The art-world ecosystem of Los Angeles continues to evolve. On the opening day of Paris Photo Los Angeles, the art fair held last weekend at Paramount Studios, another international contemporary fair—FIAC—announced an L.A. edition, which will be held at the Los Angeles Convention Center in May 2015.
This deepening investment in the city, encouraging collectors and patrons both in and outside of L.A., is welcome. One of the great things about art fairs, in fact, is the people who come to town for the conversations generated by and organized around them.
Installed at Paramount Studios for the second year in a row, Paris Photo Los Angeles invited curator Douglas Fogle to organize Sound and Vision—The Conversations, which brought curators and artists together to discuss contemporary image making. Swiss Institute director Simon Castets traveled from New York to introduce artists Frances Stark and Leigh Ledare. Castets observed that, when focusing on the two artists’ recent works, it became obvious how relevant they were to each other, “to the point that certain quotes by either artist became useful to read the other’s work.” He touched upon the interplay between the intimate and the public, the reliance on the erotic potential of the unknown, and the disregard for taboos that Stark and Ledare both explore.
The exhibitors, and the objects they display, are the heart of any fair. Besides photographs, Paris Photo Los Angeles has a strong emphasis on books and publishers, with participants like Artbook|D.A.P., Taschen, and Printed Matter. The latter’s Jordan Nassar and Shannon Michael Cane, who in January oversaw Printed Matter’s successful and second annual L.A. Art Book Fair (LAABF), are encouraged by the L.A. audience, saying, “It’s so much more enthusiastic than it gives itself credit for.” The Los Angeles incarnation of Printed Matter’s fair saw 25,000 attendees this year—only 2,000 less than its ninth New York edition last September.
As Nassar explains, “It’s clear that L.A. is thirsty for affordable art, dialogue, and discussion around the art world, and our alternative corner of it. More than anything, Printed Matter’s fairs are about bringing the artist book community together, including artists, publishers, distributors, antiquarians, and enthusiasts. The most exciting thing for me is watching everyone meet—people from around the world—and end up trading or working together on books.”
Included above are some photos from the ForYourArt fete for Castets, Nassar, and Cane, thrown by the incomparable hostess, collector, arts patron, and friend, Rosette Delug.
Photos: Courtesy of Paris Photo Los Angeles ; ForYourArt