More Museums

Last Monday I went to the Centre Pompidou to view their Los Anglees exhibit (which is now closed, maybe making this entry irrelevent). The exhibition was sprawling and quite impressive in the depth of each artist shown- not just one Ed Ruscha, but many! I loved walking into James Turrell’s piece which was a room bathed in blue florescent light. It gave a calm, cool, silent feeling and I noticed one girl curled up in the corner, like she had been staying there absorbing the blue frequency for a long time. I stayed later than I planned to watch Kenneth Anger’s video “Inauguration of thePleasure Dome,” in which my favorite author, Anais Nin, plays a part. It is totaly amazing, heady mix of colors, music, costumes, sequences and emotions and makes his piece for the recent Whitney Biennial that features rock stars and Micky Mouse seem absoltely pale in comparison. My one gripe with the show was this: in a city as complex, fraught and diverse as LA the curators gave one room for both feminist artists AND a Chicano artists collective (yes, one room for both and two gay artists were given a hallway after that). And from the selection of feminist art you would think that Judy Chicago was THE MOST important feminist artist to ever live. Women artists and artists addressing social concerns seemed quite absent throughout and from the show one might think LA was just a white dude, formalist conceptualist playground, interesting, some great art, sure, but but nothing more. I also left wanting to know “why LA?” and how it connected or didn’t to other cities such as NYC and Paris. And why a show of art from LA in Paris now?
Despite my gripes, which had amounted to feeling seriously peeved by the time I walked out of the show, I imagined working at the Centre Pompidou as a guide and interpreter or maybe as part of the curatorial team, sigh…

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