If you boiled the artist/viewer relationship down, the simple act of sharing might turn out to be its purest essence. That isolated gesture is more than enough to generate a meaningfully communicative experience.
Two Canadian-born artists currently on exhibit in Culver City, Marc Hundley and Jon Rafman, deliver elegant and heartfelt tokens of sharing that transcend the simplicity of their respective approaches.
Canadian-born New Yorker, Marc Hundley, one artist in a group show at Cherry and Martin, (entitled Look Here Upon This Picture: Alice Channer, Mari Eastman Marc Hundley and Amanda Ross Ho,) shares images and/or texts of things that he likes, with the (year-less) dates and addresses of his encounters with them.
Everything has the tasteful, weathered, low-key feel of vintage ’60s or 70′s exhibition advertising or concert promotion, but the most important thing is the substance of what is being shared: some Bowie lyrics, a snippet from Virginia Woolf or an evocative movie still. Like moments from an intimate journal, they are brief notations of things he’s found meaningful – shared milestones of a magpie’s continuing intellectual and emotional quest.
Among the work in Montealer Jon Rafman’s solo show, Mirror Sites, at Culver City’s International Art Objects and West Hollywood’s M+B Gallery, are a series of near-miraculous photographs pulled straight from the seemingly infinite number of images recorded by Google Maps’ street views.
Each image is, in some way, extraordinary. The series is kind of like one of those art projects where photographers around a particular region team up to document a particular day or event. But the near-divine truth revealed in this exhibition is that there is beauty and poetic mystery occurring, without committed artist/witnesses, all over the world, virtually forgotten and virtually accessible, at any given moment.
Birds and butterflies float or flutter in the middle of the road, a van burns unattended, horses run past a gothic cemetery and a private stroll are all documented.
The two artists highlight those moments of beauty which are either so culturally omnipresent as to be nearly invisible or which slip by every moment of the day without witness, fanfare or recognition.