2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90049
Region: Out of Town
When artists celebrate the first big museum survey of their career, it's an opportunity to regard the entire sweep of their creative evolution. Seeing early works along with curious side projects, sketches, photographs and other work-process materials lends a deep level of insight, taking the event beyond the already exciting gathering of the comprehensive oeuvre. But Gary Baseman is not content to stop there. Unique among artists of his global popularity, Baseman spends as much time as he can with his fans -- in person, online, even onstage -- happy get to know them better if that's what they want. That's where this exhibition gets really special. The show's title, "The Door Is Always Open," is taken from Baseman's late father's reminder that he is always welcome in the family home -- and Baseman pays it forward by welcoming you into his, literally. Almost every piece of furniture, decor, memento, toy and household object from Baseman's childhood and current homes has been carted up the hill and turned into an imaginative installation that not only gives the art on display the most profound of contexts but also does the same for the artist's whole life. Special events in film, lecture, performance and art-making pop up throughout the exhibition, but the opening-night "House Party" features Baseman live-painting with the band Nightmare & the Cat, in a not-to-be-missed expression of creative risk-taking in the comfort of his own, er, living room. Skirball Cultural Center, 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd.; Thurs., April 25, 7:30-11 p.m.; runs Tues.-Fri., noon-5 p.m.; Sat.-Sun., 10 a.m.-5 p.m., through Aug. 18; regular admission $10, free Thursdays. (310)440-4500, skirball.org.
Tuesdays-Sundays. Starts: April 25. Continues through Aug. 18, 2013