Bruce Conner @ Reina Sofia, Spain

Bruce Conner @ Reina Sofia, Spain

This piece brings us closer to the work of the American artist Bruce Conner, currently considered one of the most important artists of the American underground scene of the second half of the 20th century. The exhibition, which can be seen in the Reina Sofía Museum from February 21 to May 22, brings together about 250 works made in different media: film and video, painting, assemblage, drawing, engraving, collage, 

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Bruce Conner & Wallace Berman - Huffington Post

Bruce Conner & Wallace Berman - Huffington Post

I’ve always remembered a story my father used to tell me, about how my mother was arrested in North Beach, San Francisco in the late 1950’s for walking barefoot in public. “Howl”, City Lights Books, and Lenny Bruce were often mentioned in the same conversations. Those were days when society and government heavily censored people - their writing, speech, music, public activity, and art - primarily out of fear, fear of anything different or non-conformist.

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Bruce Conner - sfist

Bruce Conner - sfist

Realist. Surrealist. Hippie. Punk. Bruce Conner (1933-2008) was all of these and more. A Bay Area pioneer in experimental film, collage, photography, conceptual works, and paintings, Conner challenged the limitations of medium, genre, and style, constantly breaking new ground.

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Bruce Conner - San Francisco Chronicle

Bruce Conner - San Francisco Chronicle

In an onstage conversation Wednesday, Oct. 26, at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, where Directors’ Circle donors were previewing “Bruce Conner: It’s All True,” it was emphasized that Conner, “the quintessential artist’s artist” by museum director Neal Benezra’s description, was a man of paradox.

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Bruce Conner - SFGATE

Bruce Conner - SFGATE

He made an art film about the Kennedy assassination and delicate, meditative paintings based on inkblots and autumn leaves. His haunting assemblages, like those of a viscerally rotting “COUCH” or a mutilated and gauze-shrouded “CHILD” bound in a high chair, hold an undimmed charge more than a half century after they were made. So do his photographs of San Francisco’s burgeoning punk rock scene of the 1970s and ’80s. Female nudes proliferate in his art. Mushroom clouds of nuclear bombs are forever blooming — one from the neck of a headless man in a collage.

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Bruce Conner - ARTFORUM

Bruce Conner - ARTFORUM

“WHAT A SHOW! WHAT A SHOW!” The reaction of the unseen, breathless, and elated MC at the end of Bruce Conner’s moving-image installation Three Screen Ray, 2006, is likely to be the exclamation of many a visitor exiting “Bruce Conner: It’s All True,” the revelatory retrospective of some 250 works currently installed at the Museum of Modern Art in New York (through …

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Wallace Berman - Fanzine

IDEAL HOME NOISE (9): BREAKDOWN, BERMAN, & GALEMBO

By JEFF JACKSON

WALLACE BERMAN: AMERICAN ALEPH
Edited by Claudia Bohn-Spector and Sam Mellon
(Kohn Gallery)

Though he’s hardly a household name, Wallace Berman’s work casts a long shadow. He helped create the vibrant West Coast art scene of the 1960s, and was one of the luminaries featured on the cover of The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. He’s been called a Beat artist and proto-Pop artist, but curator Johan Kugelberg more accurately describes him as “proto-punk, proto-DIY, and proto-appropriation art, and also post-Dada and post-Symbolist, and this and that, and whatever you want him to be.”

Berman’s multifaceted work refuses to fall into neat categories, which is why it’s remained a vital source of inspiration in the decades since his untimely death in 1976. He’s a major figure in American art whose true significance has yet to be fully realized.

The Kohn Gallery in Los Angeles recently mounted a Berman retrospective and their beautifully designed catalog serves as an excellent introduction to his work. It captures the full breadth of his output, including sculptures, collages, photographs, drawings, posters, film stills, mail art, and even images of pieces that are no longer extant.

There’s also a nod to his assemblage and literary magazine Semina, which lasted from 1955-64 and featured work from writers including Jean Cocteau, Herman Hesse, Robert Duncan, and John Wieners. For a deeper dive into this influential project, check out the recently reissued Semina Culture: Wallace Berman and his Circle.

American Aleph discusses Berman’s far-flung influences and the paths his work followed after an early gallery show was busted on obscenity charges. The catalog is most notable for the generous selection of Verifax collages he focused on during his final decade. These works feature a hand holding a transistor radio whose visual content continually changes: religious icons, politicians, pop stars, nudes, flowers, buildings, animals, and much more. They’re accompanied by Hebrew letters, deployed in ways that suggest mystical Kabbalistic associations.

This onslaught of images feels remarkably contemporary, leaving viewers to discern their own patterns and meanings. They’re mysteries whose depths remain unplumbed, transmissions vibrating on their own disruptive frequency.

Source: http://thefanzine.com/ideal-home-noise-9-b...