We've Only Just Begun

Sunday, February 1, 2015, 8:30 pm
Ghebaly Gallery

2245 East Washington Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90021


Aykan Safoğlu, Off-white Tulips, HD video, 24 minutes, 2013
Pauline Boudry + Renate Lorenz, To Valerie Solanas and Marilyn Monroe in Recognition of Their Desperation, Super-16mm/HD film, 18 minutes, 2013
My Barbarian, Counterpublicity, HD video, 11:38 minutes, 2014

Dirty Looks launches our latest initiative, DL: Los Angeles with a program of work made within the past year that examines contemporary queer relationships with gay icons ranging from Marilyn Monroe, Valerie Solanas, James Baldwin, Pedro Zamora and José Esteban Muñoz. Our 4-year celebration will also mark the launch of DL: Los Angeles, spearheaded by Clara López Menéndez and Bradford Nordeen.

Off-White Tulips (Kirik Beyaz Laleler) is a tribute to writer James Baldwin, a video essay comprised of still photographs that illustrate or confound a narration that blends Baldwin’s self-imposed exile to Turkey with the artist’s own biographical details and an exploration of his native country.

To Valerie Solanas and Marilyn Monroe in Recognition of Their Desperation takes as a starting point the score of the same title composed by the avant-garde composer Pauline Oliveros in 1970. Documenting a performance of the work by Rachel Aggs, Peaches, Ginger Brooks Takahashi, Catriona Shaw, Verity Susman, and William Wheeler, the composition, which was influenced by Valerie Solanas’s radical feminist SCUM Manifesto, affords the musicians an equal role, rejecting the hierarchical structures of traditional music.

My Barbarian's Counterpublicity is a staged video performance based on an essay about Pedro Zamora, AIDS activist and star of the Real World: San Francisco, written by José Esteban Muñoz in his book, Disidentifications. The three members of My Barbarian re-perform scenes from The Real World in an alienated style, resisting the affect of "reality tv" even as they interrogate its politics, contrasting these scenes with the embodied performance of 90s-inspired music videos, with lyrics adapted from Muñoz's theory of Queer counterpublic spheres that operate against the dominance of racism and homophobia.

Aykan Safoğlu lives and works in Berlin. Born in Istanbul, he holds a BA in Film from Istanbul Bilgi University, an MA in “Art in Context” from the University of the Arts Berlin and an MFA in Photography from Bard College. Since 2004 he has made several short films, published articles and reviews in various magazines and participated & curated several group shows. He was a member of the curatorial collective “ğ”(soft g) and won the Grand Prize of the City Oberhausen at the 59th International Oberhausen Short Film Festival.

In their primarily filmic works, Pauline Boudry / Renate Lorenz deal with the emergence of photography and film against the backdrop of colonial history and the invention of body norms. Historical photographs, texts or songs become the starting point for their search for alternative (sexual) practices and ways of living, conjoining with subversive approaches from pop, glamour, and camp. Boudry/Lorenz’s films show performances for the camera, which are only indirectly encountered by the audience through the film projection. At the same time, projected films or images often form the stage background for these filmed performances, so that the different levels overlap. The filmic illusion is broken again and again in the works by Boudry/Lorenz, as the performers look or speak directly into the camera and the director or the camera itself comes into the picture.

My Barbarian is a collective made up of Malik Gaines, Jade Gordon, and Alexandro Segade. The group's performance and video works have been shown at MoMA , The Kitchen, New Museum, Whitney Museum, Studio Museum in Harlem (New York); LACMA, MOCA, REDCAT (Los Angeles); SFMOMA (San Francisco); Hirshhorn Museum (Washington DC); ICA (Philadelphia); De Appel (Amsterdam); El Matadero (Madrid); Peres Projects (Berlin); Townhouse Gallery (Cairo), and others. The group has had solo exhibitions at Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects, 2013; Yaffo 23, Jerusalem, 2013; Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, 2010; Museo El Eco, Mexico City, 2010; and Participant Inc., New York, 2009. My Barbarian has been included in numerous group exhibitions including the 2014 Whitney Biennial.