Lecture/Talk with art critic Catherine G. Wagley (Los Angeles)
Catherine G. Wagley's current book project is a case history and an excavation of the work of five gallerists whose lives intertwined and whose programs overlapped: Virginia Dwan, Riko Mizuno, Eugenia Butler, Suzanne Jackson, and Claire Copley. They operated galleries in Los Angeles during the 1960s and 1970s and were similarly under-known and instrumental in encouraging a generation of artists to take risks. None have been written about thoroughly or often, despite the fact that many of the artists they nurtured have since been canonized. While this project certainly aims to fill a gap in a still-imbalanced historical record, another big picture aim is to share that excitement with readers who feel hungry for different, more open models for what working and living with art can look like. This talk focuses particularly on Butler’s short years at the helm of her eponymous space (1969-71), exploring how her propensity for collapsing her personal life into the lives of her artists led to a program in which nearly everything felt like defiant spectacle.
Catherine G. Wagley writes about art in Los Angeles. She is a contributing editor at Momus and Contemporary Art Review Los Angeles (Carla), and she has written criticism and journalism for the LA Times, X-TRA and ArtNews, among other publications. She is working on a book about a group of female gallerists who embraced and encouraged risk-taking in 1960s and 1970s Los Angeles.