LOS ANGELES — You enter the Diana Thater installation at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) and start to read the introductory wall text.
Lyra Kilston is a writer and editor in Los Angeles interested in architecture, urban design, art, and art-world satires. She tweets at @lyra_k, and has written for Art in America, Artforum.com, frieze, Icon, Time, and Wired, among other publications. She is a Consulting Editor for Hyperallergic.
BuzzFeed Acquires Hyperallergic, Critical Pivot for Future of Art Blogs
OMG, we have exciting news today: Hyperallergic has been acquired by bleeding-edge media company BuzzFeed for an undisclosed amount.
Chalk Activist Triumphs over Big Bank
LOS ANGELES – Political activist Jeff Olson was acquitted today of vandalism charges brought against him by the city of San Diego in a case that even the mayor called “nonsense prosecution.”
Building Parity: On Women Architects
LOS ANGELES – Too many documentaries on architecture feature the same faces, and they’re mostly male. Same goes for panel discussions, lectures, and exhibits. The new documentary Coast Modern does a better job, yet there’s still far to go.
Urs Fischer: The Raw and the (Over)Cooked
LOS ANGELES — What do you get when you invite 1,500 people to make clay sculptures of whatever they want? An incredibly weird, crumbling, monotone wonderland. As part of his current retrospective, New York-based artist Urs Fischer organized this freewheeling project at the Geffen Contemporary MoCA in downtown Los Angeles, and titled, appropriately, “YES” (2013).
Letter from Los Angeles: Cults, Cacti, and Crystals
Narcotic-riffing duo Jonah Freeman and Justin Lowe have been at it again, creating an immersive drug den abandoned to time and decay. After staging their faux meth labs in Marfa, Miami, and New York, they’ve moved onto a fictional narcotic, Marasa, and an invented cult figure, Dr. Arthur Cook. Like previous projects, this new installation, Bright White Underground, is a serious gesamtkunstwerk, man.
Hyperdocumentation: Better Than the Real Thing?
This summer, I tried to go see a free David Byrne concert in Brooklyn’s Prospect Park but to no avail.
The next morning I looked up the concert online and immediately found masses of documentation … the concert had been reconstructed online so thoroughly that I didn’t really feel like I’d missed it.
Just Say No: Santiago Sierra Takes Manhattan
What happens when in the name of art you ride through Manhattan in a truck hauling ginormous letters that spell the word NO? Lyra finds out.
Corin Hewitt & Molly McFadden Play Double at Recess
Recess opened on Grand Street in September as a storefront artist residency space open to the public, and their inaugural show by Corin Hewitt and Molly McFadden, Double Room, tackles questions of replication, authorship, documentation, labor-as-performance, and collaboration.
Worst. Press. Release. Ever. Hanoi 9-1-1
Ah, the e-flux email list, ever full of surprises. One day it might elicit a cri de couer of indignation (“really?”), and the next day just a dramatic eye-roll. Sure it’s a very useful tool, but it’s also chock-full of self-important curatorial jargon, exaggerated claims, and overblown PR-ese…Which brings us to Hyperallergic’s new semi-regular feature: Worst. Press. Release. Ever.
Frankly American at the Met
Much has been written about the traveling exhibition The Americans, but here’s a recap: Swiss photographer Robert Frank won a Guggenheim fellowship and drove around the United States in 1955-56 taking pictures. His book The Americans, with a forward by Jack Kerouac, was published in 1959, and met with acclaim and controversy. Some people didn’t like the America that Frank saw. On the 50th anniversary of the book’s publication, the entire series has been shown at several U.S. venues, and is now at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
From images of a funeral in South Carolina to a wedding chapel in Reno, Frank revealed a nation that looked burdened, anxious, and lost.
As Seen on TV, Alex Bag at Elizabeth Dee
For Alex Bag’s current solo show, Reality Tunnel Vision, the front room of Elizabeth Dee gallery is wrapped with forest-patterned wallpaper on one side (curling off the wall at the far end), dead plants hanging from the wall, some dead bamboo sticking out of dirt on the gallery floor, an old barbeque, and a few drawings. The drawings, sketched in a cartoony crudeness, depict some of the despicable characters currently swarming our cable channel reality TV shows, such as puffy-lipped Barbie-women with impossibly huge breasts, or the muscled, faux-hawked, tattooed men who compete on national television for a chance at “true love,” money, or their own spin-off show.