Your list of must-see, fun, insightful, and very Los Angeles art events this month, including Alicia Piller, Brad Phillips, Mulyana, the MexiCali Biennial, and more.
February is a big time in the Los Angeles art world, with four art fairs (Frieze, Felix, Spring Break, and the LA Art Show) coming to town later this month (not to mention Museums Free-For-All day). Galleries and museums here are mounting ambitious shows to take advantage of the moment. These include Alicia Piller’s Laocoönical assemblages at Craft Contemporary, Trulee Hall’s phantasmagorical multi-media environments at Rusha & Co, and the Fowler Museum’s show of Amir Fallah’s captivating paintings that pull from centuries of high and low visual culture. The peripatetic MexiCali Biennial touches down at the Cheech in Riverside with their latest edition focused on the contested histories of food and agriculture throughout California and Mexico, while UC Irvine’s Contemporary Arts Center Gallery presents British sibling duo Jane and Louise Wilson’s video installations that dig into the Cold War and its contemporary echoes.
Bridget Mullen: Sensory Homunculus
Bridget Mullen: Sensory Homunculus, Shulamit Nazarian, Los Angeles, January 7 - February 10, 2023
A sensory homunculus is a scientific figure of a human that illustrates how much of our brain is dedicated to controlling certain areas of the body. Its hand and mouth are monstrously oversized, given the exceptional neurological resources devoted to them. Bridget Mullen’s solo show at Shulamit Nazarian takes its name from the goblin-like creature, and her paintings elicit a similar sense of corporeal unease. With a nod to surrealism and psychedelia, she grapples with the tension between abstraction and figuration, as pools, blobs, and skeins of paint transform into body parts, hair, and effluvia. For both Mullen and the homunculus, representation is not limited to the visually mimetic.
Amir H. Fallah: The Fallacy of Borders