los-angeles

William Leavitt, Virtual Reality, 2017, acrylic on canvas, 36 × 60".

William Leavitt

Honor Fraser

William Leavitt, Virtual Reality, 2017, acrylic on canvas, 36 × 60".

It’s difficult to tell if William Leavitt’s work reflects an imprecise past or a strange, near future, and it’s exactly this temporal blurriness that makes his work so compelling. Comprising eleven paintings and three theatrical, flat-like sculptures, his recent exhibition “Cycladic Figures” proposed alternate realities in which the stuff of the past—for example, rotary phones, Polaroid cameras, and Greek statuary from 2500 BCE—collided with fantastic technologies, both real and imagined. As with much of Leavitt’s oeuvre, this pileup of images was set in a distinctly Californian mise-en-scène of indoor/outdoor spaces, desert landscapes, and midcentury design.

The titular Cycladic figures materialized in the work Cycladic Figures (after de Chirico), 2016, an odd acrylic-on-canvas portrait of two humanoid subjects demonstrating the flattened heads, elongated noses, and

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