Entries in LA Times (4)


ARTE: I Remember Paradise - LA Times Review

The Los Angeles Times review of Lakwena Maciever's I REMEMBER PARADISE solo exhibition.

The sense of adventure in Lakwena Maciver's universe

by Christopher Knight

Seven recent paintings by London-based artist Lakwena Maciver, who often goes by just her first name, fairly shout. They’re homemade street signs, a deft cross between commercial logos and personal emblems.

Lakwena paints in flat colors on wood panels. The hues are as bright as a Technicolor rainbow.

They’re applied as stripes, checkerboards, targets, giraffe-like squiggles, lightning bolts and zigzags. One painting -- the largest, 16 feet wide and composed from six panels that happily overwhelm the small room -- is adorned with big, dangling sequins. Their shimmer and shine are animated by a pair of electric fans that create an artificial breeze.

Each painting carries a text in raised letters. What links them is their future orientation.

“Imagine eternity.” “Build to last.” “The best is yet to come.” “Faded glory.” “Wake me up.” “I repeat.” In Lakwena’s visually excited paintings, the present urges looking toward tomorrow.

“Just passing through,” blares the big sequined painting in trumpeted lettering. Indeed, we are -- both at the gallery and in life.

These big, jaunty paintings couldn’t be happier or more enthusiastic about the prospect. At a time when so much else seems fraught and troubled, Lakwena’s welcome art advocates for an insistent sense of open-eyed adventure. 



The Los Angeles Times gave Samuel Levi Jones a favorable review!

By Leah Ollman for the Los Angeles Times - Art section
Riveting new work by Samuel Levi Jones, at Papillion, is hot and cool at once, the result of aggressive action as well as a deliberate, formal intelligence. This isn't the only polarity at play. Jones generates several different varieties of friction, all of them fueling the work's quietly rumbling charge.

Based in the Bay Area, Jones practices a kind of muscular abstraction bolstered by conceptual heft. He tears the covers off encyclopedias and reference books and stitches the surfaces (face-in) together in grids, which he then mounts on canvas. The skins of the books are scarred by the violation: Shreds of the cardboard used in binding cling to the fabric, and edges run raw. Many of the works resemble the unfinished backs of quilts, all exposed seams and loosely hanging marginal material.

"Hematoma" (71 by 59 inches) is divided vertically, the left half an amalgam of black book covers and the right side slate blue. The grid structure emanates an air of order and regularity, while each individual component, each damaged relic, testifies to a dynamic act of force and disruption. Every cover is its own distinct landscape of ruin, scabbed and scraped. The titles of the books are barely visible: "The Annals of America" and "World Book." In rending and flaying these particular volumes, Jones symbolically dismantles their ostensible authority.

His protest is a general one against, it seems, such totalizing histories, with their partial perspectives and gross exclusions. By not taking more specific aim, Jones lets formal qualities -- visceral immediacy, textural complexity and damage-driven process -- carry the bulk of the work's metaphorical weight.

One stunning monochrome piece, a neat grid of Encyclopedia Britannica covers, all dilute rust, brings to mind the post-minimal, sallow resin grids of Eva Hesse, as well as the evacuated library conjured in Rachel Whiteread's Holocaust Memorial in Vienna.

These pieces also tap into a history of scrap-built textiles, and notably, the tradition of found-object assemblage. Such sculptural repurposing has an affecting temporal dimension, a vague aroma of the past inflecting the sensory mix.

Jones received this year's Joyce Alexander Wein Artist Prize, a major recognition from the Studio Museum in Harlem, where he will have a solo show in 2015.

His work has integrity, not just in the sense of authenticity but also internal consistency. The physical gestures of its making, the notion of empowerment at its core, and its tremendous tactile vigor are all mutually reinforcing. Evocations of the body, too, are manifold: bodies of knowledge, bodily injury, disembodied skins. Jones harnesses the twin forces of destruction and creation to generate these works of defiant beauty.


ARTE: LA Times Datebook!!

You read it! The LA Times has put us on their datebook...so we should be seeing you this week! Numa's Florida Water is playing now!



LA TIMES gets it right on this one…we were at #OCCUPYLA facilitating art classes with the youth down there, we were located right next to the Wish Tree where anyone can right down there wishes and hang them around the trunk. A large percentage of the teenagers that stopped by wished there was no violence in there community.

Other things that are worth mentioning are the People’s University (where class was in session when I dropped in), the Library, Meditation and Free Yoga, the Theatre Co., Kids Village, the free solar powered wifi tower and a plethora of other creative things springing up by the minute.