Frank Lloyd’s blog

Art, architecture and the people that I know.

Posts Tagged ‘Gustavo Pérez

Ceramics on track

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FPZ340_A copyAmong the common questions I’ve heard, since I closed our public exhibition program, is this one: “Who will show ceramics in Los Angeles?” To answer that, it’s time to count the number of current or upcoming shows:

I’m very proud to see that our friends at Latin American Masters have already selected a survey titled Cerámica Contemporánea, an exhibition of twenty-six ceramic works of art by Mexican artist Gustavo Pérez. Their press release states, “Despite a modesty of means and scale, Gustavo Pérez’s ceramics have achieved worldwide recognition, including a 2012 retrospective at Museo Palacio de Bellas Artes, Mexico City.”

Just reviewed in the Los Angeles Times, an exhibit at Acme is titled “Hard and Soft”, and includes the work of four women artists, all demonstrating the flexibility and form of clay, that most plastic of materials. Selected by Vicki Phung Smith, it was characterized by Leah Ollman as a show where “Fluidity and fixity serve as the primary poles between which all of these works dance and tease and strike their own marvelously precarious balances.”

In fact, ceramics shows are all over the galleries. Keep in mind that Shoshanna Wayne Gallery still represents the work of Kathy Butterly and Arlene Schechet. Over at Edward Cella, who is moving to a new location on South La Cienega soon, there is the work of Adam Silverman and Brad Miller. L. A. Louver has, for a long time, presented various artists working in clay. Their sculptor Richard Deacon makes major works in fired clay, and the younger Matt Wedel is prominently featured.

An upcoming show at AMOCA will present approximately 300 works from the permanent collection of the museum. Curated by Jo Lauria, it marks the 10th anniversary of the AMOCA, and presents the wide array of possibilities of the medium.

There are many more, and there will be dozens—if not hundreds—to follow! It’s a great time to see ceramics, from the finely crafted to the freely formed, in Los Angeles. Don’t mourn the loss of our program, just get out and see the art!

Beatrice Wood at the Frank Lloyd Gallery

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CWD181_A copyThe gallery’s next exhibition will present works by Beatrice Wood (1893-1998) alongside those of Gustavo Pérez and Cheryl Ann Thomas. Opening on May 24th, this show will be the fourth time I have shown Wood’s ceramics.

This selection of work will feature vessels as vibrant as Wood’s famous life and personality. With ties to the Dada movement in New York, the theosophy community outside Los Angeles, and the West Coast Crafts revival, Wood developed a personal vision of art that drew on myriad influences. The pieces on display artfully contrast simple forms with richly complex surface treatments. With her signature in-glaze luster technique, Wood created artworks that shimmer with vivid color, reflecting the changing light.

Although I have not had Wood’s work on view for several years, her work was recently the subject of a Pacific Standard Time show at the Santa Monica Museum of Art. Called Beatrice Wood: Career Woman – Drawings, Paintings, Vessels, and Objects, the exhibition offered a survey of Wood’s long career, from her earlier Dada inspired drawings and paintings through her more well-known ceramic works.

Gallery Artist Updates

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FJL052 copyFrank Lloyd Gallery artists have been very busy, so here’s a round-up of their latest activities. To begin, Jennifer Lee has been invited to participate in the International Ceramic Festival in Sasama, Shizuoka, Japan. During the festival, November 22 – November 24, 2013, Lee will present a slide lecture and practical demonstration. Gustavo Pérez will join her at the festival, as he is also scheduled to speak to participants. In 2014, Lee will return to Japan for a two-month artist’s residency at the Shigaraki Ceramic Cultural Park.

An important work by Craig Kauffman is now on display at the Barbican Art Centre, as part of their exhibition Pop Art Design, which opened on October 22 and will run through February 9, 2014. I was fortunate enough to preview this show during my recent trip to London. Pop Art Design investigates the “exciting exchange of ideas between the fields of design and art” during the Pop Art movement.

Peter Voulkos is currently the subject of a one-man exhibition at the Franklin Parrasch Gallery titled Peter Voulkos: Works, 1956 – 1997. On view through November 23, 2013, this show features ten ceramic artworks drawn from distinct periods within the artist’s long career.

I am also pleased to announce that the Copy of IMG_1455 copy 2Hetjens Museum in Dusseldorf, Germany, has acquired a recent sculpture by Wouter Dam. Founded in 1909, the Hetjens Museum is home to a collection of ceramic works from all over the world, spanning 8,000 years of ceramics history. Finally, The Harwood Museum of Art in Taos, New Mexico, recently announced a major gift of contemporary art by a private collector. The promised collection contains over 30 artworks by Larry Bell, including two examples of his most recent series, the “Light Knots.”

Fall Updates

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FBL020 copyI’m happy to announce that Larry Bell will be the subject of an upcoming solo exhibition at White Cube in London. On view from October 16th through December 22nd,  the show is timed to coincide with the Frieze London Art Fair. Bell will be presenting recent works in the North Galleries, as well as in the central 9 x 9 x 9 meter exhibition space that the gallery is known for. This show will increase Bell’s already considerable presence in London – he currently has two cubes and a very early box on display in the Minimalism Gallery at the Tate Modern. A photograph from 1972 can also be seen in the Prints and Drawings Study at the Victoria and Albert Museum.

Another gallery artist, Wouter Dam, FDM090_A copyhas been included in the group show In Dialogue with the Baroque at Schloss Schleissheim, near Munich, Germany. This exhibition presents contemporary artists in the context of the baroquely decorated Schleissheim Castle. The sinuous, curving lines of Dam’s ceramic sculptures recall the formal principles of baroque ornamentation, making his work a natural fit. In Dialogue with the Baroque opened on September 1st, and will be on display through October 13th.

FPZ342_B copyMeanwhile, Gustavo Pérez’s international reputation continues to grow – he was included in Erskine, Hall & Coe’s Summer Show in London, and was featured in their earlier spring show, Classic and Contemporary. Pérez’s work will also be on display at the Galerie Capazza in Nançay, France, from October 5th – December 5th, 2013. This solo exhibition will include new works by the artist, who continues to pursue inventive methods of engaging with clay.

Scottish artist Jennifer Lee will open a self-titled solo show FJL059_B copyat Erskine, Hall & Coe on October 9th, which runs through November 1st. She was previously included in a group show alongside Pérez earlier this year titled Classic and Contemporary, also at Erskine, Hall & Coe. Lee’s work continues to evolve, her elegant vessels combining the geological power of nature with the beauty of human artifact.

Group_FTI068_FTI069 copyAkio Takamori has had a busy summer, and he doesn’t seem to be slowing down for the fall season. Takamori recently opened a solo exhibition titled Portraits Ordinaires at the Musée Ariana in Geneva, Switzerland, which will remain up until October 27th. He will also be included in Body and Soul: New International Ceramics, a group show at the Museum of Arts and Design, on view September 24th, 2013 – March 2nd, 2014.

Scot Heywood will be the the subject of two FHD051 copycomplementary solo shows, both opening in October. The first of these, titled Scot Heywood: A Survey of Large Paintings, 2006-2013, will open at Santa Monica College’s Barrett Gallery on October 22nd. It will remain on display through December 7th. His second show this fall, organized in concert with the first, is called Scot Heywood: A Survey of Small Paintings, and it will be on view here at the Frank Lloyd Gallery from October 26th – November 30th.

The Studio of Gustavo Pérez

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Many gallery visitors are curious about the studio life of the artist. There’s a fascination with the workspace, the materials, and the lifestyle. While most queries have to do with technique or process, another oft-asked question is “Where does he work?”

Gustavo Perez studio copyYears ago, I traveled to Mexico for a studio visit with Gustavo Pérez. Since Gustavo lives in a small town near Xalapa, it was quite a journey. Hours east of Mexico City, near la Ruta de la Niebla in the Veracruz province, Gustavo has built a very productive studio structure.  The photo here shows the artist welcoming a visitor to his compound. It’s not far from the picturesque town of Coatepec. This, of course, is just his base camp, for Pérez is quite a global presence in the world of ceramics. He’s recently been working and exhibiting in France.

In one sense, Gustavo might be seen to have taken refuge in the country, a gentleman scholar with a rich interest in politics and literature. But he speaks four languages fluently (Spanish, French, English, Dutch), which reflects his knowledge of the modern world and its cultures. His work, dealing with the issues of symmetry, progressions and compression, has a kind of lyrical modernism to it, and is a masterful manipulation of the material. Especially when he addresses a transformation in ten parts, like these pieces arrayed on the grid of the studio floor.

Gustavo Perez 2 copy2

Written by Frank Lloyd

January 18, 2013 at 12:17 am

Scotland Sky, New Year

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Scotland Sky2

Those who follow my blog might remember my love of landscape photos. It’s something that I share with Jennifer Lee, our Scottish ceramist who lives in London. Jennifer sent a wondrous picture of the Scottish sky, with a stark silhouette of a tree—a reminder of winter. It’s a picture of the year’s passage.

2012 was filled with accomplishment for the gallery. It’s also been a year of amazing statistics for the blog. As I’ve been noting lately, the gallery has a truly international presence, a fact borne out by the global reach of the blog. In the past year, the blog has been viewed in 114 countries! People seem to be reading quite of few of the 163 blog posts.

The world-wide visitors came searching, mostly for Peter Voulkos, Craig Kauffman, Larry Bell, Gustavo Pérez, and Richard Neutra. While that might seem eclectic, it represents the scope of the gallery and the blog: a concentration of interest in the major artists that emerged on the West Coast during the post-WWII era, and a complementary interest in international ceramics as well as architecture. The posts that were viewed the most times in 2012:

1 Craig Kauffman, 1932-2010

2 Richard Neutra: The Perkins House

3 Peter Voulkos: Words from Irving Blum

4 Monte Factor, 1917—2011

5 Peter Voulkos: On Improvisation

I’m looking forward to the New Year, and want to thank everyone for reading!

Gustavo Pérez

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Gustavo Pérez, born in Mexico City in 1950, has been honored with a third retrospective of his work in his native country. Entitled Gustavo Pérez: Obra reciente, it was held at the Museo del Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City from December 2011 through February 2012. It’s hard for me to think of someone more deserving – Gustavo has been working and exhibiting internationally since 1976, in countries as diverse as Great Britain, Germany, Japan, France,  the United States, and Mexico, to name only a few.

Before turning to ceramics, Gustavo studied engineering, mathematics, and philosophy, and these disciplines have left their imprint on his work. He cites equally diverse artistic inspirations, mentioning Brancusi, Schubert, Rembrandt, Picasso, Francis Bacon, and Paul Klee in the same breath. These disparate sources haven’t resulted in chaotic or wildly eclectic work however; Gustavo instead works through his ideas systematically, producing a body of work that has remained recognizably his own.

Incessantly experimental, his work has advanced in stages. Primarily working in the same sand-colored stoneware, Gustavo has applied parallel lines, calligraphic traces, and geometric incisions to his minimalist vessel forms. His most recent output unifies the structure of his vessels with his drawings on them in a sinuous and flowing manner.

Gustavo’s work will be on display in our upcoming group exhibition, Frank’s International House of Ceramics, which opens Saturday, November 17th at 5:00 pm. Works by Wouter Dam, Georges Jeanclos, Adrian Saxe, Goro Suzuki, Akio Takamori, and Cheryl Ann Thomas will be shown alongside Gustavo’s.

Written by Frank Lloyd

November 6, 2012 at 10:17 pm