Buttnekkid Bares It All at MuzeuMM

Butt 10

Butt 2

Opening tonight at MuzeuMM, Buttnekkid is two artists’ take on nude painting. It is also a phenomenal show, as graceful as it is non-judgmental, lush and visceral.

As the show’s description notes “We are all born naked – and artists either reveal or obfuscate this fact when creating figurative work.” This show is all about the reveal.

butt7

Above, show curation in progress

A reveal which oddly enough still makes some people uncomfortable. When Facebook frowns at posting something that even resembles a nipple,  it’s only too obvious that the puritanical purveyors of “morality” are still very much with us.

So it is worth noting that as well as being beautiful work, the two solo shows that comprise Buttnekkid, curated by Mat Gleason, are also making a bold statement as to the beauty of the body and our views toward it.

Butt 4

Lena Moross pairs same-sex couples in intimate yet unsentimental poses, some clothed, some bare. Anna Stump critiques the ways in which our society seems to fear flesh as much as it is obsessed by it. 

Butt 6

Both artists have a uniquely lovely way of expressing intimacy,  of revealing the body even as they portray this form as exactly what it is – completely natural.

Butt 5

Stump, left; Moross, right

Moross says “I was working on my new series on figures and Anna saw it. She said she had figure paintings too, and proposed we do a double show at MuzeuMM.”

Because the two artists create entirely different works, they knew that their figure paintings would not mesh, and should stand as two separate, thematically twinned exhibitions at the gallery. 

Butt 3

“I worked my usual way: staging and taking photos from real people and then painting from them. Anna did her take on the 1970s era pornography industry.  Basically we did our own thing in our studios,” Moross explains.

Stump reveals “About a year ago, Lena saw an older figurative painting I’d done with a heavy grid structure of drips. She really liked it and asked if I’d do an exhibition with her of nudes. I said, of course!”

Butt 1

According to Stump, “Lena and I are similar in the way we approach art making. We are both extremely confident with our technical skills and understanding of the body represented in 2D, which frees us to make work that is actually less concerned about beauty and more about monstrousness.”

For Stump, the inspiration for her subject matter came from a stack of Playboy magazines she borrowed from her studio mate. “I grew up in the 1970s, exposed to nudes from Playboy, courtesy of an uncle. I’m charmed by the awkward, pre-Photoshop poses, the tans, the naiveté, the non-surgically enhanced bodies. The porn is almost wholesome. The male sketches—earnest, goofy—are also referenced from the magazine ads and editorials,” she relates.

Gleason notes that the show is about the “female gaze and agency…of disrobing.” He says that nudity in art received a bad reputation when the models were all women and the painters men. But with two women creating this work, the tables have turned.

Lena Moross uses nudity as a semiotic device within a psychological drama while Anna Stump pushes the boundaries and politics of professional eroticism…curating them has been a dream.”

Butt 10

 

Experience that dream for yourself Saturday, 8-11 p.m. at MuzeuMM, 4817 W. Adams in mid-city. The show runs through
– Genie Davis; photos provided by artists and curator

The Brewery Art Walk – Spring 2017 Edition

brwery 25

brewery 27

Above, the work of Sean Sobczak Sandman Creations.

As always, DTLA’s awesome and eclectic artists lofts, studios, and galleries – the Brewery – offered up a tremendous wealth of art to peruse at the April edition of their twice yearly art walk.  Take a look at some of the artists and art – and if you missed it this spring, be sure to mark the walk on your calendar for October. So much to see, intimate conversations with artists, brilliant art work at reasonable prices. Hard to top that, but this being LA, we threw in a bright, sunny day, some gourmet food trucks, and beer. The Artwalk IPA was perfect.

brewery 23

Above and below, artist Samuelle Richardson with her wonderfully haunting “Ghost Dogs” sculptural installation. Richardson created these beautiful pieces especially for Art Walk.

brewery 21

A magical energy in these sculptures, which use fabric and wood to shape powerful and poignant beasts.

brewery 20

Chenhung Chen’s fluid, alive wire sculptures dance with kinetic energy, below.

brewery 42

brewery 41

brewery 39

brewery 40

The artist’s wall art, many utilizing staples, is a fresh take on abstract imagery, works that shine literally and figuratively.

brewery 44

Below, Glen Waggner creates intense and diminutive drawings that tell succinct, perfectly realized impressionistic stories. The prolific artist creates both figures and landscapes.

brewery 29

brewery 45

brewery 46

brewery 48

Kristine Augustyn, below, offers both lush abstracts and figurative pieces that edge into the surreal. Both Augustyn and Waggner showed works at the Brewery’s Jesus Wall Gallery.

brewery 30

brewery 55

brewery 52

Below, a work inspired by a trip to Disneyland.

brewery 53

brewery 54

Randi Hockett’s studio-grown crystals dazzle, below. These raw and glittering works offer a wonderful contrast of sharp crystal textures and the softness of the wax surfaces. This is work that is hard to look away from, which evoke the feminine and the fairy tale.

brewery 18

brewery 17

brewery 16

Kristine Schomaker, below, has reconstructed and reimagined her own work in an exhibition titled “An Ode to a Lost Love.” Tackling complex issues from body image to gender identity, her sculptural installation below explores both the personal and the universal – and still evoke a fantastical candy store.

brewery 65

brewery 64

brewery 61

brewery 63

brewery 62

Bill Leigh Brewer, below, creates photographic works that are painterly in style, mysterious and magical in perception.

brewery 32

brewery 58

From the California desert to the snowy hills of Vermont, Brewer fills his landscapes with a subtext of wonder and loss.

brewery 57

brewery 56

Winnie Brewer, below, has painted bees and other creatures great and small in exquisitely detailed works that glow with light and color.

brewery 34

brewery 60

brewery 59

Below, Tony Pinto, in residence at Shoebox Projects, created dimensional paintings and photographic portraits in his exhibition “Art Seen.” His ability to capture the innate essence of artists, writers, and gallerists in LA’s art scene is revealing and insightful.

brewery 36

 

brewery 37

While her studio was not open for art walk due to deadlines on completing works for other exhibitions, we had a sneak-peak at a piece currently on exhibit at Durden & Ray’s “Going Native” show from installation and sculptural artist Dani Dodge. Here a deeply layered image invites second, third, and many more looks beneath the surface.

brewery 66

brewery 14

Her work, above, is like accessing an archeological dig: there is so much going on beneath the surface, an intense energy breaking through.

Below, Ryan McIntosh and Kati Milan share studio space and a wealth of evocative art.

brewery 11

brewery 10

brewery 9

Artist Ted Meyer, below. A little bit Picasso, a little bit Modigliani in great faces, forms and familiars. These are portraits that tell a story worth “reading” often. Stylized, riveting, and exotic, Meyer’s figures also serve as a healing document for those affected by trauma. Brewery ONE

Below the incredibly rich partnered work of Anna Stump and Daphne Hill blossoms with life – lush and sensual florals.

BREWERY TWO

brewery 3

There is such an overflowing cornucopia of art at The Brewery that we could not do justice to all the artists here – or even those in this article. Find your own overflowing artistic joy at the next art walk come October.

brewery 7

brewery 6

brewery 12

brewery 8

brewery 35

brewery 38

brewery 13

  • Genie Davis; Photos: Genie Davis