© Jean Pagliuso Photography

© Jean Pagliuso Photography

 

3 Women
July 23 - September 17, 2016
Opening reception: Saturday, July 23rd, 6 to 9 pm

 

                The Landing is proud to present a group exhibition, 3 Women, featuring works by Lenore Tawney, Tanya Aguiñiga, and Loie Hollowell. The exhibition uses as its framework the loose structure of Robert Altman’s film 3 Women (1977) to create a cross-generational dialogue that explores the intersections of craft and fine art, influence and homage.
               The film 3 Women began as a dream that Robert Altman had, which the director soon adapted into a treatment for a movie that he planned to shoot without a script. The story revolves around three characters—Millie Lammoreaux, Pinky Rose, and Willie Hart—who take turns being infatuated, infuriated, and heavily influenced by one another. By the end of the film, these three merge into a singular identity that reflects three stages of womanhood: mother, daughter, and granddaughter. They live as one, in a world of their own making.
               Lenore Tawney began weaving in the late 1940s, following the death of her husband. In the 1950s she began to experiment with open-warp weavings, hanging her pieces away from the wall to emphasize their sculptural presence. Upon receipt of her first commission in 1957, she told the magazine Craft Horizons, “[I need] to free myself to do what I want with the work… and plan to keep it if the customer doesn’t like it.”[1]  With this independent spirit, she moved to New York and set up a studio on Coenties Slip, in a building managed by Jack Youngerman. Ellsworth Kelly, Robert Indiana, and Agnes Martin occupied other studios. Tawney soon developed a close friendship with Agnes Martin; some even trace the wavering pencil line in Martin’s paintings to the sinuous threads of Tawney’s weavings. Perhaps the biggest likeness, however, between Martin and Tawney is that each had an aesthetic that was steadfastly against the grain of what their contemporaries were making. Tawney found her fiercely unique voice at the age of fifty, experimenting with an unconventional approach to a traditional technique, in a field that was less than receptive to a craft-based practice.
               Tanya Aguiñiga grew up in Tijuana, Mexico, crossing the U.S./Mexico border every day for fourteen years to attend school. Her work explores community-oriented activism through the experience of site-specific installations. “Having grown up between two countries, I have always felt a sense of un-grounding that has allowed me to operate between cultures and artistic disciplines,” says Aguiñiga. As did Lenore Tawney, Aguiñiga uses both traditional and modern weaving techniques in her practice, blurring the line between craft and fine art, and inspiring a conversation about why a distinction between the two forms continues to exist. For 3 Women, Aguiñiga has realized an encompassing environment composed of suspended rope structures cradling biomorphic forms. “The minimal hammock structures echo my sense of not-belonging, as the geometric forms cradle and objects precariously teeter. The objects held in these forms represent disembodied, engendered forms.” Aguiñiga observes, that in “the current political climate, I can’t help but feel disenfranchised and simultaneously empowered regarding gender, ethnicity and my own physical body."
               Loie Hollowell paints elements of the female form as mandala-like abstractions that pulsate with a spellbinding inner energy. Hollowell’s work evokes the neon-hued paintings by Judy Chicago from the 1970s, as well as a state of mind influenced by the geomagnetic vortices of the Southwest. In her work there is often a balanced tension between boldly abstracted geometric forms and a soft, dreamy rendering of human flesh. A new group of paintings presented here, introduces dimensional surfaces formed with modeling paste to her canvas. Titled Stacked Linghams, these works channel both male and female sexual organs, as well as stacked intestinal track, precisely rendered in gradient hues.
               Each of these artists draws upon processes or forms traditionally associated with the realm of craft to forge works of fine art that revel in and celebrate the power of the feminine.

Lenore Tawney (1907-2007). This is the first time since 1968 that Tawney is being exhibited in Los Angeles. Select solo exhibitions include the American Craft Museum in New York, New Jersey State Museum, and the Art Institute of Chicago. Select group exhibitions include the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, The Drawing Center, and Michael Rosenfeld Gallery in New York. Select public collections include the Art Institute of Chicago, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Cooper Hewitt, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Whitney Museum of American Art, and the National Gallery of American Art.

Tanya Aguiñiga (b.1978). Solo exhibitions include Volume Gallery in Chicago, Craft and Folk Art Museum in Los Angeles, and the Laguna Art Museum. Select group exhibitions include Gallery Diet in Miami, Ed Cella Gallery in Los Angeles, and Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery. Her work is included in the permanent collection of Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and the Chipstone Foundation. This is her second exhibition with the Landing. Reform Gallery hosted Aguiñiga’s first solo exhibition in 2008.

Loie Hollowell (b.1983). Solo exhibition upcoming at Feuer Mesler/Mesler Feuer in New York, NY this October, and previously at 106 Green in Brooklyn, NY. Select group exhibitions include Ballroom Marfa in Marfa, TX, Underdonk, and Jeff Bailey Gallery in New York.

[1] Margo Hoff, “Lenore Tawney: the warp is her canvas,” Craft Horizons, November/December 1957 (Volume 17, No. 6).