September 21 – November 16
The Main Gallery hosts Material Matters as one of seven venues in the Los Angeles region taking part in the 5th SUR:biennial (2019). Gallery Two examines superheroes in contemporary art with To Save The Day!
Material Matters features works by Cruz Castillo, Elisa Ortega Montilla, Ruben Ochoa, and Tessie Salcido Whitmore. These four artists gather together the materials of urban life, here in Southern California – plastics, steel, concrete, fabrics, detritus – and manipulate them in order to address themes of identity, memory, political positions, and the poetics of the urban environment. The artists make discoveries with these gathered materials and reassemble them in new ways to bring a fresh insight into what it might mean to be urban within our massive contemporary metropolis.
To Save the Day! features work by Enrique Chagoya, Chaz Guest, ICE DISH, Craig Knight, Aaron Noble, Fernando Rasco. Since their inception, the presence of super powered human beings in comic books has served as mighty metaphors for societal conditions, both the dreams and the ills. Fictional heroes have progressively led the way in addressing culture’s contemporary problems, from Otherness to citizen’s rights. Even today, with the explosion of Marvel and DC characters onto the silver screen, we see how this dynamic explores human frailties and strengths, our moral and ethical positions, as well as the trials and tribulations of our world. Contemporary artists have shown the same engagement with our times, often utilizing these comic book denizens as a way to critique the same issues.
Both exhibitions are curated by Torrance Art Museum’s Director, Max Presneill. Material Matters and To Save the Day! will be on view from September 21 through November 16 at the Torrance Art Museum.