dayoutlast is a record of my direct engagement with mostly contemporary art, mostly Los Angelean.

As this blog has evolved since its 2010 inception, so has my perspective. What I once perceived as central within the investigation was what was central, literally, within the photographic frame that I shared here. While still an important consideration, such thinking has also given way to more peripheral considerations, ones also accompanied occasionally by text (written manifestation of thought) and the oscillations between them. What's missing here are larger unknowns surrounding issues of presentation and representation; the amount of time and space it actually takes to accomplish such first-hand observations; and the quandaries between documentation and interpretation.

Despite my attempt to communicate here with image and text what is essential in some respect about the artwork, neither representation should ever be considered a substitution for the primary viewing experience. Of course, occasionally there are exceptions.

Most of the time, these posts are merely remnants---residual fragments---from my last day out.

Friday, April 1, 2016

Edward and Nancy Reddin Kienholz "Televisions" @ LA Louver

Cement TV, 1969
Mixed media
45 x 11 3/4 x 9 inches

Bout Round Eleven, 1982
Mixed media assemblage
90 x 97 x 92 inches

Drawing for the Hoerengracht No. 1, 1984
Mixed media assemblage
49 x 55 x 11 inches

Nancy Reddin Kienholz
Home Sweet Home, 2006
Mixed media assemblage
86 x 48 x 26 inches

With a title like Bout Round Eleven,  I can't tell if we are to be thinking about a time of day or a title bout (cf. boxing) in this case between man and woman embroiled in a presumably domestic ring, itself a potential metaphor for the struggles of all existence, especially as it pertains to the details of this exhibition. Certainly a stage of works such as these between husband and wife could intimate as much. Signs of raging loyalty (dogs), disaffected humans, and dead technologies (CRTS, that is to say televisions), all mark struggles within passages of time. Whatever way the reading goes (literal or figurative), it's still indicates the "11th hour" (end of a day or second to last round of a fight).  Therefore, it seems a fitting point to depart while looking at works that not only confront male/female relations in so many ways within the sculptural images, but also because, again, husband and wife, have crafted these works, mostly mixed media assemblage, themselves intrinsic indicators of embroglio, certainly things that can be both messy and elegant depending on point of view. Such are the virtues of intense personal and social relations. Here, Edward and Nancy Reddin Kieholz provide a window into such worlds, ones that would play out nowadays through some version of "reality" TV.  But, these works, despite dates as late as 2006, are really from another time both in image as they might relate to art history as well as technological sign. The title suggest as much.  Televisions are/were the locus of the domestic, household gathering place, the hearth, mostly for entertainment occasionally for critical communications, certainly of a Cold War variety.  Now they are flat screens. 

If you were to take these works in chronological order, then, a static television (void of image) gives way to expanded sculptural space (both an internal/external struggle of relations framed, literally, as such) and then then finally to a place of containment/contentment, a glimmer of hope indicated by warm light (hearth red), a dimming quiet moment in Home Sweet Home. Considering this same chronology formally, object on pedestal becomes more less contained installation (think Rauschenberg combine) on floor and wall, all mostly backed into a corner (at least where two dimensions meet). So, the works are not about being in the round (a full ring) and are more strongly about the face from whatever angle and therefore to still be thought about as paintings despite intense dimensionality.  That said, they are more than flat surface.  

For some reason, I have two persistent images as I reflect on this exhibition.  The first is some vague expression within the existential works of George Segal; the other is the imagined space of a Kiehnolz living room, one in which a boxing match is on the TV, the lights are turned down low, shadows loom large and the voice of a sports announcer fills the otherwise tense and quiet space.  Whatever the case of my wanderings, it's clear that the works presented here are about the struggles within, within time, and therefore, most likely, about time, now, perhaps, just a bit after eleven.