The work of Los Angeles-based, Argentinian-born artist Luciana Abait is the subject of “Luciana Abait: On the Verge,” a survey exhibition presented by Laband Gallery at Loyola Marymount University. The multi-media solo show features more than twenty works created from 2017 to 2022. With a throughline of conjuring imaginary worlds that address the fragility of our eco-systems and portend climate catastrophe, the pieces in the show are also intended to serve as hopeful reminders change is possible. There is an artist’s reception on Saturday, September 24 from 1-3pm (through December 10, 2022).

“Black Water (The Exquisite Edge of the Precipice)” photograph and acrylic painting on canvas, 56″ DIA, (2022)

Abait created the new title series “On the Verge” specifically for the exhibition. She says, “These photos were taken at Lake Powell, a water reservoir that is drying up at an alarming rate due to climate change. Seen from a distance, the landscapes appear to be idyllic and are reminiscent of 18th Century English landscape paintings. But upon closer viewing one sees that not everything is a utopia. A garbage dumpster, a parking lot made of asphalt, structures such as a water pump; these details highlight how the human imprint interrupts the beauty of the natural world and acts as a reminder of the power of human influence.”

Another show highlight is the site-specific digital projection “Agua” (2021). The piece’s luminous, cascading waterfall celebrates the beauty and sensuality of water, while also reminding us of the precariousness of its supply as climate change accelerates. “She says, “This piece has been a significant component of my work, bridging public art with a celebration of our natural world.”

“On the Verge” was curated by Laband Art Gallery Director Karen Rapp, who says, “I find that Luciana’s depictions of our contemporary climate crisis are likewise overwhelming and invitational. Her palette is sometimes skewed neon and deliberately unnatural which causes an unsettling effect. But, at the same time, she renders her pictures with such intentionally beautiful surfaces and colors to remind us of what is at stake: her landscapes are figuratively pushing at the edge of planetary existence. It’s as if she’s urging us to step into the scene and do something good.”

About the Artist:
Born and raised in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Abait is based in Los Angeles, where she is a resident artist of 18th Street Arts Center in Santa Monica. Her multimedia works engage with themes of environmentalism, climate change, ecological fragility, assimilation, and immigration. Abait uses images of nature, such as mountains, icebergs and oceans, along with flight plans, maps and human-made structures, to act as metaphors for her personal experience in her photo-based works.

On view: September 24, 2022 – December 10, 2022

What: “Luciana Abait: On the Verge”
Where: Laband Gallery, Burns Fine Arts Center, 1 LMU Drive, LA, 90045
When: Saturday, September 24, 2022, 1:00pm – 3:00pm