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Luis De Jesus Los Angeles
2685 S La Cienega Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90034 | T 310 838 6000

NEWS

July 24, 2018


History unseen: Smithsonian gallery examines overlooked victims of US lynchings

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SHINGTON — The Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery acknowledges that people of color have long been missing in the works it exhibits.

Now the museum is tackling the issue in an unusual way.

The Portrait Gallery is currently showing about 20 works by Los Angeles-based artist Ken Gonzales-Day that examine lynchings, mostly in the American West, and probe the history of racial violence in the United States.

“Latinos were a very small number” of those lynched in the U.S, Gonzales-Day told The Associated Press during a recent interview at the Portrait Gallery. “Native Americans, Chinese, even smaller numbers.”

“But when you think of it as a spectrum of racialized violence, then we can see it is part of a continuing (history) in the United States that dates back to its founding,” he said. [ READ MORE ]

July 24, 2018


KEN GONZALES-DAY REVIEW: How to Talk About Whiteness

The Racial Imaginary Institute wants to “make visible that which has been intentionally presented as inevitable,” to disrupt the “bloc” of whiteness.

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e scholar Sara Ahmed opens her essay “A phenomenology of whiteness” with a series of questions on the project of examining whiteness: “If whiteness gains currency by being unnoticed, then what does it mean to notice whiteness? … Could whiteness studies produce an attachment to whiteness by holding it in place as an object?” In other words, how do we talk about whiteness without solidifying, even strengthening it?

Ahmed’s text is one of the groundings for the exhibition On Whiteness on view at the Kitchen — the latest iteration of a project exploring this topic by the Racial Imaginary Institute, a project founded by Claudia Rankine with her MacArthur grant in 2016. The Racial Imaginary Institute decided to focus on whiteness as their first major initiative, in order to “make visible that which has been intentionally presented as inevitable,” to disrupt the “bloc” of whiteness. In addition to the exhibition, several other organizations in New York are hosting partner events, and the Institute published an online “Whiteness Issue.” [ READ MORE ]

July 23, 2018


‘I’ve Always Been an Advocate for Diversity’: Los Angeles Dealer Luis De Jesus on Creating a Space for Latino Artists

Luis De Jesus hopes that a new class of Latino collectors will emerge in the US like it has in the African-American community.

A former artist and one of only a few successful Latino dealers in the US, Luis De Jesus understands the difficulty of getting the art world to pay attention.   more

Since founding his gallery Luis De Jesus Los Angeles in 2010, he has made a career of showing young artists with something to say, and has quietly become a staple of the city’s art scene in the process.

De Jesus cut his teeth in New York, where he studied art at Parsons, then went on to work in galleries in Soho and Tribeca before deciding to head west. He launched his first gallery in San Diego, Seminal Projects, in 2007, just before the economic recession that caused many galleries—particularly those in regional markets—to fold. De Jesus’s gallery did not, however, and he credits this early experience as priming him for success in the bigger market of LA. [ READ MORE ]

July 23, 2018


NATHAN GLUCK, THE WARHOL ASSISTANT WHO KNEW MORE THAN HIM (but about the wrong things)

THE WEEKLY PIC: This lovely photogram and collage was made in 1939 by Nathan Gluck, and it’s now in a show of his works at the Luis De Jesus gallery in Los Angeles, which holds his estate.

If Gluck is known at all, it’s as the man who assisted Andy Warhol in his commercial-art business for about a dozen years, ending in 1966. That standard view of Gluck as playing second fiddle to Warhol isn’t quite wrong, but it gives a false impression of how things stood when they first met, around 1951.   more

At that moment, Gluck, a decade Warhol’s senior, was clearly the more sophisticated, mature, and art-educated of the two. He made this photogram, for instance, exactly ten years before Warhol’s tried his hand at the same medium, while still in art school. This and the other early collages at Luis De Jesus show that Gluck was fully clued-in to the latest in European Surrealism at a moment when Warhol was still literally in short pants.

When Gluck first came on board as Warhol’s “assistant,” around 1955, he was an erudite opera fanatic who came with a notable cultural pedigree: He had dined with the great designer Paul Rand and also with Marcel Duchamp well before Warhol could boast of the same, and was known among New York’s dealers in modernist prints and books. He’d even had a poster selected for the MoMA collection, where Warhol wouldn’t manage to place his work until the 1960s.

In a way, you could say that Gluck’s maturity and Europeanism were his Achilles heel. He was tied to traditional, style-centered ideas about Modern art and could never quite appreciate the conceptual, anti-retinal, Duchampian ideas that Warhol deployed in his Pop.

Warhol’s Pop revolution came in making the look of something matter less than what it meant. Whereas the commercial art that Gluck worked on – often made from scratch, in Warhol’s name – needed to look absolutely fabulous. Gluck was the perfect man, with the perfect training, to make it so.  [ READ MORE ]

July 21, 2018


REVIEW: NATHAN GLUCK AND DENNIS KOCH

Dennis Koch & Nathan Gluck: Gobsmacked By Collaging

Although many artists and non-artists alike engage with the process of collaging, a successful collage is not that easy to achieve. For the merger of unrelated images and/or texts to resonate beyond the obvious, there is much to take into consideration— point of view, message, cohesion of elements, formal arrangement, etc. Juxtaposing disparate elements from various sources does not necessarily construe art.   more

Collage has a broad history and those who venture into collaging must take into consideration their historical precedents.

Popular and influential early collage artists include Max Ernst, Joseph Cornell, Hannah Hoch, John Heartfield and Kurt Schwitters — whose materials ranged from text and photographs to historical reproductions. Many artists have used collage to communicate their social and political views via the mass media. With the proliferation of digital technologies, collaging has become more commonplace as cutting and pasting is now easily achieved with software.

Though not necessarily a household name, artist and former Andy Warhol studio assistant, Nathan Gluck (1918-2008) was a dedicated collagist. For over 70 years, he created works on paper that combined original and found materials that spanned numerous genres of collage from Dada and Surrealism to Postmodernism. [ READ MORE ]

July 13, 2018


Lynching in the US: Even the mob kills systematically

A new memorial in the US focuses on the lynchings committed on African Americans. Looking more closely at the subject, another, largely unknown, history of mob violence against Mexicans comes to light.

"The worst thing we've ever done," was the reportage that an American radio station dedicated to the recently opened National Memorial for Peace and Justice. In addition to racist violence and slavery, the memorial site in Montgomery, Alabama, brings lynchings to America's collective memory. The numbers cited by Bryan Stevenson, founder of the Equal Justice Initiative (EJI) and driving force behind the Memorial since 1989, are impressive. More than 4,400 African Americans have been extrajudicially and often brutally killed in southern states like Alabama.   more

They are now reminiscent of 800 free-floating steel steles in the museum. [ READ MORE ]

July 03, 2018


ZACKARY DRUCKER IN THE LOS ANGELES BLADE

“DIRTY LOOKS: ON LOCATION" BRINGS QUEER HISTORY BACK TO LIFE IN L.A."

Lovers of local queer culture have a fantastic opportunity to experience it throughout July with “Dirty Looks: On Location,” an arts festival which focuses on “celebrating L.A. queer history in the streets that wrote it.”

According to the festival’s planners:

“On Location began in 2012 in the bars and community centers that fill New York City. Putting screenings or performances in everyday spaces brought new life to the works, focusing on the social nature of art making in the city.   more

But there were other stories to tell. On Location 2018 was organized in Los Angeles by 13 local curators, artists and promoters, playing with venues and meeting places that defined queer life in Los Angeles – 31 spaces across the 31 days of July, charting a progression of culture(s) using one month’s time.”

“Dirty Looks” is a widespread program of events and “happenings” featuring local musicians, artists, cultural icons and community leaders. It aims to capture the creative and historic queer pulse of Los Angeles by “animating and activating historic sites of queer cultural exchange.” [ READ MORE ]

July 02, 2018


ZACKARY DRUCKER IN THE ADVOCATE

DIRTY LOOKS FILM FEST LIGHTS UP L.A. QUEER LANDMARKS

Dirty Looks: On Location is an exciting, alternative arts festival offering an event every night in July. The festival engages with historic queer locations across Los Angeles and brings new life and meaning to them by screening films and offering performances by artists including Zackary Drucker, Maya Deren, and Gregg Araki. The Advocate spoke with Bradford Nordeen, the founder and creative director of the event, about what makes this festival so playful, provocative, and intriguing.  [ READ MORE ]

June 26, 2018


KEN GONZALES-DAY IN EAST OF BORNEO

SURFACE TENSION: MAPPING MURALS IN LOS ANGELES

Last year, I was commissioned by the Skirball Cultural Center to make an exhibition considering the relationship between the Mexican Muralists and Los Angeles. This was to be part of the Getty Foundation’s Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA, as was a second exhibit the Skirball was planning: an examination of the work of writer Anita Brenner, whose 1929 volume, Idols behind Altars: Modern Mexican Art and Its Cultural Roots, helped promote Mexican art and muralism to American audiences.   more

Thinking of Brenner’s work alongside the six months David Alfaro Siqueiros spent in Los Angeles in 1932, teaching at the Chouinard Art Institute and creating murals there and on Olvera Street, framed my thinking about the exhibition. The result was Surface Tension: Murals, Signs, and Mark-Making in Los Angeles, a photographic journey to map out the city through its murals, signs, and mark-making, in the hopes of making visible the larger cultural, socio-economic, and political forces that have shaped the place we have come to call Los Angeles. [ READ MORE ]

June 25, 2018


LUIS DE JESUS EXHIBITS ART BY WARHOL CONTEMPORARY

Luis De Jesus Los Angeles presents “SOMETHING ELSE: The Collages of Nathan Gluck,” an exhibition celebrating the artist’s centennial anniversary, 1918-2018, on view from June 23 through July 28. An opening reception will be held on Saturday, June 23, from 4-7 p.m.

“SOMETHING ELSE” represents the first survey exhibition of collages created by Nathan Gluck, who is recognized as Andy Warhol’s pre-pop commercial art assistant. Gluck helped shape and create many of Warhol’s most famous illustrations, ads and designs.   more

He also assisted Warhol with his early transitional pop pieces. [ READ MORE ]