Photograph of a statue of an Egyptian Mau, (i.e., cat), from Ancient Egypt. This exhibit at LACMA shows the Mau, which was designed as a tribute to the goddess Bastet. Given how much I like cats in general (and Mizu in particular), I’m surprised it took me this long to feature this statue.
(As this post, I should be photographing the Great American Eclipse 2017- maybe that will be featured in next week’s blog…)
A Wild Jerusalem Sphere Appears!
In Malibu one day, I came across this objet d’art in an acquaintance’s home. At the time, I thought that it was interesting, and maybe it was a small model of Jerusalem? Apparently, I was right on both counts, as it was indeed the city of Jerusalem in the form of a sphere. Frank Meisler designed the concept inspired by Mediæval maps which depicted Jerusalem as a circular city at the centre – the navel – of the world from which all distances to other cities were measured. The sculpture depicts the spirit of the city, its ancient walls and buildings of many styles, periods and cultures. It is mounted on a marble base the sphere is revolvable, and forged of metal silver and gold plated. And you can see the Malibu coastline of the Pacific Ocean in the background…
Ribbons in Red
Shot of the westerly side of the Petersen Automotive Museum after its recent renovation; the building is certainly unique, but this view demonstrates an even more memorable scene…
Farewell to Penetrable
This Sunday, 12 Feb 2017, was the last day that the Penetrable installation was at LACMA; this photo is to commemorate the fabulous piece of art.
A little of history of Penetrable, (from the LACMA site):
In the 1950s and 1960s, several Latin American artists settled in Paris, where they became key players in the movement of kinetic and op art. One such artist was the Venezuelan Jesús Rafael Soto, whose projects directly engaged the viewers’ participation. This is the case of Penetrable, a long-term loan from the Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros, installed on LACMA’s plaza.
As the work’s title implies, the architecturally scaled structure is intended to be pierced both optically and physically by the viewer. This interactive aspect sets it apart from many works presented within museum settings, in which objects are not meant to be touched. The piece is made of basic industrial materials, the bulk of it comprised of yellow plastic hoses that are suspended from a simple steel grid.
When viewers walk through the dense curtain of plastic tubes, they disappear into them and become part of the work. Soto was profoundly interested in the dematerializing effect of light, which he sought to recreate through such works. In the artist’s words “[the] man is no longer here and the world there, he is inside the fullness and it’s this fullness that I want to make people feel.”
Although Soto’s work is conceived as a geometric sculpture, it lacks a solid surface or plane; its shape is easily altered by human contact, or even natural elements such as wind and rain. In other words, it is a work in constant flux. This playful and profoundly sensorial aspect of Soto’s Penetrable has made it one of the most popular works in the museum—an object that invites the viewer to become one with the work of art.
Watts Towers of Rodia
This photo is one in a series taken during a recent trip to the Watts Towers, located in Watts (a region of Los Angeles, famous for the riots in the 1960s). The towers are magnificent- doubly so as they were hand crafted by one man.
The Watts Towers, Towers of Simon Rodia, or Nuestro Pueblo (“our town”) are a collection of 17 interconnected sculptural structures within the Simon Rodia State Historic Park in the Watts community of Los Angeles. The tallest of the towers reaches a height of over 99 feet (30 m). The towers and walls were designed and built by Sabato (“Simon”) Rodia (1879-1965), an Italian immigrant construction worker and tile mason, over a period of 33 years, from 1921 to 1954. The work is an example of outsider art and Italian-American naïve art.
The Watts Towers are located near the 103rd Street/Watts Towers Los Angeles Metro station of the Los Angeles County Metro Rail Blue Line, and off the I-105 Century Freeway. They were designated a National Historic Landmark and a California Historical Landmark in 1990. They are also a Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument, and on the National Register of Historic Places in Los Angeles.
(Thanks to Wikipedia for the info)
A skyward view from within Jesús Rafael Soto’s sculpture, Penetrable, on permanent exhibition at LACMA. While it can be fun to play in the spaghetti, it also gives many opportunities to look at the work in and through a different perspective…
A full view of a Mayan round mosaic shield. This artwork was part of the LACMA exhibit, “Children of the Plumed Serpent: The Legacy of Quetzalcoatl in Ancient Mexico”. This mosaic resonated with me- the colours, the details, the amount of work that must have went into affixing tiny chips of turquoise to wood with natural gum… and then lasted for almost a millenium and counting.
Seriously, this piece demonstrates how much beauty the First Nations were capable of.