Cities of chrome, perpetual motion machines. All prying objects, all things striving to trespass are diminishing. All that has reached beyond the tactile senses to the abstractions of sight.
Ericka Beckman and Mike Kelley’s seminal 1989 video collaboration Blind Country plays. A title already once removed from H.G. Wells’ Country of the Blind, the video’s six scenes use tropes of trauma and debauched senses to accentuate how displaced visuals and spoken word violate acquiescence. This eponymous titled exhibition draws from the still resonant burdens laid bare in Beckman and Kelley’s work.
Karl Holmqvist’s neon hangs in the window. The glow of I’m With You In Rockland is cast in solidarity across the ugly parking lot of Gower Plaza onto Hollywood Boulevard, where the stars end. American pop language is filled with trauma. Holmqvist’s words, culled and trimmed, crawl along the gallery walls. Poetry is shaped into horizontal lines and geometric abstractions, disarming syntax as an accomplice to compliance.
Nicolas Ceccaldi’s young man sits with a gun between his legs. The violent shooting vessel occupies that space where genitalia would be, if only lithe childhood heroes were endowed outside of unauthorized pornographic caricature.
1 papa, 1 maman, pour tous les enfants. Choose Life. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to help. Tightly leashed into slogans, these words have mutated into pictograms enshrined with definitions of their own. Layered with severed images atop held receptacles for the discarded, Lucie Stahl’s grayscale and flattened image surfaces revel in the depreciation of certainty.
These are the mysterious incantations of an alien sexuality.