Women on the Plinth Catherine Wagley
Us & Them, Now & Then:
Reconstituting Group Material
Travis Diehl
The Offerings of EJ Hill
Ikechukwu Casmir Onyewuenyi
Interview with Jenni Sorkin Carmen Winant
Letter to the Editor Lady Parts, Lady Arts
Launch Party August 19th at Blum and Poe
Object Project
Featuring: Rebecca Morris,
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Lindsay Preston Zappas
Photos by Jeff McClane
Reviews Mark Bradford
at the Venice Biennale
by Thomas Duncan

Broken Language
at Shulamiit Nazarian
by Angella d'Avignon

Artists of Color
at the Underground Museum
by Matt Stromberg

Anthony Lepore & Michael Henry Hayden
at Del Vaz Projects
by Aaron Horst

by Simone Krug

Analia Saban at
Sprueth Magers
by Hana Cohn
Kanye Westworld Travis Diehl
@richardhawkins01 Thomas Duncan
Support Structures: Alice Könitz and LAMOA Catherine Wagley
Interview with Penny Slinger Eliza Swann
Exquisite L.A.
taisha paggett
Ashley Hunt
Young Chung
Intro by Claressinka Anderson
Portraits by Joe Pugliese
Letter to the Editor
Launch Party
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Jennie Jieun Lee
by Stuart Krimko

Trisha Baga
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Jimmie Durham
by Molly Larkey

Parallel City
by Hana Cohn

Jason Rhodes
by Matt Stromberg
Catherine Wagley
Put on a Happy Face:
On Dynasty Handbag
Travis Diehl
The Limits of Animality:
Simone Forti at ISCP
(L.A. in N.Y.)
Ikechukwu Casmir Onyewuenyi
More Wound Than Ruin:
Evaluating the
"Human Condition"
Jessica Simmons
Launch Party
Exquisite L.A.
Brenna Youngblood
Todd Gray
Rafa Esparza
Intro by Claressinka Anderson
Portraits by Joe Pugliese
Reviews Creature by Thomas Duncan
Sam Pulitzer & Peter Wachtler by Stuart Krimko
Karl Haendel by Aaron Horst
Wolfgang Tillmans by Eli Diner
Ma by Claire de Dobay Rifelj
The Rat Bastard Protective Association by Pablo Lopez
Kenneth Tam
's Basement
Travis Diehl
The Female
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Catherine Wagley
The Rise
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Art Witch
Amanda Yates Garcia
Interview with
Mernet Larsen
Julie Weitz
Agnes Martin
Jessica Simmons
Launch Party Carla Issue 6
Exquisite L.A.
Analia Saban
Ry Rocklen
Sarah Cain
Intro by Claressinka Anderson
Portraits by Joe Pugliese
Made in L.A. 2016
Doug Aitken Electric Earth

Jean-Pascal Flavian and Mika Tajima
Mark A. Rodruigez
The Weeping Line
Molly Larkey, Aaron Horst,
Keith J. Varadi, Katie Bode,
Stuart Krimko, Matt Stromberg
at The Underground Museum
Catherine Wagley
The Art of Birth Carmen Winant
Escape from Bunker Hill
John Knight
Travis Diehl
Ed Boreal Speaks Benjamin Lord
Art Advice (from Men) Sarah Weber
Routine Pleasures
at the MAK Center
Jonathan Griffin
Launch Party Carla Issue 5
Exquisite L.A.
Fay Ray
John Baldessari
Claire Kennedy
Intro by Claressinka Anderson
Portraits by Joe Pugliese
Reviews Hana Cohn, Eli Diner,
Claire De Dobay Rifelj,
Katie Bode, Molly Larkey,
Keith J. Varadi
Moon, laub, and Love Catherine Wagley
Walk Artisanal Jonathan Griffin
Marva Marrow's
Inside the L.A. Artist
Anthony Pearson
Mystery Science Thater
Diana Thater
Aaron Horst
Informal Feminisms Federica Bueti and Jan Verwoert
Marva Marrow Photographs
Lita Albuquerque
Launch Party Carla Issue 4
Interiors and Interiority:
Njideka Akunyili Crosby
Char Jansen
Reviews Claire de Dobay Rifelj,
Matt Stromberg, Hana Cohn,
Lindsay Preston Zappas,
Simone Krug, Keith Vaughn,
Ikechukwu Casmir Onyewuenyi
Le Louvre, Las Vegas Evan Moffitt
iPhones, Flesh,
and the Word
at Arturo Bandini
Lindsay Preston Zappas
Women Talking About Barney Catherine Wagley
Lingua Ignota
Faith Wilding
at The Armory Center
for the Arts
Benjamin Lord
A Conversation
with Amalia Ulman
Char Jansen
How We Practice Carmen Winant
Launch Party Carla Issue 3
Share Your Piece of the Puzzle Federica Bueti
Amanda Ross-Ho Photographs
Erik Frydenborg
Reviews Eli Diner, Jonathan Griffin,
Don Edler, Aaron Horst
Hot Tears Carmen Winant
Slow View:
Molly Larkey
Anna Breininger and Kate Whitlock
Americanicity's Paintings
Orion Martin
at Favorite Goods
Tracy Jeanne Rosenthal
Layers of Leimert Park Catherine Wagley
Junkspace Junk Food
Parker Ito
at Kaldi, Smart Objects,
White Cube, and
Château Shatto
Evan Moffitt
Melrose Hustle Keith Vaughn
Reviews Benjamin Lord, Aaron Horst, Stephen Kent
Top-Down Bottom-Up Jenny Gagalka
Snap Reviews Aaron Horst, Char Jansen, Randy Rice, Lindsay Preston Zappas
Max Maslansky Photographs
Monica Majoli
at the Tom of Finland Foundation
White Lee, Black Lee
William Pope.L’s Reenactor
Travis Diehl
Dora Budor Interview Char Jensen
Metaphysical L.A.
Travis Diehl
Art for Art’s Sake:
L.A. in the 1990s
Anthony Pearson
A Dialogue in Two
Synchronous Atmospheres
Erik Morse
with Alexandra Grant
at François Ghebaly
Jonathan Griffin
#studio #visit
with #devin #kenny
Mateo Tannatt
Jibade-Khalil Huffman
Ben Medansky
I've been a lot of places,
seen so many faces
Nora Slade
Launch Party Carla Issue 1
Slow View:
Discussion on One Work
Anna Breininger
with Julian Rogers
Reviews Tracy Jeanne Rosenthal, Catherine Wagley, Keith Vaughn, Aaron Horst, Kate Wolf, Mateo Tannatt, Evan Moffitt, Cal Siegel
We’re in This Together Lauren Cherry & Max Springer
ARTBOOK @ Hauser & Wirth
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Ibid Gallery
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Nicodim Gallery
Venus Over Los Angeles
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18th Street Arts
Ben Maltz Gallery at Otis 
College of Art and Design
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DXIX Projects
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1301 PE
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ltd Los Angeles
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Walker Art Center (Minneapolis, MN)
Whitney Museum of American Art, Frances Mulhall Achilles Library (New York, NY)
Yale University Library (New Haven, CT)

L.A. Povera

Bernadette Corporation, The Gay Signs (installation view). Image courtesy of House of Gaga.

Sunbeams shuffled through the gallery’s dust-colored windows on gangrenous feet. Between wooden columns and around white plinths, past sutured metal and ceramified condoms, a black plastic bag dragged itself across the concrete floor, as slow as the changing light. The piece was Tucson Rug (2009), one of Robert Breer’s more trashly kinetic sculptures—a squashed and abject version of his droidlike domes. Here, at 356 Mission, in a show curated by Mitchell Algus and Olivia Shao and called Sunlight Arrives Only at Its Proper Hour, the creeping sculpture fit the mood.

What mood was that? Uneven and post-industrial. Clean surfaces intersecting grimed. Warmly lit, trans- lucent, and crisp. Objects seemed to drift, if not crawl, between being art and being trash. There, on a little shelf, rested a resin model of a rodential severed head—a piece by Matt Hoyt. Up on the wall was Michael E. Smith’s Untitled (2015), a lengthy sunflower stalk angled just so and fixed to a plastic “prisoner transport seat” like a relief. These objects felt casual and found, yet piercingly, obsessively sure. It wasn’t just any trash: it had to be this way. Near Smith’s piece were 30 cigarette cellophanes filled with tiny refuse, trash-world terrariums by Yuji Agematsu, who famously makes one a day, every day, on his daily walk.

It’s as if to know a place, you need to root through its trash. Or else, in certain unfinished circumstances, such as 356 Mission’s roughly refurbished warehouse, on a block trenched with old rail sections and puddles of sewage, the trash on the inside recalled that in the gallery’s surroundings. This, perhaps, to con- tradict art’s tendency to grow aloof in its sunstreaked white boxes. Found materials seem to signal a kind of local awareness, even a claim to localness. This despite the fact that both Smith and Agematsu are from New York, and their work probably is too.

For The Great Indoors, Klara Liden’s recent show at House of Gaga // Reena Spaulings Fine Art, the artist made a point of locally sourcing her materials. Several pieces of “furniture” consisted of benches that double as stands for salvaged plywood construction barriers from the Los Angeles area. Liden’s act of reuse amounted to a kind of site-specificity that was less invested in the building itself than the city around it. The barriers were painted with rectangles of a custom whitewash. Playing in their shadows were two videos: one of a pigeon in New York City, the other of ducks in MacArthur Park Lake, visible through the gallery’s mission-style windows, swimming around a drowned shopping cart.


Kara Linden, The Great Indoors (installation view). Image courtesy of Reena Spaulings Fine Art.

This take on urbanism, part vampiric, part critical, carried over to the gallery’s very next show, Bernadette Corporation’s The Gay Signs. Among some custom beer pong tables, lit from within by LEDs and variously etched and printed with quotes from Sylvere Lotringer, was another that doubled as a vitrine filled with garbage from the surrounding streets. And, to match Liden’s birds, BC fashioned a seagull sculpture crafted from a “locally sourced” styrofoam cup, disembodied feathers, and bits of plastic. In BC’s hands the use of found materials took on the aura of  disaster—the sort that formed the backdrop for their “collectively authored novel” Reena Spaulings (from which the gallery drew its name). At the story’s climax, a tornado savaging Manhattan skyscrapers is a crude realization of New York’s enduring millennial disaster—not 9/11, but the real-estate boom that would follow. As with the galleries on the edge of Boyle Heights, the neighborhood’s unfinished feel is its appeal. In rooting through its garbage, Gaga // Reena nods to the working-class neighborhood which it has a part in gentrifying—and while Gaga // Reena was not the first gallery to move to MacArthur Park, it did so with aplomb.

Indeed, is there something about galleries in “transitional” L.A. neighborhoods that makes them interested in trash-based, trash-like art? 356 Mission finds itself at the center of heated protests against the gentrification of Boyle Heights; activists have fingered the galleries there as prime suspects. In 2016, the NAH Fair (an off-site alternative to Los Angeles Art Book Fair) printed a map of the district and described each business with brevity and wit. “They got a fire pit outside,” says the guide of the now-defunct Harmony Murphy Gallery. “They often show art of found trash.” It’s meant as an insult—your precious art —but it’s no accident that several recent shows have been proud to feature found trash. Perhaps this is partly to absorb that very criticism: galleries in gentrifying parts of town might say as much by invoking a trashly site specificity—a conceptual retrofit, if not camouflage. Perhaps this is also part of the process by which what resists today sells out tomorrow.

If the show at 356 Mission had an airy, depopulated feel to match its venue, and the two shows at Gaga // Reena riffed explicitly on the neighborhood outside the windows, the garage gallery Reserve Ames in West Adams, where artists are slowly but surely buying houses, has the look of a fixer-upper—stubbornly unrenovated. In a recent two-person show there featuring Brian Dario and Christian Tedeschi, the sculptures had the dark readymade tang of Michael E. Smith—for instance, a push broom in a form-fitting plexiglass box, or a Felix Gonzalez-Torres lightbulb piece “remade” with broken bulbs cast in blobs of glass. The show looked like junk you’d find lying around in an old shed—and a lot of it was. A conscious effort had been made to play on this confusion between the pile of boards and chain link fence and miscellaneous poles that always sits in the gallery’s back left corner, and the similar items moved into the space by the curator—many of which, in their turn, had been lying around the artists’ studios.


Brian Dario and Christian Tedeschi (2017) (installation view). Curated library by Leslie Dick. Image courtesy of the artist and Reserve Ames.

Leave it to artists to “appreciate” a pile of yellowed lumber, or a disused commercial space. The ICA LA, newly relocated from Santa Monica in an old garment warehouse across the street from the downtown Greyhound bus station, opened with an artist project by New York-based artist Abigail DeVille. Over several days, DeVille combed Los Angeles second-hand shops and curbsides for materials— shoes, red and blue party lights, hubcaps—then clamored them together around a chicken wire tornado, beneath a punctured black trash bag sky. In all of this, she is the only artist among the aforementioned who declares that her work is specifically about gentrification and displacement. Themes latent in Algus and Shao’s exhibition at 356 Mission, and central in Liden’s and BC’s exhibitions at Gaga // Reena, manifest as the whole of DeVille’s piece.

Yet DeVille’s remains an abstract gesture. Does it matter that her materials were sourced from Los Angels—? And does this proximity lend these displaced objects a particularly Angeleno sense of displacement? To the point, Liden dressed up her chipped and grimed plywood barriers with white abstract paintings, like fresh drywall over old brick. These barriers could have been from anywhere, but they weren’t— they were from L.A., and their damage was sustained for the construction and demolition of L.A. buildings. In that sense, Liden’s installation has a particularly “Los Angeles” texture, as if the city was expressing itself on it own canvas. Yet this was also, consciously, reflexively, a fetishized urbanism—wherein the “urban” is characterized not by diverse communities and dynamic culture, but by the convection of blight, displacement, and reinvestment. Such is an urbanism without a city.


Abigail DeVille, No Space Hidden (Shelter) (2017) (installation view). Image courtesy of the artist and the Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Photo: Brian Forrest.

Bernadette Corporation, The Gay Signs (installation view). Image courtesy of House of Gaga.

Christian Tedeschi, Untitled (2015). Plastic and found basketball, 81⁄2 x81⁄2 x81⁄2 inches. Image courtesy of the artist and Reserve Ames.

Kara Linden, The Great Indoors (installation view). Image courtesy of Reena Spaulings Fine Art.


Abigail DeVille, No Space Hidden (Shelter) (2017) (installation view). Image courtesy of the artist and the Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Photo: Brian Forrest.

Robert Breer, Tucson Rug (2009). Motorized sculpture: plastic (black) cover, motor, wheels, 2.8 x 7.9 x 5.9 inches. Image courtesy of the artist and Simon Preston Gallery, New York and gb Agency, Paris.


Originally published in Carla Issue 10.