“From Los Angeles to New York: The Dwan Gallery 1959-1971”
Resnick Pavilion, Los Angeles County Museum of Art
March 19 – September 10, 2017
BROADWAY 1602 Harlem artist Rosemarie Castoro is featured in “Los Angeles to New York: Dwan Gallery 1959-1971″, at LACMA. The exhibition – previously on display at The National Gallery of Art in Washington D.C-, highlights the manifold accomplishments and achievements of The Dwan Gallery and its founder, Virginia Dwan. The gallery was a major contributor to the post-war contemporary art movement, housing some of the inaugural works of pop-art, neo-dada and abstract expressionism to emerge in the U.S, while also providing a platform for the Nouveau Réalistes. Founded by Dwan in a storefront in Westwood in 1959, the gallery would go on to showcase some of the leading contemporary artists of the 1960s, presenting radical exhibitions by Edward Kienholz, Yves Klein, Franz Kline, Claes Oldenburg, Robert Rauschenberg, Ad Reinhardt, and Robert Smithson, among others. After migrating to New York City, in 1965, The Dwan Gallery would go on to to introduce major movements in contemporary art, including Land Art, Minimal Art, and Conceptual Art. Virginia Dwan, a leading patron of Earthworks, would go on to sponsor projects including Heizer’s Double Negative (1969) and City: Complex One (1972); Smithson’s Spiral Jetty (1970); De Maria’s 35-Pole Lightning Field (1974); and Charles Ross’s Star Axis (1971).
In 1969, Rosemarie Castoro created the 24-part series of visual poetry, “A DAY IN THE LIFE OF A CONSCIENTIOUS OBJECTOR” for the Dwan Gallery in Los Angeles. At once deeply intimate, humorous and abstract, the piece incorporates diaristic pieces of script with conceptual drawings to create a diagrammatic system with which Castoro structured her daily activities, becoming at once mantra and mode of reflection, imposing order onto the minutiae of absurd and quotidian movements, thoughts and experiences. The piece, which art critic Lucy Lippard described as being “the best ‘fiction’ I have read about the life of an artist”, (ARTFORUM, 1975) will be on display at LACMA as part of the Dwan Gallery retrospective.