Every year, the Swiss media company Ringier publishes an annual report conceived by an artist. This year, Los Angeles artist Laura Owens (born 1970) has created the publication, deploying resources and methods drawn from art history and traditional printing craftsmanship. She took as inspiration Charles Henri Ford and Parker Tyler's legendary art magazine View, published in the 1940s, when printing presses were still the pulse of every newspaper and publishing organization. Owens has created a very haptic cover in typographic print, as well as drawings to be reproduced using silkscreen. Allowing the inclusion of up to nine colors, this methodology implies a realization by printing experts who still master the old book and screenprinting methods--a technical challenge made visual delight. This slim, staple-bound volume is published in a limited edition of 300 copies.
Published by Kerber. Preface by Stephan Berg. Text by Stefan Gronert, Sarah Lehrer-Graiwer.
Laura Owens (born 1970) is one of the most vital artists to emerge from the 1990s Los Angeles art scene, and a refreshingly uplifting presence in the world of contemporary painting. Her deceptively romantic-naive visual language dissolves distinctions between abstract and figurative art, and her paintings exhibit a whimsical engagement with sources as various as Color Field painting, Pattern & Decoration, children’s book illustration and textile design. As Owens told an interviewer, “My work gets created in this space of freedom, and that’s why a lot of it has to do with experimentation, invention, and sort of a juxtaposition of things you wouldn’t normally juxtapose.” With its lush, floral palette, Owens’ work offers nothing less than an unabashed pleasure at being in the world. This catalogue accompanies the artist’s first solo museum exhibition in Germany, and reproduces for the first time a range of her more recent works.
Published by JRP|Ringier. Edited by Beatrix Ruf. Text by Rod Mangham, Beatrix Ruf, Gloria Sutton. Interviews by Alex Katz, Elizabeth Peyton, Mary Heilmann, Scott Rothkopf.
Laura Owens once said of more doctrinaire painters that "the weight of art history is what gets you…that crusty, stodgy feeling, when you look at a work of art and you feel that the person hasn't stepped outside, hasn't looked in other wings of the Met, hasn't gone to a natural history museum." There is no danger of that in her own good-natured and elegant works, which seem to emulate Rousseau, Grandma Moses and the aesthetics of the 1960s and of vintage decorative arts at once. Robots in the garden, lions, hunters, romance and war are some of the subjects parading through, under passing influences as wide ranging as Dada performance, Japanese prints and Hindu beliefs. Birds grow larger than the trees they perch on, cats sniff at a pair of skulls and monkeys exchange wary glances. Elsewhere, Owens has broken away from the fine arts to move into wallpaper and textiles. Beyond all this straightforward beauty is constant inquiry into her chosen media. She has rejected naturalism in favor of depiction, representation and an unashamed pleasure in ornamentation, which, with her delight in pictorial grace, affords decoration a new dignity. She combines the abstract with the representational in a highly personal vocabulary, from which she creates an elaborate, elegant and quietly exuberant whole. Laura Owens collects the artist's complete works to date.
Published by The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. By Thomas Lawson. Artwork by Laura Owens. Edited by Lisa Gabrielle Mark, Paul Schimmel.
In subtly lush paintings that charm viewers equally through their application of paint and their quirky iconography, Laura Owens touches on expressive abstraction, color field painting, and the occasional decorative glimpse of a monkey. Charged as one of the contemporary artists responsible for a revival of the painting, Owens has developed an enigmatic style all her own, moving from landscape to abstraction with energetic thick brush strokes, fanciful childlike doodles, or sophisticated fine-line drawings, culling her influences from any number of visual sources, including chinese landscape painting, japanese wood block prints, and patterned textiles. This volume includes new paintings created for her upcoming solo show at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.
PUBLISHER The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles
BOOK FORMAT Hardcover, 11 x 8.5 in. / 72 pgs / 60 color / 5 bw
PUBLISHING STATUS Pub Date 4/2/2003 Out of print
DISTRIBUTION D.A.P. Exclusive Catalog: SPRING 2003
PRODUCT DETAILS ISBN 9780914357834TRADE List Price: $24.00 CDN $27.50
Published by Charta. Edited by Pieranna Cavalchini. Essays by Jennifer Gross, Anne Hawley, and Russell Ferguson.
Laura Owens is among a select group of artists credited with the rebirth of American painting. She has developed a style all her own, moving from landscape to abstraction in energetic thick brushstrokes, fanciful childlike doodles, or sophisticated fine line drawings. "Each painting can act as a question," she says, and, demonstrating a wide and imaginative range, she constantly experiments and redefines her work. "Ultimately, you want to make the painting that you want to be with, not one that is constantly telling you everything it knows. Who wants to be with something or someone like that? It's more fun to be with someone who is willing to go out on a limb." This book is designed by Owens herself, and accompanies an exhibition at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston. Along with paintings from the show, it includes new drawings made exclusively for the publication, as well as several textile works from the museum's collection that inspired her during her residency of Spring 2000.
BOOK FORMAT Hardcover, 6.75 x 9.5 in. / 64 pgs / 28 color / 28 bw.
PUBLISHING STATUS Pub Date 8/2/2001 Out of print
DISTRIBUTION D.A.P. Exclusive Catalog: FALL 2001 p. 78
PRODUCT DETAILS ISBN 9788881583287TRADE List Price: $21.95 CDN $25.00