I'm very much a sucker for art with words in it, so I was excited to attend last night's opening of the new Jenny Holzer show, THE FUTURE PLEASE, at L & M Arts, Venice.
Holzer's LED light signs illuminated the West Gallery, and we stood in front of them so long reading the sometimes positive messages ("Protect Your Earth") and sometimes negative (don't want to put energy into negative so go look yourself) that we had red bars floating in front of our eyes even after walking away.
They're pretty mesmerizing, and always thought-provoking. I might suggest dark glasses for viewing as long as I did. It gets pretty deep.
The East Gallery was made up of Holzer's latest body of work, The Redaction Paintings.
Large pieces on linen portray redacted US Government documents make you wonder about the suppression of words, while the color surrounding the text brightens up the vibe, helping to feel good that at least we're all still talking about the rights and wrongs, so maybe there's still hope for us after all.
Granite benches scattered about inside and out had Holzer's poems etched into the granite surfaces, and these too were deep, and sometimes positive, sometimes negative.
While looking at the benches, my friend Vavine had a memory of visiting benches like these in Peggy Guggenheim's museum garden in our sister city, Venice, Italy. Vav carried film photos around the world with her of these benches, she loved them so, and when she figured out that this Holzer lady wasn't ripping off the Venice benches, but had CREATED them, it was one of those "The Universe led you to this moment" kind of chills for her.
So we had to go find Ms. Holzer and share this experience that had so moved Vav. She said, "Give me the headline of the story", and when Vav did, she shared her enthusiasm for both the story and the Venice Guggenheim garden. A beautiful example of manifestation and cool oneness with the entire world. Hooray for art!
You get the feeling Holzer got really burned at love in the past and looks at the very idea with tainted eyes now.
But you also sense a glimmer of that passion burning deep down within her still, pushing forward the notion that burned or not, it's what you keep trying for, it's what you're alive for. But that could just be me.
Words are also projected on the walls outside in the garden, thus the show could inspire and stimulate you even if you're just walking on by.
A bunch of art world people were there, as well as our Venice movers and shakers, all having a great time in the perfectly balmy evening.
I love the L & M openings. They're always stimulating, enlightening, and simply a good time with cool people coming together for the sake of ART. There's not a lot better than that.
You have until October 27th to get there yourself. Bring your shades.
Jenny Holzer The Future Please
660 Venice Blvd.
Tuesday - Saturday
*To see more on Jenny Holzer, check out this site: https://artsy.net/artist/jenny-holzer