Hey LA! We’re back with our monthly guide. From stellar solo shows on Alison Saar and Sadie Barnette to group shows that soak in the summer revelry, you can choose your own adventure with the art around town right now.
—Elisa Wouk Almino
When: through August 21
Where: Vielmetter Los Angeles (1700 S Santa Fe Ave #101, Downtown, Los Angeles)
Silver nitrate is used in the manufacture of mirrors, but Arceneaux transforms it into a painting medium, creating reflective, fractured, and battered abstractions. The artist’s mother passed away from dementia while he was working on this series, and it reflects the painful breakdown of memory and recognition that he witnessed. Thwarting the mirror’s function to provide an accurate reflection, Arceneaux instead offers poetic sites for contemplation of loss and mourning.
When: through August 21
Where: Craft in America Center (8415 West 3rd St, Beverly Grove Los Angeles)
This group exhibition gathers craft-based artworks that honor the ocean and its buoyant, exquisite ecosystem. From reefs and corals to shells and frozen waters, Making Waves is as much a celebration of underwater life as a warning to its fragile state during climate change. In line with this message, several featured artists recycled the materials for their works and produced them in a carbon-neutral way.
When: through September 4
Where: François Ghebaly (2245 E Washington Boulevard, Downtown, Los Angeles)
The late Angeleno artist Channa Horwitz spent her career creating serially derived drawings and paintings whose rigid structures were a vessel for her signature rhythmic vibrancy. Her colorful grid-based works were intended to be read as interpretative scores for musicians and dancers, bridging the static object and performative space. The Language Series focuses on one of her earliest bodies of work, originally conceived in 1964, and completed between 2003 and 2011, two years before her death. Using a pared-down palette of white, black, and orange, applied to simple shapes and numbers, we can see Horwitz working out the beginnings of her lifelong obsession with new forms of communication.
When: through September 4
Where: Fahey/Klein Gallery (148 N. La Brea, Fairfax, Los Angeles)
Photojournalist Ernest C. Withers documented the breadth of African-American life in the South during the mid-20th century. From the Civil Rights movement and the emergence of Rock ‘n’ Roll to high school proms, football games, and other markers of everyday life, Withers’s images provide a window onto a time of social, political, and cultural upheaval. The exhibition I’ll Take You There is presented in conjunction with his recently published book, The Revolution in Black and White.
When: through September 5
Where: Five Car Garage (Santa Monica, Calif., address upon request)
Michelle Carla Handel’s objects exist in the indeterminate space between painting and sculpture, formal and fanciful. Using a range of materials including rubber, ceramics, textiles, and photography, Handel keeps the viewer guessing, playing with texture, scale, and depth, inviting long looks. Housed in this garage-cum-gallery, her mixed-up aesthetic experiments seem right at home.
When: through September 11
Where: Anat Ebgi (6150 Wilshire Boulevard, Carthay, Los Angeles)
Anat Ebgi has a great track record of putting on thoughtful and cohesive group shows. Wish You Were Here — alluding to the sign-off on a letter or postcard — gathers vibrant paintings of everyday life by Hernan Bas, Alejandro Cardenas, Hulda Guzmán, Soumya Netrabile, and Caroline Walker. August feels like the right time for these dreamy, moody images of families lounging at home, friends dancing in gardens, and fantastical landscapes.
When: through September 11
Where: Nonaka-Hill (720 North Highland Ave, Hollywood, Los Angeles)
If you want to soak in that summery vacation feel, Nonaka-Hill is the place for you. Natsuyasumi: In the Beginning Was Love features 11 contemporary artists working in Japan who depict the pleasures of hanging with friends, drinking outside, and going to concerts. In the words of Nonaka-Hill, the images “resemble someone else’s phone camera roll after a summer well spent.”
When: August 15–September 26
Where: Murmurs (1411 Newton Street, Downtown, Los Angeles)
Composed of fur, fabric, hide, bone, and trash, the sculptures of Chihuahua-born Ruben Ulises Rodriguez Montoya resemble fearsome monsters or mutant beasts. Look closer and you’ll see hubcaps and oryx horns. Rodriguez Montoya draws on Aztec mythology, ideas of ecological justice, and sci-fi dystopianism to create these hybrid creatures that speak to the complex identity of those with roots on both sides of the border.
When: through December 12 (Armory); September 1–December 19 (Benton)
Where: Armory Center for the Arts (145 N. Raymond Avenue, Pasadena, Calif.) and Benton Museum of Art (120 W. Bonita Avenue, Claremont, Calif.)
Of Aether and Earthe, a two-venue retrospective of the work of Alison Saar, features over 30 years of the LA-based artist’s sculptures, installations, paintings, and drawings, highlighting her explorations of the duality of body and spirit. The Armory Center for the Arts focuses on her sculptures of Black, female figures, carved out of wood or hammered out of pieces of scrap tin ceiling. She surrounds them with metaphorical objects like antlers, water jugs, butterflies, invoking mythical histories. The Benton Museum will feature sculptures, paintings, and drawings, as well as a 12-foot-tall figure of the Yoruba goddess Yemaja, mother of all living things who controls the waters.
When: through December 18
Where: Benton Museum of Art (120 W. Bonita Avenue, Claremont, Calif.) and Pitzer College Art Galleries (Lenzner Family Art Gallery, Atherton Hall, 1050 N Mills Avenue, Claremont, Calif.)
Sadie Barnette mines her own family’s radical history and fuses it into a utopian vision of Afrofuturism. Based at two venues, Legacy & Legend will feature new work from her FBI Drawings series at the Benton Museum. Using the 500-page surveillance file the FBI kept on her father, who founded the Compton chapter of the Black Panther Party in 1968, Barnette reclaims these documents with decorative elements, colorful interventions in the stark black-and-white text. Meanwhile, the Pitzer Galleries will feature a living room installation covered in holographic vinyl, glitter, and spray paint, an exuberant celebration of communal, domestic space.
New research contests the myth that it was Christianity’s opposition to public nudity that led to the decline in large-scale bathing in the late Roman Empire.
An exhibition at San Francisco’s Letterform Archive highlights typography’s role in iconic social movements from the 1800s through the present.
The program, along with recently announced visiting critics, will provide long term funding, promote access, and safeguard experimentation for future students of color.
Rocks, ducks, and a self-organized survey of Gingham are some of the things to see right now in four Chicago art galleries.
Three weeks into their strike, part-time professors are escalating their protests, backed by public figures and disgruntled parents.
More than a dozen activists participated in the action, organized by the group Woman Life Freedom NYC.
The Wellcome Collection closed the long-term exhibition Medicine Man for concerns of “racism, sexism, and ableism.”
Contemporary art, original sketches, and more explore how the Japanese character sprung from the pages of a manga and became a global cultural sensation.
Eva Hagberg’s new book sheds light on the relationship between critic and publicist Aline Louchheim and architect Eero Saarinen.
If there is an object you have ever desired in your life, rest assured that someone in the advertising industry made money convincing you of exactly that.
Eleven Contemporary Artists Explore the Meaning of Shelter at the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art
Artists collaborate with nonprofit institutions and field experts to examine historical and contemporary determinants of housing and the feelings of safety and connection integral to places of living.
Custodians, groundskeepers, and movers at the Rhode Island School of Design are seeking wage improvement, healthcare benefits, and a retirement package.
Ceramic fried eggs, critiques of real estate, and a whole booth dedicated to female-identifying saints caught my eye at Untitled, NADA, and Art Miami.