Platt and Borstein Galleries
“ART AND ADVOCACY” brings the biting political and social commentary of Mariona Barkus, Sheila Pinkel, and Joe Ravetz to the Platt/Borstein Galleries of American Jewish University, located at 15600 Mulholland Drive in Bel Air. The exhibit will be on display from August 17th through November 23rd. Gallery hours are Sunday through Thursday 10 to 4 pm., Friday 10 to 2 pm. Parking is free.
The public is invited to meet the artists at a reception Sunday, August 17, from 3 to 5 pm. With wit, irony, and in a variety of media, the artists strike deeply at the ills of society and government. Curator Elizabeth Bloom was inspired to plan this exhibition in memory of courtroom artist, David Rose, longtime member of American Jewish University’s Fine Arts Council. Always outspoken, David Rose was an artist “advocate” in pursuit of justice, acclaimed for his graphic coverage of the international trials of the perpetrators of the Holocaust. In this election season exhibition, we experience art’s potent communicative power in the work of Barkus, Pinkel, and Ravetz, as they passionately address current issues.
Mariona Barkus selects images and text from popular culture as the starting point for her stark black and white prints and mixed media sculptures. She incorporates news headlines and advertising slogans, to pose troubling questions about sexism and hypocrisy in contemporary society. “I have used image and text, often laced with humor, to express social and political commentary since I began making art over thirty years ago,” says Barkus.
Photographer Sheila Pinkel’s compositions are about the unseen dimensions of nature and culture. The current exhibition is part of a larger body of work entitled “Site Unseen: Incarceration”, in which she explores various aspects of the concept of incarceration and its implications.
Joe Ravetz captures images of the homeless with his camera, questioning our ethical and moral sensibility. “For most people, making eye contact with a street person is considered foolish if not downright dangerous,” says Ravetz. “By asking my subjects to h old up their handmade signs so that, in most cases, only their eyes are visible, I hoped to create images that would overcome the fear most of us have of looking street people in the eye.”
For more information or to schedule a guided tour, call (310)476-9777, ext. 201.