The Boehm Gallery opened the Spring semester with its first exhibit of the year titled “Borrowed Landscapes.”
The exhibit took about a month to develop and execute curator, according to Nikko Mueller, a professor at Southwestern College. This is Mueller’s first curated show but he did have his work at the Boehm in the 2009 exhibit, “Terra Incognita.”
“On a certain level, it’s sort of like going for a shopping spree without any money,” Mueller said on curating his first show. “You get to pick out all these great works and see them in a place and in a context you like but you don’t have to be able to afford the work.”
Mueller sought out a variety of work from artists in both San Diego and Los Angeles that looked at landscapes in ways that were “tied in with tradition but weren’t terribly traditional.”
The inviting motif of landscape is easily relatable to the viewer while the motifs may not be as obvious or straightforward.
The pieces on display utilize varying media from traditional acrylic and oil on canvas to audio and visual media and photographs.
Eben Goff is an artist based out of Los Angeles with three of his structural works showcased in the borrowed landscapes exhibit: Sluice Gate, Spanish Slides and Flood Cubes.
These works look at how fluid objects react within a container and are shaped by its typographical landscape. The aluminum shapes of Goff ’s wall-mounted work, Sluice Gate and Spanish Slides, create a container that acts as a landscape toward the wax and pigments that move across its given ter- rain, solidifying in the process.
Flood Cubes was a project that evolved from rudimentary bare metal forms to more refined chromed metal that play up the polarity of the elements witnessed in the greater Los Angeles River system, Goff said.
The work came from Goff ’s fascination with the life cycle or seasonal cycle of Ballona Creek and how impromptu sculptures were being made through the outcroppings and architecture of the river when the floodwaters came during the big rains.
Keaton Macon is another artist based out of Los Angeles with his Palm series instillation on display in the Boehm. His work has archival processes that transport the viewer to the artists-conveyed experiences through time and place and its placement within a given landscape.
The epicenter of Macon’s work was prompted from a neighborhood fire in Koreatown of Los Angeles. The installation discusses how documents work through audio recordings, photographs and drawings and how documents have qualities that can evoke an experience, Macon said.
Chants are two audio recordings on pedestals that recount the night of the fire Macon witnessed. The title of the work is a play-on-words from the chanting of his neighbor that night and the chance event that took place, Macon said. The overheard chant is the Buddhist mantra “nam myoho renge kyo” that Macon roughly translates as “I’m letting all sound waves wash over my body.”
“Borowed Landscapes” is on display at the Boehm Gallery from Feb 3 to Feb 25.