Downtown Los Angeles, California
A show we’ve anticipated for quite some time opened nearby our new house lately. We found ourselves there with an old friend, Brian who wrote about his time there and shared it with us to share with you. How nice.
Last Thursday was the opening of “The Mothership, In Our Details are the Maps of Existence” at Dilettante in Downtown Los Angeles. I don’t have a nice camera, so I used the 10-megapixel Nikon Coolpix L20 I bought as a throw-away on a trip to Prague in 2010. According to the official description, “The Mothership is a vessel that guides and carries smaller vessels … a symbol of the collective conscience form, which we, as individuals, draw creativity and inspiration from.” The show, which features work from a selection of female artists, is intended as a celebration of that vessel.
A giant spider made of Swarovski Crystals greets us just inside the door. This is Eye Walker by Amanda Charchian. I ask Amanda what her piece is about, and she sighs, then responds “It’s based on a Native American myth about the eye walker. It’s about magic. Good magic — white magic. Sympathetic magic.” When I ask Amanda if she got frustrated stringing together all the little crystals, she stares, deadpan. “No. It’s a meditative process.”
Next to the spider, a bunch of glitter-coated knives are stuck into the wall. This isGiving in to All My Best Qualities by Lola Rose Thompson. Lola and Amanda went to Otis around the same time; they are good friends.
Lola steals my camera to take a picture of Amanda with the glittery knives. Lola is not pictured, but she is also very good-looking.
I run into my friend Shane who tells me that “The stuff upstairs is really dope,” so we go upstairs. The stuff up there is really dope.
From the balcony, I see this dude examining the piece on the floor. I go downstairs to talk to him. His name is Jack. I ask Jack about his feelings on the piece. Jack thinks for a moment and replies, “It made me feel like a jazz riff. It’s a dancey piece, like a bunch of movement on the floor.” The piece is called Jazz Riff #1 by Lita Albuquerque.
This is Single Camera by Alia Shawkat. Alia says it was inspired by "a really bad audition I had one time. This guy," she points to the man painted red in the upper right corner, "he hated me. He was a producer. And this woman over here is a producer, that’s why she’s holding ‘CONTENT’."
Artist and event organizer Carly Jo Morgan stressed that she did not curate by selecting specific works. "I picked women who inspire me, gave out the theme, and let them go." Carly is herself currently a mothership.
I find Jacqueline Suskin of the Poem Store. You have seen her in the galleries and farmers’ markets of Los Angeles. On the wall behind her is her piece The Poet & The Timber Baron. I ask Jacqueline to write a poem about this show. Here is what she wrote: