Los Angeles

Los Angeles

Kay Rosen: lifeli[k]e

The Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA)
250 South Grand Avenue
November 15, 1998–January 17, 1999

You could say that Kay Rosen paints monochromatic fields traversed by rows of abecedarian ciphers divorced from any signified to which they might conventionally be attached. You could also say she messes with words—that through inversion, substitution, twisted repetition, she contrives odd overlaps between what words look like and what they mean. On one level Rosen is a wry comedian, putting heteronymns and homophones to bed together. But there’s also an elegantly reflective quality to her examinations of the particles of thought, and Connie Butler (cocurator, with Terry Myers, of this twenty-year retrospective) links her to Bruce Nauman, among others, in a “tradition of conceptual and linguistically based experiments.”

Also on view at Otis College of Art and Design.