Shoshana Wayne Gallery is pleased to present ‘Lay Back and Enjoy It’ by Rachel Lachowicz. This is the Los Angeles-based artist’s seventh solo exhibition with the gallery. The exhibition will be on view January 21st through April 1st, 2017, with an opening reception on Saturday, January 21st from 5-7pm.
“Lay Back and Enjoy It” is both the title of the exhibition and of the large-scale installation modeled after three prominent structures from the 1973 Clint Eastwood film, High Plains Drifter. The artist has completely covered two structures – the Sheriff’s Station and the Church – in red lipstick to represent different pillars of historical patriarchal power: Law and Order, Religion, Markets and Domesticity. At just under full-scale, viewers are completely immersed in the seductive aesthetics of red lipstick, visually, physically and olfactory, while viewing their own reflection in the red mirrored windows of the buildings.
This new work is a revisitation for Lachowicz, who in 1996 created a series of video-stills from the film that depict the town after it was painted red. Initially struck by the film’s two rape scenes, and the classic Hollywood trope of submissive female characters, Lachowicz sought to address the archetypal notion of architecture as being historically masculine. Her use of translation and appropriation reaches new levels of scale with this work, offering a “feminine” covering which repurposes and repositions the buildings. Lay Back and Enjoy It places the structures within a context that critiques social constructions of the contemporary, by combining a western town with high modernism and minimalism.
In the Eastwood film, the town painted red acts as a metaphor for the changing psyche of its inhabitants and even the identity of the town itself. Another component of the installation is a model loosely based on a Western 19th century town, dipped in lipstick. The model offers the notion that our past structures or architecture need to change, while giving the viewer a vision of what a larger construction of Western topography might look like with a feminine index.
On view: January 21st – April 1st, 2017
What: Opening reception
Where: Shoshana Wayne Gallery, Bergamot Station (B-1) 2525 Michigan Ave., Santa Monica, 90404
When: 5:00 – 7:00 pm – January 21, 2017