Dealer's Choice: Painting and Sculpture in 1980s


“…the years between 1980 and 1990 were also a time of revived symbolic values, with art and its products leading the way. Out of this singular paradoxical context, a market without precedent was born.” – Paul Ardenne, The Art Market in the 1980s

(Los Angeles) Edward Cella Art & Architecture is proud to present Dealers Choice: Painting and Sculpture in the 1980s. This group exhibition features the work of Carlos Almaraz, Russell Crotty, Joe Goode, Tim Hawkinson, Julie Heffernen, Anish Kapoor, Rachel Lachowicz, Matt Mullican, and Ursula von Rydingsvard. These works were originally acquired with patience and passion by a distinguished Los Angeles private collection and have been kept out of public view for thirty years; this is their first offering and the first time these works have been exhibited together.

Dealers Choice: Painting and Sculpture in the 1980s presents work that illustrates artistic relationships between painters, sculptors, and designers. Central to the exhibition is Matt Mullican’s canvas Untitled (From the World Unframed) from 1986 that uses his invented visual language of graphic signs and symbols to dissect and explain man’s common past, present, and future. Another anchor of the exhibition is a monumental painting by Carlos Almaraz that depicts two scenes, figures in Echo Park, reflecting his passion for the Chicano Movement, and a recreation of Edouard Manet's, Le Dejeuner sur l'herbe, 1862 which represents the paradox of his inner struggle as an artist aside from his political actions. In addition to these museum-caliber paintings is Ursula von Rydingsvard’s Nine Finger Bowl, a large cut and expressively layered cedar and graphite sculpture that speaks of her own childhood memories growing up in Germany during World War II.

In a decade when color combinations were dramatic, fashion was bold, music was synthesized, and commercialism consumed many: the 1980s were the original golden years for collecting contemporary art and luxury design. As free markets matched materialistic ideology, standards of living increased measurably, and a euphoric marriage of art, design and the market attracted connoisseurs. Even with today’s auction markets ruling the art economy, if you ever wonder why the art world is like it is today, then look to the 1980s, that’s where it all began.  

This exhibition marks a new collaboration with Thomas Lavin who has curated a selection of furniture for this exhibition.

Collectors, Dealers, and Designers
Saturday, December 1, 2018, at 1 p.m.
Join gallerist Edward Cella and designer Thomas Lavin for a conversation about collecting through the decades.