LA MOCA Taps Beasties’ Mike D to Curate Art Show


Jeffrey Deitch, director of L.A. MOCA since 2010, has drafted a giant from the pop-music world to organize an upcoming cultural festival that will include an art exhibition at MOCA’s Geffen Contemporary. The Beastie Boys’ Mike D, aka Michael Diamond, will curate “Transmission L.A.: AV Club” [Apr. 19-May 10]. 

Diamond trolled the Lower East Side recently, visiting galleries and seeking artists for the show, according to a curator familiar with his process.

Klara Liden and Brooklyn art collective Still House are among the artists who will be included, according to a curator and to one of the artists involved.

Hosted by online magazine The Avant/Garde Diaries, “Transmission L.A.” will be sponsored by Mercedes-Benz. Its first iteration, curated by Belgian fashion designer Raf Simons, took place in Berlin last year.

Swedish-born Liden recently garnered attention for her installation S.A.D. at Reena Spaulings, which amassed dozens of discarded Christmas trees from the streets of New York.

Still House is a group of eight 20-something artists, mostly from L.A., who work in various mediums and had their first show in 2009 at Rental gallery, on New York’s Lower East Side. (Rental is now Untitled Gallery.)

“Mike D found out about our work somehow through someone,” said Still House’s Isaac Brest. “He looked at our website and saw that we had done a residency in Tribeca in which we took over an abandoned Department of Transportation office. We created work there, inspired by the space, then opened it up as
an exhibition.”

The collective will bring a similar approach to their participation in Transmission. “We’re setting up a studio and making work in it. We’re basically transplanting the program we have in Red Hook, of a rotating residency, to L.A.,” Brest said.

UPDATE: Liden is not part of the show, according to MOCA.

Photo: Zachary Susskind, Self-Portrait, Wilshire Boulevard, 2009.