reviews

  • David Novros

    Mizuno Gallery

    That David Novros is from Los Angeles but lives in New York is informative: his latest shown works (a year and a half old) are products both of what is known as the Los Angeles “finish fetish” and the tough-minded New York “there it is; that’s it” outlook. Novros’s show is simple: two works, each twelve right-facing upright and upside down L’s, hung on opposite walls of the gallery cube. The panels, manufactured in fiberglass about half an inch deep, have almost imperceptibly rounded corners which help them function as paintings. Novros’s color has moved away from the earlier monochrome pearlescence

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  • Richard Yokomi

    Nicholas Wilder Gallery

    While Novros’s two works make only a pair, his greater body of work indicates a series, an “obsessive image,” or simply a deliberately limited (for clarity) set of formal problems. It’s safe to say that most younger artists are thinking in sets, and the difficulty in sorting out good stuff from bad stuff is in telling the difference between passionate narrowing and mere bright ideas. A survey view of current art looks like a chessboard, with most squares occupied. Once in a while the intersection of stylistic elements (hypothetically, “funk” and “light-as-medium”) is found vacant and a claim is

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  • Les Levine

    Molly Barnes Gallery

    Les Levine is more (or less) than an artist; he’s an operative, a set-breaker dealing with expectations and removals, real time and phenomena in general. His calling card, “New from Les Levine,” has a department store banality and his press releases are integral to his works (usually having the form of events). Levine, especially in “Paint,” challenges us not with “It’s interesting, but is it art?” but rather with, “Sure it’s art, but is it interesting?” Needing the backdrop of art as much as any painter or sculptor, “Paint” is more interesting taken in the context of art rather than the world

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  • Tantric Works

    Eugenia Butler Gallery

    The relative importance of the show of 18th and 19th century Tantric Works at Eugenia Butler depends on whether art activity is measured by what’s being done or what’s being shown. Although my most constant interests are with the former, these 99 small, hand-done (in look as well as fact), water-base “mystical diagrams” form a substantive, contemplative exhibition which should have some small effect on current art production. The purpose buried in the works is one unfamiliar of late: to evoke God and/or magic, both through, aside from several graceful figurations, the defiant irrational in

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  • Michael Asher

    La Jolla Museum

    The La Jolla Museum of Art is undergoing an image transformation under a new director, Tom Tibbs and assistant director, Larry Urrutia. The Museum is now organizing a number of low pressure exhibitions of Los Angeles area artists. Last month a single work of Robert Irwin’s was exhibited, one of the recent plastic discs, shown isolated in a long, low-ceilinged gallery. This gallery has now been transformed into an environment designed and constructed by Michael Asher. The room has been only slightly altered. The floor was covered with thick white shag carpeting—a favorite California tract house

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  • Lloyd Hamrol

    Pomona College Art Gallery

    Hal Glicksman, late of the Pasadena Art Museum and Los Angeles County Art Museum, is the new director of the Pomona College Art Gallery. He is giving the major space of his gallery during the next year to five artists who have the option to work, exhibit, or work and exhibit there in turn. The first of these artists in gallery residence was Lloyd Hamrol who chose to construct an environment within the space, which remained in place for a week. However, in keeping with the spirit of the project and to make himself available to Pomona students, Hamrol conducted experiments in the space before

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  • James Byars

    Eugenia Butler Gallery

    “Byars at Butler,” a two part performance/environment, was organized by James Byars into two segments, each lasting five days. The first part, “Walling up Jenie,” called for the removal of the gallery name from the building and construction of a wall between the gallery space and Eugenia Butler’s office. The gallery was painted white with the exception of the new wall which Byars ordered painted bright red. Eugenia Butler was not permitted in this space, and had to enter her office by the back door. This first portion of the rite of James Lee Byars might be regarded as a purification to rid the

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