This winter the historic Neutra VDL Studio and Residences in Silver Lake will host the work of artist Shio Kusaka in a project curated by Douglas Fogle and Hanneke Skerath. Responding to the unique architectural environment of Richard Neutra’s Los Angeles home and workspace, Kusaka will quietly populate this iconic example of domestic mid-century modernism with her signature idiosyncratic ceramic vessels, small sculptures of animals, a new set of dinnerware and hand-crafted textile designs inspired by the work of Agnes Martin, Josef Albers and Ellsworth Kelly, respectively. Living and working in Los Angeles for the better part of the past two decades, Kusaka has spent her career subtly subverting the world of ceramics within the field of contemporary art. Enthusiastically embracing imperfections and irregularity in her ceramic-based works, Kusaka has approached her practice with a playful openness that is at once modest yet laced with wry humor.
For her installation at the Neutra VDL Studio and Residences Kusaka has given a nod to the phrase “indistinct chatter” that often appears in the subtitles of films and television when voices in the background cannot be identified. Like figures at a cocktail party who quietly chat away in different parts of a home, Kusaka’s pots and sculptures will circulate through Neutra’s own domestic environment making their own small talk with both the unique features of the home itself, as well as the visitors to the exhibition. Groups of Kusaka’s older and newly created pots will be distributed throughout the shelves, coffee tables and other nooks and crannies of the VDL’s interior.
Kusaka’s ceramic vessels have been defined over the years by the interplay between their slightly imperfect shapes and the geometric but loose patterns that the artist incises or paints on their surfaces. Paying homage to the ordered regularity yet slight imperfections of the works of a painter like Agnes Martin, Kusaka embraces the paradox of a desire for perfection and its all too human impossibility.
Kusaka’s pots will be accompanied in the house by a long row of her ceramic animals that will march across the built in bookcase in the VDL’s upstairs living room facing the Silver Lake Reservoir as well as new dinnerware produced at Cerámica Suro in Guadalajara, alongside handmade throws and pillows inspired by the patterns and palettes of Agnes Martin, Ellsworth Kelly and Josef Albers. To complete the indistinct chatter of her installation, Kusaka will honor the inside-outside ethos of Neutra’s modernist design principles by presenting planters on the living room and rooftop terraces. Kusaka’s work, with its exquisite attention to the irregular and embrace of the fallibility of the human hand, is an incredible match for the architecture of Richard Neutra who preached about the therapeutic qualities of modern architecture from a psychological and environmental point of view. In different but related ways, both artist and architect embrace the fragility of the human condition and the power of objects to make our lives more joyful. Although mute, her pots and other interventions generate a kind of silent indistinct chatter that harkens back to the heyday of Neutra’s VDL house when it played host to a wide array of artists, architects, writers, filmmakers and musicians.
A publication about the project is forthcoming and will be published by Blum & Poe.
About Shio Kusaka
Shio Kusaka was born in 1972 in Morioka, Japan and lives and works in Los Angeles. She received her B.F.A. in 2001 from the University of Washington, Seattle. Collections include Museum Voorlinden, Wassenaar, The Netherlands; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; The Broad Art Foundation, Los Angeles; Allen Memorial Art Museum, Oberlin, OH; and Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, Overland Park, KS. Recent solo and two-person exhibitions include the 2014 Whitney Biennial, New York; “Shio Kusaka and Jonas Wood,” Museum Voorlinden, Wassenaar, The Netherlands (2017-18); and "Shio Kusaka," Gagosian, Rome (2018).
Douglas Fogle spent over twenty years as a curator of contemporary art at Walker Art Center, Carnegie Museum of Art and the Hammer Museum. In 2012, he joined forces with independent curator Hanneke Skerath to open the curatorial office STUDIO LBV in Los Angeles. Together they curate exhibitions, organize talks, and produce publications.
For more information please contact Douglas Fogle and Hanneke Skerath at +1 310 871 5615 or firstname.lastname@example.org / email@example.com
This project has been made possible by the generous support of Blum & Poe Gallery, Los Angeles, Tokyo, New York.
Mark Cottle: The Cost of Money
October 12 to November 23, 2019
Opening Saturday October 12, 6-10pm
Press Preview Saturday October 12, 4-5pm
Barnett Cohen Performance: congrats & condolences
April 27 & 28, 2019, 6:15pm
congrats and condolences, a new and original performance piece by the Los Angeles-based visual artist Barnett Cohen, is an experiential inquiry into consciousness and its relationship to the physical sense of sight.
congrats and condolences is created by Barnett Cohen in collaboration with performers Celina Bernstein, Nikki Bohm, Dan Bruinooge, Daphne Gabriel, Lea Madda, Andres Paul Ramacho, Cary Thompson. Outfits are by House of 950 and were produced by Blue Tin Production Co-Op in Chicago, the first clothing cooperative in America run operated refugee and immigrant women, run by Hoda Katebi. Curated by Samara Kaplan.
Barnett Cohen originally received formal theatrical training, with an emphasis on breath and vocal work, at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts. He then embarked upon a career as a visual artist with an interest in multiple disciplines, employing a wide-range of media—sculpture, painting, video, installation, and performance–-that collectively serve as meditations on the space between thought and the self and between the self and the body. His work has been exhibited at such venues as Pieter (Los Angeles), House of the Book (Los Angeles), 356 Mission (Los Angeles), Human Resources (Los Angeles), Vox Populi (Philadelphia), City Limits (Oakland), The International Center for Photography (New York), and La Galerie SEE Studio (Paris.) In June of 2019, he will present new work at JDJ | The Ice House in Garrison, New York. He received a BA in English literature from Vassar College, an MFA from the California Institute of the Arts, and has been in-residence at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture and the MacDowell Colony.
Book Presentation: Sun Seekers - The Cure of California by Lyra Kilston
Saturday, February 9th, 2019 from 5-7:30pm
Saturday, October 6, 2018 from 7-9pm
Exhibition Opening: BLESS N°63 Neutra Dasein
Saturday, July 28, 2018 from 6-9pm
Book Presentation: LIGA, Space for Architecture, Mexico City “Architecture Exposed”
Saturday, October 28, 2017 from 4-6pm
Exhibition Opening: Tu casa es mi casa
Saturday, September 23, 2018 from 6-9pm
Exhibition Opening: VAPA@VDL
Saturday, May 20, 2017 from 5-8pm
This exhibition features work by high school students (age 16-18) from the Ramon C. Cortines School of Visual and Performing Arts, curated by (16-year old) VAPA high school student Avery Wilcox. Each artwork offers new interpretations of the Neutra VDL House expressed in a variety of mediums - film, ceramic, painting and photography.
Dance Performance: Home LA // ENTER>text ONE HOUSE TWICE
Saturday and Sunday, May 6-7, 2017 at 4pm, 6pm and 8pm
Saturday, April 24, 2017 from 4-6pm
Read KCRW's take on the celebration
Talk: Archinect presents Floating Worlds, Gender, Finance, Architecture
Saturday, March 4, 2017, 5pm
See event info on E-Flux
Exhibition Opening: Cornerstone by Les frères Chapuisat
Saturday, February 4, 2017 from 4-8pm
Saturday, May 21, 2016 from 3:30-5:30pm
About the Book:
"Waiting for Lipchitz at Chateau Marmont captures two Californias at a time when they have never been less coincident. Janigian serves up a brilliantly bipolar mix of memory and observation, fury and speculation, a story that may free his waiting screenwriter from false tethers to an overhyped city, even as it ties the author fast to a vast, prodigious, if lately unsung state."
—Joe Day, author of Corrections and Collections: Architectures for Art and Crime
TURF Spring Preview
Materials & Applications (M&A)
Sunday, March 13-April 15, 2016
Stephen Lichty, Neil Marcus, Daphne Honma
January 31 2015
Treatise L.A. Book Launch & Party
May 02, 2015 (5PM)
In collaboration with Archinect and the Neutra VDL House, the Graham Foundation is pleased to present the Los Angeles book launch and party for the Treatise: Why Write Alone? publication series at the Neutra VDL House. Organized by Los Angeles-based designer Jimenez Lai of Bureau Spectacular and the Graham Foundation, Treatise brings together fourteen young design offices working at the forefront of conceptual architecture. This collection of individually-authored treatises follows our recent exhibition at the Graham Foundation in Chicago.
An Experimental Installation of Cold War Modern Design from East and West in One Context
July 13 – September 13, 2014
Luis Callejas / LCLA office
October 11 – November 23, 2014
One Long Collective Table by Table + Supper Studio 13
Event curated by Jia Gu
November 13, 2014
Participants Erin Besler and Ian Besler, Laurel Consuelo Broughton and Andrew Kovacs, Jose Sanchez, and Katya and Alexei Tylevich
The collective table is envisioned as a single, continuous surface upon which a grid of 2” x 2” finger foods can be served. (This is the standard size of saltine crackers.)
Embroidering in Architecture: Neutra VDL with Jenny Hart
July 24, 2013
This workshop was produced by Machine Project for The Machine Project Field Guide to L.A. Architecture as part of Pacific Standard Time Presents: Modern Architecture in L.A. A portion of the proceeds from this workshop went towards restoration efforts at the Neutra VDL Research House.
July 13 – September 7, 2013
August 9 – September 16, 2012
Curated by Francois Perrin
Outpost for Contemporary Art Auction and Benefit
May 7 2011
Fort / Da
Santiago Borja with Maddalena Forcella and El Camino de los Altos Tzotzil Weaving Cooperative
November 18 – December 23, 2010
Book Presentation: Architecture of the Sun
October 26, 2010