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Superficiality and Superexcrescence

Jun 27, 2009
June 27 - September 12, 2009
Spotlight Category: Exhibition

Superficiality and Superexcrescence features work by Amy Adler, Rebecca Campbell, Marcelino Gonçalves, Lia Halloran, Salomón Huerta, Elliott Hundley, Kurt Kauper, Elad Lassry, Blue McRight, Joel Morrison, Kori Newkirk, Tia Pulitzer, and Catherine Sullivan. Conceived in opposition to the hard and fast interior/exterior dialectic that cultural theorists like Frederic Jameson have used to contrast the modern and postmodern eras, this exhibition offers a close examination of the work of thirteen LA-based artists who are variously committed to the notion that deep cultural meaning inhabits—as code, nuance, and implication—the outer husk of the people and objects that populate our day-to-day lives, remaking superficiality not as a condition to be resisted, but rather one to be analyzed and manipulated. For these artists, surface and substance are not opposed properties, but equally present. Accordingly, each of these artists focuses on what is latent over what is manifest, on implication over demonstration, and on faint whispers over loud, declarative statements, not with the aim of privileging appearance over essence, but rather to suggest that appearance and essence co-mingle in the surfaces that surround us to generate cultural meaning.

This exhibition is initiated and sponsored by FOCA, organized by OTIS Ben Maltz Gallery, and curated by Christopher Bedford, Curator of Exhibitions at the Wexner Center for the Arts, The Ohio State University; Kristina Newhouse, Deputy Director of the MAK Center for Art and Architecture at the Schindler House in West Hollywood; and Jennifer Wulffson, an independent art historian and former senior editor of the Bibliography of the History of Art at the Getty Research Institute. The three curators are recipients of the Fellows of Contemporary Art's Curator's Award. Since 1975 FOCA has been initiating and sponsoring exhibitions and publications for emerging and mid-career California artists with the intention to collaborate with the art community at large and to nurture the expression of creative freedom.

The exhibition catalogue features essays by Christopher Bedford, Kristina Newhouse and John Welchman; catalogue entries on each artist by Jennifer Wulffson, and full-color reproductions of the artists' work. It is available for purchase in the Gallery.

Press Release  /  Slideshow