2019 EXHIBITION: “Disclosure” at Durden & Ray, Los Angeles

DISCLOSURE: CONFESSIONS FOR MODERN TIMES

Jan 5 – Feb 2, 2019
Opening reception:
Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019,
7-10 p.m

Artists: Kim Abeles, Jorin Bossen, Kimberly Brooks, Joe Davidson, Dani Dodge, Donald Fodness, Kathryn Hart, Debby and Larry Kline, Conchi Sanford, Ed “Celso” Tahaney and Steven Wolkoff, Curators: Dani Dodge and Alanna Marcelletti

Durden and Ray will celebrate the start of 2019 with an exhibition that allows people to cleanse their souls through the art of disclosure. January is about cleansing the past and making new starts. But since the early 1990s, independent polls have shown the rapid growth of those without a religious affiliation. So where do people go to confess, if not to a higher power? Maybe an art gallery? Dani Dodge and Alanna Marcelletti decided to play devil’s advocates and create a space where the participants can disclose transgressions and progress unfettered into 2019 through art.

The exhibition includes interactive confessionals, each designed by different artists, and figurative art exploring the experience of being human through relationships, tragedy, translation of autobiography and Barry Manilow. The show is a contemporary take on the sacred and secular acts of confessing sins. Conchi Sanford’s confessional is composed of two see-through cocoons that allow people to whisper secrets to each other. Steven Wolkoff channels Bart Simpson with a piece on which people write what they will not do. Inside Kim Abeles’ confessional, people hear the sound of audio she collected one minute every day for 1440 minutes, or 24 hours, and Dani Dodge’s formal wooden confessional flashes “CONFESS” while inviting people to put their sins on display through Post-it notes. The figurative works in the show acknowledge the burden of unreleased guilt. Aesthetically, they are divided by the curators into their ideas of heaven, hell and in-between. Kimberly Brooks’ abstract figures exist in a heavenly realm, while Donald Fodness hellishly disassembles Barry Manilow. Debby and Larry Kline play prophet by mapping impending tragedy for the planet referencing Biblical plagues as they foretell natural and manmade disasters. In between are the paintings of a disconnected relationship by Jorin Bossen, and Ed “Celso” Tahaney’s vibrant take on the personal disclosures of Hollywood luminaries. Joe Davidson memorializes a life lived through concrete castings of the insides of his own shoes, while Kathryn Hart reveals her personal form of survivor guilt with a sculpture that includes found bone, which she refers to as a private confessional.

Durden & Ray
1206 Maple Ave. #832, Los Angeles, CA 90015
Hours: Sat/Sun, 12 – 5 p.m. and by appointment

Media Contact:
Dani Dodge, 213-703-9363
dani.dodge@gmail.com

REVIEW: WhiteHot Magazine by Daniel Maidman

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When I was in film school, before the millennium, we were instructed always to reserve some time at the end of shooting in each room. During this time, we were to record several minutes of silence in the room. This “room tone” could then be seamlessly woven in wherever sound editing called for dialogue shot in that space to pause. 

The point of room tone was that the ear can hear a mismatch if two different silences are welded together in the editing. No two silences are alike. Silence is full of timbre. Each room has a personality which comes to the fore in the quiet that falls after its occupants have left.

This concept comes to mind when considering many of the paintings in Kimberly Brooks’s solo show Brazen, at Zevitas Marcus in Los Angeles.

Painting is sight, but some painters naturally summon other senses in service of their imagery. Brooks summons sound, and yet she does not imply noises. She is a painter of silence, of the full, textured silence of room tone. The rooms she depicts are stately and filled with luxurious objects. People have perpetually just vacated them. Their conversations or laughter have fallen away. There is a stuffy close quality to the air. It is trapped and moves only in tiny currents. The personality of these rooms comes into focus now that they are empty.

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REVIEW: Art Scene by Andy Brumer

artscenelogo by Andy Brumer

Los Angeles-based artist Kimberly Brooks offers a strong showing of mostly oil on linen paintings. The title of the show, “Brazen,” offers a an insightful clue to its contents. Brooks spoke to this writer of the need she felt to move her paintings in a new direction. Towards that end she took leave of (for now, at least) the style of landscape paintings and figurative works (of mostly fashionably attired women), as well as the emotionally charged symbolic colors with which she painted them, and for which she has used exuberantly in previous work.

"Talitha" Oil on Linen 2017

“Talitha” Oil on Linen 2017

Using the word “Brazen” as a  mantra to free her paint brush to wander where it would, allowing the paintings to find new shapes, feelings and themes, the artist set to work. This rather extensive exhibition of large and small works attests to the fact that she met, if not exceeded her goal. It’s not that the figure and the landscape subjects of earlier paintings have vanished, far from it. Rather Brooks this time coaxes forth their visual DNA in a different manner.

Take, for example, the face-on portrait titled “Talitha.” Whereas previously Brooks would infuse her portraits of women with a blend of sultriness and luscious full-bodied curves, she now presents “Talitha” with a thoroughly flat, austere and almost featureless visage. The artist sets the face in an oval of sky blue reminiscent of a Victorian era pin or brooch that augments the piece’s sense of restraint. The painting’s primitive style adds an element of flourish and relief. A geometrically complex patchwork garment clings tight against the figure’s chest and neck.

Kimberly Brooks 'Blue Forest' Oil on lInen 2017

Kimberly Brooks ‘Blue Forest’ Oil on lInen 2017

This relative restraint finds its free-wheeling, sensual counterpart in a dreamy landscape painting titled “Blue Forest.” Here the artist uses a muted palette of earthy browns, yellows, greenish tans and pinks that run ubiquitously through this show, in this work to configure a dreamscape of plants, tree limbs and other organic forms. The bottom half of the painting presents a row of brighter red shapes that both pop forward visually and dot the canvas with a breezy grace.

"Gods and Mountains" Oil on Linen 2017

“Gods and Mountains” Oil on Linen 2017

Brooks’ undergraduate training in Literature (at UC Berkeley) makes itself known in this show as well. For example, in the narrative approach to “Gods and Mountains,” a group of angular El Greco-like figures kneel and huddle under a ray of teeming expressionist brushstrokes that pour out of a rather Old Testament looking cloud capping a mountain. “Angel/Mother/Goddess” then shifts into more of a New Testament mode, with a Virgin Mary-like figure spreading cloaked wings to embrace a flock of daubed cream-colored faces that have snuggled safely within their span.

"Portrait Hall", Oill on linen 2017

“Portrait Hall”, Oill on linen 2017

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“Portrait Hall” is a slightly eccentric rendering of a Baroque, Palace of Versailles-like interior that introduces an architectural motif that relates most readily to Brooks’ previous style. However, rather than plumb straight corners and realistically rendered walls, this room shimmers in and out of focus in a kind of fun-house buzz. Loosely stroked and smudgy images of tall portrait paintings hang from the walls and add a note of hilarity to this highly skilled painting.

While Brooks may have corralled her muse’s willpower to produce these works, the paintings themselves in the manner in which they nourish the eye and nurture the soul feel anything but audacious, this is to say “brazen” at all.