A.i.A. editors suggest a few of the myriad events in Los Angeles this week: A lecture by Walead Beshty on Michael Asher at MoCA; Aryana Ghazi-Hessami speaks on Adrian Piper; a performance by Emma Sulkowicz at Coagula Curatorial; a conversation between Sebastião Salgado and Pico Iyer at the Broad Stage; and a panel discussion at Art Center Pasadena Graduate Center.
Thursday, February 25, 7:00 p.m.
In conjunction with his work currently in the exhibition “The Art of Our Time” at MOCA Grand Avenue, conceptual photographer Walead Beshty will speak on the work of Michael Asher as part of the museum's “Artists on Artists” series of talks. Asher’s influence on the art of L.A. has chiefly been felt through his teaching practice. During his 30-year tenure at the California Institute of the Arts, he became known for the marathon critiques that are now a standard part of the CalArts curriculum. His work questions the environments in which we view art, creating slight interventions to undermine the perceived authority of gallery and museum spaces.
MOCA Grand Avenue, 250 South Grand Avenue
Friday, February 26, 8:00 p.m.
The Women’s Center for Creative Work has taken on the topic of “soft power” in its winter series of lectures. Joining the discussion on Friday is their fellow-in-residence, writer Aryana Ghazi-Hessami, who has previously spoken at WCCW on philosopher Catherine Malabou and Parisian graffiti artist Princess Hijab. This week she looks at the work of Adrian Piper to suggest how conceptual art can reorient ideas about political difference, or persuade its audience to adopt new ones.
WCCW, 2425 Glover Place
Saturday, February 27, 8:00 p.m.
The arts journal Coagula Curatorial hosts the first solo exhibition by recent Columbia University graduate Emma Sulkowicz at its Chinatown venue. Sulkowicz received substantial media attention for her durational performance Mattress Performance (Carry That Weight), 2014-15, during which she carried her 50-pound mattress around Columbia’s campus in protest of the university’s inadequate response to her allegations that another student had raped her. At Coagula, she presents Self-Portrait (Performance with Object), a new performance, in which participants are invited to interact with the artist, who will stand on a platform in the gallery. If they ask questions she perceives as objectifying or fetishizing her, they will be redirected to Emmatron, a life-size replica of Sulkowicz programmed to answer a series of preset questions.
Coagula Curatorial, 974 Chung King Road
Monday, February 29, 7:30 p.m.
The Library Foundation of Los Angeles’ OUTLOUD series presents a conversation between Brazilian photojournalist Sebastião Salgado and travel writer Pico Iyer. Salgado has traveled to over 100 countries for his photographic projects presented in books such as Workers (1993), Migrations and Portraits (2000), and Africa (2007). An award-winning documentary of his life and work, The Salt of the Earth, directed by Wim Wenders, was released in 2014. Pico Iyer is the author of books including the New York Times bestsellers The Open Road (2008) and The Art of Stillness (2014).
The Broad Stage, 1310 11th Street, Santa Monica
Tuesday March 1, 6:30 p.m.
This week continues the ArtCenter’s excellent Graduate Seminar lecture series programmed by faculty member Jack Bankowsky with a panel titled “The Art World We Deserve.” Panelists include curators Bob Nickas, Alison Gingeras and Brendan Dugan, artist Laura Owens and Ooga Booga bookstore owner Wendy Yao.
Los Angeles Times Media Center, 1700 Lida Street, Pasadena