LA Louver, Venice, California, 10 March – 16 April 2011
Our times demand that we embrace paradox. In response, instead of parsing out the incompatible, my experiment is the opposite. I seek the radiant, the abject, deliverance and damage in concert. These paintings are a manifesto for rapture, in spite of, or even in debt to, the abyss.
Rebecca Campbell’s new paintings are looser and juicier and far more beautiful than anything she has made since she began exhibiting her haunting works in Los Angeles 10 years ago. They’re also stranger and scarier than anything else being made today — despite, and because of, their generally benign subjects: pretty girls, gorgeous rainbows and sublime fireworks.
It Speaks to Me: on Edouard Manet’s ‘The Ragpicker’ at the Norton Simon
Los Angeles Times, March 2011
Manet was sort of a dandy, so I don’t know what he could have possibly known about the reality of being a ragpicker or homeless person. This is a very outside-in look at a subject. But for me what’s really compelling is that there’s a tiny still-life in the left-hand corner: a painting within the painting. You can make out a shard of glass, a lemon peel, a bit of garbage — but it looks like he’s only touched the canvas a few times.