Our regular feature, Collection Rotation. Each month I invite someone to organize a mini-“exhibition” from our collection works online. Today, please welcome artist Gina Osterloh.
(I was not able to see this installation — part of Project, Transform, Erase — but I imagine there are similarities to Line Describing a Cone, which I experienced in Frankfurt. As one enters the room there is uncertainty about what one sees, what one perceives. There is a collapse of two- and three-dimensionality, physicality, the ephemeral, and optics. Familiar boundaries that locate the self within a room are redrawn onto dust in air.)
(When I stepped out of the elevator, I second-guessed the ground upon which I stood, I questioned the distance and fixedness between myself and the other beside me. Via the yellow hue, familiar boundaries became illucid, and a slight queasy feeling unsettled my gut.)
Linda Besemer: “Abstraction: Politics and Possibilities,” X-TRA,
Spring 2005, Volume 7 Number 3
I am committed to creating work where the language in which we describe identity — who we are as an individual and as a group — is erased, obliterated, and reconsidered.
There isn’t one visual strategy that can do this alone, hence why I am attracted to these selected works. I find it productive to look at these works together!
In relationship to the body, these works create a hiccup, a misarticulation, in the normative process of hailing — in the process of looking, seeing, and becoming. With the Bruce Nauman video, we are brought to a type of ground zero.
Finally, I wanted to share Linda Besmer’s essay “Abstraction: Politics and Possibilities,” published in the Los Angeles–based critical arts magazine X-TRA. What is the role of abstraction today in relation to identity, gender, race, and politics?
Gina Osterloh is an artist and educator. Currently she is working on a short film that addresses issues of perception and identity through interviews with blind massage therapists in the Philippines. Her photographic practice combines elements of minimalist set construction, montage, and performance. These works investigate operations of mimicry and perception within the photographic plane — to form new ground between abstraction and identity.
Two upcoming projects are a solo exhibition at YBCA this January and fund-raising with Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions for the solo work Wide Group Dynamic.