off-kilter at Michael Benevento

Artists: Tony Cokes, Bjorn Copeland, Christopher Culver, Raque Ford, Oto Gillen, Ashton Hudgins, Salomon Huerta, Gigi Janchang, Chadwick Rantanen, Davina Semo, Julia Wachtel

Exhibition title: off-kilter

Venue: Michael Benevento, Los Angeles, US

Date: September 16 – November 5, 2022

Photography: all images copyright and courtesy of the artists and Michael Benevento, Los Angeles

off-kilter is an exhibition about how things look and feel. While rooted in the formal, the arms of this exhibition reach into areas of the emotional, generational, and art historical. An exhibition that considers various levels of production and meaning, exploring color, appropriation, and landscapes, both architectural and psychological. An exhibition where objects illustrate a non-linear story regarding the ghostly resonances that exist between fact and fiction, history and the present tense. A cup that is both half full and half empty.

The title of the exhibition is taken from an installation produced in San Francisco, circa 1984, by Taiwanese, conceptual artist, Gigi Janchang (now living in Copenhagen). After carefully measuring the gallery Janchang discovered the gallery was off square by nearly six inches. Rather than ignoring or fighting the peculiarities of the architecture, she made it the subject of her work. She created an illusionary “true” space by lining it with carpenters levels along the floor and ceiling. She also hung plumb bobs to establish true vertical. When presented with the evidence of the levels and bobs, viewers perceived the space as square and Janchang’s correction as off-kilter.

The artists in this exhibition share Janchang’s sensibility, exploring the affects and effects of a complicated moment. The works included are cryptic yet familiar, poetic, dry, dark, and psychologically vibrant, with a crushed sense of humor.