A simple reconfiguring of space at Wilding Cran has yielded a tiny, jewelbox of a gallery for small yet impactful exhibitions. Black Over White by Brazilian artist Maria Lynch is part of Pacific Standard Time LA/LA, the vast project supported by the Getty Foundation to produce exhibitions and education events related to Latin American and Latino art, in numerous venues across Southern California.
The six drawings in her show comprise a suite of investigations, essentially automatic drawings of ideas in process. All horizontal and varying negligibly in size, these works follow the description announced by the show’s title. They are graphite doodles on untreated paper, although Untitled 1 (2017) (they are all similarly titled, 1 through 6) has some white painting in small areas.
In numerical order the drawings feature battling robots and cricket balls, Jules Verne airships and conifer forests, a spiral staircase and daisy-chained flowerpots, stacked boxes and magic carpets, a vocal trio and rainbow clouds, conjoined olives and DNA strands. Though these sketchy works amuse they remain musings and give little insight as to what projects, if any, may spring from them.
Her video Bonecas (2017) is another story. Set in a bright white room are a half-dozen or so festively painted kiosks. We quickly learn they are oversized doll boxes, vividly patterned and colored, and a pair of human dolls move between and inhabit them briefly. These open changing-rooms show (through the magic of jump cuts) these characters in a variety of costumes.
They wear the apparel of comfortable lives—skinny jeans and dorky spectacles, sequined dress and high heels, business suit, thermal underwear—as they move from box to box, spend time there or decide against entering. They move from one to the other, changing costumes but hardly interacting; they transform in an instant making several wardrobe changes in mere minutes. The boxes are just like the ones they will buy for their children, the role models included beneath a cellophane window.
It is upon this recognition that these colorful kiosks most resemble coffins.
Maria Lynch, “Black Over White,” January 13 – February 17 at Wilding Cran, 939 South Santa Fe Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90021. wildingcran.com