It has been a little over two years since I expanded the gallery exhibition program, providing a context for the major figures in West Coast art. Today I recalled the shows that we have put together, especially since the pivotal “Sculpture from the Sixties” exhibit in November and December of 2006. I was reminded when I recently read Christopher Knight’s “Top Ten” list for 2008, because he used the term “cultural maturity”.
What Knight wrote about was the recognition of L.A.’s history and the projects that are documenting movements and artists. In late 2008, the Getty Research Institute announced grants to “nonprofit institutions in Southern California interested in planning exhibitions relevant to the history of art in the Los Angeles area during the postwar period…” A series of exhibitions, under the name of “Pacific Standard Time” will be held throughout Southern California from September 2011 through June 2012.
I’ve been working on the gallery’s exhibition program for the past 13 years, and have presented many shows that pointed to the history of L.A. art in the postwar era, especially our shows of the seminal contemporary ceramics movement. It’s really gratifying to see the recognition for these artists, who boldly broke the rules and broke ground for successive movements. I’ve also represented work by a group of innovative artists in other media from that era.
Some of them posed, along with the late Patricia Faure and friends, for this photo at the gallery. From left to right are Vivian Rowan, Larry Bell, Avilda Moses, Ed Moses, the late Patricia Faure, and Craig Kauffman.
Every one of these people, as well as John Mason, appears in a documentary film titled “The Cool School”, which was released last year. Documenting the formation, rise and fall of the legendary Ferus gallery, the film was reviewed in the New York Times and Variety.