The First Art Newspaper on the Net   Established in 1996 United States Monday, June 25, 2018

State of Mind: New California Art circa 1970 at the Orange County Museum of Art
Linda Mary Montano: Chicken Dance: The Streets of San Francisco, 1972; performance documentation; courtesy of the artist, Saugerties, New York. Photo: Mitchell Payne.

ORANGE COUNTY, CA.- The Orange County Museum of Art presents the exhibition State of Mind: New California Art circa 1970, opening October 9, 2011. Co-organized by OCMA and the University of California, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, and cocurated by Constance Lewallen and Karen Moss, the exhibition showcases more than 150 works of art—installations, photographs, videos, artists‘ books, and extensive performance documentation—that demonstrate the crucial role of California artists in the development of Conceptual art and other new genres. State of Mind includes newly discovered works from the period as well as rarely seen works from archives.

"In the 1960s, the Newport Harbor Art Museum, predecessor to OCMA, was one of very few venues for contemporary art in Southern California. During its first decade, the museum organized exhibitions presenting groundbreaking works by artists such as Michael Asher, John Baldessari, Allen Ruppersberg, Terry Fox, Howard Fried, Paul Kos, Bonnie Sherk, Nancy Buchanan, Chris Burden, and Barbara T. Smith, to name just a few," stated OCMA Director Dennis Szakacs. "We are excited to work again with these pioneers and to revisit this important period of our history, one that is essential to understanding California‘s extraordinary contributions to the art world."

Social Change in California
In the mid 1960s California emerged as an incubator for social change and youth-oriented counterculture. The Watts Riots in South Central Los Angeles, the Chicano students‘ protest against racism and inequality in the public schools, and the despair over the Vietnam War, had a major impact on the artists in this exhibition, who held the fervent belief that they were helping to forge a new, more open society.

Conceptual art was emerging at the same time and in response to similar cultural and social changes in New York, Europe, and Latin America. What made California unique within the United States was its relative scarcity of cultural institutions, social traditions, and markets vis-à-vis other creative centers. And with several recently opened art schools, California represented the future and freedom for experimentation of all kinds; the old order was under attack, revolution was in the air, and traditional forms of art seemed remote and wholly inadequate to the concerns of the moment.

The new art was rarely produced in the studio, even less often in the museum or commercial gallery; it took place in the streets—such as First Supper, performed by artist collective Asco in 1974—artist-run galleries, and other venues not usually associated with art. No longer satisfied with the museum‘s role as mausoleum for static art, artists performed live events or produced interactive installations as a means to critique the 'institution'.

The importance of art departments and art schools in California circa 1970 cannot be underestimated, performing crucial roles as both patron and scene in the 1960s and 1970s. The University of California built three new campuses in Irvine, San Diego, and Santa Cruz, and hired prominent artists to start new art programs, while the state university system created experimental colleges and art departments.

According to Karen Moss, State of Mind co-curator, "The zeitgeist of Conceptualism and other avantgarde practices of the 1960s and 1970s seen in State of Mind still flourishes today, as California artists continue to experiment with and innovate new methodologies, technologies, and sites for their work beyond the 'white cube.' Also, many of the artists included in the exhibition have taught in the art schools, serving as critical mentors for subsequent generations of young artists."

Content and Focus of the Exhibition
State of Mind is organized around ten themes: the Street, the Environment, Politics, Feminism, Domestic Space, Public Space, Perceptual and Psychological Space, the Body and Performance, Art About Art, Artists' Books and Ephemera. The exhibition presents visitors with new juxtapositions between artists from Northern and Southern California, who were sometimes working in similar fashion, while at other times moving in separate and distinctive directions.

With Conceptualism‘s focus on ideas, language, and systems of meaning, the exhibition showcases extensive texts and artworks that were placed in established journals and newspapers, as well as in alternative publications, giving artists the ability to disseminate their ideas. Through rare publications, visitors will gain a deeper understanding of how artists of this period successfully used media to address issues of the day.

With the advent of the Sony Portapack, artists could produce their own, more radical forms of video art. State of Mind includes important video as well as extensive photography, both of which document ground-breaking, one-time performances that happened throughout the State and that bring to life the artistic practices of that era.

Conceptualism‘s examination of space, both public and private, led several artists to explore art installations—a practice ubiquitous today but relatively unexplored prior to this period—several of which will be recreated for State of Mind.

With more than 150 works of art—both iconic works and those that are lesser known—the exhibition includes key examples of Conceptualism and other new genres that emerged in the late 1960s and early 1970s. In addition, the museum is organizing a series of performances, talks, and readings by some of the leaders of California Conceptualism.

Conceptual Art and other Avant-garde Practices
In the charged social climate of the time, urban space offered a new opportunity for artistic investigation. Ed Ruscha was a precursor to artists who elevated the mundane environment to a subject for art. His accordion-folded book Every Building on the Sunset Strip (1966), on view in the exhibition, immortalized West Hollywood‘s Sunset Strip as it looked in 1966. Paul McCarthy was new to Los Angeles when he made his slide projection piece May 1, 1971 (1971). Whereas Ruscha photographed every building he passed from a 35mm camera mounted on the back of his pickup truck, McCarthy shot his twenty-five photographs from a stationary location—only the continuous stream of cars changes from one scene to the next. This is the first time this key early work will be shown in California.

To other young Conceptualists, the street was less a subject than a site for performance. For some, it provided the opportunity to reach a wide audience; a special appeal for groups who had generally been excluded from established exhibition venues even as they were entering the art world in greater numbers.

In San Francisco in the early 1970s, Bonnie Sherk created the Sitting Still series (1970), in which she sat for approximately one hour in various city locations as a means to subtly change the environment simply by becoming an unexpected part of it. In 1972, Linda Mary Montano also performed around the city, dancing spontaneously in famous locations in San Francisco; she wore a blue prom dress and a chicken hat and pulled a cassette player on a cart. If Sherk was interested in transformation of the urban environment, Montano sought personal transformation through her performances, which bordered on the ecstatic. State of Mind includes several photographs of these performance pieces culled from the artists personal archives, most never seen by the public.

Unlike the public nature of Sherk and Montano‘s performances, Bas Jan Ader engaged in solitary performances that became known later only through photographs. Ader‘s In Search of the Miraculous (One Night in Los Angeles (1973) records in photographs his dusk-to-dawn walk from the Hollywood Hills to the Pacific Ocean. Each of the eighteen photographs of his journey contains a handwritten lyric from The Coasters‘ 1957 rhythm-and-blues ballad "Searchin‘."

Some projects mixed private with public space. On weekends between May 7 and June 12, 1971, visitors could rent one of seven rooms in Allen Ruppersberg‘s Al’s Grand Hotel (1971) presented on Sunset Boulevard in Los Angeles. The artist-designed rooms included a Breakfast Room, outfitted with restaurant booths, and a rough-hewn wooden cross diagonally spanned the Jesus Room. State of Mind showcases the most comprehensive installation of Al’s Grand Hotel artifacts, photographs, and the original soundtrack from this work of art.

With the dominance of language in Conceptual art and the use of text to document ephemeral practices, the number of artists‘ publications expanded exponentially. These works ranged from artists‘ books and journals to posters and postcards. Some pieces existed to document other ephemeral productions, serving as the only evidence of that action or event; others were produced as the primary art object. These practices were aided by an abundance of small, alternative presses and easily accessible printing facilities in art departments and art schools. Artists also pirated television airwaves and radio broadcasts and, increasingly, with the advent of video, produced their own, more radical forms of media. Rare issues of publications, artists‘ books, and other forms of media intervention highlight for visitors these ground-breaking works of art.

The use of the body as a material is one of the defining characteristics of California Conceptual art. Throughout the state, artists used the body as both subject and object of their artwork for a variety of reasons; to test the body‘s limits; to explore its sculptural potential; to act as a means of selfunderstanding and transformation. These practices were often documented through the newly available use of video, several examples of which are on display throughout State of Mind.

Southern California artist Chris Burden explored the body through performance—flirting with danger to experience what most wish to avoid—in a series of iconic performances he began while still a graduate student at the University of California, Irvine. In his most infamous performance, Shoot, a friend shot Burden in the arm with a .22 rifle on November 19, 1971, at F Space in Orange County.

The rise of the feminist movement played an important role as many women came into the art world in the early 1970s with the need to forge an identity in an overwhelmingly male-dominated field. Artists working within this movement often incorporated their bodies in performances, actions, and sculptural works in order to call attention to how the body is 'culturally marked' with differences such as gender. In Representational Painting (1971), Eleanor Antin treats the camera like a dressing-table mirror before which she transforms herself through the careful application of makeup, commenting on traditional painting and how women choose to represent themselves to the world.

Perhaps no other female artist put herself more on the line to challenge perceived notions of female passivity and to test the limits of the artist-viewer relationship than LA-based artist Barbara T. Smith.In Feed Me (1973), a performance at the Museum of Conceptual Art in San Francisco, the artist allowed visitors, one by one, to enter a small space—in which she lay nude—and to interact with her as they chose. By leaving herself vulnerable to any interaction, she shifted the responsibility for behavior onto the mostly male participants.

The most enduring legacy of early California Conceptualism has been its breadth, which impressed upon succeeding generations a broader understanding of what art could be. Virtually all of the hallmarks of contemporary art practice—collectivity, emphasis on the ephemeral, body-oriented performance, participation, art as life, political commentary, and art as social interaction—were pioneered in California during Conceptualism‘s formative era, an era in which the very definition of art, the role of the artist, and that of its academic and institutional structures were challenged. This was the core of the Conceptual revolution

Orange County Museum of Art | State of Mind |

Last Week News

October 9, 2011

Exhibition devoted to the works in black and white by Ellsworth Kelly at Haus der Kunst

North American debut of David Hockney's "Fresh Flowers" at the Royal Ontario Museum

World's oldest running motor car brings a remarkable $4,620,000 at RM's Hershey Sale

Three of the greatest painters of the last 200 years are brought together at Moderna Museet

Collectors of contemporary art may bid for a Banksy at the Cumberland Hotel

The Whitney presents "Real/Surreal", exploring two of the strongest currents in twentieth-century American art

Titian masterpiece among highlights of Miami's longest running contemporary art fair

Most ambitious exhibition to date on the work of Brancusi and Serra at the Guggenheim in Bilbao

Beauty as Duty: Textiles on the Home Front in WWII Britain exhibition on view at Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Winners Selected for ArtPrize 2011, top prize of $250,000 went to artist Mia Tavonatti

The Québec Triennial 2011: The Work Ahead of Us at the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal

Rare 1920 Gandhi letter advocating peace to be auctioned at Nate D. Sanders

Ronan & Erwan Bouroullec: Bivouac open exhibition at the Centre Pompidou-Metz

SOFA Chicago 2011 to feature more than 60 international art galleries and dealers

"Proto-Pop: The Elegant Object" exhibition at International Poster Gallery

"Bloodlines" James Aldridge first solo exhibition at Poppy Sebire

Des Moines Art Center exhibition looks at relationship between artist and subject in Vincent van Gogh

First major retrospective honoring the work of Sheila Hicks opens at the Mint Museum

Kunsthaus Zurich to stage 13 exhibitions in 2012 season

Massachusetts church shot during Revolution gets overhaul

October 8, 2011

Mexican archaeologists find Aztec temple platform at Mexico City's Templo Mayor ruin

Christie's announces the auction of an exceptional selection of Pop Art masterpieces

"Modern Masters from the Smithsonian American Art Museum" opens at Reynolda House Museum

Degas Dancer estimated at US$25-35 million to lead Christie's Impressionist and Modern evening sale

"Beckmann & America" at the Stadel Museum highlights Max Beckmann's late works

New show at Ordovas Gallery in London examines artist Francis Bacon's debt to Rembrandt

La Dolce Vita: 1950-1960. Stars and Celebrities in the Italian Fifties at Eataly New York

Christie's New York announces sale of selected works from the Herbert Collection this November

Frans Hals Museum confronts contemporary arts with master paintings of the Golden Age

The Pace Gallery presents "pionier" exhibition by German artist Carsten Nicolai

Egyptian treasures from the Brooklyn Museum exhibition opens at the Frist Center for the Visual Arts

Major exhibition&event that recounts Arte Povera at the Maxxi Museum in Rome

The Whitney presents three Landscapes: A film installation by Roy Lichtenstein

Miami Art Museum names Chief Financial Officer

International bidders drive Asian works of art auction past pre-sale estimate

Sam Jury is Perlmutter Award winner

Schwarzenegger inaugurates his museum in Austria

Sotheby's HK autumn sales achieved over US$411 million, the second highest total ever

Jury announced for United Kingdom's biggest painting prize

October 7, 2011

iPad Launch in Beijing Quiet, Orderly

Most extensive exhibition of Frank Stella's work in the UK to date at Haunch of Venison

Getty Museum and Getty Research Institute acquire Ed Ruscha photographs and archive

Comprehensive retrospective of the leading figure of Soviet Socialist Realism at Fundacion Juan March

Prince William V of Orange Glass Goblet expected to sell for 150,000 at Bonhams     

Architect Frank Gehry reveals new details for Dwight D. Eisenhower Memorial

Park Avenue Armory unveils design for multi-year project by Herzog and De Meuron

From Renaissance to Rodin: Celebrating the Tanenbaum Gift at the Art Gallery of Ontario

Midwest collectors drive sales of important Tiffany glass at Christie's New York in December

Sotheby's New York announces annual autumn sale of important Russian art in November

Shaped by War: Photographs by Don McCullin at the Imperial War Museum in London

More than a game of marbles as Greek and Roman sculpture makes top prices at Bonhams

"Surreal versus Surrealism" exhibition on view at the Valencian Institute of Modern Art

Strong attendance and solid results at Auctions America by RM's debut fall Carlisle sale

Booming Asian art market shows signs of stalling

Vermont tries to save historic buildings after Irene

Spokesman says Putin's dive treasure find was staged

Sotheby's Contemporary Art/Arab & Iranian and Arts of the Islamic World sales total $16,843,460

"Hitler Killed the Duck" solo exhibition by British artist David Bailey at Scream Gallery

Dive team retrieves old cannon from Detroit River

October 6, 2011

Anselm Kiefer: Selected Works from the Grothe Collection at the Museum Frieder Burda

The Whitney Museum of American Art presents David Smith: Cubes and Anarchy

A solo exhibition at the Schirn Kunsthalle highlights Icelandic artist Erro's work

The Ashmolean Museum opens Fall exhibition: Claude Lorrain: The Enchanted Landscape

Historic alliance opens door to Academy Museum at Los Angeles County Museum of Art

An outstanding blue and white vase sets a world record for any Ming porcelain at auction

South Indian Jewelery and Iznik outperform estimates at Bonhams Indian and Islamic sale

Grayson Perry: "The Tomb of the Unknown Craftsman" at the British Museum

One of the most iconic post-modernist designs, Proust's Armchair, to sell at Bonhams

Kayne Griffin Corcoran Gallery opens with inaugural exhibition featuring work by James Turrell

Barbican Art Gallery transformed by a major exhibition on OMA: One of the most influential architectural practices

The golden age of Albanian photography and five other exhibitions at maison européenne de la photographie

Artistic Evolution: Southern California Artists at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, 1945-1963

The BAT Artventure Collection Part III Realises $1,608,776

Third Prix Pictet commission, a series of over 30 photographs by Chris Jordans, unveiled

More iconic Marilyn Monroe costumes up for auction

Frank Lloyd Wright urn sells for record $772,000 at Leslie Hindman Auctioneers

Artist that influenced Tim Burton John Atkinson Grimshaw at Richard Green

Hitler Jewish annihilation letter on display in Los Angeles

October 5, 2011

Tate Modern launches a major retrospective of German artist Gerhard Richter's work

"Picasso's Drawings, 1890-1921: Reinventing Tradition" traveling exhibition at The Frick Collection

Some 200 paintings and other works from the Steins' collection at Paris' Grand Palais

Toledo Museum of Art acquires stunning masterwork by Dutch artist Frans Hals

"Vermeer's Women: Secrets and Silence" opens at the Fitzwilliam Museum

Bonhams to sell stunning JMW Turner painting of Kirkby Lonsdale Churchyard

Exhibition of portraits by Julia Margaret Cameron at Hans P. Kraus Jr. Fine Photographs

The Museo del Prado shows Goya's first documented painting for a period of six years

Walters Art Museum removes copyright restrictions on 10,000 images

Elvira Dyangani Ose appointed Curator of international art with a focus on Africa at Tate Modern

Ayyam Auctions announces sale of art and antiques of the Islamic world: The Ottoman Levant

Two Polish paintings by Julian Falat stolen and then seized in New York return to Poland

John Lennon letter on Maharishi to be auctioned at Nate D. Sanders' in Los Angeles

Byzantine and Christian Museum Athens-exhibition "Within/Without Borders"

Sotheby's fine Chinese painting sale bucks rocky markets

The Art of Playboy, Gil Elvgren, Golden Age greats headline Fall New York illustration art auction

The last bell from the Mauretania in private hands to be offered in Maritime sale

Installation by conceptual artist Lee Mingwei on view at the Brooklyn Museum

American painter Elihu Vedder's work from his journey up the Nile on view at the Hudson River Museum

Gregg Chadwick's Theater of Memory at the Monterey Peninsula College Art Gallery

October 4, 2011

Major retrospective of the work of Alighiero Boetti opens at Reina Sofía Museum in Madrid

Stunning painting by Mark Rothko on view at the Princeton University Art Museum

Photographer Harry Callahan centennial celebrated at the National Gallery of Art

German artist Gerhard Richter to illuminate Christie's Post-War & Contemporary art auction

Sales success at second Ullens Collection auction at Sotheby's in Hong Kong

Sotheby's to sell one of the most important works by Vilhelm Hammershoi to come to auction

Bonhams new "Period Art & Design" auction format set to launch in November

Exciting new exhibition: MarklinWorld, shows models of the world by 40 international artists

Christie's New York announces sale of over 150 fine musical instruments on October 14

Retrospective exhibition spanning 44 years of Niki de Saint Phalle's work at Nohra Haime Gallery

WOHA's The Met Building in Bangkok wins prestigious RIBA Lubetkin Prize 2011

Wendy Mark returns to watercolors and oils on paper in new exhibition at Jill Newhouse Gallery

National Maritime Museum reopens in Amsterdam after extensive renovation to building

Sotheby's Hong Kong Modern & Contemporary Southeast Asian paintings sale achieves 10.6 million

DeCordova announces acquisition of Dan Graham's Crazy Spheroid – Two Entrances

Los Angeles puts "PST" time stamp on art world

Bush lauds construction of presidential library

Dr. Jack Kevorkian's art, belongings to be sold

Beatles photographer Robert Whitaker dies at 71

Most Popular Last Seven Days

1.- Galerie Miranda opens exhibition of works by Marina Berio

2.- Restorers unveil original face of Belgium's 'Mystic Lamb'

3.- Classic Beauties unveils the sensual enchantment of Neoclassicism

4.- Exhibition presents a dramatic survey of five hundred years of Spanish painting

5.- Glasgow blaze guts one of world's top art schools - again

6.- The Prado opens the first major monographic exhibition on Lorenzo Lotto's portraits

7.- Cleveland Museum of Art announces new acquisitions

8.- A record setting necklace, diamonds & gemstones propel $1.9 million in jewelry sales at Rago in June

9.- Czech Art Nouveau painter Mucha's masterpiece finds home after 90 years

10.- Exhibition at The Laing Art Gallery explores the garden as a "stage" for the extraordinary

Related Stories

"Two Schools Of Cool" exhibition at the Orange County Museum of Art in California

Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .


Ignacio Villarreal
Editor & Publisher:Jose Villarreal - Consultant: Ignacio Villarreal Jr.
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

Royalville Communications, Inc
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
to a Mexican poet.

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful