• Garry Simmons

    Roy Boyd Gallery

    In a witty and often disturbing installation of sculptural objects, Gary Simmons explored the ideological structures that link the conformist values of bourgeois educational systems with the art institution. Simmons’ basic strategy is to make a trope of that Marxist staple, “class,” by blurring semantic and contextual distinctions between classroom, art-world classification, and the roles perpetuated by the dominant class structure. These relationships were established from the moment the viewer entered the gallery lobby. The first thing to come into view was Eraser Chair (all works, 1989), a

    Read more
  • Joel Otterson

    Margo Leavin Gallery

    The collision of material and stylistic referents animates Joel Otterson’s sculptures. The eight 1989 works shown here are quite absurd variations on common domestic objects, done in the artist’s best industrial baroque manner In their exuberant oddness, they demonstrate their maker’s jovial disdain for anything like an unforced unity, either of substance or style. Otterson likes to oppose the social and historical meaning of a pattern or decorative effect to the material on which it appears. He also sets up oppositions of form and function through such constructive maneuvers as nestling small

    Read more
  • Carol Caroompas

    Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions (LACE)

    Carol Caroompas’ recent installation, entitled Fairy Tales, 1989, is a busy and wild amalgamation of heterosexual imagery produced in the classic post-Modern tradition of harmoniously combative renderings. Here we have fake Aztec markings, stick figures, cartoon graphics, and exquisitely rendered anatomical drawings of heads. The effect is elemental, intriguing, and nightmarish. Caroompas’ paintings are like sexual morality plays. Practically every piece has either a vagina or a penis in it; sometimes she uses metaphorical stand-ins (spiders, cherries, narrow bodies of water, versus enormous

    Read more