artistic evolution

Lucky-U-Robert-Irwin900.jpg

And so begins my updates on Pacific Standard Time. The other day I looked over at my friend and said, "I can't believe I haven't written a thing about Pacific Standard Time". The reply "Why would you need to write about the time zone?" No. No. PST is the collaboration of over sixty cultural institutions across Southern California who decided it was time to join forces and illustrate once and for all the story behind the L.A. art scene. I am seriously over-joyed by this. In fact, the lack of institutional collaborations was one of my biggest gripes about the L.A. art scene. The dialogue here never really seemed cohesive. Everyone was just doing their own thing, which is fine (and rightfully so) but something was missing. The culture is rich. The art is rich. The art scene? If you're not in the mix of it all, it can be a bit of a mystery. That seems to be changing.

Let's start with Artistic Evolution - an exhibit taking place at the Natural History Museum, which offers a view of the institution's role in contributing majorly to the Los Angeles art scene. Of course, when you think of NHM, the first thing that comes to mind falls along the lines of science and natural history. However, prior to LACMA's opening in 1965, this institution was the cultural center for many of the art world titans we know by name today - John Baldessari, Larry Bell, Billy Al Bengston, Robert Irwin, Ed Ruscha and Betye Saar, to name a few. The show starts October 2, 2011 and is on view until January 15, 2012. It's set to hang in the museum's elegant Rotunda, which boasts of a 58-foot dome and 20-foot skylight, so I say the experience as a whole should get you moving on over there, no?

Thanks to NHM for the info and image.

(Image: Robert Irwin, Lucky U, 1960 15 5/8" x 15 3/8" Oil on canvas. Collection Joni and Monte Gordon, Los Angeles © 2011 Robert Irwin / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York)