Diversions LA, Jan 2016

Diversions LA

A Saturday Night in Chinatown

by Genie Davis, photos by Jack Davis

Joyous celebration, paper lanterns swinging overhead, crowds pushing into and out of galleries all along Chung King Road in the heart of Chinatown. That was the scene for Saturday openings all along Chung King Road’s walk-street gallery row on January 9th.

Images and experiences flow together with the crowd – and just because this was a don’t-miss-night, Los Angeles art lovers need not despair. Thursday January 28, the scene will be repeated from 7-10 p.m., part of an LA Art Show sponsored celebration honoring Pop Surrealist artist Robert Williams with a lifetime achievement award. And most of the exhibitions run through February 20th.

Here’s a look at the great art flowing through these DTLA galleries.


Brian Mains’ “The Intersection of Light and Darkness,” at the Gregorio Escalante Gallery is a visually and emotionally stimulating mythological world. The artist says “The kind of space, type of composition, use of light, and method of articulating forms all work together to create an other-worldly reality and to infuse the pictures with magical, theatrical and spiritual qualities.”


At Chungking Studios, Painting by Scott Trimble and Photography by Osceola Refetoff, co-curated by Refetoff and Shana Nys Dambrot, enrichingly combines photographic and painted images that share the same sensibility of space, light, line, or emotion.


Coagula Curatorial featured “Ten Top Artists,” a group show juried by Tulsa Kinney, editor of Artillery Magazine, and featuring artists including Jill Emery, Same Source, Vanessa Madrid, Annette Hassell, Jennifer Lugris, Reagan Lake, Daggi Wallace, Michele Vavonese, and Kate Oltmann.


Very different art and artists – commonality: a vision that makes you look twice.


The Charlie James Gallery gave us artist Sadie Barnette’s meditative and haunting take on life at the racetrack, Superfecta, and Rosette, a group show curated by artist Mary Anna Pomonis, featuring the work of Suzanne Adelman, Lili Bernard, Mattia Biagi, Annie Buckley, Kristin Calabrese, Angel Chen, Sarah Cromarty, Cherie Benner Davis, Mark Dutcher, Christine Dianne Guiyangco, Sabina Ott,  Pomonis, Cindy Rehm, Allison Stewart and Vincent Ramos.


 Artist Lili Bernard, above, discusses her autobiographical tribute to the souls of her ancestors and three generations of rape survivors. The powerful piece, titled “Elvis Slept Here: Help Me, Abuelitas,” grabs you by the heart and the gut and won’t let go until you really see the details.





Below, The Project Gallery premiered Wyatt Mills’ Normal, whose images belie the title. The Los Angeles artist’s mixed media paintings are a bold mix of the real and surreal.


At The Good Luck Gallery, below, Art Moura’s stunning installations are a fine example of this gallery’s commitment to visionary and outsider art.


Like walking into a dreamscape…F23C7995

A treasure trove of art washed up on a wild shore…


Not sure how anyone couldn’t love this. It’s folk art, it’s surreal, it’s a tapestry of life, it’s the rhythm of existence, dream, and distance.


The details are as compelling as the large designs.


So you want some art? Some exciting art? Chung King Road is the place to be. But then, it almost always is.