los-angeles

William Leavitt, Dieter Rot

Eugenia Butler Gallery

Beside quality, ideas also have character or flavor or style; Los Angeles “concept art” bears the same general relation to the New York version as did its Abstract Expressionism (Hassel Smith v. de Kooning), Pop art (Ed Ruscha v. Warhol) or Minimal (McCracken v. Morris). That is, it’s comparatively slick, facile, pretty, light (as in “light verse”) and requires a little more hardware. The concept itself is usually a bright idea predicated on one or two conundrums of real-nonreal and/or art-nonart, roughly comparable in gravity to the spy stories Graham Greene classifies as “entertainments” rather than novels. In Los Angeles, the main source of ideological entertainments is Eugenia Butler’s gallery, which has, in exhibitions involving Dieter Rot and William Leavitt, devoted the last couple of months to environmental satire. Rot, a Swiss, filled three dozen suitcases of various forms and

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