02 n°65 mar/avr/mai 2013
02 n°65 mar/avr/mai 2013
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  • Parution : n°65 de mar/avr/mai 2013

  • Périodicité : trimestriel

  • Editeur : Association Zoo galerie

  • Format : (210 x 297) mm

  • Nombre de pages : 84

  • Taille du fichier PDF : 11,6 Mo

  • Dans ce numéro : dossier Los Angeles... Mark Hagen, Ali Subotnick, Sterling Ruby, Marc-Olivier Wahler.

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26 And even by sticking with known figures, how were activities which resisted pigeonholing to be classified ? What is the link between the Otis ceramicists and the Art and Space movement ? How were people to understand the transition of the Venice generation towards a more conceptual approach to mass entertainment, typifying certain artists belonging to the following generation, such as Bas Jan Ader and Ger van Elk ? What was the real influence of Sister Corita on these artists and on the Mike Kelley generation ? Where are we to situate the complex activities of Judy Chicago, Jack Goldstein, and Bill Leavitt ? The 1970s saw the booming development of CalArts and Irvine, and the influence of the teaching of Kaprow, Antin and Baldessari. This second wave of development took the art scene towards its status as an international reference in the 1980s. However, this history was still being written in a incomplete and blank way. These, then, were the foundations of the European vision that I had in my pocket. In 2006-2007, I spent a lot of time downtown, and in particular at 727 Spring Street, where Adrian Rivas had setup an alternative venue. At it, I met the intellectual and artistic community coming from EastL.A. The building belonged to Gronk, a man of about 50 who seemedto have outrageous street creds. « He is one of the founders of Asco », I was told. Founder of what ? I then repeatedly, but without ever seeing a work, listened to the story of that collective (whose Spanish name means « nausea ») founded in 1972 by Harry Gamboa Jr., Gronk, Willie Herrón and Patssi Valdez, when they were still in high school. It was the story of an at once glam and punk attitude, a tale of urban activities and performances… Somewhere, it came from myth and urban legend, taking the formof an oral tradition in the words of young artists. Having missed the LACMA show « Phantom Sightings : Art After the Chicano Movement », organized in 2008 by Rita Gonzalez, I had to wait until 2011 and the Pacific Standard Time programme organized by the Getty and including the first Asco retrospective at the LACMA : « Asco : Elite of the Obscure, A Retrospective, 1972-1987 ». It finally showed me certain works which had been so often described to me. Let us bear in mind that « Phantom Sightings » had been the first exhibition of contemporary Mexican- American artists since 1974 at the LACMA, if we disregard the graffiti at the museumentrance, which Asco claimedto have done in 1972. With Pacific Standard Time, the Getty ushered in a Copernican revolution in postwar American art. More than 70 venues rushed to fill the gaps of history and show the complexity of the art produced in Los Angeles and southern California between 1945 and 1980. Asco was presented in five shows, and analyzed in different contexts and from different critical angles. Instead of creating an effect of canonization, Pacific Standard Timeupset the chronological landmarks and revealed the hidden face of the iceberg : there have always been several scenes inL.A. The few moments when these scenes meet need to be highlighted. The alternative place known as LACE was, for example, one of the points of contact between the CalArts sensibility, EastL.A., Dossier Los Angeles and the Hollywood punk scene. Gronk was associated with it from the start and inaugurated the venue with Dreva, in 1978, in a memorable evening titled Art Meets Punk. For EastL.A., the five exhibitions put on by the UCLA Chicano Studies Research Center, under the name ofL.A. Xicano were instructive. One of them traced the activities and dynamic links between nine collectives, studios and alternative venues in EastL.A., most of which are stillactive today. Among them were the first Chicano art centre inL.A., Goez Art Studio (1969), Self Help Graphics (1971), SPARC (Social and Public Art Resource Center) (1976), Los Dos Streetscapers (1975-1980) and Mechicano Art Center (1969-1978). Just like Asco, these groups often drew their inspiration from Mexican-American living conditions inL.A. And that reality was a violent one, punctuated by racism and police brutality. For First Supper (After a Major Riot), Asco went back to Whittier Boulevard and Arizona Street in 1974 and setup a festive dinner scene between two thoroughfares. This was the place where Ruben Salazar was murdered by the police three years earlier during the Chicano Moratorium. In a context of tension and repression, Asco’s actions were quick and almost invisible. They were often devised like « No Movies » : an image which seems taken from a film which does not exist. Fresco activity linksup here with performance, photography and film, while at the same time emphasizing an identity-based celebration which nonchalantly appropriates Hollywood glam. Salazar’s journalism often compared the spirit of Chicano identity with that of the civil rights struggle waged by African-Americans. The Watts riots in 1965 had pointed to claims that were not just limited to SouthL.A. Noah Purifoy’s famous 66 Signs of Neon project in 1966 had also gone beyond racial lines. As shown by the Hammer Museum’s show « Now Dig This ! Art and Black Los Angeles 1960-1980 », Chicano and African-American artists shared the same kind of invisibility and many of them were involved in a kind of activism that encouraged meetings. Whatever their geographical location, alternative art centres had one reality in common. In the 1970s, for example, the artist Andrew Zermeño of the Mechicano Art Center worked with the African-American artist John Outterbridge who, in 1975, became the first director of the Watts Art Center. Asco’s underground nature and collaborative and almost ritual work processes might be aligned with the experiments conducted by the Studio Z collective, which included, in particular, David Hammons, Maren Hassinger, Ulysses Jenkins and Senga Nengudi. In 1978, with Ceremony for Freeway Fets, this latter also organized and recorded a roadside ceremony, or, more precisely, a ceremony under a freeway bridge. Despite a few archival pictures, memories of that off-the-cuff performance in the formof a collective ritual, with music and costumes, lives on above all in the oral tradition. « Los Angeles coexists as a highly volatile desert environment that has produced globally seductive mirages and myths. All the freeways lead to a dizzying spiral effect where it is still possible to catch a glimpse of a non-stereotypical view. » 2 – 1. Titre Hugo Hopping, 2009. 2. Harry Gamboa Jr., in « L.A Stories, A Roundtable Discussion », Artforum, October 2011, p.242.
Entretien avec/Interview with René-Julien Praz et Bruno Delavallade * Aude Launay – Parmi les vingt-six artistes que vous représentez aujourd’hui, treize vivent à Los Angeles, vous ne me direz pas que c’est un hasard… À l’origine, il y a l’histoire familiale de Bruno sans laquelle nous ne nous serions pas forcément tournés vers cette ville. Nous y séjournons régulièrement depuis plus de trente ans. Là-bas, c’est avant tout Rosamund Felsen, par la scène qu’elle présentait (Richard Jackson, Chris Burden, Mike Kelley, Paul McCarthy, etc.), qui a formé notre goût. Cette scène s’est créée grâce à CalArts, USC, UCLA, qui sont de vraies Facultés offrant un enseignement extrêmement riche mais différent de celui de nos écoles des beaux-arts nationales. Elles ont attiré des artistes issus de l’Amérique profonde comme Jim Shaw, Mike Kelley ou Tony Oursler. Dès 1997, vous exposez ces Angelenos dans votre espace de la rue Saint-Sabin et inaugurez la galerie rue Louise Weiss par un solo show de Jim Shaw. Quel a été l’accueil des Français ? Je me rappelle que nous avons réussi à vendre un dessin de Mike Kelley pour dix mille francs. Les Français ont peut-être mis quatre ans à apprécier Jim Shaw, ils ont en tout cas été plus rapides que les New-Yorkais. Los Angeles produit des artistes différents ; avec l’influence d’Hollywood, les artistes y sont plus enclins à utiliser la low culture pour en faire de la high culture. Ils possèdent une très bonne culture européenne qu’ils utilisent sans que le poids en pèse sur eux, le sens du ridicule n’existe pas vraiment outre-Atlantique. Il n’y a plus aujourd’hui de ségrégation entre NY et LA, plus ce regard méprisant de l’Est sur l’Ouest quand le propos des Californiens était davantage saisi par les collectionneurs européens. Il faut dire que ces artistes dénonçaient les excès de la culture américaine, ce qui devait déplaire à certaines élites conservatrices. Quel regard portez-vous sur vos homologues angelenos ? Les galeries se sont incroyablement développées depuis quinze ans, à LA. Il y a un potentiel formidable de collectionneurs làbas, dopé notamment par différentes vagues d’immigration fortunée des années soixantedix. Et puis l’Américain n’a pas d’a priori, il est moins conservateur que nous, si une œuvre lui plaît, il l’achète, sans forcément se soucier d’établir une ligne de collection. Il y a en tout cas énormément d’argent mais encore une assez petite offre de galeries par rapport à la ville, même si depuis dix ans tout a changé : chaque saison nous découvrons de nouvelles galeries, et des New-Yorkais, comme Matthew Marks, y ouvrent des succursales. Culver City grouille de galeries et un nouveau pôle se dessine vers Hollywood avec des espaces gigantesques comme celui de Regen Projects. Il y aussi une nouvelle génération qui émerge depuis cinq ou six ans (Night gallery…). Il y a un marché tout à fait pertinent là-bas pour Paris Photo. D’une cité repliée sur elle-même, Los Angeles est devenue l’une des grandes villes de l’art. – Jim Shaw « Dream Object » I was settingup a card table with a magnifying glass…, 1997. Huile sur velours/Oil on velvet, 66 x 48 cm. Among the 26 artists you represent today, 13 live in Los Angeles. Now don’t tell me this is pure chance… At the outset, there’s Bruno’s family history, without which we would not necessarily have turned to this city. We’ve been staying here regularly for more than 30 years. Over there, it’s above all Rosamund Felsen who created our likes and dislikes, through the scene which she was presenting (Richard Jackson, Chris Burden, Mike Kelley, Paul McCarthy, etc.). That scene came into being thanks to CalArts, USC, and UCLA, which are actual Faculties offering an extremely rich curriculum which differs from the curricula of our national schools of fine arts in France. They have attracted artists hailing from provincial America such as Jim Shaw, Mike Kelly, and Tony Oursler. 27 In 1997, you exhibited these Angelenos in your venue on rue Saint-Sabin, and you inaugurated the gallery on rue Louise Weiss with a solo show of Jim Shaw’s work. How did that go down with the French ? I remember that we managed to sella Mike Kelly drawing for 10,000 francs. The French took perhaps four years to appreciate Jim Shaw but, in any event, they were quicker on theuptake than New Yorkers. Los Angeles produces different artists. With the influence of Hollywood,L.A. artists are more inclined to use low-brow culture and make high-brow culture out of it. They have a very sound European culture which they use without its weight affecting them ; the sense of the ridiculous doesn’t really exist on the other side of the Atlantic. These days, there is no longer any segregation between N.Y. andL.A. We no longer find the East looking down on the West, once the ideas of Californians were takenup more readily by European collectors. It should be said that those west coast artists spoke out against the excesses of American culture, which must have displeased certain conservative élites. How do you view yourL.A. counterparts ? Galleries inL.A. have developed unbelievably in the past 15 years. Over there, there’s a tremendous potential for collectors, boosted in particular by the arrival of well-off immigrants in the 1970s. And then the American doesn’t have any foregone assumptions, he is less conservative than we are. If he likes a work, he buys it, without necessarily being concerned about having a consistent thread in his collection. In any event, there is a huge amount of money, but still quite a small supply from galleries in relation to the size of the city, even if everything has changed in the last ten years. Every season we discover new galleries, and New Yorkers like Matthew Marks are opening branches on the coast. Culver City is seething with galleries and a new hub is coming into being towards Hollywood with gigantic venues like the Regen Projects gallery. There is also a new generation which has been coming to the fore in the past five or six years (Night gallery…). Over there, there’s a thoroughly relevant market for an art fair like Paris Photo. Los Angeles was once a city turned inward on itself, but nowadays it has become one of the world’s great cities of art. * Galerie Praz-Delavallade, 5 rue des Haudriettes, 75003 Paris.

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