LA Record

Michelle Jane Lee

Unapologetically emotional despite her minimalist aesthetic and conceptual methodology, Michelle Jane Lee constructed an alphabet by assigning a color to each letter, authoring over 100 works – one of which is 30 feet long – that she calls Love Notes. Opening tonight at Gallery 3209 in Culver City, Love Notes is Lee’s first solo exhibition in Los Angeles. She will be waiting by the gallery door all evening hoping to see the person for whom she penned so many works of love.

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Gallery 3209

During an October opening at her gallery, Eddie and Moshe Brakha of Brakhax2 approached Denni Zelikowsky of Gallery 3209 to be a subject in their photo series, New Economy. She obliged, hesitantly. The charismatically irreverent gallerist prefers to create and curate images rather than be integrated into them. Like its founder, Gallery 3209 eschews convention for community, providing a safe space for the strange and the wild amidst rows of clinical white boxes in Culver City. With ample space, natural light falling in through sky lights and floor to ceiling windows, and an address ending in 90034, Gallery 3209 provides pristine digs for emerging artists. While waiting in the Brakhax2 studio before her shoot, the iconic black and white image of the members of Devo donning peach breasts with bright pink nipples caught the young curator’s eye. Moshe Brakha of Brakhax2 famously photographed such cheeky personalities as Madonna and Run DMC. After experiencing the collaborative process of Moshe and Eddie Brakha as a subject, Denni knew she wanted to exhibit this father/son duo at Gallery 3209. New Economy opens this Saturday January 7th. Arts Editor Drew Denny discusses Gallery 3209 with curator Denni Zelikowsky below.

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Penny-Ante

Penny-Ante started just about the same time as L.A. RECORD, at the other extreme of printed matter—instead of one page every week, they’d release giant beautiful books full of original art and writing and creative expression and even wedge in a unique CD of music, too. Now after three giant volumes,Penny-Ante’s Rebekah Weikel has released a series of original prints asPenny-Ante part 4 this spring. She will DJ at Big Freak tonight

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Art Interview

Pentecostalism and Mormonism may be the world’s fastest growing religions but it’s Art that we turn our attention to today, folks: The art of Connecting to others, creating Community, transcending our Selves and Time. Put your hands together with those of your neighbor, give a squeeze and believe (at least temporarily) in the mystical joy showered upon you inside a white room in Highland Park at the ephemeral bethel of Signify Sanctify Believe! This interview of the entity summed up as SSB by Drew Denny.

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Tonight

L.A-based artist/curator Niko Solorio represents Los Angeles abroad. Berlin Gallery Cercle Blanc, founded by Luci Lux, opens tonight with an exhibition featuring work by artists from Los Angeles and Napoli. The gallery itself wants to be a work of art—a social sculpture in the Beuysian sense, concentrating disparate disciplines in search of limitless possibilities. This interview with Max Dax, the gallery cook, by Drew Denny.

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Nicole Disson

Producer Nicole Disson takes theater out of the ‘theater’ and drops it out of the sky into places like the rooftop of the Standard Downtown, where confused and bemused businesspeople wonder at the dancers in the pool and the actors in the fire pits. Her March performance of her one-night-only THE SERIES put L.A. RECORD alumni like Julia Holter in strange new performing environments—even for them! This interview by Drew Denny. 

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San @ Redcat

San is a genealogy of the Khoi-San people performed with movement. Choreographed by Vincent S.K. Mantsoe, San integrates moves born from street dance or borrowed from pop with the ancient rhythms of Mantsoe’s family of spiritual healers. The story starts with the beginning of humans and ends in the dystopian now, an intensely emotional evolution that follows the Khoi-San from freedom and wandering to expulsion and execution. A minimal stage design of criss-crossed twine creates an earthy geometry that recalls constellations or migration charts or the lines the dancers make as they convulse and percuss about the space. The show starts in silent darkness that slowly reveals five characters hanging, necks pressed into the twine as their bodies lean and sway with great agony and deliberation until the sound and the story take flight. The score is also stark—the unbelievable undulations of Iranian Sufi music master Shahram Nazeri’s voice interspersed within the 12th-century poetry of Rumi. The only improvement I could imagine for this performance’s presentation would be live performance of the score. San presents five dancers who react to one another’s presence and performance like family. Portraying love and brutality with equal elegance and passion, the dancers of San relate a million years in an hour—tracing the steps of the first-ever humans with contemporary gaits as Montsoe’s choreography compresses time and space into a tiny black box theater in downtown Los Angeles, California.

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Nobunny

Little bitty Nobunny came into the world in love with love and celebrates his 10th birthday this Easter by performing at the Playboy Mansion with some old-school bunnies this spring. He is playing L.A. RECORD’s NOBUNNY LOVES YOU! show and if you need love L-U-V you better get to it on Feb. 11 at 6th St.! This interview by Drew Denny.

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Anne Ellegood

Anne Ellegood served as curator of contemporary art at the Hirshorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in D.C. and as the associate curator at the New Museum of Contemporary Art in New York before relocating to Los Angeles to become senior curator for the Hammer. Ellegood collaborated with Chief Curator Douglas Fogle on the Hammer’s sixth Invitational entitled All of this and nothing, an intricate extravaganza of local and international artists whose works traverse many media but remain connected by conceptual quandaries. Together they reject the monument, celebrate the ephemeral, and cordially demand a slow, considered viewing. This interview by Drew Denny.

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Interview

Tiny Creatures was born in May 2006 with its release of Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffitti’s My Molly EP and grew into a gallery space that September when founder and director Janet Kim opened her home to a community of artists and performers in search of a space that could absorb their wildness and reflect their passion. Over the next two years, Tiny Creatures hosted openings, happenings, crafts nights, music and dance performances, film screenings, publication releases, record releases, and a music school where I learned to play the keyboard. Almost two years later, Tiny Creatures is celebrating a month-long residency called “Big Deal.” Part re-performance, part reunion, part evolution—this iteration of the Tiny Creatures project ends tonight. Be there. This interview by Drew Denny.

What made you come out of hibernation? How did you manage to corral all the original tiny creatures?
Janet Kim: The cyclone. I killed the wicked witch of the East.

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