February 25, 2013

BEST PICTURES: Oscar Weekend Art Openings in L.A.

The Oscars may have gotten top billing this weekend in Los Angeles, but with the throng of art openings that also took place around the city, there were plenty of other "best pictures" worth checking out.  Below, (not) straight from the Academy, are the winners of this year's first annual Painting In L.A. Oscar Weekend Gallery Opening Awards.  Or the PILAOWGOA's for short.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTORS

Richard Prince
Cowboys
Gagosian Gallery, Beverly Hills
On view through April 6, 2013

This show was a shoe in to win as soon as the actual best supporting actor nominee Tommy Lee Jones showed up at the opening.  Prince's cowboy themed paintings were nice but it was so packed on opening night that getting a good look at them proved challenging.  Instead, the main attraction ended up being the star-studded crowd itself.  We aren't going to name names lest we tarnish our reputation as a serious, intellectually rigorous art publication.  We will, however, post a picture.

Richard Prince, Cowboys, opening night at Gagosian Gallery.  Several of those heads are super famous, promise.

Painting by Richard Prince from Cowboys at Gagosian Gallery, Beverly Hills


BEST PICTURES, BEST ANIMATED FILMS

Allison Schulnik
ex.pose
Laguna Art Museum
On view through April 28, 2013

Our top award goes to the very talented Allison Schulnik who definitely knows how to craft a memorable picture.  The basement gallery at the Laguna Art Museum is a perfect setting for Schulnik's lightly menacing graveyard-inspired paintings.  Three of her animated films, Hobo Clown (2008), Forest (2009), and Mound (2011) are also being screened in an adjacent room.  The soundtrack from the films, made up of Grizzly Bear songs, can be heard softly throughout the entire exhibit, adding nicely to the atmosphere of the show.

Allison Schulnik, Green-Wood #2, 2012, oil on linen, at Laguna Art Museum

Allison Schulnik, Cemetery Boo, 2012, oil on linen, at Laguna Art Museum

Installation view, paintings by Allison Schulnik at the Laguna Art Museum

Installation view, paintings by Allison Schulnik at the Laguna Art Museum


BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN / SET DECORATOR

Henry Taylor
Blum & Poe
On view through March 30, 2013

Henry Taylor ran away with this one, turning Blum & Poe's main gallery space into a "formal" dining room complete with a crystal chandelier and a groomed dirt floor.  But despite the theatrics, Taylor's large paintings still managed to steal the show.

Installation view, Henry Taylor at Blum & Poe

Installation view, Henry Taylor at Blum & Poe


BEST VISUAL EFFECTS

Karen Woods
Driving Rain
George Billis Gallery, L.A.
On view through March 30, 2013

If you had a rag with you at Karen Wood's show this weekend, you might have been tempted to wipe the water droplets from her small, beautiful paintings - they look that real.  But Wood's paintings are more than just Tromp l'oeil special effects.  They manage to imbue quite, everyday scenes with a weighty importance.

Karen Woods, Next Exit, 2013, oil on canvas, 10 x 15 inches, at George Billis Gallery

Paintings by Karen Woods in Driving Rain at George Billis Gallery


BEST COSTUME DESIGN

Mara De Luca
Cruise Collection 2013
Luis De Jesus Los Angeles
On view through March 30, 2013

Mara De Luca had the best-dressed paintings on view this weekend.  Part of her process involves collaging actual translucent fabric onto the surface of her paintings, visually mimicking the "minimal atmospheric effects of the California Light and Space movement" among other historic modes of abstraction.

Paintings by Mara De Luca in Cruise Collection 2013 at Luis De Jesus Los Angeles

Left: Mara De Luca, Elegy I.II (SV), 2012, acrylic and collage on canvas, 48 x 42 in, at Luis De Jesus Los Angeles
Right: Mara De Luca, Elegy IV.I (SV), 2012, acrylic and collage on canvas, 48 x 42 in, at Luis De Jesus Los Angles


BEST. . . SOMETHING

Noah Davis
The Missing Link
Roberts & Tilton
On view through March 30, 2013

Honestly, we couldn't think of a cutesy, Oscar-themed category for Noah Davis' show at Roberts & Tilton.  But it was a good painting show and we wanted to include it anyway.  So there.

Noah Davis, The Missing Link 4, 2013, oil on canvas, 78 x 86.123 inches at Roberts & Tilton

Noah Davis, The Missing Link 1, 2013, inkjet print and oil on canvas, 54 x 45.375 inches, at Roberts & Tilton

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