The Avant/Garde Diaries is currently presenting Transmission LA: AV CLUB, curated by the recent Hall of Fame inductee, Mike D from the Beastie Boys. The new exhibition at the MOCA, Geffen location, is a 17 day interdisciplinary “FREE” festival featuring the work of 16 contemporary artists, musicians, designers, filmmakers, and chef. The festival is as much a showcase of Mike D’s personal insight on the avant-garde as it is an experience of how audio and visual art forms complement and influence one another, through a variety of mediums. The event’s logo design embodies Mike D’s artistic concept, depicting the letters A (for audio) and V (for visual) as an inextricably fused force.
Transmissions LA: AV CLUB is another sensational success for MOCA’s director Jeffrey Deitch while Mike D continues to prove his superlative taste and describes the exhibition as a dream of what his house could look like. The usual art-loving, cultural tastemakers were in attendance opening night; Sam Trammell, Shepard Fairey and Donovan Leitch and Chris Gartin of io/LA. The artist roster includes Cory Arcangel, Sanford Biggers, Peter Coffin, Jim Drain, Jim Drain/Ara Peterson, Family Books, David Jacob Kramer, Will Fowler, Jonah Freeman/Justin Lowe, Ben Jones, Robert McKinley, Mike Mills, Takeshi Murata, Ara Peterson, Public Fiction, Tom Sachs and Sage Vaughn.
Chef Roy Choi is also named on the artist roster. His infamous LA Kogi Korean-Mexican fusion, BBQ food truck catered opening night while Santigold graced us with a Coachella encore. Santigold’s costume designer, April Roomet was in the house putting on all the finishing touches to her own artistic creations. The bands stage wear was as colorful and visionary as the art being celebrated. The musical curation also includes DJ’s Dam Funk, Z-Trip, Diplo and the Mad Decent crew.
Ben Jones’ (Paper Rad), Roadtrip: Pt. 1 Tunnel and Pt. 2 Journey, 2012 is the Matterhorn of the festival. His video installation is a moving day to night adventure. The animated desert seamlessly covers the entire surface of the room as his much loved cartoon sun falls and rises as the moon. If Jones’ install is the “Matterhorn” then collaborative partners, Ara Peterson and Jim Drain’s, Pinwheels 2004/2009/2011 are the “Small World Afterall.” Their kaleidoscape is a set right out of Charlie’s Chocolate Factory.
Sage Vaughn’s pastel butterfly vortexes and swirling wreathes imagine passages to other dimensions and express the full bloom in the cycle of life. Peter Coffin’s Untitled (Lines), 2012 is yet another environment to experience neon rainbow lightning. The presentation showcases the international debut of a hand-crafted Concept Style Coupé by the show’s sponsor Mercedes-Benz. Good design is after all good business. The auto installation is a collaboration between the curator and design and branding branding industry leader, Robert McKinley. The showcase is accompanied by headphones playing a soundscape composed by Adam Horowitz. McKinley also created an operating coffee bar installation surrounded by a water moat with a mini motor boat circling the patrons.
Takeshi Murata is known for his colorful seething video projections and astonishing animation pieces. He is most notable for refiguring the experience of animation but his Popeye, 2012 refigures the iconic narrative. The piece is a dim portrayal of a very vulnerable Popeye – a Popeye who is a factory worker that stuffs spinach in cans and visits the recent graves of Olive Oyl and Sweet Pea.
The show offers art, film, food, music, coffee and books, Family Books. The Los Angeles independent bookstore’s pop-up store presence was the absolute cherry on top. The store even hosted a remote book signing slideshow of Sandy Kim’s new photo book, Sky High.
Mike D is an originator and true innovator. His “avant-garde” curator insight in Transmission LA: AV CLUB picks up where he left off and continues to lead new ways of thinking and seeing.
Transmissions LA : AV CLUB
April 20 – May 6, 2012
The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA
152 North Central Avenue
Los Angeles – Little Tokyo
APRIL 19: Santigold
APRIL 20: DJ Tito Cruz / Mike D / JJAMZ
APRIL 21: Stones Throw DJs featuring Peanut Butter Wolf, Dam-Funk, J.Rocc and Jonti
APRIL 26: Jeremy Sole / Fat Lip/ Egyptian Lover
APRIL 27: Special Guest
APRIL 28: Z-Trip
MAY 3: DJ Harvey / James Murphy
MAY 3: TBD
MAY 5: Diplo and Mad Decent Crew