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Going Global

OCMA’s upcoming Triennial exhibition has been seven years in the making—and it’s from worlds away.

Dan Cameron

 

Kimsooja’s “Thread Routes—Chapter 1”

 

“This series of videos depicts tactile experience through the use of repetitive actions—everyday activities that Kimsooja re-imagines as performative activities. Her video here examines the beautiful choreography of gestures used by indigenous weavers in the highlands of Peru.”

Raquel Ormella’s “Australia Rising 2” 

 

“[Ormella] works at the intersection of art and activism, incorporating commentary on issues and investigating how art can influence social action. Her current series of banners are rooted in the effort to re-imagine a postcolonial flag for her country of Australia.”

Hugo Crosthwaite’s “La Narizona”

 

“Crosthwaite blends architecture and caricatures into narrative commentary about his homeland [Tijuana]. He will produce a hand-painted mural for the museum based on the theater troupes known as carpas.”

 

Pedro Friedeberg’s “Ignodendron Noctiflorum”

 

“Born in Florence and raised in Mexico, where he is a household name, Friedeberg is famed for his meticulously detailed canvases that often include references to Jewish mysticism, Egyptian and Aztec cosmologies, and the psychedelic 1960s.”

When Dan Cameron was crisscrossing Asia to research artists for inclusion in the Taipei Biennial: Dirty Yoga exhibition in 2006, he had no idea he was laying the footprint for a groundbreaking showcase that would arrive right here in Orange County seven years later. A handful of the artists Cameron chose for that show, along with others gleaned from more recent trips to China, Japan, Indonesia and Korea, are now slated to run in the Orange County Museum of Art’s upcoming California-Pacific Triennial exhibit. (Formerly known as the California Biennial, the long-standing survey of the state’s contemporary art was last held at the museum between late 2010 and early 2011.)

The relaunched exhibition now will feature works by more than 30 emerging and established artists who hail from Canada, California and Seattle, Wash., as well as 15 Asian and Latin American countries bordering the Pacific Ocean. “The West Coast has never had a recurring exhibit that links all of its Pacific neighbors from a global perspective,” says Cameron, OCMA’s chief curator, who has been researching and selecting the artists for the show for the past five years. “Right away, we’re making history. This is the direction the world is going in. We’re all concerned about our region and locality, but all of us are also much more conscious of the world outside our boundaries.”

Running June 30 through Nov. 17, Triennial will feature paintings, sculptures, ceramics, fiber art and drawings, plus photography, video and film, performance art, installations and conceptual art. Of specific note are three striking wall-to-ceiling murals meant to capture guests’ attention upon entering the museum: a piece depicting a carnival environment by Tijuana artist Hugo Crosthwaite; a “psychedelic, sci-fi surf kind of look that will be very fluorescent” by L.A.’s Mark Dean Veca; and Shanghai artist Michael Lin’s work based on 18th century Chinese porcelain.

Another highlight is a miniretrospective covering 50 years of works by Pedro Friedeberg, who is a household name in his native Mexico but virtually unknown in the U.S. “This will give visitors a good visual argument for why this guy is so important,” Cameron says. “People will see his work and say, ‘Who is he?’ and ‘Why haven’t I seen his work?’” 850 San Clemente Drive, Newport Beach, ocma.net