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Featuring Analia Saban, Ry Rocklen, and Sarah Cain
Portraits by Joe Pugliese
Exquisite L.A. is a blueprint of a collective shape. Drawing on the history of the Surrealist Exquisite Corpse, we wish to create a communal portrait of the current Los Angeles art world.
Consisting of photographic portraits, and spanning a year of consecutive Carla issues, each artist photographed introduces the next with a short text accompanying their portrait, outlining their connection or interest in the artist that will follow them in the series. This is an ongoing story of Los Angeles—its twists and turns, side streets, and freeways.
Rooted in classical portraiture, the photographs presented capture the artists in a neutral space, isolated from their work or studio. Their individual gaze, pose, or gesture becomes a continuous visual marker for the exquisite corpse that is Los Angeles.
Fay Ray → John Baldessari → Claire Kennedy →
Analia Saban → Ry Rocklen → Sarah Cain →
For the full introduction to this project, and to view previous portraits, please refer to Carla issue 5, which was published in July 2016, or online at contemporaryartreview.la/exquisite-l-a/.
Analia Saban on Ry Rocklen
I often think, what is Ry doing right now? Is he casting his folded laundry? Building trophies? Or most likely, doing something completely unexpected. His work never fails to provoke my thought process, to challenge my sense of humor, and to extend the definition of Art.
Ry Rocklen on Sarah Cain
Sarah Cain is a dear friend and an inspiration. Her boundless personal and artistic vision has woven its way into the fabric of Los Angeles, making it a better place. I admire Sarah for her strength of character and ability to transform not only her canvases, but the spaces in which they hang. Her vibrant and ecstatic use of color, pattern, line, and shape bleed into the world around them. Her superpowers, however, extend beyond her use of paint and her ability to create expansive works of art. Her powers can also be seen in her commitment to standing up for what is right in the world, and her fearlessness of calling out what is wrong. Thank heavens for the incredible Sarah Cain!
Sarah Cain on Brenna Youngblood
Brenna is the type of artist that I’m always interested in seeing what they are going to do next. She doesn’t stay still. In the decade I’ve known her work she’s moved rapidly through photo collage, sculpture, and in and out of various ways of painting. I appreciate artists that take risks and don’t just stick to something once it’s well received. As this is a photo project I also thought of Brenna’s eyes. I remember reading about voyeurism and then noticing how portraits of women tend to lack eye contact. Brenna’s got a great way of looking you in the eye— like her work, direct with a bit of mystery.
This photo essay was originally published in Carla issue 6.