“The Lobster And The Rat: A Love Story”
One of the hometown heroes of L.A. culturati is contemporary artist John Baldessari, whose career-spanning retrospective, Pure Beauty, is now up at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Sure, there’s a catalog, but if you want to commemorate the exhibition in more of a 2010 style, may we suggest Baldessari’s iPhone (and iPad) app—the first app created by a contemporary artist? Baldessari worked with L.A.’s ForYourArt to create an application based on his famous In Still Life, 2001-2010, which invited viewers to digitally manipulate and rearrange Abraham van Beyeren’s Banquet Still Life (1667) to create their own work of art. The app—and its attendant Web site, www.in-still-life.com—lets you do the same, with the added bonus that a Flickr gallery allows you to see fellow artists’ work. To celebrate the genius new time-waster, we invited one of our own favorite Angelenos, Scott Sternberg of Band of Outsiders and Boy, to make his own (above). “I like to call this The Lobster and the Rat: A Love Story,” Sternberg wrote us simply. “John predicted everyone would try to ‘make the lobster dance,’” ForYourArt’s founder, Bettina Korek, added, “and of course Band of Outsiders did it first.”
John Baldessari: Pure Beauty is on view through September 12 at LACMA, 5905 Wilshire Blvd, L.A., www.lacma.org. Oh, and one slightly gratuitous plug—speaking of apps, have you downloaded the Style.com iPhone app yet?