In the spring, the little goat will eat melon.

July 24, 2011

It’s hard to know how to feel about being part of the Chain Letter Exhibit at Shoshana Wayne Gallery.

I arrived at the gallery about 4pm on Friday to deliver my piece, so I missed the morning action which some are now calling ‘Artmaggeddon.’ It wasn’t all that crazy, but the gallery staff was turning people away and had closed official entries because of the morning rush. I went in the gallery anyway and asked a couple people talking if I could speak to a curator. It happened to be none other than Doug Harvey. I showed him my piece, which is small, and asked if I could include it. He walked outside and got me a number and a form. I have to say it was nice to feel a little luck fall my way. LA has a way of making a small triumph like this one feel significant. You can now find my piece nestled between the pink casting of female genitalia and an Easter Island head.

It is certainly a strange show. What struck about it was its overall orderliness. Rather than piles of art stacked together, it felt like a carefully arranged garage sale. It has none of the chaos of, say, a Jason Rhoades installation, although I think some would like it to feel like his work. In this sense, all the content was still “precious” and certainly commercial. That said, you have to give it Shoshana Wayne for letting things get just a teeny weeny bit out of hand. Believe me, there is some, shall we say, lower quality work in the space that would not have otherwise had access, so it was really this act of saying, “OK … I’ll show up.” The LA Weekly Blog Post does a near perfect job of capturing the ‘YES’ spirit of the show.

Submission for 'Chain Letter'

The piece I contributed to Chain Letter is a high heel I had bronze plated; a piece fitting for a show of one-offs and oddball works. I found the shoe itself in Lawrence, Kansas on January 1, 1996. It was a gray, cold Midwestern morning. This single high heel was laying on its side in a row of empty parking spaces in the downtown. At the time, it was a pretty nice Steve Madden shoe that was clearly lost while partying the night before. It intrigued me that there was only one and it was new. At the time, I tossed around some romantic notions about reuniting it with its owner and this being some sort of “Cinderella” way into a new relationship.The method for reuniting involved a poster and an official process.

High HeelI never fully undertook the effort, so this high heel became a sort of metaphor for a new relationship and generally moving beyond the past. I’ve taken it everywhere I’ve moved and finally realized it into a finished piece. The title is a translation of a Persian saying that my father-in-law taught me to say in Farsi, in large part because it involved a goat. Its spirit seemed to match up well with the metaphorical value of the piece.

The show closes in late August. It’s worth a visit if you find yourself on the Westside.



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