The “foodie fashion” movement seems to have catapulted into fame this year. There are t-shirts that feature bacon patterns and sweaters that feature photo-realistic, monster sized french fries and even shoes covered in candy. Whether the product of designers with the munchies or junk food adoring companies, there is no way of telling—but food in fashion has definitely been showing up more and more. This brings up an important question: what would an LA entry into this world look like? Local high-end street brand Casen Kreation have suggested an answer with a new collection of bright photographic print based wears that feature fruit. Yes, fruit—because Californians are healthy!
Alex Prager is one of those local artists who is just so unique and talented and special that she’s morphed into a national treasure. When she does work, it doesn’t make little headlines on local websites but gets grand lightboxing over at Daily Beast and the New York Times. When she makes work, it is a well pronounced, well announced occurrence by media outlets abuzz about what she is doing. Very recently, Prager debuted the latest in her body of Hitchcockian photo sets that is a study on the safety, anonymity, fears, and dangers of crowds. Aptly titled Faces In The Crowd, these giant staged photographs are currently on display at their debut showing at Washington, DC’s Corcoran.
I first encountered Shizu Saldamando‘s work at LAX. Her intricate and intimate pen-on-bedsheet portraits flank the “Departures Hallway” between Terminal 7 and 8, and brought me out of my air-travel tunnel-vision long for a few pleasurable minutes. Saldamando’s work appears at the airport as part of LAX’s newly initiated Influx project, which aims to “transform the airport’s public spaces into art spaces.”
Weeks later, I was given a tour of the Vincent Prince Art Museum by writer Marisela Norte. I was delighted to recognize Saldamando’s work, exhibited in the solo survey show When You Sleep Featuring large scale portrait drawings of “everyday” scenes and subcultures, the work makes her subjects shimmer, their magic heightened by the deliberate neglect of scenes’ backgrounds. Most of her subjects are young and racially diverse, and their urban music scene context is read through their style choices. These are portraits of young Angelenos in an environment they’ve chosen and helped to create, whose identities exist both within and beyond race – a complicated layering that Saldamando captures with sophistication.
Tanya Aguiniga reminds her audience that the American Craft Movement in California isn’t over: it has just changed. The artist and designer inhabits an area that marries folksy practices with contemporary, forward thinking forms. She’s made a name for herself in Los Angeles—and the world—in showing her creations in both gallery and retail spaces. Her rope knot bracelets seem to have singlehandedly inspired a fashion movement that repurposes similar industrial materials for accessories.
Her latest offering, coming off the heels of her Arts ReSTORE residency, is a little show of new work at Melrose design destination Reform Gallery. The show sees Aguiniga returning to Reform, a venue that offered the artist her first solo exhibit in 2008. This offering is a departure from what you may have seen from her lately—but is note entirely unexpected. The show—Fiber Elements—features gauze wall hangings embellished with metallic stamps. The work suggest a homeyness and a clinical complexity, an effect that comes from the combining of soft and hard materials.
On the third day of Holiday, my LA friend gave to me… OKUM MADE’s O’Clocks.