reviews

  • “Helter Skelter”

    Temporary Contemporary

    In “Helter Skelter: L.A. Art in the 1990s,” Paul Schimmel’s first major statement as MoCA’s new Chief Curator, he seems to have deliberately thrown the gauntlet in the face of traditional curatorial taboos. He has mounted a regional survey (read, “provincialism”); appended a historically dated title (Charles Manson, the Beatles, the ’60s); and has had the audacity to define the trends of the ’90s though the decade has barely begun. Despite this outward bravura, however, Schimmel’s main intent is more scholarly: a desire to invert the common conception of Los Angeles as “La-La Land”—the city that

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  • Paul McCarthy

    Rosamund Felsen Gallery

    Every civilization gets the shamans it deserves. What we have is a media bureaucracy of fashion plates managing our dreams and fears, their Dolby chorus of double-talk snake-charming the popular imagination beyond complacency into a deep, deathlike slumber. Paul McCarthy’s hour-long hostile takeover of television sitcomdom, Bossy Burger, 1991, interrupts our regularly scheduled programming like a nightmare. McCarthy has appeared on TV before. (He chose to exhibit a few of his more unseemly performance works, such as Sailor’s Meat, 1975, in which he dressed in women’s lingerie and fucked raw meat

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