Amy Bessone, “Body & Paint” at David Kordansky Gallery
This is Amy Bessone’s first solo show in the U.S., and her four large-scale paintings are, well, super weird. Put simply, Bessone paints small female figurines found in auction catalogues and blows them up on a large canvas with a cloudy backdrop reminiscent of cheap 1980s studio portraits or school pictures. Once small and incidental, these tiny porcelain objects depicting the female nude are now oddly monumental. Not only is the female form itself the subject of the work; Bessone also raises questions regarding objectivity, value and scale.
510 Bernard St., Chinatown | www.davidkordanskygallery.com | (323) 222-1482 | Through October 13
Matthew Spiegelman, “Officioné” at Sister Gallery
Matthew Spiegelman’s photographs explore stoner paraphernalia and the “mystical” experience of preparing to get high. In his work Spiegelman considers the signifiers, using a view camera, ink-jet prints, collage and photograms to transform bongs, smoke and tie-dyed T-shirts. While walking around before the opening I heard quite a few people say they now felt like smoking weed, and maybe that’s a compliment. Spiegelman’s artist statement is a compelling narrative about the ritualistic space and nostalgia involved in smoking pot, and how these rites prepare us for a transcendental experience. He likens the artistic process to the meditative and even spiritual place created by getting high. If that doesn’t seem like a stretch, you might find yourself in that space while viewing the work.
437 Gin Ling Way, Chinatown | www.sisterla.com | (213) 628-7000 | Through October 13