSM, rape, amputee fetishism, vampires, and zombies, delivered with a mix of campy humor and radical politics. Faggotry presents 25 years of his work including photographs, film stills, movie posters, and ephemera, as well as his signature perfume “Obscenity.” His first feature film No Skin Off My Ass (1990), starring LaBruce as a hairdresser who falls in love with a skinhead, will also be screening at Redcat on Saturday, sponsored by Outfest.
Current:LA Water Public Art Biennial
When: Begins Saturday, July 16
Where: sites throughout Los Angeles
Instead of focusing on the museum as the sole locus of contemporary art, Los Angeles’ first Public Art Biennial has chosen 16 sites throughout the city to host a program of public performances and artworks. Titled Current:LA, the monthlong series of events will focus on water, not only as it affects us Angelenos in the midst of a drought, but its importance on a global scale. Artists include Edgar Arceneaux, Kerry Tribe, Gala Porras-Kim, Kori Newkirk, Michael Parker, and many others.
Mertzbau: 419 Salvaged Wooden Chairs by Artists
When: Opens Saturday, July 6, 4–6pm
Where: TIF SIGFRIDS (1507 Wilcox Avenue, Hollywood, Los Angeles)
Filling several rooms of his family’s home in Hanover, the “Merzbau” by German artist Kurt Schwitters was a three-dimensional collage — a piece of proto-installation art — that evolved over a number of years, merging art and life. For his upcoming exhibition at TIF SIGFRIDS, artist Joe Sola adds a “t” to the Merzbau, effectively drawing in Danish artist Albert Mertz, whose own work built on Schwitters’s Dada legacy. For his Mertzbau, Sola has created a construction from 419 salvaged wooden chairs — a collaboration involving three generations of artists who defied categorization.
A Robert Russett Memorial Retrospective
When: Saturday, July 16, 8–10pm
Where: Echo Park Film Center (1200 N Alvarado St, Echo Park, Los Angeles)
In celebration of the life and work of Robert Russett, who passed away last year at the age of 79, Echo Park Film Center will be hosting a retrospective of the 16mm films of this groundbreaking experimental filmmaker. In addition to being a prolific artist and animator — whose 50-year career spanned painting, abstract film and video, and computer animation — Russett was also a historian of the medium, penning three books on experimental animation and digital art. This screening offers a rare chance to see a nearly complete survey of films from this pioneer of avant-garde cinema.
Destroy All Your Humanity
When: Opens Saturday, July 16, 7–9pm
Where: The Mistake Room (1811 East 20th Street, Downtown, Los Angeles)
For the second part of The Mistake Room’s “TMR as HUB” initiative, a series of collaborations with an international selection of institutions, the gallery has invited Guadalajara-based gallery Páramo to organize the upcoming exhibition, Destroy All Your Humanity. This will be the first US show by Mexican artist collective Gabinete Homo-Extraterrestre (Gabinete H-E). The group will present mixed-media works, sculptures, photographs, and a performance that serve to reexamine previous bodies of work dealing with spirituality, myth-making, the paranormal, and ritual-based objects.
When: Monday, July 18, 7–10pm
Where: pehrspace (325 Glendale Boulevard, Echo Park, Los Angeles)
After 10 years as a mainstay of the Echo Park underground music and art scene, storefront performance space and gallery pehrspace is being evicted from its Glendale Boulevard location. As part of a slew of events leading up to the gallery’s exodus at the end of the month, it’ll be holding an auction to help raise funds for its relocation effort. Records, art, musical instruments, and more will be on the auction block, in addition to a number of items on sale for a set price. The gallery has also set up a go fund me page for donations.