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,
Linda Stark, Alex Olson
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

Home
at LACMA
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.
Featuring:
taisha paggett
Ashley Hunt
Young Chung
Intro by Claressinka Anderson
Portraits by Joe Pugliese
Letter to the Editor
Launch Party
Reviews Alessandro Pessoli
by Jonathan Griffin

Jennie Jieun Lee
by Stuart Krimko

Trisha Baga
by Lindsay Preston Zappas

Jimmie Durham
by Molly Larkey

Parallel City
by Hana Cohn

Jason Rhodes
by Matt Stromberg
Generous
Structures
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.
Featuring:
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
Cool School
Catherine Wagley
The Rise
of the L.A.
Art Witch
Amanda Yates Garcia
Interview with
Mernet Larsen
Julie Weitz
Agnes Martin
at LACMA
Jessica Simmons
Launch Party Carla Issue 6
Exquisite L.A.
Featuring:
Analia Saban
Ry Rocklen
Sarah Cain
Intro by Claressinka Anderson
Portraits by Joe Pugliese
Reviews:
Made in L.A. 2016
Doug Aitken Electric Earth
Mertzbau

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
Non-Fiction
at The Underground Museum
Catherine Wagley
The Art of Birth Carmen Winant
Escape from Bunker Hill
John Knight
at REDCAT
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.
Featuring:
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
Reconsidering
Marva Marrow's
Inside the L.A. Artist
Anthony Pearson
Mystery Science Thater
Diana Thater
at LACMA
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
F.B.I.
at Arturo Bandini
Lindsay Preston Zappas
Women Talking About Barney Catherine Wagley
Lingua Ignota
Faith Wilding
at The Armory Center
for the Arts
and LOUDHAILER
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
MEAT PHYSICS/
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
SOGTFO
at François Ghebaly
Jonathan Griffin
#studio #visit
with #devin #kenny
@barnettcohen
Mateo Tannatt
Photographs
Jibade-Khalil Huffman
VESSEL // CINS and
VESSEL // PERF
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
Distribution
Downtown
ARTBOOK @ Hauser & Wirth
Baert Gallery
Cirrus Gallery
Château Shatto
Club Pro
Dalton Warehouse
Elevator Mondays
The Geffen Contemporary 
at MOCA
Ghebaly Gallery
ICA LA
LACA
MAMA
Mistake Room
MOCA Grand Avenue
Monte Vista Projects
Night Gallery
The Box
Wilding Cran Gallery
Boyle Heights/ Chinatown
A.G. Geiger
BBQLA
Chimento Contemporary
Charlie James
Human Resources
Ibid Gallery
Ooga Booga
Ooga Twooga
Parrasch Heijnen Gallery
Museum as Retail Space (MaRS)
Nicodim Gallery
Venus Over Los Angeles
Eastside
AWHRHWAR
67 Steps
ESXLA
Otherwild
SADE
Smart Objects
Skibum MacArthur
Westside
18th Street Arts
Ben Maltz Gallery at Otis 
College of Art and Design
Christopher Grimes Gallery
DXIX Projects
Five Car Garage
Team (Bungalow)
Pasadena/ Glendale/ Valley
The Armory Center for the Arts
The Pit
Los Angeles Valley College
Natural
The Art Gallery @ GCC
Mid-City
1301 PE
Big Pictures Los Angeles
California African American Museum
Chainlink Gallery
Commonwealth & Council
David Kordansky Gallery
H I L D E
JOAN
Kayne Griffin Corcoran
LACMA
ltd Los Angeles
Marc Foxx
Shoot the Lobster
Ochi Projects
Park View
Praz-Delavallade
The Landing
SPRÜTH MAGERS
The Underground Museum
USC Fisher Museum of Art
Visitor Welcome Center
Culver City
Anat Ebgi
Arcana Books
Blum & Poe
Cherry and Martin
Honor Fraser
Klowden Mann
Luis De Jesus
Roberts and Tilton
Susanne Vielmetter
Hollywood
Diane Rosenstein
Family Books
GAVLAK
Hannah Hoffman
LACE
LA><ART
M+B
Nino Mier Gallery
Moskowitz Bayse
Noysky Projects
Regen Projects
Shulamit Nazarian
Various Small Fires
South Bay
DMV
Grab Bag Studios
The Torrance Art Museum
Elsewhere in CA
Alter Space (San Francisco)
City Limits (Oakland)
Et al. (San Francisco)
Ever Gold Projects (San Francisco)
fused space (San Francisco)
Gym Standard (San Diego)
Helmuth Projects (San Diego)
Interface Gallery (Oakland)
Jessica Silverman (San Francisco)
Left Field (San Luis Obispo)
San Diego Art Institute (San Diego)
Verve Center for the Arts (Sacramento)
Wattis Institute for Contemporary Art (San Francisco)
Non CA
Artbook @ MoMA PS1 (Long Island City, NY)
Editions Kavi Gupta (Chicago, IL)
Good Weather (North Little Rock, AK)
Nationale (Portland, OR)
Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture (Skowhegan, ME)
Small Editions (Brooklyn, NY)
Space 42 (Jacksonville, FL)
Spoonbill & Sugartown (Brooklyn, NY)
Ulises (Philadelphia, PA)
Libraries/ Collections
Bard College, Center for Curatorial Studies Library (Annandale-on-Hudson, NY)
CalArts (Valencia, CA)
Cranbrook Academy of Art (Bloomfield Hills, MI)
El 123 (México City, MX)
John M. Flaxman Library at SAIC (Chicago, IL)
Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Research Library (Los Angeles, CA)
Los Angeles Contemporary Archive (Los Angeles, CA)
Marpha Foundation (Marpha, Nepal)
Maryland Institute College of Art, The Decker Library (Baltimore, MD)
Metropolitan Museum of Art, Thomas J. Watson Library (New York, NY)
Midway Contemporary Art (Minneapolis, MN)
Pepperdine University (Malibu, CA)
Point Loma Nazarene University (San Diego, CA)
School of the Art Institute of Chicago, John M. Flaxman Library (Chicago, IL)
Scholes Library, NYS College of Ceramics at Alfred University (Alfred, NY)
Skowhegan Archives (New York, NY)
Sotheby’s Institute of Art (New York, NY)
Telfair Museum (Savannah, GA)
USC Fisher Museum of Art (Los Angeles, CA)
Walker Art Center (Minneapolis, MN)
Whitney Museum of American Art, Frances Mulhall Achilles Library (New York, NY)
Yale University Library (New Haven, CT)

Mertzbau at Tif Sigfrids

Mertzbau2

Joe Sola with Albert Mertz, Mertzbau (2016) (installation view). Image courtesy of the artist and Tif Sigfrids. Photo: Steven Rimlinger.

Joe Sola’s recent exhibition at Tif Sigfrids, Mertzbau (featuring the late artist, Albert Mertz), cycles through ideas in threes. The press release claims that Mertzbau is “a celebration of art, trash, life, and the slippery distinction between the three.” A third artist, the inimitable Kurt Schwitters, is present in spirit alone—Schwitters’ grand work, Merzbau (1937), in which he transformed most of his family home in Hanover, serves as the inspiration and bridge connecting Sola and Mertz. For this semi-collaborative presentation, Sola utilizes 419 salvaged wooden
 chairs to form three tunnels, the light at the end of each is a distinct work by Mertz. The title of the show adds Mertz’s “t” to the aforementioned Schwitters work—a subtle linguistic gesture that the Granddaddy of Dada would no doubt appreciate.

Sigfrids has whited out the exterior windows to
 her Hollywood storefront and put a compact piece
 of cardboard on display, which contains a quote by Schwitters transcribed by Mertz in 1948. It reads: “Being active in several different art forms was a matter of necessity for me as an artist. My goal with the ‘Merzkunst’ was the total work of art that comprises all other forms of art in one artistic unity.” By both revoking viewership from the street and offering only a cryptic clue, Sigfrids has set a situational stage for multi-generational works to perform.

However, this stage 
is cluttered to capacity with chairs collected from city streets, precariously balanced in a thoroughly conceived frenzy. Dinged and dented, functional 
or fragile, garish yet gratifying—these pieces 
of furniture are no longer meant to be sat on and are not really meant to be seen, either. Despite the exhibition being billed as a solo show by Joe Sola, featuring Albert Mertz, Sola has chosen to play the role of supporting actor, using his contribution to highlight Mertz’s oddly enchanting, more nuanced works. Individually and collectively, these works are emblematic of Mertz’s consistent yet varied practice.

The first Mertz work on view, Untitled (Red/Blue on homemade stretchers) (1971), is a small and seemingly slapdash minimalist painting of two squares 
on a ratty primed canvas; staples protrude around the sides and strings sneak from behind. The next, Untitled (framed landscape painting) (1979), is an innocuously compelling rural scene covered in blue dots and contained within a weathered frame, dotted in red. The third and last, Untitled (Chicago-Caesar) (1981), was made a decade after the first on display and uses a book cover by California crime novelist W.R. Burnett as the central icon, surrounded by vague earth tones, dotted and lined with more of his signature blue and red.

Mertzbauinstall1

Joe Sola with Albert Mertz, Mertzbau (2016) (installation view). Image courtesy of the artist and Tif Sigfrids. Photo: Steven Rimlinger.

These three paintings don’t waste anything: materials, time, or effort. They concisely communicate what they need to with just enough panache, rigor, and savvy. They do not reveal too much too quickly, nor do they go out of their way to conceal any information either. Sola, for his part, counters this approach with his audacious assemblage. By creating this absurdist environment for his predecessor to shine within, Sola graciously pays homage to a brilliant and overlooked talent.

Humor is a crucial aspect of Sola’s work, and here, the over-the-top physical comedy of the installation shakes the body and rattles the mind. One walks in and out of these tunnels, tuning in and out of infinite tone zones.
 Is this safe? Is this sane? 
Is this good? Is this bad? None of these questions are justifiably answerable. At a certain point, it must be understood that not all inquiries can be qualified or quantified; instead, perhaps the value of the question can rest within the constant shifts in confusion and discovery surrounding its loose punctuation.

So then, what can we learn from Schwitters? Art is trash; trash is art. Art is life; life is art. Life is also trash, and the slippery cycle goes on. And what can we learn from Mertzbau? More or less the same. Think outside this exhibition, and the idea of “the exhibition.” We will continue to slip up and repeat for as long as our lives allow us to go on. When we nosedive into the most foul of piles, it is immediately a horrid sensory nightmare, but then gradually, our sense of hope and idealism becomes heightened. This show strongly suggests one to take the leap, with Mertz in one ear, whispering, “Don’t fear death,” and Sola in the other, whispering, “For now, just don’t fear bedbugs.”

mertzbaudetail3

Albert Mertz, 1948 Kurt Schwitters tekst (1948). Pencil on cardboard, 12.75 x 9.5 inches. Photo: Steven Rimlinger.

 

Mertzbau1

Joe Sola with Albert Mertz, Mertzbau (2016) (installation view). Image courtesy of the artist and Tif Sigfrids. Photo: Steven Rimlinger.

mertzbaudetail2

Albert Mertz, Untitled (framed landscape painting) (1979). Oil paint on found framed print, 8 x 10 inches. Photo: Steven Rimlinger.

mertzbaudetail1

Albert Mertz, Untitled (Red/Blue on homemade stretchers) (1971). Oil on canvas, 8 x 12.5 inches. Photo: Steven Rimlinger.

 

Originally published in Carla issue 6