Matthias Merkel Hess demonstrates an impressive power of aesthetic transformation with a contemplative and intelligent solo exhibition at Acme Gallery on Wilshire Boulevard. One of the foremost principles of art is an act of transformation. This can be as basic as observing the three-dimensional object and rendering it in two dimensions. Of course it can [...]
Author: Mario M. Muller
With 27 years as an Artist, Educator and Curator under my belt, I know what I like and why I like it.
I hold a degree in Filmmaking and Fine Art from Northwestern University where my primary mentor was Ed Paschke. I’ve also been fortunate enough to have master classes with Roy Lichtenstein, Wayne Thiebaud, Esteban Vincente, and Elaine de Kooning.
A born and bred New Yorker, I live and work in Los Angeles with my wife and four year old son.
As a writer of cultural criticism, my primary subjects have been Painting, Photography and Film. My film reviews appeared regularly in several Mid-western publications in the 1990’s while my art criticism has been exclusively published in New York and Los Angeles.
Dovetailing neatly with my critical interests, I have curated numerous exhibitions for corporate, gallery and non-for-profit venues. Essays have accompanied most of these shows.
And as an educator I have taught as a guest lecturer at the School for Visual Arts, International Center for Photography and the 92nd Street Y, all in NYC.
The Santa Monica Museum of Art throws a great party. Every year, around this time there’s a party that’s thrown called Incognito. Should the name conjure images of revelers with bars across their eyes or entire heads pixelated beyond recognition, you might be a little off in your expectations. Incognito is an annual fundraiser for [...]
The power of photography, in its infancy, was often associated with magic. To capture the likeness of animate or inanimate objects with chemicals is of course a sort of alchemy. But along with democratic availability of the technology came not only a ubiquity but also a disillusion of magic. Rinko Kawauchi is one of the [...]
I’ve always been a fan of drawings by sculptors. Perhaps more than any category of artist, sculptors have an innate understanding of line, volume and form on paper. Puryear, Shapiro, Balkenhol, Rodin and Kapoor have all been bilingual in sculpture and drawing. Richard Serra belongs to this group in a distinctive manner. Rather than translate [...]
Let’s face facts: art fairs are entertainment. They provide an opportunity for the mildly culturally curious to scan and peruse 40-80 galleries which trot out their chosen “best.” All under one roof. Art fairs are the malls of the visual culture world. They come in all shapes and sizes. Some are pretentious, expensive and self [...]
Heroic can come in many forms. More often than not it is content that signals the heroic. And yet, perhaps the most inventive form of the heroic in art slips under the radar in the guise of scale. This is certainly true of a medium that is often, if not always, associated with intimacy and [...]
Poetry is in short supply in the art world. It’s as if there’s a general mistrust of even the search for beauty, truth or elegance. Thank god there’s George Stoll to fill the void. With ten pieces installed in the sun-drenched gallery of Maloney Fine Art, Stoll reacquaints us with grace achieved through rigor and [...]
Every so often one stumbles upon something in the art world that acts like an aesthetic Wasabi. Stopping in at Gallery Brown off 3rd Street the other morning initiated such a moment of palette cleansing recently. Installed in the sunny windows of the gallery were plastic containers, in groupings of two and three, of varying [...]
Richard Prince has come west. Riding into Beverly Hills with a posse of cowboys shouldn’t be surprising. It is perhaps the most natural way the elder statesman of appropriation art should stake his claim in Los Angeles. We are, after all, not only the epicenter of American image broadcasting but also the NASDAQ of artificiality. [...]
Communal openings do bring out the crowds. On an evening when frost warnings were posted, LA’s art world denizens came out in serious numbers to attend dozens of galleries in the La Cienega/Washington vortex. It must be said from the onset, openings are probably the worst possible time to actually view art. This malady was [...]