A Los Angeles exhibit examines the recent transformation in abstract painting
As part of its ambitious plan to become a universal art space, the recently established Aïshti Foundation has co-funded a major exhibit at Los Angeles’ prestigious Museum of Contemporary Art. Named “The Painting Factory: Abstraction after Warhol,” the show explores the recent transformation of abstract painting into one of the most dynamic movements in contemporary art.
One of the places where this fresh approach to abstraction was germinating was the studio that might seem the farthest from the practice of the abstract tradition: Andy Warhol’s Factory. The Factory (Warhol’s original New York studio from 1962 to 1968) was a haven for all sorts of brilliant artistic misfits, but was also a lab in which historical and contemporary innovations in art and culture could be remixed and reconstituted.
After Warhol refocused on painting in the late ‘70s and ‘80s, with series like “Shadows,” “Oxidations” and “Rorschachs,” he transformed pure abstraction into an impure product that opened up new directions. He thrived on the increasing confusion between high art and progressive popular culture and the challenge to conventional methods of painting by the techniques of mechanical reproduction.
This group exhibit addresses a painting tradition that was once seen as essentially reductive, but has since become expansive, merging popular culture and current technology. On display are works by the likes of Tauba Auerbach, Mark Bradford, DAS INSTITUT (Kerstin Brätsch and Adele Röder), Urs Fischer, Wade Guyton, Glenn Ligon, Julie Mehretu, Seth Price, Sterling Ruby, Josh Smith, Rudolf Stingel, Kelley Walker, Andy Warhol and Christopher Wool.
“The Painting Factory: Abstraction after Warhol” is on view until August 20 at the Museum of Contemporary Art, 250 S. Grand Ave., Los Angeles, www.moca.org