Kathy Leonardo

Kathy Leonardo  Photo:Gregory Dahl

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LA Art Party Newsletter

LAArtParty is an arts and entertainment website. Established in 2010, it is an online go-to guide for what's happening in and beyond the LA area - this includes dining, travel and more.

Founded by journalist, and "Blues Mama" Kathy Leonardo (a longtime performer), the campy site has an unusual slant which will keep you entertained. Leonardo has been writing for the past 15 years about various subjects for the Huffington Post, THRIVE GLOBAL, LA Weekly, etc.

Each month the LAArtParty staff, led by Kathy Leonardo decides which events will be featured. Posted at noon on the Thursday prior to the last week of the month, LAArtParty.com features the Top Ten Art Parties, plus other fun events each month. VIP subscribers find out ONE week prior to the public and receive discounts and invites to VIP parties throughout the year.

See Contact Page to find out how to become a VIP subscriber so you don't miss any more great ART Parties!! See Contact/Rates Page to find out how submit and promote your own events!


Mayor Garcetti

126x144 kathyandthemayor2-1

Former Mayor Villaraigosa, Levitated Mass LACMA

ADsize-Kathy and Jonathan Gold

Pulitzer Prize Winning Food Critic, Jonathan Gold


Bernie Taupin


Actor, Martin Mull


Herb Alpert

 Graham Nash

Graham Nash

Ed Moses

Larry Bell




John Van Hamersveld


Andy Moses

Peter Alexander



David Trulli

Ellwood T. Risk


Stuart Kusher


Brooke Harker


Sona Mirzaei

Jules Muck


LA Art Show

On site with LA Art Party's Video team

First Fridays on AK

view on youtube.com

”Magic Circles” at MOCA


 Depena Productions
    Video Partner

On View Now: bG Gallery, "Spectrum-Gestalt"

Part curatorial, part installation "Spectrum-Gestalt" brings together artists' works from a wide variety of genres and mediums, grouping them into an expansive spectrum of color. The first spectrum was one of our most popular exhibits and the unofficial launch of our new Bergamot Station space and has since become an annual open call, allowing the gallery to discover new talent. Spectrum-Gestalt is part of an ongoing series of installation/curatoriales exploring gestalt principles by Australian artist/curator, Airom.
Bleicher Project Space is located inside Bleicher/Gorman (bG) Gallery in Bergamot Station G8A. bG specializes in artists who have blurred boundaries between traditionally divided art approaches in their work with a particular emphasis on bridging 'inside' and 'outside,' and 'highbrow' and 'lowbrow.' Bleicher Project Space is an exhibit area within the gallery that has a focus on experimental projects and collaborative installations.

Artists: Adrienne Allebe, Sue Allen, Melissa Behr, Natalia Berglund, Michael Berkowitz, Barbara Berry, Maud Besson, Susan Card, Natalie Ciccoricco, Carla Ciuffo, Lee Clarke, Annie Clavel, Mike Collins, Joanna Garel Hayat Gul, Daniel Hammerson, Cathrine Hancher, Katie Hovencamp, Walter Impert, Peggy Lee, Marietta Patricia Leis, Donna Lomangino, Chalda Maloff, Ryan Ostrowski, Lisa Rasmussen, Jimmy Reagan, Mika Revell, Eugene Rodriguez, Janet Rutkowski, Shyun Song, Dori Spector, Qinyuan Sun, CTina Ybarra, April Zanne Johnson, Airom, and many more.

Save the date July 1, 2017 - closing Art Party!

Where: BLEICHER/GORMAN (bG) Gallery Bergamot Station, Space G8A, 2525 Michigan Avenue, Santa Monica 90404 
Phone: 1 (310) 906 4211
Website: bGartGalleries.com

Thomas Mercer Hartman - Beyond the Canvas

Thomas Mercer Hartman has been immersed in art for most of his life. For the past four decades, he worked on museums in exhibition design and special projects. His artistic talents extend beyond the canvas. "Designing exhibitions was an excuse to design space - which was my passion," explained Hartman.
Mar 12 2017 lowres-ThomasMercerHartman BLUE FALLS 2014
Image: by Thomas Mercer Hartman Blue Falls, 2014, Acrylic, lacquer, enamel and caulking on canvas, 60" x 120"

Early on in his career, Hartman realized there was a niche market for his talents. He was proficient at designing graphic-intensive and object oriented exhibits (requiring custom cases) and architectural interiors. He developed architectural program documents for museums - to determine the building envelope, space allotment, collections storage requirements, construction cost, and interpretive approach. This included working with museums' boards of directors to determine the vision, operations, and exhibitions forecast."Developing interpretive environments," continued Hartman, "to translate the story and house the objects, films and content was the challenge. The content provided rules of engagement for the design." He went on to explain that working closely with the artists while organizing their works allowed for the revelation of the artist's story within the context of the spatial requirements of the exhibition.

Hartman started painting decades ago as an undergraduate. However, conceptual installations soon became his focus when his design work with museums became a full-time livelihood. His two creative outlets inspire and inform each other. "Over the past decade, the visual arts side of my work has dramatically increased. It has been a private dialogue to allow a visual language to come forward."
Mar 12 2017 72dpi FERUS 2014 15 ThomasMercerHartman
Image: Ferus, 2014-15, Acrylic, cement, caulking and lacquer on panel 48” x 76”

Hartman paints every day. "I like working early in the morning and returning to it in the afternoons. Juggling time on projects is stimulating. As I paint, I solve some of the architectural problems or content questions in my practice. As I design, I glance around the studio, and it is easy to define the next steps in the art process. There is an efficiency to being productive with ongoing projects. It is an iterative process."

Hartman reflected about his process, "For me, there is a difference between the creative effort in design and art. Design has a creative search as part of its process with a focus on solving a problem - e.g. physical requirements, budget, time constraints, etc."

He added that his art practice is more open-ended. "It starts from dreaming about what may be possible." One of his works titled Moss Pond brings to mind the paintings of the legendary artist Monet. Hartman explained his inspiration, "It has an ethereal sense of place. While exploring with surface qualities and color, this piece began to resemble a pond. Once the concept was exposed, the work was to determine how to enhance the piece without painting a pond. Color juxtaposition, nuanced values, and a 'dance' of hue changes provide a visual choreography that represents a watery habitat."
Mar 12 2017 72dpi ThomasMercerHartman MOSS POND-2015
Image: by Thomas Mercer Hartman, Moss Pond, 2015, Acrylic and lacquer on panel, 32" x 80"

This will be the first time for Hartman to exhibit his works at a restaurant. Upper West is an upscale Santa Monica eatery that he has frequented. "I like that the setting of the restaurant as a conversation with the work can occur without the imprint of the gallery world."

A solo exhibition of the artist's paintings will open this Sunday March 12th, at Upper West Restaurant (3321 Pico Blvd, Santa Monica, CA) from 4-7 pm. "Explorations" features paintings created by Hartman within the past several years at his Santa Monica studio. For more info about Thomas Mercer Hartman, visit http://www.mercerprojects.com http://www.iqmagic.net/ http://www.theupperwest.com/

On View Now: FP Contemporary!

FP Contemporary is pleased to announce the opening reception for "I'm Twelve Push-ups Away from the Perfect Body," a solo exhibition featuring recent works by mixed media artist Hunt Rettig. The paintings of Stephanie Visser are on view in the Project Gallery.
Hunt Rettig, Grab As You Go, 47 x 47 x 2 inches, mixed media on panel

Hunt Rettig is known for his three-dimensional assemblages that produce the illusion of 2D digital images. Self-taught, Rettig's process-based discipline is a continual quest to transform quotidian material into the sublime. In Rettig's hands, moldable synthetics and reflective acrylics become encapsulated sculptures implying kinetic movement if not actuating it. He has been drawn to the work of Jesus Soto since childhood.

Hunt Rettig's three-dimensional wall sculptures contain organic shapes full of light and dimension that shift depending on the vantage point of the viewer. How they are created generally perplexes the viewer. Their reflective nature makes them appear to be lit from behind. Even upon close inspection, the ­­perfection of these shapes behind the glassy surface is not compromised and their construction remains mysterious.

An explorer of both geographic and psychological terrain, Rettig is most at home on a dirt path or body of water observing "familiar patterns that connect us as one, like source code." Biomorphic shapes seen in Rettig's work suggest sensual elements omnipresent in nature. "If it didn't exist, if it didn't resonate, we wouldn't be here." Hunt Rettig was born in El Paso, Texas and received his M.A. from Babson College in Wellesley, Massachusetts. He currently lives and works in Aspen, Colorado.

The paintings of Stephanie Visser will also be on view. In her latest body of work, artist Stephanie Visser challenges her viewers with paintings rooted in deeply intimate moments - those which intertwine emotion and memory.
stefanievisser inception untitled06 a rl 72x48 2012
Stephanie Visser, Inception SeriesUntitled 6, 72 x 48, Acrylic Stained on raw linen

According to Visser, these "mental photographs" are reflective of everyday life, conveying paradoxes of sunlight and shadow, stillness and movement, sound and silence. Working in the realm of the abstract, there is no outside reference in Visser's works. Rather, Visser distills her emotional subjects through color and form. Beginning with a single gesture upon a canvas, Visser builds images layer by layer. Sanding through translucent color washes, scumbled paint, and collaged materials, this laborious process of application and removal reveals a lyrical world of mystery.  http://stephanievisser.com/

On view: May 13 - June 17, 2017

What: Opening reception
Where: FP Contemporary, 5835 Washington Blvd.Culver City, CA 90232
Website: http://fpcontemporary.com/

On View Now: The G2 Gallery Celebrates New Exhibitions!

On June 6, The G2 Gallery, two new exhibitions opened "Susan McConnell: On the Shoulders of Giants," and Roberto Cabral: Fragile Strength. "On the Shoulders of Giants" is a photography exhibit by Susan McConnell about the grandeur, power and beauty of land's largest mammal, the African elephant. 

As a neuroscientist and Professor of Biology at Stanford University, Susan combines her expertise in animal behavior with instinct and her artistic eye to capture intimate family moments. The collection of 28 awe-inspiring photographs celebrates these colossal creatures, illustrating their intelligence, adaptability, close family ties and complex social structures.
From Left to Right: "Protection" and "The Conversation," by Susan McConnell

"On the Shoulders of Giants" premiered at Stanford University last spring. "Elephants are among the most poached animal on our planet," says Curator Monika Basse. "We are honored to present this exhibit to the Los Angeles community to shed light on this issue."

"I believe that empathy can underlie actions that save ecosystems, so I try to create images that illuminate the emotional worlds of animals," says Susan. The exhibit concludes with shadowy silhouettes of elephants against the landscape, alluding to the possibility of ghostly images in our future, to inspire conservation for these magnificent animals.

The exhibition "Roberto Cabral: Fragile Strength," features endangered African animals with a fresh artistic approach and presents Roberto's foray into conservation photography.

Roberto's interest in photography began as a high school hobby and has fueled a passionate lifelong love affair with photography. A few months ago, Roberto traveled to Africa for the first time to honor his father's love of travel. Seeing the big cats, majestic elephants, powerful gorillas and towering giraffes ignited a fervor for conservation photography.
June10-2017-theG2Gallery-From LefttoRight-MuhozatheThinker-and-LionUnderFullMoon-byRoberto-Cabra
From Left to Right: "Muhoza the Thinker" and "Lion Under Full Moon," by Roberto Cabra

"Roberto's images out of Rwanda and Kenya are very unique," says Curator Monika Basse. "The black and white fine art elements Roberto incorporates in his art elevate these photos and the underlying message behind them." Roberto added, "In great strength there is vulnerability, and in vulnerability, strength. This collection shows the raw power of the natural world and its fragility."

The opening reception for "Susan McConnell: On the Shoulders of Giants," along with "Robert Cabral: Fragile Strength," will be held Saturday, June 10, 2017.  All proceeds from admissions and art sales will be donated to Wildlife Conservation Network's Elephant Crisis Fund.

What: Opening reception
Where: The G2 Gallery, 1503 Abbot Kinney Blvd., Venice, CA 90291
Website: http://www.theg2gallery.com/

Attn Artists: Large Figurative Paintings Needed for Upcoming Exhibition!

You may already know that LAArtParty.com reps artists and curates exhibitions. We actually guarantee bookings (with a one on one Artwork-stockphotorepping package, which also comes with FULL guaranteded promotion via one of our PR partners (placement in local newspapers and on other popular websites). We also work with partner galleries all over Los Angeles who have agreed to book our LAArtParty artists. We receive calls for specific types of work and occasionally we do go out of our artist network to help our partner galleries find exactly what they need. We also collaborate with other curators, reps and Pr companies.

Right now we are looking for large works (figurative is preferred). We need over 20 works (5' x 4') ALL From ONE artist, but they CANNOT all be from the same series. We are looking for a variety of styles (some abstract may work) - just paintings (at this time). Stay tuned, we were just approached by a new collector ....looking for photography. If we cannot fill this via our artist ads, we'll be sure to put it out for an open call. We are looking to visit studios to see work this coming week and through October 15. 

PLEASE DO NOT EMAIL our EVENT submission EMAIL. If you would like your artwork to be considered for this next exhibition. PLEASE SEND TO CHRIS CARR at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.   ONLY!!!  PLease SEND LOW RES IMAGES ONLY!
We do NOT ask for submissions fees like many juried exhibitions. Instead we guarantee unlimited FULL listings (300 words + 2 images, posted one month early) all year long with a year ad and your work will automatically be viewed by galleries for selection of upcoming shows. Why chase exhibitions and pay additional fees, when you can focus on your art and let LAArtParty.com do the booking for you? See below for ALL the benefits. Once you have an artist ad, you are then included in our pool of artists for gallery consideration. If you are interested in finding out how you can get booked in upcoming exhibitions, be sure to check our Contact Page/Year Ads. 

For just $600 for the ENTIRE YEAR, you'll receive unlimited listings an ad on LAArtParty.com plus a FREE ad on KTRPRomo.com. Both will link to your website or FB page.

LA Art Party does NOT believe in exclusivity....and in this day and age, if you find a rep that does...RUN!!! Times have changed and we all have to help each other, which is why LA Art Party has formed so many alliances. We want to help artists sell their art and help galleries and curators and other reps book great art. The more help the artist can get, the better.

HERE's What YOU Receive when you have an AD on LAArtParty.com. Your event will receive early coverage (as early as you send it)...300 word listings provided by you. This package also offers placement of two images posted on the Upcoming Events Page. Once the exhibition opens, the 300 word event feature will then be moved to the Artists & Exhibitions Page for the duration of the run. In addition, your event will be featured in a social media campaign....with special mentions on FB, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, & Linked-In. And finally your event info will be included in our E-Blast to over 12,000 people in the LA Area. - LETs not forget THE ADDED Bonus of your artwork being booked into exhibitions in galleries.
Come to LAArtParty.com, an active art platform to meet and mingle...Sell your art or promote an upcoming event NOW!

Just go to Paypal, sign in and send money to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to purchase a year ad package for just $600 and receive an ENTIRE YEAR of Media Exposure on LA Art Party.

Remember many popular websites link to LA Art Party, such as the Huffington Post, LA Weekly, and more.

On View Now: Skidmore Contemporary Art Presents “Black, White, Sparkle, and Pop!”

Skidmore Contemporary Art presents “Black, White, Sparkle, and Pop!” featuring the art of Robert Charles Dunahay.

Appropriate for the artist well-known for his painting series of palm trees, the first shapes which spoke to him were shadows of palms and parts of palms—a trunk, a section of a frond, and the patterns of black and white made by leaves moving in the wind.Dunahay could easily have painted a series of palm tree shadows in his signature style. But in his words "I had been painting palm trees for a very long time and I wanted to do something new and more experimental. I wanted to work with new materials and I wanted to simplify my message. I realized that I wanted to do the exact opposite of what I had been doing."
May20-2017-Skidmore-InteriorDesign-2017-Mixedmediaoncanvas-65x65"More than any other place I have lived, the desert has had a profound effect on how I perceive the world. I love the textures of the desert. The sand and the changing shapes of shadow and light, and the vast openness. Another important influence has been mid-century design and architecture which is everywhere in Palm Springs."

Dunahay's new paintings are black and white and appear at first glance to be completely abstract. The artist chose shapes which "are purposely suggestive of things, so that the resulting image has a vague yet familiar feel to it." The imagery references nature, architecture, art deco patterns, and textiles from many different cultures. In contrast to the black and white shapes, the surfaces sparkle like diamond dust and are peppered with a shifting rainbow of holographic colors.

Robert Charles Dunahay's work is in the collections of the Al Thani Royal Family, Qatar, W Hotel San Diego, Westin Hotels, Vanguard Properties, San Francisco, and The Frederick R. Weisman Museum of Art at Pepperdine University, Malibu.

The gallery will also be featuring works by Maxine Smith - the opening is set for June 2, 2017

On view: May 20 – June 17, 2017

Where: Skidmore Contemporary Art, Bergamot Station 2525 Michigan Avenue, B-4 Santa Monica, 90404
Phone: 310-828-5070

On View Now: Produce Haus, Grand Opening

Produce Haus, formerly the Zadik Zadikian Product Studio, held its grand opening on April 27 featuring a group exhibition titled "WALLS: A Quest For Immersive Space." 
Produce Haus at night, featuring, L-R, works by Kaloust Guedel, KuBO, and Zadik Zadikian; the floor that you see will be completely gilded for the grand opening

Featured in Produce Haus's main room – with a gold-leafed floor, 16' high ceilings and 60-foot-long east and west walls offering panoramic views of downtown L.A. – are works by Zadik Zadikian, Kaloust Guedel, and KuBO. In the two-story-high sky-lit entry stairwell, works by Rouzanna Berberian, Gary Brewer, Clayton Campbell, and Yvette Gellis will be installed. Filmmaker Corey Burns is documenting the project. 

Blending evanescence and endurance, each of the artists' works coalesce around the architecture of a living piece of Los Angeles history – a 100-year-old building inside the colossal produce market that runs the full block from 7th Street to 8th Street in between Central and Alameda in the DTLA Arts District. The building went up in 1918, the same year that Warner Bros. Studios, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and Otis College of Art and Design got started. A century later, as L.A. is in the throes of a new wave of artistic proliferation, Zadikian's vision has transformed the space into a vector for creative collaboration. Adorned with gold and copper patina, rich colors, and natural light, Produce Haus distills the illuminated openness that Zadikian feels is the essence of Los Angeles as a place. As artists intervene with large scale installations, the ever-changing environment itself becomes the work of art.

Art critic Peter Frank has said, "The...artists treat the wall as a site not for composing a mural, but for composing an expanded physical and aesthetic experience. The space is raw; the outside light and atmosphere penetrate it; but the work maintains its self-possession precisely by responding to the vagaries of space, light, and material."
Image: Copper/leaf patina-ed wall, windows overlooking market; Zadikian’s “Foreigners” series of sculptures

About Zadik Zadikian: Zadikian was born in Erevan, Soviet Armenia. At age 19 – already an accomplished artist – he escaped by swimming across the Arax River in mid-winter. Of the five friends he was with, only he and one other made it to freedom. He first got to the U.S. in 1969, landing in San Francisco, where he became an assistant to sculptor Benjamino Bufano, a friend of Brancusi. He moved to New York City in 1974, and worked assisting Richard Serra – and developing own work. From his bio: "In 1976 he covered his entire home and studio, 10,000 square feet of walls, floor and ceiling with industrial gold, by pounding and gilding so as to uniformly transform it into a singularly radiant vision. A predilection for the magic and majesty of gold leaf led to the 1978 project of '1000 Bricks Gilded in 24 Karat Gold Leaf.'"

In Los Angeles for almost a decade, Zadik continues his passion for creating with gold with the new sculpture series "Foreigners," and the gilding of Produce Haus, eventually to include the ceiling as well as the entirety of the floor. Integral to the purpose and spirit of Produce Haus is a dedication to the friends of Zadikian's who did not escape. That can be felt in the generosity of the free-flowing artistic collaboration, and in the atmospheric beauty and presence of the timeless space being created in a landmark L.A. building about to have its centennial.
Produce Haus is located at 1318 E. 7th Street, Los Angeles, CA, 90021; Directions/Map Click here. Directions: Enter into the Market space at Market Court, on 7th in between Alameda and Central; you will see a vintage "CAFÉ" sign where at entryway. If there is an attendant, say you are there for Zadik's studio. Once inside, drive to the far end of the very large parking lot. The studio door will be to the right – there will be signage indicating the entryway. Check out the Huffington Post article by Shana Nys Dambrot. 

Details from works by: Zadik Zadikian, KuBO, Kaloust Guedel, Rouzanna Berberian, Gary Brewer, Clayton Campbell, Yvette Gellis and Gary Paller.

Where: Produce Haus, 1318 E. 7th Street, LA, 90021
Website: http://www.produce.haus/

April 27 - Sept 10, 2017: Skirball Cultural Center Presents "PAUL SIMON: WORDS & MUSIC"

The Skirball Cultural Center presents "Paul Simon: Words & Music," a traveling exhibition curated by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum and making its only West Coast stop at the Skirball. This is a fantastic exhibition - read my Huffington Post review for additional info. 

Additional info provided by Skirball: Developed based on exclusive interviews with the artist, 
the show will walk visitors through Simon's life and music and illuminate his creative process. On view will be instruments, records, sheet music, handwritten lyrics, photography, costumes, and stage maquettes, as well as listening stations and performance footage spanning Simon's six-decade career. Exclusively for the Los Angeles presentation, "Paul Simon: Words & Music" will include additional artifacts from Simon's private archive and a newly created music lab developed by the Skirball in cooperation with Roland Corporation. 
[Paul Simon by Nick Elgar CM#2243] Paul Simon at the Concert in Central Park, 1991. Photograph by Nick Elgar. Courtesy of Paul Simon Archive. 

Paul Simon (b. 1941) has spent his life making music. From his first compositions as a teen and his celebrated work in Simon & Garfunkel to his transformative collaborations with world musicians up to and including his current work, Simon's evolution has been grounded in a lifelong quest to find the words, music, and rhythms that connect most deeply with listeners. Through his songs, he has captured the story of generations and the mood of the nation, from disillusionment and fear to hope and compassion. As the exhibition reveals, he stands as a sterling example of the power of music to reflect social and cultural ideals and to communicate them to the rest of the world.

In choosing Simon among its "Greatest Songwriters of All Time," Rolling Stone hailed, "If Paul Simon's career had ended with the breakup of Simon & Garfunkel in 1970, he would still have produced some of the most beloved songs ever.... But Simon was just getting started. The quintessential New York singer-songwriter, he switches between styles effortlessly with as much attention to rhythm as melody, a rare quality among artists who came of age in the folk era. Over the decades, his music has incorporated Tin Pan Alley tunecraft, global textures, gentle acoustic reveries, gospel, R&B and electronic music, all without diluting his core appeal as an easeful chronicler of everyday alienation."

"Paul Simon: Words & Music" will be organized chronologically, with specially themed sections that cover Simon's early years and Simon & Garfunkel period, his acclaimed solo work since 1971, and his songwriting process. In the newly developed music lab, visitors will experience Simon's recordings firsthand, inviting music fans to experiment with them by playing acoustic guitar, manipulating rhythms on a mixing console, and harmonizing with Simon on one of his most popular tunes.

The exhibition opens on April 27, 2017. Museum hours: Tuesday-Friday 12:00-5:00 p.m.; Saturday-Sunday 10:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.; closed Mondays and holidays. Admission to exhibitions: $12 General; $9 Seniors, Full-Time Students, and Children over 12; $7 Children 2-12. Exhibitions are always free to Skirball Members and Children under 2. Exhibitions are free to all visitors on Thursdays.
[Paul Simon by Edie Baskin CM#1784] Paul Simon, New York, 1975. Photograph by Edie Baskin 

Save the date....May 12,
enjoy a rare opportunity to see the exhibition "Paul Simon: Words & Music" at night for FREE! Stop by anytime between 6:00 and 10:00 p.m. to celebrate the artist’s enduring legacy. At 7:00 p.m., take a tour of the exhibition led by Museum Director Robert Kirschner. Stick around to enjoy a full cash bar and local food trucks The Deli Doctor and Mandoline Grill. Then pick up exhibition-related gifts and memorabilia at Audrey’s Museum Store, open throughout the night.For general information, the public may call (310) 440-4500 or visit skirball.org

On view: April 27 - September 3, 2017

Where: The Skirball Cultural Center, 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90049
Website: http://skirball.org/