Editorial: Paul Young Projects - Publication: Fabrik - Date: May 2013

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You Ought To Be In Pictures - Moving Images @ Paul Young Projects

In operation since 2009 Paul Young Projects, inside the esteemed Pacific Design Center is one of LA’s formative video art galleries.

Rather than align his space to genres such as “digital art,” or “new media,” Director Paul Young explains that the populism of such terminology sees him sway more towards the  moniker, “moving image.”

Says Young, “designed to be less of a new media gallery than a true project space, the gallery is dedicated to the idea that moving image artworks are concrete art-forms, much like painting, sculpture and fine art photography.”

“It operates as a project space for both, experimental film artists and contemporary artists who are interested in exploring the full capabilities of the medium.”

Still. there is a stigma to showing moving image art for artists,Young says. “Showing at a gallery devoted to new media can see an artist become typecast. Many artists simply use video as a medium, and they don’t want to be bound to a certain genre.”

With a background in experimental film and journalism, Young’s devotion to nurturing and exhibiting international “moving image,” art is obvious. In turn he faces major challenges in high concept marketing art that isn’t easily commodified.

Yet, he says, the medium does attract a select collector base. “it’s a radically different ballgame than  conventional gallery. It takes an elevated collector with a comprehensive  collection, there really are only about four serious collectors of video based art in Los Angeles.”

Paul Young Projects presents 6 - 10 shows per year and each show runs for approximately two months (three months during the summer). Youg says, “the goal is to present monographic or group exhibitions (both historic and contemporary) where as many as 15 - 30 works can be shown simultaneously,” says young

In keeping with his commitment to running a “project,” space, Young says he is more concerned with creating a venue to premier new and innovative work rather than purely attain sales. “Its very important to bring work to LA that wont otherwise be seen,” he says.

“I'm always disheartened when I see people install video in galleries. It's usually done so badly, with little or no thought put into it. It's usually on a white wall, with a curtain at the door, and you can usually see the dvd player, extension chords, and everything else. To me that's like hanging a painting in the dark, with the hammer and nails still laying on the floor (granted, that can be a good look for certain works) But I work very hard at the presentation of the works, that's crucial to me.”

Young adds that he also faces the added advantage of tapping work from anywhere in the world, without the expense and inconvenience of  elaborate shipping costs .

Subsequently the gallery offers a range of international moving image art, that utilizes a myriad of creative techniques, from projection mapping geometric forms to 3D sculptures and 2D photographic prints.
Current shows include the work of Turkish born artist Refik Anadol. Anadol’s emphasis is on augmented sculptures, projection mapping and live events.  He has a central interest in the ephemeral nature of “space”, both as a concept and as a physical entity. 

Anadol also cites the work of the new media theorist Lev Manovich, as a key influence. Manovich espoused the notion that  the next logical step after architecture is to realize how the “invisible space” of electronic data flow can also be physical, substantial and even emotional, in the hands of artists.
For his first solo show in the US Anodol will be showing several works that engage that discrepancy between interior and exterior, mostly with projection mapping works, a new laser piece and several ‘augmented landscapes.’ For the latter, Refik has created 6 digital prints that hang on a wall much like abstract photographs. Each was designed to mimic a different digital realm, whether it’s a purely imagined, abstract image or very specific art-historical, and/or sociological references.

Commenting on his show, Anadol reveals, ”The blur and interconnection between the boundaries—between the two realms actual/fictional and physical/virtual—signifies the threshold between the simulacrum space created by the projection technology, and the physical space where the viewer stands.”
“This exhibition discusses the inherent spatial qualities of augmented spaces and their effect on the embodied person. Through the presented framework, the works intends to question the relativity of perception and how it informs the apprehension of our surroundings.”

Anadol has recently begun working with both, Frank O Gehry + Partners and the LA Philharmonic’s conductor Gustavo Dudamel on a projection mapping project for Disney Hall (set to take place in 2014). Anadol has devised sensors to track Dudemel’s every move during a performance, which will in turn trigger specific imagery projected onto the outside of the building. The result is a highly advanced form of visual music and a further expression of Anadol’s aesthetic interests.
Also showing at PYP is the work of artist Phil Solomon, with a show titled Before and After the Falls.  It will feature a range of work charting the artist’s 40-year career with a special emphasis on his installation work. At the center of the exhibition is the West Coast premier of the 3-channel version of American Falls, which was originally commissioned by the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington D.C.

Solomon’s work has previously been included in two Whitney Biennials and has been the subject of 3 solo shows at New York’s Museum of Modern Art. His films have won 10 first prize awards at major international film festivals for experimental film (including six Juror's Awards from the Black Maria Film and Video Festival). Today his films are included in the permanent collections of the MoMA, The Chicago Art Institute, the Oberhausen Film Collection and a number of important institutions.

Paul Young Projects - http://www.youngprojectsgallery.com
Tues-Fri 11am - 5pm By appt Sat-Mon
Located at the Pacific Design Center
8687 Melrose Ave. Los Angeles CA 90069

Written by Craig Stephens

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