March 8 - May 31, 2009
Nine Lives: Visionary Artists from L.A. is the fifth in the Hammer’s biannual invitational exhibition series highlighting work created in greater Los Angeles. Nine Lives features over 125 works, much of it new, by nine artists spanning four generations—Lisa Anne Auerbach, Julie Becker, Llyn Foulkes, Charles Irvin, Hirsch Perlman, Victoria Reynolds, Kaari Upson, Jeffrey Vallance, and Charlie White. The works include video, paintings, drawings, photography, textiles, and two new sculptural installations. As all of the artists live and work in L.A., Nine Lives embodies many of the psychic complexities and paradoxes of the city – it is at once beautiful and frightening, refined and unruly.
The reinvention of oneself is central to several of these artists’ practices. These mesmerizing artists create characters and tell stories of fantasy and science fiction, building alternate worlds grounded on their obsessions. Popular culture and mythology are common themes, as are alternative lifestyles, and subcultures. The luxury of space and privacy that Los Angeles affords allows them the freedom to tinker, research, and explore their obsessions which often parallel Hollywood’s dream factory.
Curated by Ali Subotnick.