los-angeles

Lauren Davis Fisher, TBD, 2015, papier-mâché, wire, 64 3/4 × 29 3/4 × 19 1/2". From “Recesses.”

“Recesses”

Park View/Paul Soto

Lauren Davis Fisher, TBD, 2015, papier-mâché, wire, 64 3/4 × 29 3/4 × 19 1/2". From “Recesses.”

As might have been expected, much of the talk around this group exhibition—and it did generate a great deal of talk—blithely skimmed over the art on view. Comprising works by the class of MFA students who dropped out en masse from the USC Roski School of Art and Design this past May to protest the dramatic restructuring of their program by its new dean, “Recesses” was a contextually loaded event, and one in which at least two intersecting spheres of influence must be taken into consideration. The first is academic, institutional, and in some sense public, although USC is, of course, a private university. Just how private the school keeps its affairs is precisely what has been exposed, indelibly, by the news of its recent art-department debacle (in brief, changes to the program and cuts to student financial packages resulting in an exodus of faculty as well as of the

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