Emerson Woelffer

July 28, 2017

Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA  – selling exhibition

Qué Significa:
Emerson Woelffer in the Yucatán

September 18, 2017 until September 29, 2017: 10am-5pm daily

Emerson Woelffer in his studio

Emerson Woelffer in his studio

Los Angeles Modern Auctions (LAMA) is thrilled to announce its participation in Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA, as part of the Getty-led initiative celebrating the artistic and cultural relationship between Los Angeles and Latin America. The exhibit will feature works for sale as well as works on loan from The Otis College of Art and Design.

LAMA’s exhibit, titled “Qué Significa: Emerson Woelffer in the Yucatán,” will showcase the art of Emerson Woelffer from his time living in the seaside village of Lerma and its continued effect on his oeuvre. Woelffer was deeply influenced by the aesthetics and forms of the region, and lived there in near isolation for a period, from 1949 to 1950.

The phrase “Qué Significa,” is a curatorial statement regarding the significance of Woelffer’s time in Mexico and its effect on the rest of his life and practice. Paintings from this period are a clear break from the Eurocentric ideas of modernism, and indicate the beginnings of his devotion to Abstract Expressionism.

After returning from Mexico, Emerson later settled in Los Angeles where he taught and worked for nearly forty years. Because Woelffer’s paintings and drawings until his death in 2003 pay homage to this time in Mexico, there will also be a selection of works from his years in Los Angeles dating from the 1980s and 1990s.

Works from 1993, for example, retain the forms Woelffer mimicked in pre-Columbian statues, fused with the influence of Woelffer’s friend, Robert Motherwell. Likewise, paintings from the early to mid-1980’s allow free flowing drops of paint to rest on the canvas, a style made famous by Jackson Pollock, another of Woelffer’s supporters. “Qué Significa: Emerson Woelffer in the Yucatán,” is a conversation between Latin American and Los Angeles art as seen on the canvases of Woelffer. A clear dialogue is evident between the works made in Lerma, Mexico and the works made in Los Angeles.

“Qué Significa: Emerson Woelffer in the Yucatán” will be open daily 10am to 5pm, from September 18th through September 29th.

Preview the exhibition catalogue here.


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