It’s one thing to operate “outside the traditional gallery system,” but what about operating just plain outside? Other Places is a loose consortium of artists and curatorial organizers who install work in random spots around the city — garages, coops, parks, lunch rooms, whatever. Sometimes, like this weekend, they accrue themselves into the shape of an art fair — but without giving up their appreciation for the charms and quirks of locations that leave the sterile white box in the dust.
Other Places art fair (OPaf) participants construct site-specific, boothlike setups across the offbeat location; this year, it will be the Battery Leary-Merriam at Angels Gate in San Pedro. Once an army installation, big-gun encampment, missile launch site and other military-industrial functions, it’s also been a film location, public park and studio art center. Not only this richly weird history but the entire grounds are available to the artists, to interact and intervene as they see fit with trees, tunnels, concrete pads, green space, views and architecture.
Several dozen independent spaces, artists and collectives, including the CalArts MFA 2019 program, Elevator Mondays, Gas, Monte Vista Projects and O’Project Space — some of which you might recognize from the recent Spring/Break Art Show, which was also definitely in an “other place” itself — will be on-site, ready to transform not only the landscape but the fundamental context of how art is experienced.
A full schedule of performances and spatial activations enlivens proceedings on both days, including an all-weekend conceptual scavenger hunt and CalArts MFA candidate performances; live mixtape remix experiments; drop-in still-life drawing sessions; live sound-piece recording; literary/poetic readings; and a hide-and-seek style multichannel video installation.
Battery Leary-Merriam/Angels Gate Park, 3601 S. Gaffey St., San Pedro; Sat.-Sun., March 16-17, noon-5 p.m.; $5. opaf.info.
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