Christian Leigh

  • “LA Hot and Cool—The Eighties”

    In the introduction to the catalogue for this exhibition of recent work by 23 Los Angeles-based artists, curator Dana Friis-Hansen started off by asking the question “Has Los Angeles art hit the Big Time?” Pushing the naive notion of a regional art movement to an extreme, he went on to present his thesis that cool conceptual work and warmer representational work exist side by side there, embodying the city’s “two distinct temperaments.” Big surprise. With this ersatz intellectual baggage in tow, “LA Hot and Cool—The Eighties” became a grandiose travelogue for “the new art capital.”

    To be sure,

  • ACT-UP

    At a time in the post-Modern discourse when the political and the esthetic are all but separate, the window installation Let the Record Show . . . by ACT-UP (the AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power) has been especially welcome. Throughout history, political groups have continually made use of art as a means of disseminating their ideology, for art has never been beyond the reach of a cause, sympathetic or otherwise.

    ACT-UP is a radical, grass-roots, positive-action organization dedicated to developing political and medical justice during the AIDS crisis. This nonpartisan New York group meets weekly