Los Angeles

View of “Laura Owens,” 2019–20.

View of “Laura Owens,” 2019–20.

Laura Owens

Matthew Marks Gallery | 1062 N Orange Grove

Visitors to Laura Owens’s exhibition “Books and Tables” might be surprised to find that the show consists of just that. Although she has been showing her handmade books for more than ten years, Owens has never before displayed them in a solo presentation without an accompanying installation of paintings. In the absence of the latter, the viewer’s eyes are pushed away from the walls and down toward the ninety-nine books spread out across six tables. Made in a wide variety of colors, sizes, configurations, and paper stocks, the books each ask for a slightly different mode of engagement. Some pop up, some become animated as you flip them, one folds out into a twenty-foot-long strip, and others just call for the usual page turning. Those viewers who are familiar with Owens’s paintings (which probably includes many, given that her midcareer survey traveled to the city’s Museum of Contemporary

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