Artist James Gobel makes art about bears — big, bearded, gay men — using brightly colored, conventionally crafty materials, mostly felt and yarn. His bears have retrospectively invaded history before, appearing in Dionysian myths or in Shakespearean garb. But this time, at Steve Turner Contemporary, they're invading the Weimar Republic. In bright portraits and melancholic text pieces, Gobel riffs on the history of New objectivist painters Otto Dix and Christian Schad, who were trying to bring a scathing version of realism back to post-WWI Germany, until Nazis rolled in and squelched their vision. 6026 Wilshire Blvd.; through March 10. (323) 931-3721,

Tuesdays-Saturdays. Starts: Feb. 11. Continues through March 10, 2012

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