This is the last week to catch the astonishing exhibition by Eddo Stern at Young Projects Gallery in the Pacific Design Center. The work above “Emoticon” gives you sense of the humor and game-inspired sensibility of Stern’s work. It’s synthesis of all the most alluring video-game heroines, and she’s singing a loop from The Who’s “Behind Blue Eyes.”
Other works investigate ideas of gaming in pop culture in different ways. For example, a witty and disturbing series of short videos pairing early-generation war games with snippets of popular music like the “MASH” theme song, or more kitschy classic rock numbers. His FLAMEWARS piece captures a real conversation between players, in which macho rhetoric first inflames then inspires a strange and moving interaction having to do with the difference between real-world and game-verse violence.
There are also a few seemingly analog works like the sexy, stylish MELF that play off old-world traditions of the shadow puppet, combined with contemporary pop culture and computer technology, which are delightful and creepy and absolutely gorgeous as objects in a dimensional, physical way that infuses fine art and folk craft into the tech-mix.
The gallery is open Tues-Fri and the show closes July 27, so do your best to make it over there. But even if you can’t, spend some time at the artist’s website, you won’t regret it.
Exhibition Information: The World is Down: 10 Works by Eddo Stern marks a rare solo presentation of Stern’s work in Los Angeles and features some of his most important projects from the past decade. Regarded as a legend within the digital arts, Stern creates hybrid forms that bridge a wide array of methodologies and influences—from video games to classical sculpture; appropriation to Chinese shadow puppetry; performance to animated painting.