Disclosure: Art Redemption through Confession
Disclosure: Confessions for Modern Times
Durden and Ray
Through February 2nd
Closing Reception: Saturday, February 2nd, 2-4pm
Curated by Dani Dodge and Alanna Marcelletti
By Genie Davis
With Disclosure: Confessions for Modern Times, at Durden and Ray, curators Dani Dodge and Alanna Marcelletti have shaped an exhibition that marked a perfect start to the new year. Elegant and insightful, with tons of wit to go around, the exhibition is both timely and eternal. The human need for confession and healing has never been stronger.
With a political landscape muddied by hate and lies; horrific crimes populating the news; and personal angst seemingly at an all-time high, isn’t it time to cleanse the spirit and start anew?
Infused with both the spiritual and the secular approaches to cleansing the spirit, 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 create an exhibition that the curators note “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.”
There are aspects of religion, self-realization, and secret lives here; physically immersive works and visually arresting pieces. Some fall into all categories, with fervor and intensity, as if an Almighty Art Deity was ready to absolve the most heinous artistic sin of banality.
While the show tackles repentance, guilt, self-confession, and culpability, giving us images of plagues, heavenly realms, and hellish moments, the largest takeaway is a kind of spiritual redemption through artistic aesthetic. It’s a cathartic renewal of faith – in creative expression and its uplift to the human spirit.
Viewers can do more than view here – they can participate in an art ceremony of sorts; potent as any purging.
Co-curator Dodge gives us “Truly Sorry,” an actual construct of a confessional stopped with a flashing sign that encourages viewers to “Confess.” Using post it notes and pens – with a give-away pen to all who participate, attendees are encouraged to post a note of their own personal confession.
Kim Abeles, with “3.9,” has another confessional on display, in which selections from one minute of audio tape captured every day for 3.9 years can be listened to in a work that includes tin ceiling panels taken from Berger Bead, soil, wood, and glitter. In all, 1440 minutes – or 24 hours – of audio footage has been compiled in a mesmerizing and haunting auditory experience.
Conchi Sanford’s “Confessional VI” is composed of two see-through cocoons constructed of plastic, wood, plexi, and tape, that allow people to whisper secrets to each other reclining in futuristic pod-like beds.
And Steven Wolkoff’s acrylic paint “I will not” allows viewers to write invisibly what they will not do – or at least will not do again. The textural quality of the work is fascinating in and of itself to hands-on users.
In a glowing and silvery ephemeral work, Kimberly Brooks’ abstract figures exist on linen, the oil painting evoking a modern tapestry, created in a monastery of art. Both futuristic and eerily sublime, it is a work well worth studying.
So too are Donald Fodness’ demonic takes on Barry Manilow album covers in “Hot ___Auction,” “This One Man,” and “E-Stranger.” The layered works include colored pencil, gouache and gesso, and seemingly respond to an eternal question – is listening to Manilow hell?
Debby and Larry Kline play prophet by mapping impending tragedy for the planet. The large scale ink on paper work is lush and dramatic, referencing Biblical plagues as they foretell natural and manmade disasters. The work, “Prayer Rug: Be Not Afraid” is a massive 49 by 94 inches.
There are also vibrant takes on Hollywood confessions in Ed “Celso” Tahaney’s paint and ink on cardboard depictions of “Jerome,” “Joseph,” and “Gloria.” The rich and lustrous colors make it easy to study these fragments of intimacy.
A disconnected relationship is shaped in oil, acrylic, and pastel pencil by Jorin Bossen, whose fresh, large scale takes on portraiture continue to dazzle in “Kiss a Real Man.”
Joe Davidson memorializes life itself, and vividly spins the concept of ‘walk a mile in my shoes’ through concrete castings of the insides of his footwear in “Casts of the Interior of My Shoes” shaped from cement and cloth. They are reliquaries of the passage of time.
And Kathryn Hart weaves a mixed media work that combines wax, canvas, wire, leather, wire, mesh, twine, and found bone in a haunting spiritual work, which she refers to as a private confessional. “Caretaker” is as notable for its open spaces as its materials, inviting viewers to fill in the blanks with personal meaning: a window into the soul of self.
Finding redemption has never been easier for art lovers.
Durden and Ray
206 Maple Avenue, #832 Los Angeles, CA 90015
Hours: Saturday and Sunday noon to 5 p.m. or by appointment
Closing Reception: Sat. 2-4pm:
Closing Reception: https://www.facebook.com/events/1179016348921433/