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Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Installation view of Concrete Island, Los Angeles, Venus Over Los Angeles, 2017

Press Release

Press Release

Concrete Island
March 11 - May 20, 2017
Opening: Friday, March 11th, 5:00 - 8:00 pm

VENUS
601 South Anderson Street
Los Angeles, CA 90023

(Los Angeles, CA) – Concrete Island: The Antidote for Civilization

“Alone in this forgotten world whose furthest shores were defined only by the roar of automobile engines…an alien planet abandoned by its inhabitants, a race of motorway builders who had long since vanished but had bequeathed to him this concrete wilderness.” – J.G. Ballard, Concrete Island, 1974

Welcome to Concrete Island: an overlooked city within a city, an entropical paradise where leisure is lean. Careen off the highway and into the cushion of your airbag to arrive at this bleak no man’s land, where you’ll be marooned in plain sight. No one will hear your cries against the tide of commuter traffic lapping at the shores of our deserted island, nestled between two lanes of howling interstate. This vestigial location is your vacation destination, boasting all the sights and specificities of any cultural petri dish. Come and brave this new world. This here and now – this moment – could last forever.
 

MENTAL HYGIENE

Come to Concrete Island and leave your worries at the roadside. Our island is a duty-free zone, set far apart from the taxing pressures of civilization and sanity. You’ll feel better in no time: the surrealism of total solitude arrives faster than you’d think. Boredom and desperation begin to take hold, and you’ll remember what it means to notice your surroundings. Let us guide you; a new pantheon of visual culture will rise before you, delivering you to that enchanted realm of magical thinking.

Listen to our walls: they speak in a rare blend of hobo shamanism and contemporary primitivism that captures the texture of the urban psyche. Fine-tuning the aura of the found object, the animistic objects of Blair Saxon-Hill, Lazaros and Jon Pylypchuck remind you that pareidolia really does enrich the sociality of your environment. Sterling Ruby’s early video work, the Transient Trilogy, forages against the odds, and pushes you through satisfying bricolage with no clear purpose, right toward a set of new rituals. Stop and explore Daniel R. Small’s cargo cult artifacts: his petrified versions of vital objects will remind you of life before Concrete Island. Kim Gordon’s crumpled canvases covered in glitter dance with Kelly Akashi’s ritual altars that pay homage to discarded materials.

Concrete Island is home to Ry Rocklen’s ancient idol dedicated to dreams of the Michelin boy, a terracotta index of tire treads from all points in history. Matt Johnson’s massive, repurposed building materials recall public sculpture, divorced from the hectic city you left behind. Nancy Rubins’ blossoming gargantua of canoes has the ambition of an architect designing for Mad Max: Fury Road; her logic of accretion provides rejuvenating ideas for what our cities could look like. Totems by Jason Bailor Losh punctuate the property, reaching skyward with crockery bound in basket weave.


SMOKE SIGNALS

It’s hard to ring home from Concrete Island – the phone lines are down, and they’re not set to be fixed. Your efforts to be heard will pass in vain, but eventually someone will stumble upon evidence of your existence. Jason Matthew Lee’s hardwired zombie phone booths don’t make calls, and Will Boone’s cryptographic warnings subliminally tell you to “stay put.” At night, you can hear The Crenshaw Cowboy calling from the side of I-10.
 

LUSH ENTROPICS

On Concrete Island, you remember that nature always wins. Ruben Ochoa’s grand gateway of dilapidation welcomes you to the land that time forgot. Weeds will outlive all infrastructure – even ours – and Tony Matelli’s bronze dandelions are no exception. They sprout amongst the shadows of Sam Falls’ tree painting, situated near the grove of tree lamps by Pentti Monkkonen, made from cell towers that ape the palms that grow along the freeway. Chris Wiley’s photographs document the surface and texture of our natural world, and framed like postcards, these images are specimens that echo their environs.


AESTHETICS OF SURVIVAL

“These days one needed a full-scale emergency kit built into one’s brain, plus a crash course in disaster survival, real and imagined.”  – J.G. Ballard, Concrete Island, 1974

Concrete Island makes sure to furnish you with carefully considered, top-of-the-line products. Emergency Survival Weapons from Harry Dodge provide stunningly real protection for those moments when flight is just no option. Each implement is assembled at a moment’s notice from materials within arm’s reach. The tools will quickly immobilize your enemy and keep you safe until sunrise. For bodily warmth, Lazaros presents a humanitarian aid tarp from Haiti that he kept during his initiation into the Voudou priesthood, displayed here to recall Barnett Newman’s meditative zips.


THE META-CITY

On Concrete Island, your world becomes abbreviated, synthesized… simpler. Jaime Davidovich’s video of Gordon Matta-Clark shows him on one of his “fake estates,” a speculative real estate venture where the artist becomes an architect of forgotten places, much like Concrete Island itself. And with their finger on the pulse of non-place development, the Center for Land Use Interpretation is on site to give us a work that welcomes everyone – and no one – to uncharted territory.


PRIMAL DOMESTIC

On Concrete Island, you can fill your house with anything you want. Catharine Czudej’s handmade soap paintings are a local specialty, and decorate walls with color, scent, and function. William Anastasi’s splash of black industrial varnish on the wall is a different approach to domesticity, and highlights the more poetic and anarchic aspects of Concrete Island. Matt Johnson’s cosmic drop cloths strike a balance between decoration, accident, and the infinite, puncturing your home with reminders of the scale of all things. Look deep in the mirror: Kaari Upson’s Shadow Work is a domiciliary recall providing the pleasures of intimate moments with inanimate surrogates, proving that companionship is still possible on Concrete Island.


SYNTROPY – THE PRIMORDIAL SOUP

Plunging us headlong through a vivisection of decline, Jedediah Caesar’s new series is a literal stop-motion sequence of materiality’s strata in cinematic detail. Like a sublime and anarchic loam dedicated to previous civilizations, Francesca Gabbiani’s collage records a DIY shelter in its final moments, a whisper before its soft return to the elements. Within the glossy ooze of Analia Saban’s seemingly damp work on canvas, you’ll find nutritious rubble, concrete particles, and luscious paint. Strung up like a carcass from a recent hunt, Max Hooper Schneider’s shopping cart, which he found burned beyond recognition on the side of the road, is painted with a candy coat, like a monument to our sacred eternal return.


GET LOST!

Caught between the proverbial here and there, you can sleep under the stars, deliciate primordial soup, regard the mushrooming possibilities of budding civilizations, or degrade luxuries back into raw material. This is a vacation that will never end, no matter how hard you try!
 

Concrete Island: Where Survival is Avant-Garde!


Featured artists: Kelly Akashi, William Anastasi, Vern Blosum, Will Boone, Jedediah Caesar, Center for Land Use Interpretation, the Crenshaw Cowboy, Catharine Czudej, Jaime Davidovich, Harry Dodge, Sam Falls, Francesca Gabbiani, Kim Gordon, Matt Johnson, Lazaros, Jason Matthew Lee, Jason Bailer Losh, Tony Matelli, Pentti Monkkonen, Ruben Ochoa, Jon Pylypchuk, Ry Rocklen, Nancy Rubins, Sterling Ruby, Analia Saban, Blair Saxon-Hill, Max Hooper Schneider, Daniel R. Small, Piotr Uklanski, Kaari Upson, and Chris Wiley

For further information about the exhibition and availability, please contact the gallery at info@venusovermanhattan.com

For all press inquiries related to the exhibition, please email press@venusovermanhattan.com

Kelly Akashi i, 2015

Kelly Akashi

i, 2015
bronze, oil paint, linseed oil

28 x 21 x 2 in
71.1 x 53.3 x 5.1 cm

Kelly Akashi Ways of being (figure), 2016

Kelly Akashi

Ways of being (figure), 2016

brick, lead, wax, wick
26 x 6 x 42 in
66 x 15.2 x 106.7 cm

William Anastasi One gallon high-gloss enamel thrown, 1966

William Anastasi

One gallon high-gloss enamel thrown, 1966

paint on brick wall

dimensions variable

Jason Bailer Losh Sister Works (A, B), 2017

Jason Bailer Losh

Sister Works (A, B), 2017
glass, gourds, steel, maple, walnut, nylon rope, thread, pine, nylon, teak
various dimensions

Vern Blosum Rescued, 2015

Vern Blosum

Rescued, 2015
oil on canvas
72 x 48 in

182.88 x 121.92 cm

Will Boone Stay There, 2014

Will Boone

Stay There, 2014

acrylic on paper

30 x 22 in

76.2 x 55.9 cm

Jedediah Caesar Mohave Laminates, 2017

Jedediah Caesar

Mohave Laminates, 2017

mixed media, 14 works
each: 12 1/2 x 9 x 1/2 in

each: 31.8 x 22.9 x 1.2 cm

Jedediah Caesar Mohave Laminates, 2017

Jedediah Caesar

Mohave Laminates, 2017

mixed media, 14 works
each: 12 1/2 x 9 x 1/2 in

each: 31.8 x 22.9 x 1.2 cm

Center For Land Use Interpretation Concrete, Washington, 1999

Center For Land Use Interpretation

Concrete, Washington, 1999

digital print of image from the CLUI Photo Archive
12 1/2 x 9 x 1/2 in

31.75 x 22.86 x 1.27 cm

The Crenshaw Cowboy Untitled, 2017

The Crenshaw Cowboy

Untitled, 2017
marker on board and plastic

various dimensions

Catharine Czudej Large Soap Painting 6/8, 2014

Catharine Czudej

Large Soap Painting 6/8, 2014

soap
24 1/2 x 33 x 4 in
62.2 x 83.8 x 10.2 cm

Catharine Czudej I’M NOT YOUR BROTHER, 2017

Catharine Czudej

I’M NOT YOUR BROTHER, 2017

concrete, bamboo, and wood
32 x 87 x 4 in
81.3 x 221 x 10.2 cm

Jaime Davidovich Reality Properties: Fake Estates, 1975

Jaime Davidovich

Reality Properties: Fake Estates, 1975
digital video
7 minutes

Harry Dodge Emergency Weapons, 2002-2017

Harry Dodge

Emergency Weapons, 2002-2017

mixed media
various dimensions

Sam Falls Untitled (Absence of Evidence is Evidence of Absence), 2016-2017

Sam Falls

Untitled (Absence of Evidence is Evidence of Absence), 2016-2017

super 8 film transfer to digital

edition 1 of 3 + 2 APs

Sam Falls Untitled (tree burn, blue), 2016

Sam Falls

Untitled (tree burn, blue), 2016

cotton/linen blend
64 x 46 in
162.6 x 116.8 cm

Francesca Gabbiani Destruction of a radical space (3), 2015

Francesca Gabbiani

Destruction of a radical space (3), 2015
colored paper, gouache, glue, pencil and paper on canvas

36 1/2 x 40 in

92.7 x 101.6 cm

Kim Gordon Not yet titled, 2017

Kim Gordon

Not yet titled, 2017
spray paint, glitter, medium on canvas, aquaresin and fiberglass

50 x 42 in
127 x 106.7 cm

Kim Gordon Untitled, 2017

Kim Gordon

Untitled, 2017
glitter, archival glue, wood, nylon stocking
34 x 68 x 11 in
86.4 x 172.7 x 27.9 cm

Max Hooper Schneider Shopping Cart, 2017

Max Hooper Schneider

Shopping Cart, 2017
melted shopping cart, polymer- encapsulated pigments
44 x 40 x 24 in
111.8 x 101.6 x 61 cm

Matt Johnson Untitled (Cosmos Tarp #3), 2016

Matt Johnson

Untitled (Cosmos Tarp #3), 2016

painted blue tarp, wood, and fiberglass
72 x 96 in

182.9 x 243.8 cm

Matt Johnson Drywall #5 (Baby Aqua M440-3), 2017

Matt Johnson

Drywall #5 (Baby Aqua M440-3), 2017
carved wood and paint

84 x 108 x 72 in

213.4 x 274.3 x 182.9 cm

Lazaros Shelter, 2011

Lazaros

Shelter, 2011
NGO distributed post-disaster tarpaulin
104 x 144 x 2 in
264 x 366 x 5 cm

Lazaros HSD.1952.078.a (WINGLESS BIRD), 2016

Lazaros

HSD.1952.078.a (WINGLESS BIRD), 2016

sood, paint, paper, pen, tape, resin
7 1/4 x 2 1/2 x 10 3/4 in

18.4 x 6.3 x 27 cm

Jason Matthew Lee bruteforcephreak (untitled, suicide, and concrete_island), 2017

Jason Matthew Lee

bruteforcephreak (untitled, suicide, and concrete_island), 2017
mixed media on cut and welded pay-phones

each: 21 x 7.5 x 6.25 in

each: 53 x 19 x 12.7 cm

Jason Matthew Lee bruteforcephreak (concrete_island), 2017

Jason Matthew Lee

bruteforcephreak (concrete_island), 2017
mixed media on cut and welded pay-phone

21 x 7.5 x 6.25 in

53 x 19 x 12.7 cm

Jason Matthew Lee bruteforcephreak (suicide), 2017

Jason Matthew Lee

bruteforcephreak (suicide), 2017
mixed media on cut and welded pay-phone

21 x 7.5 x 6.25 in

53 x 19 x 12.7 cm

Jason Matthew Lee bruteforcephreak (untitled), 2017

Jason Matthew Lee

bruteforcephreak (untitled), 2017
mixed media on cut and welded pay-phones

21 x 7.5 x 6.25 in

53 x 19 x 12.7 cm

Tony Matelli Two Faces, 2015

Tony Matelli

Two Faces, 2015

urethane on mirror

36 x 24 in
91.44 x 60.96 cm

Tony Matelli Weed #334, 2014

Tony Matelli

Weed #334, 2014

painted bronze
11 x 7 x 13 in

27.9 x 17.8 x 33 cm

Tony Matelli Weed #365, 2016

Tony Matelli

Weed #365, 2016

painted bronze
13 x 10 x 20 in

33 x 25.4 x 50.8 cm

Tony Matelli Weed #374, 2017

Tony Matelli

Weed #374, 2017

painted bronze
22 1/2 x 13 x 8 in

57.2 x 33 x 20.3 cm

Pentti Monkkonen Cell Towers, 2017

Pentti Monkkonen

Cell Towers, 2017
wood, anodized aluminum, electrical components, fluorescent lights, steel, paint
various dimensions

Ruben Ochoa Pinky Swear, 2017

Ruben Ochoa

Pinky Swear, 2017

galvanized steel and concrete

108 x 204 x 24 in
274.3 x 518.2 x 61 cm

Jon Pylypchuk I know you always wanted more, 2016

Jon Pylypchuk

I know you always wanted more, 2016
enamel, spray paint, fabric, light bulbs on panel
40 x 40 in
101.6 x 101.6 cm

Jon Pylypchuk We find this closeness and this distance insufferable, 2016

Jon Pylypchuk

We find this closeness and this distance insufferable, 2016

tires, lightbulbs, spray paint, crate containing an older artwork

76 x 78 x 71 in
193 x 198.1 x 180.3 cm

Ry Rocklen Tired Boy, 2017

Ry Rocklen

Tired Boy, 2017
ceramic, glaze decal, mirror, frame, glass, hardware
39 x 47 x 10 in
99.1 x 119.4 x 25.4 cm

Nancy Rubins Collage, 2008

Nancy Rubins

Collage, 2008
giclée print on archival paper mounted on aluminum

67 1/4 x 72 5/8 x 1 1/4 in

170.8 x 184.5 x 3.2 cm

Sterling Ruby Transient Trilogy, 2005-2009

Sterling Ruby

Transient Trilogy, 2005-2009

single channel video
37 minutes, 22 seconds

Analia Saban Study for Concrete Cluster #1, 2017

Analia Saban

Study for Concrete Cluster #1, 2017

concrete and encaustic paint on linen
16 x 12 x 1 in

40.6 x 30.5 x 2.5 cm

Blair Saxon-Hill Aerobics, 2016

Blair Saxon-Hill

Aerobics, 2016
mixed media
39 x 80 x 3 in

99.1 x 203.2 x 7.6 cm

Blair Saxon-Hill Pitcher, 2016

Blair Saxon-Hill

Pitcher, 2016
mixed media
82 x 20 x 11 in

208.3 x 50.8 x 27.9 cm

Blair Saxon-Hill Specter / Spectator, 2016

Blair Saxon-Hill

Specter / Spectator, 2016

mixed media
93 x 26 x 3 in
236.2 x 66 x 7.6 cm

Blair Saxon-Hill To Be Real, 2016

Blair Saxon-Hill

To Be Real, 2016
mixed media
94 x 64 x 4 in

238.8 x 162.6 x 10.2 cm

Daniel Small The Petrified Order (Laptop, Xbox 360, X internet router, DVD player), 2017

Daniel Small

The Petrified Order (Laptop, Xbox 360, X internet router, DVD player), 2017
petrified eProps

Various dimensions

Piotr Uklanski Untitled (Dirty Sanchez), 2003

Piotr Uklanski

Untitled (Dirty Sanchez), 2003

hole, marker
7 x 9 x 2 in
17.8 x 22.9 x 5.1 cm

Kaari Upson Shadow Work, 2009

Kaari Upson

Shadow Work, 2009

digital video
19 minutes, 58 seconds

Chris Wiley Dingbat (32), 2015

Chris Wiley

Dingbat (32), 2015
archival inkjet print mounted on aluminum in artist’s frame with carpet
42 x 28 in
106.7 x 71.1 cm

Chris Wiley Dingbat (40), 2015

Chris Wiley

Dingbat (40), 2015
archival inkjet print mounted on aluminum in artist frame with fabric

42 x 28 in
106.7 x 71.1 cm

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