Los Angeles County Museum of Art
The Los Angeles County Museum of Art is an art museum located on Wilshire Boulevard in the Miracle Mile vicinity of Los Angeles. LACMA is on Museum Row, adjacent to the La Brea Tar Pits. LACMA is the largest art museum in the western United States, it attracts nearly a million visitors annually. It holds more than 150,000 works spanning the history of art from ancient times to the present. In addition to art exhibits, the museum features concert series; the Los Angeles County Museum of Art was established as a museum in 1961. Prior to this, LACMA was part of the Los Angeles Museum of History and Art, founded in 1910 in Exposition Park near the University of Southern California. Howard F. Ahmanson, Sr. Anna Bing Arnold and Bart Lytton were the first principal patrons of the museum. Ahmanson made the lead donation of $2 million, convincing the museum board that sufficient funds could be raised to establish the new museum. In 1965 the museum moved to a new Wilshire Boulevard complex as an independent, art-focused institution, the largest new museum to be built in the United States after the National Gallery of Art.
The museum, built in a style similar to Lincoln Center and the Los Angeles Music Center, consisted of three buildings: the Ahmanson Building, the Bing Center, the Lytton Gallery. The board selected LA architect William Pereira over the directors' recommendation of Ludwig Mies van der Rohe for the buildings. According to a 1965 Los Angeles Times story, the total cost of the three buildings was $11.5 million. Construction began in 1963, was undertaken by the Del E. Webb Corporation. Construction was completed in early 1965. At the time, the Los Angeles Music Center and LACMA were concurrent large civic projects which vied for attention and donors in Los Angeles; when the museum opened, the buildings were surrounded by reflecting pools, but they were filled in and covered over when tar from the adjacent La Brea Tar Pits began seeping in. Money poured into LACMA during the boom years of the 1980s, a $209 million in private donations during director Earl Powell's tenure. To house its growing collections of modern and contemporary art and to provide more space for exhibitions, the museum hired the architectural firm of Hardy Holzman Pfeiffer Associates to design its $35.3-million, 115,000-square-foot Robert O. Anderson Building for 20th-century art, which opened in 1986.
In the far-reaching expansion, museum-goers henceforth entered through the new roofed central court, nearly an acre of space bounded by the museum's four buildings. The museum's Pavilion for Japanese Art, designed by maverick architect Bruce Goff, opened in 1988, as did the B. Gerald Cantor Sculpture Garden of Rodin bronzes. In 1999, the Hancock Park Improvement Project was complete, the LACMA-adjacent park was inaugurated with a free public celebration; the $10-million renovation replaced dead trees and bare earth with picnic facilities, viewing sites for the La Brea tar pits and a 150-seat red granite amphitheater designed by artist Jackie Ferrara. In 1994, LACMA purchased the adjacent former May Company department store building, an impressive example of streamline moderne architecture designed by Albert C. Martin Sr. LACMA West increased the museum's size by 30 percent when the building opened in 1998. In 2004 LACMA's Board of Trustees unanimously approved a plan for LACMA's transformation by architect Rem Koolhaas, who had proposed razing all the current buildings and constructing an new single, tent-topped structure, estimated to cost $200 million to $300 million.
Kohlhaas edged out French architect Jean Nouvel, who would have added a major building while renovating the older facilities. The list of candidates had narrowed to five in May 2001: Koolhaas, Steven Holl, Daniel Libeskind and Thom Mayne. However, the project soon stalled. In 2004 LACMA's Board of Trustees unanimously approved plans to transform the museum, led by architect Renzo Piano; the planned transformation consisted of three phases. Phase I started in 2004 and was completed in February 2008; the renovations required demolishing the parking structure on Ogden Avenue and with it LACMA-commissioned graffiti art by street artists Margaret Kilgallen and Barry McGee. The entry pavilion is a key point in architect Renzo Piano's plan to unify LACMA's sprawling confusing layout of buildings; the BP Grand Entrance and the adjacent Broad Contemporary Art Museum comprise the $191 million first phase of the three-part expansion and renovation campaign. BCAM is named for Edy Broad, who gave $60 million to LACMA's campaign.
BCAM opened on February 2008, adding 58,000 square feet of exhibition space to the museum. In 2010 the Lynda and Stewart Resnick Exhibition Pavilion opened to the public, providing the largest purpose-built lit, open-plan museum space in the world; the second phase was intended to turn the May building into new offices and galleries, designed by SPF Architects. As proposed, it would have had flexible gallery space, education space, administrative offices, a new restaurant, a gift shop and a bookstore, as well as study centers for the museum's departments of costume and textiles and prints and drawings, a roof sculpture garden with two works by James Turrell. However, construction of this phase was halted in November 2010. Phase two and three were never completed. In October 2011, LACMA entered into an agreement with the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences under which the Academ
Peter Alexander (artist)
Peter Alexander is an American artist, part of the Light and Space artistic movement in southern California in the 1960s and is best known for his resin sculptures from the 1960s and 1970s. Peter Alexander was born in Los Angeles in 1939, he studied at the University of Pennsylvania. After working as an architect, he rose to prominence in the 1960s with translucent resin sculptures, he has produced paintings, including a series that depicts luminous aerial views of the city lights stretching across the Los Angeles basin. He was commissioned to paint a large mural for the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, his art has appeared in Terminator 3 and Shopgirl. He was a longtime friend of Christopher Isherwood. A portrait of Alexander by Isherwood's former lover Don Bachardy has been displayed at the Laguna Art Museum. In October 2011, Craig Krull Gallery exhibited a survey of Alexander's work, including paintings and sculptures from 1970 - 2009 in conjunction with Pacific Standard Time. Alexander will be exhibited in Pacific Standard Time museum shows as well, including "Civic Virtue: The Impact of the Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery and the Watts Towers Arts Center", organized by the Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, "Phenomenal: California Light and Space" at the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, "Pacific Standard Time: Crosscurrents in L.
A. Paintings and Sculpture 1945-1970" at the J. Paul Getty Museum. In 1980 he was awarded a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. Fogg Museum, Harvard University, Massachusetts Getty Museum, Los Angeles, California Henry Art Gallery, Washington Los Angeles County Museum of Art, California Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York Minneapolis Institute of Contemporary Art, Minnesota Honolulu Museum of Art Spalding House, Hawaii Museum of Modern Art, New York New York Public Library, New York Norton Simon Museum, California Princeton University Art Museum, New Jersey Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, La Jolla, California San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, California Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York Stanford University Art Museum, Palo Alto, California University of California, Berkeley University of California, Santa Barbara Vancouver Art Gallery, British Columbia, Canada Walker Art Center, Minnesota He lives in Santa Monica, California, he has been married twice, with two grown-up daughters from his first marriage and a son from his second to artist, Claudia Parducci.
Archives of American Art Oral history interview with Peter Alexander, 1995 Dec. 13-1996 May 8 Oral history interview with Peter Alexander, 2009 Sept. 24-2010 Jan. 19
John McCracken (artist)
John Harvey McCracken was a minimalist artist. He lived and worked in Los Angeles, Santa Fe, New Mexico, New York. After graduating from high school, McCracken served in the United States Navy for four years before enrolling in the California College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland, earning a B. F. A. in 1962 and completing most of the work for an M. F. A. During these years he studied with Gordon Onslow Tony DeLap. Taught: 1965–1966: University of California, Irvine 1966–1968: University of California, Los Angeles 1968–1969: School of Visual Arts, New York City 1971–1972: Hunter College, New York 1972–1973: University of Nevada, Reno 1973–1975: University of Nevada, Las Vegas 1975–1976: University of California, Irvine 1975–1985: College of Creative Studies, University of California, Santa Barbara Internationally recognized John McCracken commenced developing his earliest sculptural work while in grad school at California College of Arts and Crafts along with Minimalists John Slorp and Peter Schnore, painters Tom Nuzum, Vincent Perez, Terry StJohn, 1964, 1965.
Well known Dennis Oppenheim, enrolled in the M. F. A. program at nearby Stanford, was a frequent visitor to this more vibrant graduate program. While experimenting with three-dimensional canvases, McCracken began to produce art objects made with industrial techniques and materials, sprayed lacquer, pigmented resin, creating the more minimalistic works featuring highly-reflective, smooth surfaces, he applied techniques akin to those used in surfboard construction—popular in Southern California. McCracken was part of the Light and Space movement that includes James Turrell, Peter Alexander, Larry Bell, Robert Irwin and others. In interviews, however, he cited his greatest influences as the hard edge works of the Abstract Expressionist Barnett Newman and Minimalists like Donald Judd, Dan Flavin and Carl Andre. Early objects created by John McCracken were derived from company logos such as the Chevron corporation logo, his sculptures deal with the interrelationships existing between the material design.
In 1966, McCracken generated his signature sculptural form: the plank, a narrow, rectangular board format that leans at an angle against the wall while entering into the three-dimensional realm and physical space of the viewer. He conceived the plank idea in a period when artists across the stylistic spectrum were combining aspects of painting and sculpture in their work and many were experimenting with sleek, impersonal surfaces; as the artist noted, "I see the plank as existing between two worlds, the floor representing the physical world of standing objects, cars, human bodies... and the wall representing the world of the imagination, illusionist painting space, human mental space." The sculptures consist of plywood forms coated with layers of polyester resin. While the polished resin surface recalls the aesthetic of 1960s southern California surfboard and Kustom Kar cultures, the title was drawn from advertising slogans in fashion magazines. In addition to the planks, the artist creates wall pieces and free-standing sculptures in varying geometrical shapes and sizes, ranging from smaller forms on pedestals to large-scale, outdoor structures in the shape of pyramids, ziggurats and crystals.
He worked in polished stainless steel and bronze and made work that in effect sliced the planks into thin, repeating elements that leaned against the wall in rows. In McCracken's work, color was used as "material." Bold solid colors with their polished finish reflect the unique California light or mirror the observer in a way that takes the work into another dimension. His palette included bubble-gum pink, lemon yellow, deep sapphire and ebony applied as a monochrome. Sometimes an application of multiple colors marbleizes or runs down the sculpture's surface, like a molten lava flow. McCracken makes each resin or lacquer work by hand rather than using industrial fabrication; each is handmade by McCracken himself, who paints them. The monochrome surfaces are sanded and polished many times to such a degree of reflectiveness that they seem translucent, he made objects of stained wood or, in recent years polished bronze and reflective stainless steel. In 2010, for example, he created various sculptures that are polished to produce such a high degree of reflectivity that they activate their surroundings and seem camouflaged.
In 1971 to 1972 he made a seen series of paintings based on Hindu and Buddhist mandalas, first shown at Castello di Rivoli in 2011. John McCracken: Sketchbook was published in 2008 by Santa Fe-based Radius Books. During the 1970s and early 1980s, a period when he devoted his time to teaching at the University of Nevada in Reno and Las Vegas and at the University of California, Santa Barbara, McCracken received little critical attention. A 1985 move to Los Angeles with his wife, artist Gail Barringer, revived his career in terms of newly conceived bodies of work and museum exhibitions, recognition by a younger generation of artists and curators. McCracken had lived in Santa Fe since 1994. McCracken was included in every important exhibition of Minimalist sculpture in both the United States and Europe, starting with “Primary Structures” at the Jewish Museum in 1966 and with "American Sculpture of the Sixties" at the Los Angeles County Museum. A retrospective of McCracken's work was hosted by the Castello di Rivoli - Museo d'Arte Contemporanea, Turin in the spring of 2011.
Other recent solo exhibitions include Inverleith House at the Royal Botanic Gar
Larry Bell (artist)
Larry Bell is an American contemporary artist and sculptor. He is best known for large-scaled illusionistic sculptures, he is a grant recipient from, among others, the National Endowment for the Arts and the Guggenheim Foundation, his artworks are found in the collections of many major cultural institutions. He lives and works in Taos, New Mexico, maintains a studio in Venice, California. Bell's art addresses the relationship between the art object and its environment through the sculptural and reflective properties of his work. Bell is associated with Light and Space, a group of West Coast artists whose work is concerned with perceptual experience stemming from the viewer's interaction with their work; this group includes, among others, artists James Turrell, John McCracken, Peter Alexander, Robert Irwin and Craig Kauffman On the occasion of the Tate Gallery's exhibit Three Artists from Los Angeles: Larry Bell, Robert Irwin, Doug Wheeler, Michael Compton wrote the following to describe the effect of Bell's artwork: At various times and in the 1960s some artists have worked near what could be called the upper limits of perceptions, that is, where the eye is on the point of being overwhelmed by a superabundance of stimulation and is in danger of losing its power to control it...
These artists sometimes produce the effect that the threat to our power to resolve what is seen heightens our awareness of the process of seeing... However, the three artists in this show... operate in various ways near the lowest thresholds of visual discrimination. The effect of this is again to cause one to make a considerable effort to discern and so to become conscious of the process of seeing. Born in Chicago, Illinois in 1939 and grew up in Los Angeles, California. From 1957 to 1959, he studied at the Chouinard Art Institute in Los Angeles, with the intention of becoming a Disney animator, he was a student of artists Robert Irwin, Richards Ruben, Robert Chuey, Emerson Woelffer, it was at Chouinard where Bell explored abstract painting. He followed friends like Billy Al Bengston, Robert Irwin, Ken Price, Craig Kauffman to the beach. "He was the first and youngest person to crash the art scene of that era", says Edward Ruscha. He found representation at the Ferus Gallery in Los Angeles, together with Edward Ruscha, Ed Moses, Billy Al Bengston.
Bell’s earliest pieces are paintings in the Abstract Expressionist tradition. He began incorporating shards of clear and mirrored glass into his compositions. At the same time, he began in his painting to produce angular geometric compositions that alluded to or represented three-dimensional forms; these works depicted rectilinear forms with truncated corners. Next there came a series of shadow boxes or “ghost boxes”, three-dimensional cases whose surfaces featured shapes reminiscent of those in the preceding paintings. Of this transition, critic Peter Frank has observed: The earliest boxes contained within them, coated onto the glass or defining their parameters, the angled contours and beveled edges with which the paintings had inferred three-dimensionality. From the shadow box pieces, Bell moved on to begin what is his most recognizable body of work, namely cube sculptures that rest on transparent pedestals. Bell first started constructing these pieces in the early ‘60s; the earliest examples featured "the systematic use of modular internal divisions", used a variety of materials including formica and wood.
Three of these works were included in the seminal 1966 exhibit, "Primary Structures" at the Jewish Museum in New York. "Hewn from remaindered bits of glass salvaged at the Burbank frame shop where he worked while studying at Chouinard, Bell’s sculptures set the artist apart from his contemporaries. After the Sidney Janis Gallery sold one of his early cubes to Buffalo’s Albright-Knox Art Gallery, the Pace Gallery in New York offered him a solo show, along with representation, as did Ileana Sonnabend based in Paris," according to Michael Slenske. Bell's surfaces work both as windows, sometimes simultaneously. In viewing the cubes, their suspension at torso height on clear pedestals designed by Bell allows the viewer to look up through them from underneath, as well as perceiving them from all four sides and from above. Bell’s sculptures have the effect of reading as self-contained objects while drawing in their surroundings and proactively changing their environment. For these reasons, the sculptures’ effects depend on their lighting and setting.
Bell has explored the opportunities afforded by thin film deposition along other avenues. He began creating large, freestanding glass walls that can be arranged in an infinite number of configurations; these larger installations feature panes that extend from that reach above eye level. In 1968 Bell made the following comments on the perceptual and environmental aspects of this body of work, on the leap from the cubes to the larger configurations: The space declared by these new sculptures becomes the work.... When the pieces get to the kind of scale I am employing the scale of the material begins to overwhelm the spectator; this creates the sense of a partial environment. So to extend the format may prove to be interesting; the observer could walk around and into the unit and at the same time, see through it. It will do different things to the observer and the spatial experience will be dimensional given the ephemeral nature of the material. At the moment my work tends to be two-sided; this doesn’t rea
Phillip K. Smith III
Phillip K. Smith III is an American artist based out of Southern California, he creates light-based work that draws upon ideas of light and space, color and shadow, change. Phillip K. Smith III received his Bachelor of Fine Arts and Bachelor of Architecture at the Rhode Island School of Design. Phillip K Smith III has worked on and created numerous large-scale sculptures across the country, as well as internationally, he has participated in numerous museum shows around the country. His artwork is held in many important private collections as well as multiple museum's permanent collections. Phillip K. Smith III has been compared to his predecessors such as Robert Irwin, James Turrell, Dan Flavin, Donald Judd, Craig Kauffman, Constantin Brancusi, Sol Lewitt, Kenneth Noland. Phillip K. Smith III was born in Los Angeles in 1972.. He grew up in the Coachella Valley in Southern California, after his family moved there from LA when he was in first grade. Phillip K. Smith III received his Bachelor of Fine Arts and Bachelor of Architecture at the Rhode Island School of Design.
After living in Providence, Rhode Island, Boston and New York City, New York, he returned to the Palm Springs, California area in late 2000. He works from his Palm Desert, California studio Joshua Tree, California. 2013Lucid Stead was a temporary art installation created in 2013 in California. Set in the Californian High Desert, for the installation Phillip K. Smith III used a 70+ year old homestead shack"Lucid Stead is about tapping into the quiet and the pace of change of the desert," said Smith at the time. "When you slow down and align yourself with the desert, the project begins to unfold before you. It reveals that it is about light and shadow, reflected light, projected light, change." Indio, California. 2014Reflection Field was an art installation created in 2014 for the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival. Phillip K. Smith III created an installation of mirrored forms that by day provided a series of reflections, but as day transitioned to night, the mirrored forms transformed into colorful forms of light.
Indio, California. 2016Portals created in 2016 commission by Goldenvoice for the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival. An 85 foot diameter, open-air pavilion. At the center of the pavilion, a mesquite tree. Surrounding the mesquite tree eight "portals," which feature pulsing, LED-powered concentric circles. Laguna Beach, California. 2016Created in 2016 for part of the Laguna Art Museum's Art and Nature programme. A 1/4 mile arc of mirror polished stainless posts curving along main beach in the Southern California beach town of Laguna Beach. Palm Desert, California. 2017Part of the inaugural 2017 Desert X contemporary art exhibition. The Circle Of Land And Sky, was located in California; the installation, a reflective and dynamic sculpture formed by 300 reflectors, made of polished stainless steel, all angled at 10 degrees to form a circle that reflected the desert landscape and sky. Miami Beach, Florida. 2017Sculpture created in 2017 in Florida in association with Faena Art. Milan, Italy. 2018Open Sky presented during Salone del Mobile 2018 in association with COS.
The atmospheric, large-scale sculptural installation was installed in Milan’s Palazzo Isimbardi, inviting visitors to experience an artwork that transforms the historic courtyard into physical ring of reflected sky through carefully-angled mirrored planes. Detroit, Michigan. 2018Detroit Skybridge, unveiled in 2018, reactivates a disused pedestrian walkway that links two towers in the Detroit, Michigan downtown area. Phillip K Smith III transformed the 100-foot-long bridge adding LED lights behind the translucent panels, so they shine through as blocks of color. “We desire the powerful, memorable experiences that we can’t explain. We desire mystery and beauty as they remind us of the unity, love and incomprehensible complexity that exist in the world.” – Phillip K. Smith III Smith III, Phillip K: Five Installations Laguna Art Museum and Grand Central Press ISBN 0940872420 Official website
Bruce Nauman is an American artist. His practice spans a broad range of media including sculpture, neon, drawing and performance. Nauman lives near New Mexico. Nauman was born in Fort Wayne, but his father's work as an engineer for General Electric meant that the family moved often, he studied mathematics and physics at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, art with William T. Wiley and Robert Arneson at the University of California, Davis. In 1964 he gave up painting to dedicate himself to sculpture and cinema collaborations with William Allan and Robert Nelson, he worked as an assistant to Wayne Thiebaud. Upon graduation, he taught at the San Francisco Art Institute from 1966 to 1968, at the University of California at Irvine in 1970. In 1968 he met the singer and performance artist Meredith Monk and signed with the dealer Leo Castelli. Nauman moved from Northern California to Pasadena in 1969. In 1979, Nauman further moved to New Mexico. In 1989, he established a home and studio in Galisteo, New Mexico, where he continues to work and live along with his second wife, the painter Susan Rothenberg.
Nauman has two children, Erik and Zoë, with his first wife, Judy Govan, he has two grandchildren. Confronted with "What to do?" in his studio soon after graduating, Nauman had the simple but profound realization that “If I was an artist and I was in the studio whatever I was doing in the studio must be art. At this point art became more of an activity and less of a product.” Nauman set up a studio in a former grocery shop in the Mission district of San Francisco and in a sublet from his university tutor in Mill Valley. These two locations provided the setting for a series of performed actions which he captured in real time, on a fixed camera, over the 10-minute duration of a 16mm film reel. Between 1966 and 1970 he made several videos, in which he used his body to explore the potentials of art and the role of the artist, to investigate psychological states and behavioural codes. Much of his work is characterized by an interest in language manifesting itself in a playful, mischievous manner, he has a strong interest in setting the metaphoric and descriptive functions of language against each other.
For example, the neon Run From Fear – Fun From Rear, or the photograph Bound To Fail, which literalizes the title phrase and shows the artist's arms tied behind his back. He seems to be fascinated by the nature of communication and language's inherent problems, as well as the role of the artist as supposed communicator and manipulator of visual symbols. Nauman began in the 1960s with exhibitions at Nick Wilder's gallery in Los Angeles and in New York at Leo Castelli in 1968 along with early solo shows at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and the Whitney Museum in 1972. Nauman's use of neon as a medium was recurrent in his works, he uses neon in irony by making allusions to the numinous connotations of light to Mario Merz, who used neon to bring new life to assemblages of mundane objects. Neon connotes the public atmosphere by the means of advertising, in his works he uses it with private, erotic imagery as seen in his Hanged Man, his Self Portrait as a Fountain shows the artist spouting a stream of water from his mouth.
At the end of the 1960s, Nauman began constructing claustrophobic and enclosed corridors and rooms that could be entered by visitors and which evoked the experience of being locked in and of being abandoned. A series of works inspired by one of the artist's dreams was brought together under the title of Dream Passage and created in 1983, 1984, 1988. In his installation Changing Light Corridor with Rooms, a long corridor is shrouded in darkness, whilst two rooms on either side are illuminated by bulbs that are timed to flash at different rates. Since the mid-1980s working with sculpture and video, Nauman developed disturbing psychological and physical themes incorporating images of animal and human body parts, depicting sadistic allusions to games and torture together with themes of surveillance. In 1988, after a hiatus of nearly two decades focused on time-based media, he resumed his work with cast objects; some of Nauman's best-known works include: A Rose Has No Teeth - Lead, 7.5 x 8 x 2.25 in.
Eleven Color Photographs - Portfolio of eleven color photographs, various sizes, all approx. 19.75 x 23 in. Edition of 8 Published by Leo Castelli Gallery, New York Art Make-Up - video in which Nauman covers his face and upper torso with white pink green black makeup, until by the end he looks like a negative image Initially the films were intended to be projected on four walls of a room. Although this form of installation was never realized for this piece, Nauman employed the method for subsequent film and video installations; the True Artist Helps the World by Revealing Mystic Truths – a spiraling neon sign with this slogan. Flesh to White to Black to Flesh 51 minutes b&w, sound. Nauman puts on white makeup black makeup returns to his ordinary skin color. Burning Small Fires - artist's book for which Nauman burned Ed Ruscha's book Various Small Fires and Milk, photographed it, edited a book of his own. Wall-Floor Positions - Videotape and white, sound, 60 mins. to be repeated continuously. Pacing Upside Down 60 minutes b&w.
With his arms held over his head, hands crossed, Nauman is moving jerkily around a perimeter defined by a square drawn on the studio floor, filmed by a fixed camera, placed upside down. Audio Video Piece for London, Ontario - Nauman uses a closed-circuit television, a camera, an audio