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‘Postcards from L.A.’ reprise at Art Paris Art Fair

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The 2014 Art Paris Art Fair opened today and trends from the Los Angeles contemporary art world were noticeably visible. The theme of the 2013 Los Angeles Art Show special exhibition “Postcards from L.A.” greeted visitors at the entrance with two works by local French artist Karl Lagasse. The theme of “Postcards from L.A.” was a convergence of text and graphics in works of art. The new works in this genre by Lagasse on display were a customized Maserati Ghia handpainted with words evocative of driving a Maserati, and a two cubic foot metal block embossed with linotype. Lagasse chose words like “peace” and expressions like “yes we can” to create a series of optimistic thoughts in a work of art.

Similarities in trends at last year’s Los Angeles Art Show and this year’s Art Paris Art Fair are part of a larger trend years in the making that is gaining momentum. That is a globalization in tastes by art collectors that is being reflected in choices that gallery owners make when deciding what to display. This year’s edition of the Art Paris Art Fair also showed that galleries are also paying more attention to business collectors. Art that engages visitors in conversation and art that inspires employees to think more creatively is on a par with the decorative art favored by private collectors. A fascinating example is a motorized hourglass in the shape of a spherical globe that creates new designs with ever changing hourglass sand with each tick of the clock.

Southern California’s influence on the art world is also noticeable from many displays in the style of San Diego Comic-con. This hobby enthusiast show turned global pop culture phenomenon resurfaced at the Art Paris Art Fair in an iconic image of “Supermao,” a Chinese interpretation of the superheroes in American illustration art.

The Art Paris Art Fair selection of China as guest of honor this year is another Los Angeles art event trend that is on display at this year’s Art Paris Art Fair. The Blue Square Gallery of Washington D.C. is featuring works by emerging artists from China including Sui Jianguo whose three dimensional “Made In China” is pictured here.

“Made In China” is not an image commonly associated with the Paris Art Scene today. But there is an intriguing historical association. In the eighteenth century, Chinese art had such a strong influence on French artists that the term Chinoiserie was used to describe this entire category of art. While this year’s Art Paris Art Fair looks much less Parisian, it looks much more cosmopolitan and that is appealing to collectors whose viewpoint is “Change is Good.”

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