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Exhibition Date:
Aug.30 - Sept.24, 1999
Assemblage Works by:

Max Alper
Pat Cox
John Grant
Eva Kolosvary-Stupler
Nancy Kyes
Jay Messinger
Frank Miller
Kelly O'Donnell

A very significant development in 20th Century sculpture has been the incorporation of mass-produced objects into works of art. A number of sophisticated artists including Marcel Duchamp,Kurt Schwitters and Pablo Picasso gained notoriety and generated heated intellectual debate in the early part of the century when they placed items such as urinals, bottle racks and newspapers in museums and other fine art context. Assemblage, as this form of art has come to be known, incorporates the everyday world in a way that no other prior art form has. Assemblage proclaims that high art is no longer necessarily made exclusively from oil paint, marble and bronze and that rusted pipes, bones or car parts are equally valid materials for expression of an idea. Found objects, as the materials for assemblage have come to be known, often have a previous recognizable function which affects the meaning of the work of art. Through combining and possibly altering found objects, the artist creates a new context in which the objects are seen.

El Camino College Art Gallery is pleased to present the works of 8 southern California artists in ENCORE, assemblage works by:Max Alper, Pat Cox, John Grant, Nancy Kyes, Eva Kolosvary-Stupler, Jay Messinger, Frank Miller and Kelly O'Donnell.

Once a design engineer in aerospace, MAX ALPER presents precise geometric works concerning the relationship of volumes. In his own words he comments on "tecnical evanescence, by the inclusion of objects, now totally obsolete, that only a moment ago were indispensable." (Examples are slides rules, vacuum tubes and tennis racquet press found in his works.)

PAT COX'S poetic boxes of letters and old photographs seem to whisper of the delicacies and intricacies of human relationship. In her series, Shelf Life, Cox explores the form of still life, replacing traditional fruits, flowers and table setting with mysterious water-washed and sun-baked objects.

JOHN GRANT'S meticulously crafted works are assembled from fragments cut from printed tin cans combined with assorted wire, plumbing parts, bones and fishing lures. By recombining images Grant creates marvelous and whimsical narratives within his brooches, tins, bolas and wall constructions.

NANCY KYES' works from her Chakra series are energetic tornadoes of objects ranging from rubber snakes to candle wax and whiffle balls. The nestlike pieces, individually dominated by a unifying color, are inspired by Hindic cosmology. The colors, as designated in Hinduism, signify different chakras or spiritual centers within the human body.

The works of Hungarian-born artist EVA KOLOSVARY-STUPLER reflect a highly personalized spiritual sensibility. Kolosvary-Stupler incorporates figures of wooden saints and small silver fetish objects, borrowed from various religious sources, with wooden tripods, medical tubing, tin toys and doll parts to form powerful icons.

Ironic and often peppered with social commentary, JAY MESSINGER'S works are constructed from very inventive material. Compton-1992 is made out of a wooden shelf from a clothing store which burned to the ground in the Los Angeles riots in 1992. the image of the shorts on the self resulted from prolonged exposure to fire rather than being produced by photographic technique.

"I acquire my art along the tracks, empty lots, abandoned buildings and alleys. It waits in thrift stores, junkyards, and along the lines of trash in front of homes on pick-up day. I find it at my doorstep, abandoned like a baby in a basket. It is given to me by my fellow artists and friends", says FRANK MILLER of his method of collecting objects for his sculptures. Miller's art works, from Blade Animals, made of swords, hatchets and knives to his Wizard and 5 Subjects, composed of odd electrical parts, are imaginative, funny and fierce.

KELLY O'DONNELL'S blunt and powerful sculptures made of old wood, rusted metal, teeth and industrial detritus have a curiously still and enigmatic flavor. Her deceptively simple forms constructed from materials eroded by time and weather suggest machinery and tools of a bygone era.

El Camino College Art Gallery

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 Last Updated On: 1/13/06