The LA Art Show, which is now operated by The Palm Beach Show Group, has been widely celebrated for 19 years. Attended by the who’s who of the entertainment world, art collectors, artists & lovers alike this year was the most innovative, fun and visually stimulating to attend. In the heart of Downtown LA, The Los Angeles Convention Center brought out a mix of LA’s finest. (Literally from Barbra Streisand to Shepard Fairey) Sure there were the celebrities, a slew of international galleries and global media but for this little art maven nothing beat the excitement of seeing “Littletopia” curated by New Orleans, Red Truck Gallery, own Noah Antieau. Antieau hand selected some of the more innovative galleries at LA Art Show from LA to NYC and everything in between.
Let me explain why discovering, what some might call this “underground, irreverent, bold, progressive, anti-establishment” section of the of the show not only captured my eye but my heart as well. For years now I have been participating and attending Art Basel Miami Beach as a curator, artist & participant and have always bumped into The Little Red Truck Gallery at Scope Art Fair. A vaudevillian, circus like playful party with an array of art that focuses on craftsmanship, the absurd and the cool (basically take nostalgia culture, a pinch of voodoo mixed with a side show) the only space to not give a shit about their table being nice, the occasional empty pizza box, beer bottles with Noah and crew sitting around shooting the shit while welcoming you in like it’s your local watering hole. (At first in can be a little intimidating seeing a table of men, big and small repping art but after a while you can’t help but being enamored with all of them) I ran into Noah in early December at Scope Miami Beach and finally introduced myself, we both had cocktails, of course, and I told him how much I’ve been an admirer of his gallery but actually have never seen him. One month later, not knowing what to expect for this LA Art Show, I was ever so pleased to reintroduce myself and congratulate him on his successful Littletopia.
Here’s who was there (this was taken off the LA Art Show’s press release regarding the galleries that made up Littletopia)
Sloan Fine Art, New York - Sloan Fine Art, New York; exhibits emerging to mid-career artists with a focus on work that is emotionally compelling, intellectually stimulating and visually arresting.
Breeze Block, Portland - Directed by Paige Prendergast, founded in 2006, Breeze Block presents culturally significant artists in the emerging and established contemporary genres surrounding popular culture, design, and urban art.
FIFTY24MX, Mexico City
La Luz de Jesus, Los Angeles -Credited with launching the pop-surrealist movement in Los Angeles, La Luz de Jesus has a mission to make underground artists and counterculture accessible to the general public.
Last Rites, New York-The premiere gallery for the ‘dark arts’ movement, Last Rites Gallery is a haven for artists who prefer to explore the ominous, uncomfortable and eccentric in their work. The gallery creates an atmosphere where the artist can harness limitless expression and the observer can reflect inwards. (on a side note: loved these girls & this exhibit)
Roq La Rue, Seattle -With an emphasis on technical craftsmanship blended with fantastical imagery and visually dynamic narratives, Roq La Rue has been an integral part of the Pop Surrealism / Underground Contemporary art movement since 1998.
Spoke Art, San Francisco - The gallery maintains a focus on exhibiting the works of emerging contemporary artists, who specialize in figurative and illustrative works in pop surrealism and street art.
Thinkspace, LA- Founded in Los Angeles in 2005, and located in the Culver City art district since 2009, Thinkspace was established with a commitment to the promotion and dissemination of young and emerging art. As a haven for talent, and a venue founded in passion, conviction, and community, the gallery’s mandate is rooted in projections for its future longevity. We intend to be a vehicle for the talents we vet for year’s to come, and are passionate advocates for their vision and their dreams.
Varnish Fine Art, San Francisco-Jen Rogers and Kerri Stephens believe that Art makes the world a better place. Since founding Varnish Fine Art in 2003, they have become known for showing provocative and skillfully executed contemporary artwork.
Red Truck Gallery, New Orleans- Beautiful & unique art with a focus on craftsmanship and artistry presented in a welcoming atmosphere in opposition to the customary frills and stark white walls of the traditional art scene.
For those of you that follow the emerging art scene you probably have heard of La Luz de Jesus and Thinkspace and if you haven't get to know them, this is where LA’s art scene is heading. In the same way Wynwood was coming up in 2006 (now defined by having the most incredible & most urban murals in the country) DTLA will be next, even if its always been a location for the creative arts now with downtown LA’s expansion of galleries, warehouses, lofts, restaurants and lounges it seems the LA scene is bridging the gap of the art communities all the way from Venice to Boyle Heights.
Other notable works were LA’s own Ace Gallery & Bruce Lurie Gallery featuring cuban artist Nelson De La Nuez, San Francisco’s The McLoughlin Gallery, China’s Gallery IHN , Me Art Gallery, New York’s, RJD Gallery & Waterhouse & Dodd.
For more info on the the LA Art Show check out their website http://www.laartshow.com