Drew Heitzler, Lullaby (2007)Gerard Brane has long been a quiet fixture on the L.A. scene, but fixture or no, he’s been hard to pin down. Sometimes he paints images, sometimes he paints shapes, sometimes he just paints. If we can brand Brane anything, we can call him a painter — dedicated almost beyond reason to that most challenging and seductive of media. And even in his grayest, brownest, muddiest work he’s a colorist, finding a subtle luminescence in the darkest of hues. The Brane microspective at Cardwell Jimmerson, then, provides a roomful of luscious painting and strange pictures, some almost invisible, some almost unavoidable, some starkly imagistic, some about nothing but atmosphere, some large, some small, some rectangular, some anything but.
The same continuity within discontinuity pervades Drew Heitzler’s conceptual show at Angstrom Gallery. The leitmotif here is time made spatial, with a brief soundpiece emitting from a sculpturelike speaker, a sequence of 200 stills from his film running the base of the gallery walls, and a high school yearbook photo of Thomas Pynchon blown up on the wall comprising a parade of frozen moments. Amy Granat’s neostructuralist approach to film flips the equation, making space temporal — and rather beautiful in its graphic starkness. And in Olivier Mosset’s paintings there’s no time, no space, only uninflected fields of color so gorgeously over the top that they’re either painful or embarrassing (but not both). Mosset comes from a philosophy of visual neutrality, and demonstrates that such neutrality is most forcefully realized when you fly in its face most absurdly. Gerard Brane at Cardwell Jimmerson Contemporary Art, 8568 Washington Blvd., Culver City; Tues.-Sat., 11 a.m.-6 p.m. (310) 815-1100. Drew Heitzler, Amy Granat and Olivier Mosset at Angstrom, 2622 S. La Cienega Blvd., L.A.; Tues.-Sat., 11 a.m.-6 p.m. (310) 204-3334. All thru March 31.