“Photoville,” a popular Brooklyn-based photography pop-up exhibition, visited Los Angeles for the first time in its seven-year history from April 26-May 5.
Taking place at the Annenberg Space for Photography in Century City, Photoville LA offered visitors a dazzling cross-section from the international photography community, including several CalArts alums and students. The event featured multiple gallery exhibitions in photo cubes, lightboxes and repurposed shipping containers for Angelenos to explore.
Included in the festival’s inaugural LA edition was an exhibition of student films from CalArts’ Character Animation Program. Curated by Maija Burnett, director of the Character Animation Program, the collection includes films from Alex Avagimian (Film/Video BFA 19), Nelson Boles (Film/Video BFA 12), Aron Bothman (Film/Video BFA 15), Seth Boyden (Film/Video BFA 15), Josue Geronimo (Film/Video BFA 18), Anatola Howard (Film/Video BFA 19), Hanna Kim (Film/Video BFA 19), Aya Kneitner (Film/Video BFA 20), Jasmin Lai (Film/Video BFA 12), Xiya Lan (Film/Video BFA 17), Tom Law (Film/Video BFA 13), Samantha Maurer (Film/Video BFA 17), Catharine Ren (Film/Video BFA 21) and Anchi Shen (Film/Video BFA 19).
Other CalArtians were also featured in group and solo exhibitions, such as Cassils (Art-IM MFA 02) and Brandy Trigueros (Art BFA 19).
Cassils (they/them) presented the solo exhibition “Becoming an Image,” a photo series depicting the artist unleashing blows and kicks to a 2,000 pound block of clay in total darkness, illuminated only by the photographer’s camera flash. Cassils is an internationally acclaimed visual artist known for their exploration of the human body as a social sculpture. Their catalogue of photography, sculpture, live performances and film draws upon feminism, body art, conceptualism and gay male aesthetics.
Trigueros is part of the group exhibition “MADE IN L.A.,” a selection of vibrant street and fine art photography compiled and presented by The Los Angeles Center of Photography. Trigueros is an LA-based artist and photographer who explores womanhood, memoir and self-transformation through her lens. Her work has been exhibited in venues around the globe, including the Berlin Foto Biennale, the Los Angeles Center of Photography, and the Building Bridges Art Exchange.
Running concurrently at the Annenberg Space with Photoville LA was “CONTACT HIGH: A Visual History of Hip-Hop” (on view through Aug. 18). The exhibition offers an inside look into the world of hip-hop photography, featuring original contact sheets for performers like Notorious B.I.G. and Jay-Z, rare videos, legendary photoshoots and memorabilia.
Renowned music photographer and professor Brian Cross (Art MFA 92), also known as B+, is a featured photographer in the Contact High exhibition. The Irish-born photographer has shot covers for artists like Damian Marley, Mos Def and J Dilla, and is cited as instrumental in documenting the early days of hip-hop.
His book “It’s Not About a Salary: Rap Race and Resistance” (1993) was among the first to explore the flourishing hip-hop scene on the West Coast. Cross was also the founder of production company Mochilla, and is credited on various music video and feature-length music films, such as Academy Award-nominated crime documentary “Exit Through the Gift Shop” (2010). Cross was also featured in the exhibition’s documentary and present at the opening night party.
— By Taya Zoormandan