Decent studio rents, generous space, radiant light, and several separate cultural nodes rather than a single centre are some of the reasons people tend to give for why the Los Angeles art scene is flourishing so. American curator Melanie Lum has followed several artists over the years, and watched them establish themselves, work hard, and achieve success. For this show at CFHILL, which opens April 15, she has invited some of the most exciting and talked-about artists born in the 70s and 80s. Meet one of them.
When her paintings of gates appeared, the buzz around Becky Kolsrud really began to build. The gates she used are the kind you see enclosing commons, industrial properties, or lots of land that were once claimed by somebody or other, but have since been abandoned to their fates. Behind these gates, we catch glimpses of young women’s faces. Like mythic time travelers, Amazons in camouflage, they are almost invisible to contemporary eyes. Becky Kolsrud, who was born and raised in this dry, sun-scorched region, is preoccupied with the expressive potential of painting, and with its shared visual memories, particularly those involving the representation of females. In the works shown at LA Dreams, these steel curtains have given way to something more malleable and liquid.
What is life in LA like?
“During my childhood, LA was known for its traffic, gangs, smog and earthquakes. Well, that and Hollywood. Of course, the Light and Space Movement was here [its most renowned members were Bruce Nauman and James Turrell]. But since then, things have definitely changed. It’s become a good city to be a painter. You can find the most beautiful things here, and the most ugly. I love it. The city sprawls in all directions, and if the rents go up, I’ll simply move further away from the centre.”
Becky Kolsrud was born in 1984 in Los Angeles and lives and works in Los Angeles, CA. She has had solo exhibitions at JTT, New York and Tif Sigrids, Los Angeles. In 2013 she was the recipient of the Rema Hort Mann YoYoYo Grant. Public Collections include the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles.