previews

  • James Welling, 0818, 2006, ink-jet print, 33 3/4 x 50 1/2". From the series “Glass House,” 2006–2009.

    “James Welling: Monograph”

    Hammer Museum
    10899 Wilshire Boulevard
    September 28 - January 12

    Curated by James Crump

    Over the past forty years, there has been no American photographer more creative and original than James Welling. Certainly no photographer has been more successful working in both black-and-white and color and in both depictive and abstract modes (sometimes, as in the “Glass House” photo­graphs, 2006–2009, within a single image). Welling’s recent show at David Zwirner was further evidence of his super­lative gifts, with ravishing, tempera-like color variations on scenes associated with the painter Andrew Wyeth and two very different groups of abstractions. This ambitious career survey, comprising nearly two hundred photographs taken between 1975 and today, will be accom­panied by a book with contributions from Crump, Mark Godfrey, Eva Respini, and Thomas Seelig and promises to give a thorough picture of the artist’s wide-ranging achievements.

  • Eric Owen Moss Architects, Samitaur, 1996, Los Angeles.

    “A New Sculpturalism: Contemporary Architecture From Southern California”

    MOCA Geffen Contemporary
    152 North Central Avenue
    April 21 - July 29

    Curated by Christopher Mount

    There is a certain irony in using the rubric of “sculpturalism” to encapsulate the influential architecture that has emerged from Southern California in recent decades, because its sculptural quality is now probably its least defining characteristic; its once-novel forms—and the pioneering digital technologies that enable them—have become ubiquitous, and what previously had the cachet of a local style has become a global export. Fortunately, the region’s architecture has always been distinguished above all by its heterogeneity and restless experimentation, so this show and extensive catalogue, focusing on thirty designers, including LA legends Frank Gehry and Thom Mayne and a host of emerging talents, are sure to offer more than one way to keep the field moving forward long after it leaves sculpture behind.

  • Llyn Foulkes, Happy Rock, 1969, oil and acrylic on canvas, 88 3/4 x 84 3/4".

    Llyn Foulkes

    Hammer Museum
    10899 Wilshire Boulevard
    February 3 - May 19

    Curated by Ali Subotnick

    Despite his Ferus Gallery credentials and considerable influence on the Los Angeles art world, a career-long thwarting of stylistic consistency may have rendered Llyn Foulkes and his work virtually unclassifiable. All of the polarities of West Coast art have found their way into his practice, from “cool” abstraction and the brand-newness of Pop to “hot” (abject) figuration and the used-upness of assemblage. What holds it all together is the relentless tone of political indignation; whether aiming at the rape of landscape by commerce or the siege of real life by the forces of spectacle, Foulkes makes work about what he hates—and he does so with loving care. This exhibition of nearly 140 works—including the notorious rock paintings; the “Bloody Head” series, 1973–2011; and numerous rarely seen early drawings—and its accompanying catalogue will explore that beautiful paradox.