LA Art Show 2015: Dark Progressivism Debuts on International Stage

Posted by


The 20th anniversary of the LA Art Show opens tonight, and I am thrilled–not only because the art is amazing (check out Littletopia with its collection of local cutting edge galleries, and The Mural Conservancy Los Angeles’ booth which features Petal and Blossom and Los Quatros, along with art galleries from around the world), but because this is marks the debut of Dark Progressivism on an international stage. Here’s the official blurb:

Curated by Cartwheel Art’s editorial director Lisa Derrick and filmmaker/author Rodrigo Ribera d’Ebre, “Dark Progressivism: Metropolis Rising” marks the international debut of this Southern California nativist genre. The artists included this exhibition–some internationally known, others emerging, one who is a prisoner in Pelican Bay Prison’s Secure Housing Unit, and many of whom are featured in the film, Dark Progressivism: On Rupture to Rebellion–present works in black, white and shades of gray, drawing on Dark Progressivism’s roots in gang graffiti, illicit murals and tattooing, as well as commenting on the shadows out of which the artists, and Southern California as whole, have progressed over the past five decades. Artists include Abel M. Alejandre, Big Sleeps, Chaz Bojorquez, Cryptik, Daniel Gonzalez, Roberto Gutiérrez, Ed Gutter, Jesse Hazelip, Jason Hernandez, Juan Carlos Muñoz Hernandez, Alex Defer Kizu, Jack Morris, Rafael Reyes, Joe Prime Reza, and Gary Wong. Dark Progressivism is presented by Cartwheel Art, the film’s media sponsor.

We hung the show yesterday! Master installer and all around cool cat Gary Wong who has two pieces in the exhibition came down to check it out. We have major works by Chaz Bojorquez and Roberto Gutierrez (who is showing his monumental piece Ripped Apart for the first time ever), plus pieces created specifically for the exhibition from Big Sleeps, Cryptik, Defer, Prime, Jason Hernandez,  and Juan Carlos Muñoz Hernandez. Several collectors loaned us works, others came from the artists’ archives. It is a strong show–all black and white, elaborating on the concept of  German Expressionism and film noir.

Along with with art we are running the trailer of Dark Progressivism: On Rupture and Rebellion, written and directed by my co-curator Rodrigo Ribera d’Ebre, and music videos conceived by Rafael Reyes for his band Prayers which elaborate and expand upon the themes in his artwork.

Sunday at 1pm we’re having a book signing with Big Sleeps, Rodrigo Ribera d’Ebre and Rafael Reyes. As part of the Cartwheel Art Tour designed for the LA Art Show, Cartwheel Art founder Cindy Schwarzstein will be taking tour participants on a spin of the LA Art Show, including a look at Littletopia. For more details on Saturday’s tour of the LA Art District and the LA Art Show, click here.

IMG_0310 Left: Rafael Reyes; top: Gary Wong, Abel Alejandre, Ed Gutter; Ed Gutierrez; top Abel Alejandre, Jack Morris, Michael Ulrich, Jesse Hazelip IMG_0299

Bryan Chagolla hanging Chaz Bojórquez. Visible left to right, Ed Gutiérrez, Abel Alejandre, Daniel González, Jason Hernandez.IMG_0312We get all multimedia with music videos and our documentaryIMG_0300Me, Rodrigo and Gary Wong

Leave a Reply