New exhibits by artists Fay Ray and Sessa Englund draw inspiration from the past

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Installation view of Fay Ray’s “Lacuna.” Photo courtesy of the artist and Shulamit Nazarian, Los Angeles.

A couple of LA-based artists are exhibiting work in two new shows that both look to the past for inspiration. Fay Ray’s “Lacuna” exhibit at Shulamit Nazarian in Hollywood runs through June 26. Sessa Englund’s “Fool’s Errand” exhibit at Hunter Shaw Fine Art in Mid-City runs through July 4. 

Ray has built large aluminum metal mobiles with some hanging freely in the gallery and others hung against the wall. She mixes in objects such as abalone, driftwood, seashells, and corn. Each item relates to a specific childhood memory or aspect of her family history. For example, there is a large piece that uses abalone shells, and Ray remembers how her father used to make abalone in the backyard, and she would eat it with lime and salt. 


Installation view of Fay Ray’s “Lacuna.” Courtesy of the artist and Shulamit Nazarian, Los Angeles.


Installation view of Fay Ray’s “Lacuna.” Courtesy of the artist and Shulamit Nazarian, Los Angeles.

In Sessa Englund’s “Fool’s Errand,” there are wooden shelves with sheets of latex that lay across them and on the walls. There are large hooks that look like oversized piercings with large chain necklaces that dangle onto the floor. Englund incorporates a lot of 1990s culture and ephemera that aren’t obvious at first glance. For example, troll dolls are hidden in some of the sculptures. The artist cast them in tin, and then used them as charms on large necklace pieces, or as feet to the shelves. 


Installation view of Sessa Englund’s “Fool’s Errand.” Photo by Ruben Diaz.


Upholstered skeleton structure with snakeskin detail in Sessa Englund’s “Fool’s Errand.” Photo by Ruben Diaz.



Twin piercings with chain and butterflies in Sessa Englund’s “Fool’s Errand.” Photo by Ruben Diaz.

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