reviews

  • Brian Bress, Creative Ideas for Every Season, 2010, still from a color HD video, 19 minutes 58 seconds.

    Brian Bress

    Cherry and Martin

    Self-described Abstract Expressionist painter Agnes Martin spent the last three decades of her life in the seclusion of her New Mexico studio. Though she often exhibited alongside Minimalists such as Sol LeWitt and Donald Judd, Martin famously insisted that great art responds purely and unthinkingly to inspiration—a way of working only possible with a vacant mind. Such a notion may seem quaint in the context of much idea-heavy art, but it is only partially alien to the work of Los Angeles–based artist Brian Bress. In his most recent show, the requisite references, slickness, and self-reflexivity

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  • View of “Beneath the Valley of the Lowest Form of Music: The Los Angeles Free Music Society (1972–2012),” 2012.

    Los Angeles Free Music Society

    The Box

    Legendary among connoisseurs of weird records and mutant sounds for their woozy, hypnotic tape manipulations and free-form freak-outs, the Los Angeles Free Music Society (LAFMS) may be obscure but it hasn’t been entirely overlooked. In fact, having attracted a frenzied cult following, this coterie of self-described “bands without musicians” is probably now as “popular” as it could ever hope to be—and these noise-icians have always seemed more at home on the fringes of pop music than anywhere in the institutionally sanctioned world of the “experimental.” After all, the group formed in the

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