LA’s newest gallery addition is more like a small kunsthalle as former LA MOCA Chief Curator and now HWS Partner Paul Schimmel leads the way for Hauser and Wirth’s sixth international gallery. Opening yesterday, March 13 in the Arts District in downtown Los Angeles, huge crowds blocked the sidewalks and cars filled the streets for hours as they thousands lined up for this mega arts event of the year.
And HWS didn’t disappoint. Located in an old flour mill that occupies a full city block, it is an example of “adaptive reuse” retrofitting of a 116,000 square foot 1917 building that allows a lot of the original structure to show while shoring up the HVAC, doing a cosmetic exterior makeover and erecting industrial exhibition spaces, a restaurant, and a bookstore that give this all the necessary kunsthalle attributes. It is very LA to the core in its casualness and works brilliantly.
And also in tune with the progressive nature of California is the opening exhibition, ‘Revolution in the Making: Abstract Sculpture by Women, 1947 – 2016, with 100 works made by 34 artists over the past seventy years. The intelligent and compelling exhibition is co-curated by Paul Schimmel, and Jenni Sorkin, art historian, critic, and Assistant Professor of Contemporary Art History at the University of California, Santa Barbara.
As stated in the press release about the show, ‘Revolution in the Making’ explores multiple strains of artistic approaches, characterized by abstraction and repetition, that reject the precedent of a monolithic masterwork on a pedestal, employing such tactics as stacking, hanging, and intertwining, to create an intimate reciprocity between artist and viewer. The exhibition examines how elements that are central to art today – including engagement with found, experimental, and recycled materials, as well as an embrace of contingency, imperfection, and unstructured play – were propelled by the work of women who, in seeking new means to express their own voices, dramatically expanded the definition of sculpture.”
In the future, HWS plans to offer “innovative exhibitions, museum-caliber amenities, and a robust schedule of public programs that contextualize the art on view, drawing upon, illuminating, and contributing to the urban culture of L.A.”
To find out more about what’s current and upcoming at HWS, go to http://www.hauserwirthschimmel.com/