Guest post: Southern California picks from Amelia Rina

Cliff Notes

Each week, our regional Cliff Notes columnists Christopher AlamSharon ArnoldDemian DinéYazhi’, and Angella d’Avignon pick the most exciting events and exhibitions on the West Coast. BUT this week we had a scheduling conflict, so VW founder Amelia Rina is popping in with some picks from Southern California.

Friends and Lovers
Shulamit Nazarian, Los Angeles, CA
July 15 to August 19

Hold on to your hats folks because this show is bursting with goodness. I don’t know about you, but I’ve been feeling some serious midsummer ennui/psychic restlessness/destabilization (are there any witches out there who can explain why?) that has made me really ache for the very specific comfort that comes from intimate connection, whether romantic or otherwise. I just want to be around people who make me feel safe and loved. So, you can probably understand why it feels like this exhibition was curated specifically for me (and why it’s particularly frustrating that I won’t be able to see it).

I’m a sucker for anything with Peter Hujar in it, and this show just keeps delivering with an incredible group of over 20 artists: I’ll pay attention to anything Clifford Prince King or Summer Wheat do; the Daniel Gordon piece on the exhibition page is so weird and stunning; and the Widline Cadet photograph above makes my heart sigh.

Reflection: What kind of friendships do you need right now? How can you prioritize those relationships?

Monique van Genderen, Paintings
Quint Gallery, San Diego, CA
June 3 to July 15

Flipping 180° from the deliciously syrupy feelings in the previous pick, Monique van Genderen’s paintings are energetic and inquisitive but much less sentimental. At first, I thought they had a microscopic biology vibe to them—like I was seeing an extreme enlargement of the beautiful cellular insides of a plant or something like that. Then, after reading the press release, I learned that they’re more of a narrative dissection.

Van Genderen’s paintings communicate with each other through their connections to one another. Two wall-size works called A-Side and B-Side were made in a feedback loop with one another. Now, smaller works join the series as indexical “after images”—that visual phenomena when you stare at something for a few seconds and then look at a white wall and see a kind of ghost image in the inverse colors. The works are playful and explore the fallibility of memory.

Reflection: Do you ever remember something as being better than it actually was? Or worse? How do you know for sure?

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