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William Abranowicz turns his lens on voting rights 6 MIN, 51 SEC

William Abranowicz with his photograph of Harry Belafonte. Photo by Frances Anderton.

The midterms are a couple of weeks away. But will people show up to vote?

LA art galleries and museums have stepped up to encourage people.

Track 16 gallery in Downtown LA had a stack of voter registration forms at the opening of a Robbie Conal show. MOCA Geffen in Little Tokyo has been registering people to vote. So too has the Hammer Museum in Westwood -- and it’s going to serve as a polling station on November 6. The Maccarone Gallery in Boyle Heights has a show of anti-Trump cartoons by actor Jim Carrey. His message to visitors: get out and vote.

Then there is Matt Blacke Gallery on Melrose at La Brea, owned by interior designer Cliff Fong.

He and veteran interiors photographer William Abranowicz have teamed up to take on voting rights -- with a show called “This Far and No Further.”

The Malden Brothers Barber Shop in the Ben Moore Hotel in Montgomery, Alabama, was where Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. and other black leaders had their hair cut while organizing the Montgomery Bus Boycott in 1955 and 1956. Photo credit: William Abranowicz.

Abranowicz, known for sumptuous rooms and exotic locales for magazines including Architectural Digest and Conde Nast Traveler, tells DnA why he took on the topic and how he's applied his trademark interior photography style to historic civil rights locations in the South, such as the road where Emmett Till was murdered or the bedroom dresser from the home of Myrlie and Medgar Evers.

“These are generally genteel, bucolic places,” he says of the softly lit country road where Till met his death, adding “where horrendous, horrendous things happened.”

William Abranowicz at Matt Blacke gallery. Photo by Frances Anderton.

Fong tells DnA why he felt he had to give over his Matt Blacke gallery to this topic.

“I think everybody is looking at themselves to see what they could have done to change things or what they have already done or not done that contributed to the current situation,” Fong said. “And I'm sure it's on everybody's mind how to not repeat the same mistakes that brought us to our current condition.”

William Abranowicz’s This Far and No Further: A Photographic History of Voting Rights will be on view at Matte Black Gallery from October 18 to November 29, 2018. 

7021 Melrose Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90038
Hours: M-F 11am - 5pm, Sat by appointment only (contact  310.936.9680)

William Abranowicz, photographer (@wabranowicz)
Cliff Fong, interior designer and founder of design studio Matt Blacke Inc. (@Mattblackein)

A Striking Photographic Depiction of America's Voting-Rights History

“The Price of Everything” explores how art became an “asset class” 13 MIN, 32 SEC

Jeff Koons and a painting from his “Gazing Ball” series. Image from “The Price of Everything”

Nathaniel Kahn's highly regarded first documentary “My Architect” tracked his quest to understand his blood father Louis Kahn, the famed American architect who maintained three families.

Now he's taken on art and money. “The Price of Everything,” opening Friday, Oct. 26 at the Laemmle Music Hall in Los Angeles, follows a fascinating medley of artists, collectors, auctioneers, curators and investors in a quest to understand how art became an "asset class" and what that means for art and society.

That artists can now be played with like poker chips, says Kahn, “seemed not only fascinating to me but also terrifying to me. So something which is fascinating and terrifying is... definitely a good thing to make a movie about.”

In a conversation illustrated with clips from art dealer Gavin Brown, art historian Barbara Rose, painter Larry Poons, Amy Cappellazzo (Chairman of the Fine Art division of Sotheby’s) and collector Stefan Edlis, Kahn talks to DnA about why he made the film, about LA's role in the art world ("unbelievably exciting for young artists"), and about the importance for emerging artists, like LA-based Njideka Akunyili Crosby, of putting aside market considerations “or it'll kill you.”

He also addresses Banksy's recent stunt -- shredding an artwork when the gavel fell on $1.4 million, saying "it is a commentary on everything we're talking about."

Nathaniel Kahn, filmmaker and director of “My Architect” and “The Price of Everything”

Review: ‘The Price of Everything’ Asks $56 Billion Questions About Art
A Documentary Lays Bare the Absurdity of the Art Market
In Nathaniel Kahn’s The Price of Everything, a Lively Portrait of Money Run Amok in the Contemporary Art Market

Public Sculpture Archive puts the ‘wow’ back in public art 6 MIN, 58 SEC

Kathryn Vetter Miller, left, and Sylvie Lake are Public Sculpture Archive. Photo by Avishay Artsy.

There's art that's a commodity and disappears into private collections. Then there's public art. Drive around Los Angeles and you will see public sculpture everywhere. Hundreds of artworks, of all shapes and sizes. But do you notice them? Oftentimes not.

A project called Public Sculpture Archive is trying to change that.

DnA producer Avishay Artsy interviewed Sylvie Lake, an artist who climbs on or poses next to these public artworks, wearing monochromatic skin-tight costumes; and Kathryn Vetter Miller, the photographer who captures and disseminates the images on Instagram, altering perception of the artworks and their role in public space.

About their interventions into artworks hidden in plain sight, the artist/model Sylvie Lake says LA is a set. “Everything here has been invented and nothing here really feels real... It's so much fun to play on these sculptures here because they just feel like props in a set where you can project what you want onto it.” 

The photographer Kathryn Vetter Miller is a psychologist by profession, “and so much of what I do is about inviting people to a more mindful state. And working with the sculptures and bringing them back to life does bring life back into them, and brings people into a more conscious state with their environment.”

Double Ascension by Herbert Bayer, 1973. Downtown (515 S. Flower) Los Angeles

Friendship Knot (1981) by Shinkichi Tajiri in Little Tokyo

Mobius Bench II (2003) by Vito Acconci, Shops at Lake Avenue (401 Lake), Pasadena.

Hymn of Life: Tulips (2007) by Yayoi Kusama, Beverly Hills.

Drive-By Art (1992) by Lars Hawkes, at edge of Highway 170, at northbound Sherman Way on-ramp, Valley Glen.

“Trench, Shafts, Pit, Tunnel, Chamber” (1978) by Bruce Nauman, Citigroup Center

Arrogant Man and Surprised Woman (1986) by Viola Frey, California Mart patio.

Avishay Artsy, Producer, DnA: Design and Architecture (@heyavishay)

Why an Artist in a Skin-Tight Suit Is Posing on L.A.’s Public Sculptures


Sisyphus by Alexander Liberman, 1985. Image courtesy of the Public Sculpture Archive (Kathryn Vetter Miller and Sylvie Lake)

Frances Anderton

Frances Anderton
Avishay Artsy

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