Museum’s ‘Extract’ Artists Speak Out


Artists Laddie John Dill and Chris Wilder, who are featured in Laguna Art Museum’s current exhibition “Extract: Developing Exhibitions from the Collection,” will talk about their work and answer questions from the audience at 1 p.m. on Sunday, April 10.


Dill’s early installation work has recently been acquired by the Museum of Modern Art in New York and was included in the 2010 exhibition “Primary Atmospheres: Works from California 1960-1970” at David Zwirner, New York.


A graduate of Chouinard Art Institute (1968), Dill had the chance as an apprentice printer to work with artists such as Robert Rauschenberg, Jasper Johns, Claus Oldenberg, and Roy Lichtenstein early in his career. With artists experimenting with non-traditional materials in the 1970s, Dill said he “was influenced by Rauschenberg, Keith Sonnier, Robert Smithson, Dennis Oppenheim, and Robert Irwin, who were working with earth materials, light, and space as an alternative to easel painting.”


After experimenting first with neon and argon tubing, Dill moved on to working three-dimensionally and filled a room in his studio with 10,000 pounds of silica sand. He mixed light and sand to create pieces that he said were “very much like doing a painting, except that it was on the floor, and I used shovels and brooms instead of a brush.” He also experimented with wall pieces, using cement in contrast with the s

mooth surface of glass and using natural pigments in a wide range of colors.


Chris Wilder, who attended both the San Francisco Art Institute (1985) and the California Institute of the Arts (1988), was involved in the Los Angeles punk music scene in the late 1980s and at the same time was making pieces like his UFO Sighting series, which involved pairing one of the main tenets of Conceptualism, that the idea is more important than its physical manifestation, with the notion of UFOs and the general lack of physical support, or evidence, supporting the idea.


In newer work like “White Monochrome Fur Painting,” Wilder is more blatant in his reference to the pursuits of high modernism in painting. He uses glib, but surprisingly effective, common, cheap fur to make a comment on minimalist painting.


Laguna Art Museum is located at 307 Cliff Drive and is open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. seven days a week.

; with hours extended to 9 p.m. on the first Thursday of each month during First Thursdays Art Walk. General admission is $12; admission for students, seniors and active military personnel is $10; and children under 12 are free.

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