An Afternoon at LACMA

February 8, 2013

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LACMA did have one of his earliest masterpieces, “Saint Francis of Assisi in Ecstasy”

Just a few days before its closing, I finally made it to the “Caravaggio and His Legacy” exhibit at LACMA. Caravaggio is known for his undefined space and play of light. It seemed almost unfair to put his disciples’s paintings next to his, because he is the master. There were very few actual Caravaggio paintings; nonetheless, it was still an interesting exhibit. There was even one Velazquez painting from early in his career that was in Caravaggio’s style, which I was very excited to see.

I was also impressed to see a few works from Valentin de Boulogne, with whom I was not familiar with before seeing this exhibit. Particularly, I enjoyed his painting, “Judith.” It is clearly in the Caravaggio style, but it is in his unique interpretation.

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I was similarly impressed with Simon Vouet’s “Saint Jerome and the Angel.” I did not know about him before this exhibit, either. I studied art history in Spain, which is why I’m obsessed with Velazquez and Goya and am less familiar with French painters.

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HOT. But seriously, beautiful painting.

Finally, one more painting from the exhibit I really enjoyed was “The Denial of Saint Peter” by Gerard Seghers.

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I love the use of light in this. That’s so Caravaggio.

After the Caravaggio exhibit, I went straight to the Kubrick exhibit. Well, that was my intention, anyway. Rather, I got lost and ended up on level two of the Broad Contemporary Art Museum where the exhibit “Lost Line: Contemporary Art from the Collection” is on display. Normally, as awful as it sounds, I avoid contemporary art because I have never taken a course on it, so I worry that I won’t “get it.” But I cannot recommend this exhibit enough! The exhibit gets its name from “Lost Line” by Gabriel Orozco (1962), a small sculpture made of plasticine and cotton string. According to the explanation they put next to the work, it will slowly change shape over time. It is about impermanence (which is a very difficult word to spell, it took me like five tries until I got frustrated and looked it up).

My other favorite works from this exhibit, which I don’t have pictures of, were “Erosion” by Analia Saban, “A Circumpolar Journey Per I, Per II, Per III, Per IV” by Alfred Jensen, and an untitled work by Valeska Soares. In the end, I don’t know if I did “understand” all of the contemporary works I saw in that exhibit, but I still got a lot out of going there.

If you go to LACMA, definitely check it out!

Finally, after getting help from several LACMA employees, I found the Kubrick exhibit. Wow. Another must see at LACMA. I was so glad to learn more about his style, works, processes, and influences. He is considered an auteur and was a professional photographer for Look magazine before he made movies. His work isn’t always on the more commercial end as far as movies go, so it was fascinating to take a step back and see it broken down.

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