• Stephen J. Kaltenbach

    Another Year In LA

    Recording Conceptual Art, Alexander Alberro’s 2001 edition of Patricia Norvell’s fascinating 1969 audio interviews, helps recall the mellow Other to Conceptual art’s frequently stern diagrammatics: Dennis Oppenheim’s sunburns, Robert Barry’s belief in telepathy and the invisible, and Stephen J. Kaltenbach’s experiments with astrology, ESP, and weed. Norvell taped Kaltenbach talking about smoking pot for the first time: “I could remove myself from my ego a little bit and see myself and my work more clearly.” A year later, in a lengthy interview for Artforum, Kaltenbach located the moment’s art

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  • Stan Kaplan

    Mary Goldman Gallery

    In vivid coloration, gestural exuberance, and overall scale, Stan Kaplan’s second show of abstract canvases at Mary Goldman Gallery notably ratcheted up the ambitions of his first. This is painterly painting in the “grand manner,” recalling the exertions of the New York School without a trace of irony, or even ambivalence. The various alibis that have enabled returns of this sort over the past twenty years, from Appropriation to Simulationism, have been discarded so that the artist may, once again, face down the tundra of the gessoed surface as if for the first time, contending with this, and

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  • Jen Liu

    Lizabeth Oliveria Gallery

    Jen Liu’s Soldiers of Light, 2005, is a head-on, single-shot video projection of eleven young, ethnically diverse men and women, varied in their personal grooming from beards and ponytails to shaved heads and in style from casual and baggy to tight and tailored. All wear white and either hop up and down or jog in place (one can’t tell which since the troupe is revealed only from waist up) to a sound track of footsteps and droning music in front of a backdrop depicting a spiral galaxy. Presented in the gallery’s side room and looping with an obvious jerk every three minutes, the apparently

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  • George Herms

    ICA - Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles

    Shortly after moving to Los Angeles, almost exactly a decade ago, I encountered the work of George Herms. At first, the rusted and dusted aggregation of bric-a-brac by this local Beat legend scared the shit out of me. Not because it was ugly—it was and still is—but rather because I was entirely unprepared for its existence. If Pop and Minimalism had become emblematic of modernism’s trajectory through the 1960s, the contemporaneous Assemblage movement had long since been dismissed from the list of worthy topics for discussion. Too messy for art-historical streamlining, too unattached to the

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