Los Angeles — Join Furniture Designer Reagan Hayes, Design Icon Windsor Smith, Writer/ Curator Rose Apodaca and Artist Kimberly Brooks as they explore the interplay between art and the spaces they influence. Introducing new prints by Kimberly Brooks. Join us for a book signing of Windsor Smith’s latest book Homefront following the event.
Wednesday, March 23, 4:00 PM
Reagan Hayes Pacific Design Center Showroom, Los Angeles
8687 Melrose Ave, West Hollywood, CA 90069
It is with great joy and gratitude that I announce the posthumous publishing of my father, Leonard Shlain’s last book, Leonardo’s Brain: Understanding Da Vinci’s Creative Genius which he completed shortly before he passed five years ago.
The book is available online and in bookstores now. My siblings and I are hosting events to celebrate the book’s release in New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco this fall.
Many of you already know about Leonard Shlain’s previous books, Art & Physics,The Alphabet vs The Goddess and Sex, Time and Power, or were lucky enough to attend one of his presentations. Otherwise you may have learned about him by my Technicolor Summer Exhibition, the articles I have published about our vigil or the flowers or when I dedicated the founding of the Science and Art Meets Science sections to him.
Leonardo’s Brain is not only one of his grand intellectual journeys akin to his previous books, but also has a particularly special meaning as synthesizes of so many of his ideas connecting neurology, history, philosophy, art, science and ourselves, holding Da Vinci as a harbinger of how our species could evolve.
We have so many people to thank — from our publisher John Sternfeld at Lyon’s Press (now Globe Pequot), Robert Stricker, his long time literary agent and particularly Andy Ross, the literary agent for Leonardo’s Brain who seized the opportunity to bring this book to market with zeal our father would have loved. We also want to thank Ann Patty, (The Life of Pi) who helped us edit the final manuscript. The act of conversing with his ideas in our minds as we navigated the different stages of the editing and publication process was one of the greatest gifts of all.
In an interview with artist Ethan Murrow, I depicted a spectrum I call “The Nudist and The Chemist”. On one side, there is “The Chemist”, who works in a pristine lab with a Bunsen Burner and the thinnest of pipette; on the other, there is “The Nudist”, who slathers paint with a spatula in one hand, a glass of wine in the other, all- while naked. While every artist’s approach is different, I’m leaning towards “The Nudist”. I think of the elder Matisse, who worked in bed into his eighties with yards of fabric, a big pair of scissors and sunglasses that the doctor prescribed he wear for fear the colors might get him too excited.
For this recent show I’ve been painting directly on oil primed linen, stapling it to the wall and then stretching it afterwards. All the themes I’ve been working on as a painter — portraiture, narrative, the language of costume– have melted into one another the way meat falls off the bone after it’s been roasting for a long time– no longer recognizable in its former incarnation, but more succulent. Whereas my previous exhibitions revolved around specific subjects, including people wearing specific types of styles (“Mom’s Friends”) or people who wield style altogether (“The Stylist Project”), I now let folds and patterns serve as a vehicle for a kind of abstraction. I’ve created a series of “unportraits” where the figure no longer serves a purpose like telling a story. It’s a shape, a part of the painting.