From a painted art car rally to a weekend design world festival, three major photography exhibitions, new theater excavating endocrinological emotion, creative environmental activism, video art, books, and a startling new series from a provocateur photographer — here are our picks for your culture calendar this weekend. And remember, all those gorgeous new gallery exhibitions that opened earlier this month are still on view by appointment for another few weeks.
Thursday, September 24
L.A. Design Festival: The festival typically takes place at the ROW DTLA with off-site events sprinkled all throughout the city; but this year, it’s taking place online via pre-taped videos, tours, zooms and live streams. This year’s program is LADF’s 10th anniversary and despite the circumstances, it hasn’t lost the eclectic, bright energy that comes from its leaders’ unconditional love for L.A.’s architecture and design community. Drop in on awards, podcasts, tours, talks, book events, and studio visits. Thursday – Sunday, September 24-27, all free. ladesignfestival.org.
DISMISS: Dorian Wood and Marcus Kuiland-Nazario. Gender Trouble’s Series Finale brings together vivacious, insightful performance artist and cultural commentator Marcus Kuiland-Nazario with non-binary multidisciplinary musician, performer, activist and artist Dorian Wood in a conversation about gender expressions. Thursday, September 24, 8pm on IGTV; freewaves.org.
Paul Jasmin: Lost Angeles at Fahey/Klein. Jasmin has had a long career as a fashion and art photographer. His images of “dreamers” evoke a sensual and glamorous ideal, across intimate portraiture both personal and editorial, fantasy and fashion, and always with the soul of Los Angeles. Fahey/Klein Gallery, 148 N. La Brea, Hollywood; September 24 – December 31, by appointment; faheykleingallery.com.
Gregory Crewdson: An Eclipse of Moths at Gagosian Beverly Hills. An Eclipse of Moths comprises sixteen large-scale panoramic exteriors, shot using Crewdson’s famously meticulous production techniques and longtime technical crew. Set in a postindustrial urban landscape, the series depicts locales of removed isolation: a taxi depot, a traveling carnival lot, an abandoned factory complex, defunct bars and diners, and vacant storefronts. Gagosian Gallery, 456 N. Camden Dr., Beverly Hills; September 24 – November 21, by appointment; gagosian.com.
Friday, September 25
L.A. Phil SOUND/STAGE. is a new online collection of concert films and interviews, essays, and artwork that offer deeper insights into the music. This series from the LA Phil launches September 25 with new episodes released each week at laphil.com/soundstage.
Big City Forum: Susan Silton. Silton is an interdisciplinary artist based in Los Angeles, California. Her projects respond to resonant political and social landscapes, often through poetic combinations of humor, discomfort, subterfuge and unabashed beauty. These projects mine the complexities of subjectivity and subject positions in a range of media, including performative and participatory-based works. Friday, September 25, 3pm: instagram.com/bigcityforum.
Gabrielle Ferrer’s Gnomon at Niche Gallery. As part of the ongoing Other Places Art Fair, an exhibition space in a literal niche in the wall of a home in Glassell Park opens by appointment for one weekend only with a micro-project by Gabrielle Ferrer viewable IRL, and a related animation online through the run of OPaF (until October 31). September 25-27 (location provided with rsvp); opaf.info/niche-gallery.
Diana Wyenn’s Blood/Sugar at Boston Court Theater. Diana Wyenn’s highly theatrical virtual solo show is a thrill-ride that takes us through the roller coaster of diabetes. Conceived originally as a live stage show, it is now a live virtual experience, complete with rich projections, movement, text, and innovative theatricality as historical perspectives and staggering statistics collide with personal narrative and deep humanity to give embodied expression to the complexities of chronic illness. Live-streaming Friday, September 25, 7pm; free; bostoncourtpasadena.org.
Saturday, September 26
Stanya Kahn: No Go Backs at ICA LA. This exhibition comprises three works by Kahn produced over the past ten years, including her latest short film, No Go Backs (2020), marking its Los Angeles debut. Together, these videos present an urgent reflection of our times, foregrounding global concerns such as climate change, racism, state power, and rebellion with the artist’s singular humor and embrace of experimental time and narrative. ICA LA, 1717 E. 7th St., downtown; September 26 – January 10 by appointment; free; theicala.org.
Kenny Scharf: Karbombz! Rally. Since starting the project in 2013, Scharf has painted 260 cars around the world, about 100 of which are in L.A. Scharf’s Karbombz! range from beat up jalopies to luxury models and are always painted for free. As Scharf currently has an exhibition on view at Jeffrey Deitch Gallery (through October 31) with 250 new paintings of faces, they will be the final point of the route and will be open for viewing under social distancing protocols. Saturday, September 26, 1-1:30pm, Santa Monica Blvd. between San Vicente and Sycamore; free, possibly illegal; deitch.com.
Dorit Cypis: The Sighted See the Surface, Book Launch at LM Projects. The Sighted See the Surface is an expansive project developed by Cypis over the course of six years (2012-18). Sparked by the death of mentor and teacher Michael Asher, Cypis excavates her 40 year art practice by connecting disparate points from past to present while unearthing the complexities between sight and seeing, difference and the psychosocial relations within and between people. Join a conversation with Cypis and project contributors Susan Morgan, Simon Leung, Lawrence Lancaster and Clifford Burton. Saturday September 26, 11am; lmprojects.net/new-page.
Exhibition: Sofia Heftersmith: Proof of Life on Earth at Shit Art Club. Over the years, the Shit Art Show became the Shit Art Club, and while the collective has expanded — moving from a paint soaked backyard to the heart of Downtown — their commitment to art-world anarchy remains strong. Their presentation of Heftersmith’s first solo show encapsulates their aesthetic which is raw, rough, subversive and even unsettling, but which is also funny, insightful, and fearless. the gallery is part of Pabst Blue Ribbon’s ‘Artist in Residency’ program to commission 1000 creators in 2020. Shit Art Club, 1700 Naud, downtown; on view by appointment Saturday, September 26 – October 17; instagram.com/shitartclub.
Sunday, September 27
Michael Rippens: Live Still-Life Workshop at Acogedor Space. Join artist Michael Rippens in a durational participatory performance from your home. This event is presented in conjunction with the online exhibition home at Acogedor. Sunday, September 27, 1-2pm; facebook.com.
Michael Torquato deNicola: Reef Paintings: Responding to Oceans in Crisis at Cartwheel Art. Torquato’s work tells the story of his personal connection with the environment. As the natural world is under great duress, he has been busy in his studio creating works to help make sense of these unprecedented times. This Zoom presentation will feature Torquato’s Reef Paintings series, which explores the health of reefs around the world. He will also discuss ways we can all help preserve the environment. Sunday, September 27, 4-5pm; cartwheelart.com/tours.
Andres Serrano: Infamous at NeueHouse. Ever since his controversial use of religious iconography at the outset of his career, his name has been synonymous with charged subject matter. Serrano is an unabashed image-maker, photographing people, places and things from which most of us would rather turn away, whether out of shame, disgust or outright offense. His subjects are the resolute embodiment of themes – death, sex, religion, torture, white supremacy – that stir personal and social convictions. His newest body of work, Infamous, features photographs of race-based and racist memorabilia the artist purchased in 2019. Some, such as a Malcolm X air freshener, are trivial, while others — a photograph of a Nazi era Opera Box banner emblazoned with a swastika — remain radioactive. Infamous grew out of a previous project comprised exclusively of Trump memorabilia. It was while scouring the web for Trump paraphernalia that Serrano took note of the burgeoning market for all manner of race-based and racist documents and commercial items. He began to collect for the purpose of photographing them, the goal, as with most of his pictures, being not merely to show but to confront viewers with a subject requiring moral vigilance. NeueHouse Hollywood, September 28 – October 6, 11am-2pm and 4-7pm; $12 timed entry tickets; neuehouse.com.