LA Art Documents took an expedition to Northern California in early August to survey some exciting gallery spaces and museums for our ongoing BEYOND LA series. Here are some of the findings from an adventurous exploration.
We’re grateful to ICA San Jose for introducing us to the lush, dazzling, intricate works of Ebony G. Patterson.
The exhibition features a large-scale, five-panel work displayed with custom wallpaper, a sculptural and tapestry installation and two large works on paper hung as a diptych. The ICA augments the exhibition with additional works by Patterson showing the development of the garden motif throughout her career.Patterson has long been fascinated by the garden and its metaphorical possibilities. The garden is a “postcolonial” symbol in her work, where the invisible remnants of violent histories interrupt visible space. The garden offers many rich possibilities for interpretation – life and death, transplanting and notions of “native” vs “foreign,” beauty, danger, wealth, and sin.
Beginning with trees and plants amongst portraits and figurative work, the garden started as a background element which over the past eight years has developed into a focal point of Patterson’s work. This exhibition will introduce the ICA San José audience to a range of Patterson’s work in a variety of medium, including cut paper, tapestry, mixed media, photocollage, and sculpture.
On the same block at ICA San Jose is MACLA/Movimiento de Arte y Cultura Latino Americana, an inclusive contemporary arts space grounded in the Chicano/Latino experience that incubates new visual, literary and performance art in order to engage people in civic dialogue and community transformation.
We captured a very moving solo exhibition by the artist Natalia Anciso that focused on images and issues around the Covid-19 pandemic and its disproportionate effect on the Latinx and other communities of color.
Museums are great community places, so it’s always wonderful to discover a museum placed at a city’s central core. The San Jose Museum of Art was a splendid space that immediately charmed us with two impressive works of art in their lobby area. Their exhibition SOUTH EAST NORTH WEST: NEW WORKS FROM THE COLLECTION features works acquired by the museum in the past five years.