In Pittsburgh, smog and streets once touched lips to form a fantastical liquid forest. On the weekdays, people would cycle through shirts like interns at training camp. These days, newly native eyeballs are kaleidoscopic binoculars through which search engines can be self-motivated to the point of being self-driven. An IP address in New Brunswick finds no results for Bruce Springsteen. This can be interpreted as a self-motivated (or self-driven) sign to give up on nostalgia. Fact: There is no crying in stadiums. Also, there is no crying in the South, either. You read a blank billboard built on the False Word of God and you want to cry, but in this light, all you can do is squint. You stare at a statue carved by the sweaty hands of a half-assed apologist and you want to cry, but in this heat, all you can do is sweat. People getting fired; people getting fired up. It's a new millennium, and any sane person wonders: "Why would Millennials want to move to New York in this climate?" And it's like every week, The New York Times publishes a freshly bourgeois article about Los Angeles, and instead of reading them anymore, I just watch strip malls strip down to nothing and entire hillsides drink gallons of Muscle Milk at the speed of Bravo-inspired intercuts. While I'm at the office, everyone else goes skinny-dipping like baristas with bones in hand. This is the new, and now, tongues wag into the night.
ASHES/ASHES is pleased to present Everyday War, an exhibition curated by Keith J. Varadi, featuring Scott Benzel, Steve Kado, Jenine Marsh, Quintessa Matranga, Erin Jane Nelson, and Naoki Sutter-Shudo. The exhibition will be on view November 12 – December 30, 2016, with an opening reception on Friday, November 11 from 7–9pm.
Scott Benzel (born 1968; Scottsdale, AZ) lives and works in Los Angeles, CA. Recent performances and exhibitions include: ISBN 978-0-9913772-0-6, Blank Verse (organized by Keith J. Varadi), The Getty Center (Los Angeles, CA), Nostalgia for the Present: Two Years of LACA (curated by Eli Diner), Los Angeles Contemporary Archive (Los Angeles, CA), and (Mayakovski) for Instrumental Communication, Voice, and Autotune, Rainbow in Spanish (Los Angeles, CA).
Steve Kado (born 1980; North York, ON) lives and works in Los Angeles, CA. Recent solo and group exhibitions include: Imagine the Present, St. Paul St. Gallery (Auckland, NZ), AGPTL, 8-11, (Toronto, ON), and Climate and Infrastructure, Human Resources (Los Angeles, CA).
Jenine Marsh (born 1984; Calgary, AB) lives and works in Toronto, ON. Recent solo and group exhibitions include: The Extrovert, Cooper Cole Gallery (Toronto, ON), A Change of Heart (curated by Chris Sharp), Hannah Hoffman Gallery (Los Angeles, CA), and feminine marvelous and tough, Lulu (Mexico City, MX).
Quintessa Matranga (born 1989; New York, NY) lives and works in New York, NY. Recent solo and group exhibitions include: My Celebrity Crush, Boyfriends (Chicago, IL), Screaming in a Cage in Hell, Sydney (Sydney, AU), and Cure Cruelty, Kunsthalle Wichita (Wichita, KS).
Erin Jane Nelson (born 1989; Neenah, WI) lives and works in Atlanta, GA. Recent solo and group exhibitions include: Atlanta Biennial, Atlanta Contemporary Art Center (Atlanta, GA), Default, Honor Fraser (Los Angeles, CA), and Dylan, Hester (New York, NY).
Naoki Sutter-Shudo (born 1990; Paris, FR) lives and works in Los Angeles, CA. Recent solo and group exhibitions include: 27 av. Stephen Pichon 75013 Paris 2007-2015, Los Angeles Contemporary Archive (Los Angeles, CA), Nothing Recedes Like Failure, Mortadelle (Arles, FR), and All at Once, with Alexandra Noel, Jessica Silverman Gallery South (San Francisco, CA).
Keith J. Varadi (born 1985; Pittsburgh, PA) lives and works in Los Angeles, CA. Recent solo exhibitions include: Miso Soup for the Silicon Soul, Et al. (San Francisco, CA), Self-Evident Loss, Cooper Cole Gallery (Toronto, ON), and Free Wi-Fi, Comedy, Night Gallery (Los Angeles, CA). His writings have been featured in Art in America, Carla, and Spike Art Quarterly.
On view in LA/DW~PS is Scott Benzel’s Ekphrasis / Extended Phenotype: A rebours, La bas, et al. (2016).