For five years in a row, Beyond Eden Art Fair in Los Angeles has been like an oasis of collaboration in an increasingly competitive market and growing contemporary art scenes. Over the course of that time, galleries have come and gone, but Thinkspace Gallery, Copro Gallery, C.A.V.E. Gallery, and San Francisco’s Spoke Art galleries have remained a central part of the event. Well over 5,000 people were in attendance at the fair’s final installment this past weekend at the historic Barnsdall Art Park. This year’s event was as eclectic as ever, featuring works spanning Graffiti, Abstract, Surrealism, and other pop-culture influenced styles.
Matt Ritchie’s work makes a case for the relevance of the handmade. His flat paintings on custom-shaped panels could easily be misconstrued for digital graphics, but the artist cuts them out of wood and paints the miniature creations by hand in a way that’s adamantly analog given the many shortcuts available for production. No laser cutters are involved.
For their current group show, “Paper Cuts,” San Francisco’s Spoke Art invited a diverse assembly of artists who transform paper into fantastical visions with the help of a blade. Charles Clary, for instance, builds up layers of colorful sheets of paper cut into organic shapes that resemble neon bacteria colonies sprawling across the gallery wall. Clary’s loud, vibrant sculptural work is balanced out by the monochromatic shadow boxes of Hari and Deepti, a duo that cuts out narrative scenes from layers of white paper, using the interplay of light and shadow to illuminate their characters. Yulia Brodskaya’s delicate works utilize colorful paper in a collage-like style; the artist glues different thin, delicate pieces to create ornamental patterns. Her works for the show are small yet visually impactful. “Paper Cuts” is on view through May 24. Take a look at some work from the show after the jump.