An ongoing series of Q&As with some of L.A.’s most active and eclectic contemporary artists, introducing themselves to you in their own words. This week it’s Venice-based Doug Edge, whose practice combines actions across painting, plastics, photography, the Light and Space movement, and acts of witty, wry conceptualism. His decades of material and intellectual innovation have made him one of the most influential artists and educators in Los Angeles.
L.A. WEEKLY: When did you first know that you were an artist?
DOUG EDGE: After a long period as a self-described “student of art,” my peers ordained me. I don’t know where that exact transition happened.
What is your work about?
“A Life Narrative Through Artworks” is a 50-year snapshot of why I made the work and how it fits in with my life narrative.
Did you go to art school?
No! I didn’t know they existed.
Why do you live in L.A.?
I wanted to go to New York, then the center of the art world, all through the ’70s and ’80s, but couldn’t afford it. Once I could afford it in the early 90’s, the center had moved here.
When was your first show?
Rico Mizuno Gallery in West Hollywood, in 1969. I got a lot of notice from that show. Review in Artforum and a teaching job at CalArts. Sold a clear plastic hammer to Betty Asher.
What is your current showing schedule?
Upcoming: “Far & Near,” Jan. 3-Feb. 28 — a painting group show at VICA (Venice Institute of Contemporary Art).
Upcoming: "Abstract Painting Group Show” opening Jan. 12 at Lora Schlesinger Gallery, Bergamot Art Center.
What artist living or dead would you most like to show with?
Marcel Duchamp. For his use of self-portrait photography — and for never repeating himself.
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