STATIC at Durden and Ray
through Dec 30
Durden and Ray, Los Angeles
by Jody Zellen
Static, by definition, has myriad meanings, all apt to the exhibition STATIC at Durden and Ray. Curated by Dani Dodge and Alanna Marcelletti, the show includes both artists and journalists. Static can be defined as lack of movement, as in stasis. Static is also the noise a radio makes when it cannot find a signal or station. According to the exhibition curators, in today’s politically charged climate, information “hums like static through news and social media.” The artists in this exhibition are anything but static— they are actively engaged with responding to what is happening in the world today. They read, draw, write and photograph, and the exhibition explores their diverse responses.
The works on view range from the abstract to the representational and reflect the different ways artists extract and extrapolate from media sources. Some are quite direct— Molly Crabapple makes exquisite pen and ink drawings from cell phone photos sent to her from Raqqa and Mosul by her collaborator. Walter Robinson appropriates advertisements of shoes and other clothing from Macy’s in his acrylic on paper pieces. Other artists are more interpretive. Danial Nord’s video installation November 28, 2007 (2007-2017) divides the frame into multiple sections, juxtaposing video clips of Republican candidates faces during the presidential debate to purposefully create a pattern that examines their expressions. Steven Wolkoff’s Interference, 2017, is a black rectangle that oddly conveys Donald Trump’s tweets from January 20 – November 30, 2017, presenting the combined communications as an opaque solid. While Wolkoff’s piece is an additive process, Samira Yamin carefully cuts into pages of Time Magazine. These absences create intricate Islamic patterns from articles about the wars in Iraq and Iran. In her multi-media work News Cycle, 2017, Dani Dodge uses a vintage AV cart filled with old TV monitors to create a compelling display about how the presentation of news has changed over time.
The relationship between the analog and the digital is implicit in this exhibition. News was not always communicated immediately. Journalists wrote stories for the next day that were printed in papers that were delivered each morning. Now news is constant. It comes at us so fast it is impossible to digest. We are bombarded with the real, the fake, truth and lies, so that it is hard to know who or what to trust. STATIC is a thoughtful exhibition about communication; what is seen, heard and framed and what is missing and left out.
With Lili Bernard, Jennifer Celio, Molly Crabapple, Dani Dodge, Jose Galvez, Emily Goulding, Kio Griffith, Alanna Marcelletti, Anne Elizabeth Moore, Danial Nord, Sean Noyce, Max Presneill, Walter Robinson, Steven Wolkoff, and Samira Yamin
Durden and Ray
1923 S Santa Fe Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90021
Gallery Hours: Tuesday-Saturday 10am to 6pm; Sunday by appointment. Closed Monday.