Eva Hesse: Drawings at L.A. MOCA

by F.

hesse.jpg

LA Weekly has some notes on the show. An excerpt:

Trimmed of its extraneous ephemera by two-thirds, “Drawings” is a small jewel of a show, compiling the artist’s loopy, colorful, cartoonish, off-kilter abstractions alongside her contemplative monochrome ink-wash geometries, her tweakerific ink-on-graph-paper noodlings, and sumptuous late-’60s gouaches into a compelling analogue of her more substantial primary oeuvre.

Unfortunately, that jewel is buried in a mound of caca — student exercises, second-rate sketchbooks, and a numbing plethora of carefully matted and framed pages torn from dime-store notebooks wherein Hesse describes, in unremarkable graphic shorthand, possible color schemes or suspension hardware for works that aren’t even included here as photographic reproductions. It’s the equivalent of one of those Beatles bootlegs with 27 false starts and instrumental takes of “And I Love Her” surrounding the version of “What’s the New Mary Jane?” with Syd Barrett and the a cappella “Because.” As far as the filler goes, I believe the phrase is “for completists only,” and the appropriate venue eBay or some similar reliquary for celebrity droppings.

I like the piece above and some of her other work. But I’m somewhat tired of cartoony-looking drawings and paintings.

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