Artist: Cosima von Bonin
Venue: House of Gaga, Los Angeles
Exhibition Title: HETERO
Date: August 15 – September 16, 2020
Full gallery of images, press release and link available after the jump.
Images courtesy of House of Gaga, Los Angeles
Gaga is pleased to present HETERO, the second exhibition of Cosima von Bonin at GAGA, first in our LA location.
As it was the case with Shit and Chanel, HETERO is the result of an expansive WhatsApp dialogue between the artist and the gallerists. This time, unlike the last, even the install was done through video calls. This year plans have changed for everyone, we have had to change dates and locations for this show twice and the artist could not make her way to Los Angeles. But maybe the show has embedded in it the traces of this moment, marked by remote working and new socializing modes. We can’t avoid missing her physical presence. But who knows, by being present in every decision and detail in the show, we have the feeling that we can hear her laugh and maybe find her in this gingerbread house for adult Hansels and Gretels.
As one walks into the gallery, the first thing we encounter is LOVE/HATE behind which hides a secret (furtive) smoker lounge that serves as an anteroom to an amusement park of hard to decipher amusements. We do not know if we are entering the house of horrors or a fun house. Probably none of the above or both at the same time: the house of mirrors where we see the deformed and therefore an even more precise reflection of the adult children we are. Fragile and shy like the characters we see in the show, but voracious, seduced and fascinated by the gingerbread house that has its real place in our subconscious. And just like that the installation unfolds emphasizing the back side of the works which become just as important, or even more important, than the front side for those who like to see ́the other side of things ́. Screens create crushing spaces. Fences make sure we keep our distance but at the same time invite us in.
More than a script (discourse, meaning or slogan) Cosima has elaborated on a color palette, worthy of the most exquisite interior decorator, the perfect set for our interior and the mise-en-scene of our most shameful desires and nightmares.
Here nothing is what it seems which could be said in another way; that a rose is not a rose is not a rose. Front / back, love / hate, more than opposites in tension, binary posed or confronted, the work seems to embrace kindly the contradictions and everything in between. Hetero? Heterosexual or Heterodox? A rose is not a rose but sometimes a rose that is not a rose could also be a rose.
Flags that are not banners but axes, axes that are not weapons but toys, toys that are words, and words that are sculptures. Sculptures that become fences and fences that become hashtags. Hashtags that are not trending, nor proposing any slogan, but some tarot card of ambiguous significance, radical surfaces that work as a screen where we project. Magic mirrors.
Luis Felipe Fabre, Mexico DF 15 de Agosto 2020
Fernando Mesta Los Angeles, August 2020