Francis Ghebaly Gallery celebrated the art of Rindon Johnson with an opening reception on May 15, 2021. Not to worry, if you missed it as the exhibition runs through June 19, 2021  – contact the gallery.

Rindon Johnson, The justice of it pleases, mocking the meat you feed on, like if they came, what would you do? Grab a bat, a pitch fork, and hold it and wonder what to do? You are my own and in keeping the monster from my eye there is no composition in the mews., Detail, 2021. Furniture leather, polyurethane, shellac, rust, salt, charcoal, coconut oil. 62 x 44 inches (157.5 x 112 cm).

Johnson’s “The Valley of the Moon,” his first solo exhibition with François Ghebaly, arises from this landscape of lunar doubling. Through a wide range of mediums and working styles, the exhibition presents a view into Johnson’s exploration of material history, economies of value, and the porosity of being human.

The exhibition opens with a trio of dyed leather sculptures, part of an ongoing series that uses furniture grade cowhide, a byproduct from industrial beef production. Johnson smeared the skins with polyurethane, indigo, coffee, salt and wood stain, then left them outside under the elements for over a year, where they gathered flows of rust, oak leaves, and the raining ash of a California fire season. These works build on Johnson’s notion of the byproduct as a broader historical and conceptual condition. Whereas furniture leather is a byproduct of industrial animal processing, and Vaseline a byproduct of petroleum refining, Johnson proposes that American Blackness itself is a byproduct of another capitalist megaindustry: the transatlantic slave trade. The series poses a number of questions—what overlapping systems have conspired to allow us to come into being? To come into thinking? How do we reckon with and reconceptualize our place in a broader ecology of exploitations and freedoms?

On view: May 15 – June 19, 2021; CLICK HERE to schedule an appointment;

What: “Rindon Johnson: The Valley of the Moon”
Where: François Ghebaly, 2245 E Washington Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90021