The varied forces composing A Spaghetti Dress for World Peace dovetail in a refreshing, intimate press release penned by its curator, Paul Soto, owner of Park View. The show’s invisible but omnipresent muse is Miguel Adrover, an ingenious turn-of-the-millennium fashion designer whose professional downfall was due, in part, to his inability – or unwillingness – to properly navigate the “noise” of financial, social, and political interests. In his text Soto relates the adverse effect that similar noise has recently had on his own art and life. He also concedes that art objects simultaneously perform philosophical and commercial roles, and are, as such, conflicted.
Correspondingly, many of the works here merge unrelated or incongruous elements, none more germanely than an untitled jacket by fashion house Gypsy Sport (2017). Casually hung in the gallery’s closet, the work is an amalgam of upcycled black mesh, oxblood nylon and common grey sweatshirt material. Nearby, Victoria Colmegna’s volubly titled wall vitrine* overlaps adroit sketches and an exquisitely rendered graphite and pastel self-portrait. Similarly synthesized are Dena Yago’s site-specific vinyl text works (REGRESSERGNI, INGRESSERGE, and EGRESSERGER, all 2017). Installed atop three of the space’s doorway arches, these word collisions enact a heightened self-awareness while traversing Soto’s apartment-cum-gallery. While additional contributions by Catharine Czudej, Dardan Zhegrova, Paul Heyer, Heji Shin, and Sam Grossinger echo these notions of fused imbalance, the diverging media and varying execution of the remaining works deliberately rattle this continuity.
Comprising 26 works by an array of 16 contributors, A Spaghetti Dress for World Peace often dips into cacophony, burying decipherable resolution within its myriad folds. Ultimately, though, this decidedly discordant operation mirrors the chaos-induced sentiment of Soto’s relatable words, leaving the feeling that an easily consumable and cohesive exhibition was never really the point here. Unlike Adrover’s clothes, Soto’s exhibition achieves a liberated and reflexive dialogue about the collective “noise” we must acknowledge, both within and outside the realm of art.
*Victoria Colmegna, #229. Super Senior Series: Schiller Schuller in Floral Selfhood Valley, 2015; #62: Who´s Who?: Will the real Jessica please stand up?, 1990; #35.Out of Control: Will Aaron Dallas destroy Elizabeth’s and Jeffrey’s happiness?, 1987; #66. Who´s to Blame?: Elizabeth is running away!, 1990; #41.Outcast: Will anyone speak to Molly Hecht again?, 1987; #17.Boys against Girls: Elizabeth and Jessica team up to fight there worse enemy, Boys!, 1988 (2016). Pastel, graphite, and pen on velvet and paper (commissioned portrait and original sketches by Jimmy Mathewuse, illustrator of the “Sweet Valley High book” series book covers); glass, steel, and PVC vitrine with lock-and-key, 26.38 × 35.75 × 3.75 inches.
A Spaghetti Dress for World Peace runs September 2–October 21, 2017 at Park View (836 S Park View St #8, Los Angeles, CA 90057).
Image courtesy of the artist and Park View. Photo: Jeff McLane.