Armory Teaching Artist Jocelyn Casas makes paintings, sculptures, installations, murals, and wearables. Jocelyn's work navigates her fluid identity as a first generation Mexican-American, using both humor and "the uncanny" to investigate family history and cultural heritage. We asked Jocelyn to share her 5 favorite sculptors with us. "Wow, that was difficult," she confessed when she passed on her list earlier this week. Thanks Jocelyn for the hard work! P.S., she asked that we include Rafa Esparza, Marisa Merz, and Sarah Lucas as her "honorable mentions." Enjoy.
Banner Image: Louise Bourgeois, Maman, 1999. Bronze, marble, and stainless steel. 927 x 891 x 1023 cm. Installation photograph at the Guggenheim Bilbao Museoa. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.
Prolific. Her work has been described by many to be the process of healing from her complicated childhood experience, but I would argue and say that Bourgeois intention was not to solve but to rest with the ambiguity of it all. She worked in different media including bronze, wood, latex and fabric. Her fabric heads are some of my favorites. They are collaged in a manner that they are given no gender and are sewn through an aggressive process to appear delicate. Check this interview with Bourgeois later in her life that captures her essence.
When I first came across Beatriz’s work I was taken back by her use of material, shape, and form to speak to political concerns involving place/ space and belonging. Her Memory Insertion Capsule intertwines historical and utopian fantasies that both bring comfort and discomfort as the viewer is confronted with their own realities.
Nothing screams Los Angeles more than Halsey’s work. Halsey creates monuments that celebrate South Central’s rich history of hand painted signs and pop culture iconography. She captures the Los Angeles experience from a non Hollywood context that sheds light and heals a community that has been systematically impacted. Representation matters, and it is not more evident than in Lauren Halsey’s sculptural installations that are placed inside a white cube.
As a painter who has yet to admit that her work has bridged over to a more sculptural form, I always find comfort in Jessica Stockholder’s paintings/ sculptures. Stuff is not just objects, they can have a life beyond the utilitarian. Her use of readymades and assemblage elements is a more tactile form of painting that is playful and contentious. A documentation of a time, place, and mood. Stockholder’s work hovers in between painting and sculpture, not picking sides despite how much I try to.
I have a profound appreciation for manual labor. Saar’s sculptures embody and don’t shy away from the remnants of the hand. Her sculptures include wood, nails, wire, metals, found materials, hammers, and saws to name a few. The powerful and aggressive nature of the materials manage to create elegant and fierce sculptural works that articulate the African Diaspora experience.
We can still come together as a community to celebrate the power of art. If you are in a position to do so, please consider supporting the Armory today. We pledge to continue providing exceptional arts programming for all, while supporting our staff and teaching artists to our fullest ability in the weeks to come. Your tax deductible donation will help safeguard our mission through this crisis and beyond. Thank you.