L.A. Louver is pleased to announce an exhibition of assemblage sculptures and tableaux by Ed and Nancy Kienholz. A fully illustrated catalogue has been published on the occasion of this exhibition. You may have guessed that I have long had a love/hate relationship with American TV. I sit dummy style in front of that marvelous communication tool and find my years slipping by and my mind turning to slush from the 95% trash being beamed my way. To try and understand my ongoing stupidity and perhaps to express some kind of critical objectivity I find that I keep making TV sets out of anything that vaguely resembles a TV apparatus (oil containers, block of concrete, surplus jerry cans etc.). – Ed Kienholz in a letter to Sidney Felsen, Gemini G.E.L., January 4, 1984
Throughout the course of Ed and Nancy Kienholz’s careers and collaborations, the television found its way into many of their works, and became a recurring theme. Together they made over 30 unique assemblage works, installations, and series of multiples related to the television set. The exhibition will feature 13 of these works, produced between the late 1960s and Ed’s passing in 1994, as well as a singular piece created by Nancy in 2006. The earliest works in the exhibition focus on the television as a solitary object, such as Solid State (1965) and Cement TV (1969). Both are small portable TVs cast in concrete, their cumbersome forms rendered void of any functionality.
Later works like All’s Quiet (1986) and Chicken Little (1992) feature miniature tableaux encased within opaque plastic water jugs and lit from within, creating a luminescent glow that enlivens the scenes portrayed.