Los Angeles

Los Angeles

“NO WRONG HOLES: THIRTY YEARS OF NAYLAND BLAKE”

ICA - Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles
1717 E. 7th Street
September 29, 2019–January 26, 2020

Curated by Jamillah James

In Nayland Blake’s heroic, humble work, opposites not only attract but converse, empathize, coalesce, and grow. Largely arising from the artist’s identity and experience as a biracial and queer American, Blake’s work is critically steeped in complex representations of social prejudice while remaining deeply personal, vulnerable, and compassionate. “No Wrong Holes,” which presents nearly one hundred videos, sculptures, and drawings, represents decades of healthy artistic exploration: We find cultural symbols of innocence as erotic metaphors, BDSM equipment doubling as tender sculpture, and a bunny suit that expresses the literal weight of love. A Looney Tunes portable pothole yawns open as an abyss of death, and elegant assemblages of found trash refer to the likes of Jasper Johns and Richard Tuttle. Blake is a revered educator and artist’s artist who leads by example, making for a motivating show with the radical message that, although everything is not okay, everyone is okay.