January is always a great excuse to reset the big-show calendar with a fresh season, and it’s also the run-up to the new tradition of Art Week Los Angeles (don’t call it Frieze Week) in February. That will be its own weather system, and more to come on that later. In the meantime, here are 12 exhibitions — from kings of Pop to queens of new history, diasporic and hyper-local visions, mixed media extravaganzas, and tech-forward adventures — that already have our full attention, and they haven’t even opened yet.
Amir H. Fallah, Carrot and Stick, 2022. Acrylic, aluminum, hardware 36 x 21 3/8 x 8 7/8 in
Amir H. Fallah: The Fallacy of Borders at the Fowler Museum
Across painting, sculpture, stained glass, and textiles — all bursting with an intoxicating overload of rich, fine detail, chromatic adventurism, personal, cultural, and geopolitical symbolism, and art historical wit — Amir H. Fallah investigates persistent questions of identity, intimacy, biography, knowledge, duty of care, diaspora, and legacy. Within a deliberate fusion of inherited and invented citations from literature, pop culture, and global traditions, Fallah weaves together ornate compositions of shrouded figures, dense patterns in florals and textiles, trompe l’oeil motifs of windows and stretcher bars, meaningful objects like photographs and jewelry borrowed from the private altars of his sitters, to create masterpieces of casual surrealism and profound humanity.
308 Charles E. Young Dr., Westwood; Jan. 29 – May 14; Opening reception: Saturday, Jan. 28, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.; fowler.ucla.edu.