Category: Art for stoners

Why everyone should see the Pageant of the Masters once.

My latest at KCET Artbound, on one of O.C.’s more long running and amazing-surreal traditions: the Pageant of the Masters, a series of tableaux vivants that are all about art.

Above, Pageant members and volunteers stage Jacques-Louis David’s Oath of the Horatii. (Image courtesy of Pageant of the Masters.)


Photo Diary: Phemomenal at the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego.

All kinds of whoaaaaa: Doug Wheeler’s DW 68 VEN MCASD 11 in San Diego. (Photos by C-M.)

I am belatedly uploading some of my pictures from my recent jaunt to California, where I got to poke around some of the Pacific Standard Time exhibits. I saw some true gems — among them the California light and space show at the Museum of Contemporary Art in San Diego, which is a total perceptual mindfuck (not to mention, totally bud-worthy). Many of the pieces were all about the experience — namely, the tricks your eyes play on you — so taking pictures was often pointless, hence the limited number of images here.

If you go, be sure to spend some quality time inside Eric Orr’s Zero Mass (at the La Jolla location), a pitch black room that requires at least six minutes for your eyes to adjust — but once they do, good lord almighty! It’s like waking up from a weird dream in which everything emerges from a fog. Other highlights that will make you say Duuuuuude are Bruce Nauman’s Green Light Corridor, which will have you seeing magenta (also at La Jolla) and Robert Irwin’s Square the Room (at the downtown branch), in which a scrim and some white paint are used to create an absolutely mind-boggling optical illusion. While downtown, do not miss the paintings by Mary Corse, which contain subtle reflective surfaces that seem to change with every move you make in front of the canvas.

If you live in Cali, this exhibit is one of the PST must-sees. And yes, it is worth dealing with the parking lot otherwise known as the 5.

Phenomenal: California Light, Space, Surface is on view at both branches of MCASD (in La Jolla and downtown) through January 22.

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Bizarre Coincidence: Francis Alÿs meets Cheech Marin.

A screengrab from Francis Alÿs’s 2002 video, When Faith Moves Mountains (now on view at MoMA). In which volunteers shoveled pieces of a Peruvian dune. The line across the dune is the advancing row of shovelers. Naturally, this brought to mind…

…the 1987 Cheech Marin flick Born in East L.A. — in which all the Mexicanos storm the border to a Neil Diamond soundtrack. ¡Orale!


C-Mon Giveaway Extravaganza: 3-D Art Book edition.

Hey Folks:

I have a little treat from Prestel for giveaway purposes: Tristan Eaton’s 3-D Art Book, complete with trippy imagery supplied by more than a hundred artists — from Ron English to Miss Van. It comes equipped with two pairs of 3-D glasses. A good way to spend a stonerrific afternoon…

Leave a comment below and this little puppy could be all yours.



Flying High.

I have an interview over at WNYC with art critic Ken Johnson about his new book, Are You Experienced? which chronicles the influence of 1960s drug culture on the last half century’s worth of art. Also included: tips on the best New York museum to be stoned in. (Image of the painting Rabbit, by Judith Linhares,  featured in the book, comes courtesy of Prestel.)


Peruvian Monuments, Redux: The photography of Pablo Hare.

I am currently cultivating a healthy obsession with crazy works of public art in Peru. (See my earlier post here.) Which is why I was excited to hear about the work of Peruvian-born photographer Pablo Hare, who has a whole series devoted to some of the most sublime/absurd monuments you have ever laid your eyes on. From top to bottom: a statue of a puma, a tribute to the maca (a type of tuber) in Junín, and a contemporary rendering of the Lord of Sipán, a Moche figure found entombed on the North Coast of Peru (where my family hails from). Hare has captured some absolutely sublime public art ridiculosity. Be sure to click over to view the whole series.

Thanks to Andrés Marroquín Winklemann and Joerg Colberg for the tip.