December 3rd, 2011 - January 14th 2012
Reception: December 3rd, 2011 4-6PM
Coming out of the Beat Generation of the 1950s, George Herms is recognized - along with Ed Kienholz, Wallace Berman and Bruce Conner - as a leading figure of California Assemblage. His work combines aged, stained, and rusted detritus, always rubber stamped with the four letters L-O-V-E (the E printed backwards). The collages in this exhibition are from the past 40 years, representing a few different bodies of work. The Sepia Jones collages (2002-2003) combine a word or two from bold newsprint headlines (such as "Mob" or "Same Congress") along with one or two images torn from print media. The simple juxtapositions ignite a plethora of connotations - like improvised jazz, one riff playing off another. Another series of collages in the exhibit resulted while Herms sifted through boxes of his personal papers as the Getty was cataloguing them for acquisition. The discarded envelopes, blank sheets of thin cardboard, and other scraps of mail were covered with patterns of pale brown and tan acid staining. Herms assembled these remnants into subtle layers of tone and shape.
Julian Wasser started his career in photography in the 1950s as a teenager shooting crime scenes in Washington D.C. which he sold to The Washington Post. As a copy boy at Associated Press, he met Weegee and rode around with the legendary and unflinching press photographer. After university and military service, he settled in Hollywood and worked for many years as a contract photographer for TIME, LIFE and PEOPLE. The exhibit at Craig Krull Gallery entitled Los Angeles will include night scenes of the Sunset Strip in the 60s, images of key LA figures such as Joan Didion, Ed Ruscha and Jack Nicholson, as well as historic photos of the Watts Riots and Robert F. Kennedy at the Ambassador Hotel. His picture of Marcel Duchamp playing chess with a nude woman (Eve Babitz) has become an icon of conceptual photography.
Finally, the gallery will present a small exhibition of photographs by Edmund Teske of legendary artists and the early L.A. art, music and experimental film scenes such as George Herms, Kenneth Anger, Ramblin Jack Elliott and Jim Morrison. Teske's images however, are never mere portraits. A true poet and photographic alchemist, Teske employed manipulative and chance darkroom techniques that the artist likened to Hindu philosophies concerning the interplay of natural forces. He was honored with two major exhibitions at the J. Paul Getty Museum in 1993 and 2004.
All three of these exhibitions are part of the Getty initiative, Pacific Standard Time: Art in Los Angeles 1945-1980. On Saturday, December 3rd, the gallery will hold a reception from 4-6pm. George Herms and Julian Wasser will briefly speak about their work at 3:45pm