The mathematical works of an L.A. conceptualist. A cave that seems to emerge from a gallery floor. And an exhibition that is all about wetness. Plus: shows on feminism, ceramics and a rare gathering of European paintings. There’s lots to do in the Southland this week. Here’s what we’ve got in the Datebook:
Charles Gaines, "Gridwork 1974-1989," at the Hammer Museum. The first museum survey of the L.A.-based artist (Gaines teaches at CalArts) brings together early works that play with ideas of mapping and gridding. Gaines would take images -- a tree, a moving dancer -- and render them on specially created grids, capturing layers of shadow or movement in densely abstracted, coolly mathematical pieces. Organized by the Studio Museum in Harlem. Opens Saturday and runs through May 24. On Feb. 18, assistant curator Jamillah James leads an lunchtime artist talk on Gaines at the Hammer. 10899 Wilshire Blvd., Westwood, hammer.ucla.edu.
Anish Kapoor, at Regen Projects. The influential sculptor (he’s the guy behind Chicago’s iconic “Cloud Gate” sculpture) presents a series of new sculptures in his latest show at Regen. Some bear his trademark shimmering, minimalist lines (a torqued prism made of steel), but the star of the show is an earthy cave crafted from resin and earth that seems to erupt from the gallery floor. Poke your head in and it’s as if you’re looking at a seemingly bottomless well. Runs through March 7. 6750 Santa Monica Blvd., Hollywood, regenprojects.com.
Robert Overby, “Absence as Presence: Trace, Erasure, Eradication and Lack,” at Marc Selwyn Fine Art. The late California-based artist (he passed away in 1993) was barely exhibited in his lifetime. But that has changed in recent years, and his unusual pieces -- which can evoke feelings of heaviness and decay -- have begun to be more widely seen. These include ghostly latex castings of architectural elements (such as doors) and the reproduction, in plaster or concrete, of quotidian household objects: doors, chairs, a concrete brick penetrated by a lead pencil. Overby had the capacity to take the everyday and render it as uncanny and surreal. Opening reception Friday at 6 p.m. Runs through April 11. 9953 S. Santa Monica Blvd., Beverly Hills, marcselwynfineart.com.
Michael Parker, “Juice Work,” at Human Resources L.A. A series of wet and messy sculptures incorporate stoneware, tools and other objects. As the website says: “Come thirsty.” Opening reception Friday at 7 p.m. Runs through Feb. 10. 410 Cottage Home St., Chinatown, Los Angeles, humanresourcesla.com.
“Nohubito Nishigawara: Seeing,” at the Grand Central Art Center. Nishigawara produces ceramic sculptures that draw inspiration from sources such as religious iconography and Manga drawings. Opening reception Saturday at 7 p.m. Runs through April 12. 125 N. Broadway, Santa Ana, grandcentralartcenter.com.
“XX Redux: Revisiting a Feminist Art Collective,” at Guggenheim Gallery. In the 1970s and '80s, this under-the-radar art collective was committed to expanding the presence of women artists in the institutions of art. This exhibition gathers important material by the group from that era -- including paintings, photography and Faith Wilding’s key book, “By Our Own Hands: The Women Artist’s Movement in Southern California, 1971-76.” In addition, works by a pair of younger feminists (Micol Hebron and Audrey Chan) will also be included. Runs through March 14. Chapman University, Moulton Hall, One University Drive, Orange, guggenheimgallery.org.
"Boticelli, Titian and Beyond: Masterpieces of Italian Painting from Glasgow Museums," at the Santa Barbara Museum of Art. Drawn from the outstanding collection of Italian art at Scotland’s Glasgow Museums, this exhibition tracks the evolution of painting in Italy over five centuries -- from the late medieval period to the impressionist pictures of the 19th century. This includes works by Bellini, Boticelli and Titian -- some of which have never before been seen in the United States. A very good reason to get over to Santa Barbara -- stat. Opens Sunday and runs through May 3. 1130 State St., Santa Barbara, sbmuseart.org.
“Love/War,” at MAMA Gallery. A group show that is all about conflict, with a lineup that includes more than three dozen artists, including noted photographers such as Boogie and Estevan Oriol. Through Saturday. 1242 Palmetto St., downtown Los Angeles, mama.gallery.
“Space Program” at Steve Turner. A group show by Turner's stable of artists inaugurates his new space -- including sculpture by Yung Jake and paintings by Deborah Grant. The standout is a behemoth 20-foot collage piece about corruption and drug-war violence by Camilo Restrepo. Through Saturday. 6830 Santa Monica Blvd., Hollywood, steveturner.la.
“Lorenzo Hurtado Segovia: Mis Papeles” at the Vincent Price Art Museum. Brilliantly-hued woven paper works include abstract pieces that practically take on the feel of a textile. There will be a reception for the artist on Saturday from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Runs through April 18. 1301 Cesar Chavez Ave., Monterey Park, vincentpriceartmuseum.org.
Josef Koudelka, “Nationality Doubtful,” at the Getty Center. A retrospective on the important Czech-born photographer gathers more than 180 works from throughout the artist's six-decade career. Through March 22. 1200 Getty Center Drive, Brentwood, getty.edu.
“Nature and the American Vision: The Hudson River School” at the L.A. County Museum of Art. Forty-five paintings by the best-known artists of the American landscape movement, including Thomas Cole, Albert Bierstadt and Frederic Edwin Church. Through June 7. 5905 Wilshire Blvd., Mid-Wilshire, Los Angeles, lacma.org.
“Pierre Huyghe” at the L.A. County Museum of Art. The hallucinatory retrospective of the French conceptualist, better known for his experimentations (a site-specific sculpture made out of a beehive) than the production of serial objects. Read our handy unsanctioned guide to the show. Through Feb. 22. 5905 Wilshire Blvd., Mid-Wilshire, Los Angeles, lacma.org.
“World War I: War of Images, Images of War” at the Getty Research Institute. On the 100th anniversary of World War I, the exhibition gathers art about the experience, including propaganda and vernacular pieces. Through April 19. 1200 Getty Center Drive, Brentwood, getty.edu.
“Islamic Art Now,” at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Contemporary works from LACMA’s permanent collection by 20 artists who live in or have roots in the Middle East, including well-established figures such as Mona Hatoum, Wafaa Bilal and Shirin Neshat. Runs indefinitely. 5905 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, lacma.org.
“In Focus: Play” at the Getty Museum. A series of 20th century images that capture humans of all ages in acts of gaming, carousing, celebration and vacation. Through May 10. 1200 Getty Center Drive, Los Angeles, getty.edu.
Hammer Projects: Pedro Reyes, at the Hammer Museum. The socially minded Reyes has staged a people’s United Nations that employs techniques from theater games and group therapy as way of resolving urgent issues. Through May 24. 10899 Wilshire Blvd., Westwood, Los Angeles, hammer.ucla.edu.
“The U.S. Constitution and the End of American Slavery” at the Huntington Library. More than 80 objects, including letters by George Washington and Abraham Lincoln, explore the tumultuous road that led to the abolition of slavery. Through April 20, 1151 Oxford Road, San Marino, huntington.org.
“Bari Kumar: Remembering the Future,” at Charles White Elementary. At LACMA’s satellite space, Kumar shows a series of paintings that combine bits of imagery that he harvests from fine art and popular culture. Through June 13, 2401 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, lacma.org.
Christine Corday, “Protoist Series, Selected Forms,” at the L.A. County Museum of Art. Corday's bendy steel sculptures don't sacrifice playfulness for mass. Don't miss them in LACMA’s courtyard area (by Ray's & Stark Bar). Through April 5. 5905 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, lacma.org.
“Brian Weil 1979-95: Being in the World” at the Santa Monica Museum of Art. The first retrospective of a photographer devoted to highlighting members of insular and invisible communities, including sexual fetishists, Miami homicide detectives and members of New York’s Hasidic community. Through April 18. Bergamot Station, 2525 Michigan Ave., Santa Monica, smmoa.org.
Armin Hansen, Jim Morphesis and Lars Jan, at the Pasadena Museum of California Art. A trio of exhibitions includes a survey of Armin Hansen (1886-1957), a painter known for his oceanic scenes, as well as a show by L.A. artist Jim Morphesis, a painter whose expressionistic canvases combine elements of assemblage. In the project space, Lars Jan has an installation that explores ideas of disaster and survival. Runs through May 31. 490 E. Union St., Pasadena, pmcaonline.org.
“Jessica Rath: A Better Nectar” at the University Art Museum. Rath uses a combination of light, sound and sculpture to channel the experience of a bumblebee in search of nectar. The highlight is a human-scaled beehive with responsive acoustic elements. Through April 12, at Cal State Long Beach, 1250 Bellflower Blvd., Long Beach, csulb.edu/org/uam.
“Paulo Bruscky: Artist Books & Films,” 1970-2013, and “Vivian Suter: Panajachel” at the Mistake Room. A pair of shows features the work of Bruscky, a key Brazilian conceptualist known for his wry actions, and the Argentina-born painter Suter, who creates abstract works. Through March 14. 1811 E. 20th St., downtown Los Angeles, tmr.la.
“Sink or Swim: Designing for a Sea Change” at the Annenberg Space for Photography. An exhibition of photographs shows the ways in which humans have been contending with the rise of sea levels around the globe. Through May 3. 2000 Avenue of the Stars, Century City, annenbergspaceforphotography.org.
“Man-Made: Contemporary Male Quilters” at the Craft and Folk Art Museum. A series of works produced by a loose network of eight male quilters features elaborate pieces depicting everything from heavy metal iconography to biker imagery to sports. To find out more, read this feature on the quilters by my colleague Jessica Gelt. Through May 3. 5814 Wilshire Blvd., Mid-Wilshire, Los Angeles, cafam.org.
Jonas Becker, “The Pile” at the Craft and Folk Art Museum. A lush multimedia installation that includes video, photography and a pile of cushiony hand-crafted sculptures explores questions of desire. This includes a mountain of hand-sewn pieces by Becker, who made his Los Angeles debut in 2014. Through May 3. 5814 Wilshire Blvd., Mid-Wilshire, Los Angeles, cafam.org.
“The Heart Is the Frame,” at Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions. A thoughtful group exhibition (I wrote about it here) gathers a wide range of video, photographic and sculptural works for a look at the ways in which art can penetrate everyday life. Through Feb. 14. 6522 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, welcometolace.org.
Liz Magic Laser, “The Thought Leader,” and Anna Sew Hoy, “Face No Face,” at Various Small Fires. Laser creates a fictional TED talk out of Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s “Notes From Underground" while Sew Hoy shows void-filled sculptures that employ material (such as denim) in wry and unlikely ways. Through Feb. 21. 812 N. Highland Ave., Hollywood, vsf.la.
Alma Allen, at Blum & Poe. Allen's bulbous and amoeboid pieces have a suppleness and buoyancy that seem to defy gravity -- and the heavy materials (such as marble) from which they are made. Through Feb. 28. 2727 S. La Cienega Blvd., Culver City, blumandpoe.com.
Sadie Benning, “Fuzzy Math,” at Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects. The New York-based artist produces puzzle-like paintings that mix bold, bright color with graceful texture. Through Feb. 14. 6006 Washington Blvd., Culver City, vielmetter.com.
Glen Kaino, “Labyrinths,” at Honor Fraser. A series of new installations features maps reconfigured into origami, a depiction of a wormhole and a 40-foot wall made of wax. Through Feb. 14. 2622 S. La Cienega Blvd., Culver City, honorfraser.com.
“When the Future Had Fins: American Automotive Designs and Concepts, 1959-1973” at Christopher W. Mount Gallery. Car concept drawings from the Big Three American automakers, back when power and futuristic lines were rendered in pen and ink. Through May 20. At the Pacific Design Center, 8687 Melrose Ave., West Hollywood, christophermountgallery.com.
“Mending Wall,” a group show, at the Pit. A relatively young gallery in Glendale has a worthwhile group show that also looks at ideas of construction, with works by John Houck, Huma Bhabha and Jake Kean Mayman. Through Feb. 22. 918 Ruberta Ave., Glendale, the-pit.la.
Kon Trubkovich, “House of the Rising Sun,” at Ohwow Gallery. The Moscow-born artist presents a series of new paintings based on footage of President Reagan’s 1987 speech at the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin. Through Feb. 14. 937 La Cienega Blvd., West Hollywood, oh-wow.com.
“Roberto Chavez: Portraits” at Glike Gallery. If you missed Chavez's retrospective at the Vincent Price Art Museum, now's your chance to see this important artist and educator's paintings, which often verge on the mordantly funny. Through Feb. 22, 5890 Blackwelder St., Suite B, Culver City, glikegallery.com.
Deanna Thompson and Michael Auder, “Mixing Up the Medicine,” at Kayne Griffin Corcoran. This two-person exhibition captures a dialogue between Auder and Thompson -- the former sends the latter photographs of himself that she turns into altered portraits. Through March 14. 1201 S. La Brea Ave., Los Angeles, kaynegriffincorcoran.com.
“Tom of Finland: Early Work, 1944-1972,” at David Kordansky Gallery. Kordansky has an array of drawings, gouaches and inked storyboards by the renowned illustrator of erotica, known for the confident and virile ways in which he depicted gay male sexuality. Be prepared for racy images if you click through. Through March 7, 5130 W. Edgewood Place, Los Angeles, davidkordanskygallery.com.
“Mike Kuchar: Saints and Sinners” at François Ghebaly. The underground filmmaker is also known for homoerotic drawings that are as salacious as they are fantastical and hilarious: studly gladiators, well-endowed dinosaur hunters and a Viking with a very large, um, weapon. Through Feb. 14. 2245 E. Washington Blvd., downtown Los Angeles, ghebaly.com.
"After Living in the Room of Réalités Nouvelles, at Sonce Alexander Gallery." A group exhibition gathers a network of artists bound by social and intellectual connections -- be they as mentors, friends or colleagues. Through Feb. 26. 2634 S. La Cienega Blvd., Culver City, soncealexandergallery.com.
“Laura Krifka: Reap the Whirlwind,” and André Goeritz, “Schadenfreude,” at CB1 Gallery. Now in a new location just south of the 10 Freeway, the gallery has a show of Krifka’s exuberant figurative paintings, all full of sex and death, balanced by the precise and cerebral abstract installations of the L.A.-based Goeritz. Through Feb. 28. 1923 S. Santa Fe Ave., downtown Los Angeles, cb1gallery.com.
“Amy Elkins & Jona Frank: In Position” at De Soto Gallery. Photography by Elkins and Frank looks at notions of gender in young dancers and boxers respectively. Through Feb. 28. 1350 Abbot Kinney Blvd., Venice, desotogallery.com.
Mark A. Rodriguez, "Cup or Lovers," at Park View. A series of abstracted works evoke various aspects of home: copper pipes, a set of carved table legs and a drawing on a napkin that isn’t a napkin but a cast. Through Feb. 15. 836 S. Park View St., Westlake, Los Angeles, parkviewparkview.com.
David Stork, “10 Block Square: Havana 1999,” at Couturier Gallery. The L.A-based photographer captures Cuba in the 1990s, when he documented a 10-block square section of Havana during a profound economic crisis. Through Feb. 14. 166 N. La Brea Ave., Hancock Park, Los Angeles, couturiergallery.com.
“Don Bachardy: Hollywood” at Craig Krull Gallery. Drawings by Bachardy featuring high-profile Hollywood figures such as Natalie Wood, Jack Nicholson and most recently, Marion Cotillard. Through Feb. 28. Bergamot Station, 2525 Michigan Ave., Santa Monica, craigkrullgallery.com.
Mira Dancy, “Is She Is She Psychic,” at Night Gallery. Playing with the psychological and graphic qualities of advertising, Dancy uses a series of paintings to imagine an ad campaign for an invented fragrance called “Herfume Perfume.” Through Feb. 21. 2276 E. 16th St., downtown Los Angeles, nightgallery.ca.
G.T. Pellizzi, “Before Completion,” at Harmony Murphy Gallery. A series of sculptures and wall installations are inspired by the architecture of the gallery and the “I Ching,” exploring the notion of ideas on the verge of being completed. Through Feb. 14. 679 S. Santa Fe Ave., downtown Los Angeles, harmonymurphygallery.com.
Jason McLean, “Soda Gardner,” at Wilding Cran Gallery. Drawing, painting and random found objects find their way into surreal landscapes, abstract doodles and cartoon-like figures. Through Feb. 21. 939 S. Santa Fe Ave., downtown Los Angeles, wildingcran.com.
“Kour Pour: Samsara,” at the Depart Foundation. Pour is known for producing textile-like paintings that incorporate both historic and contemporary imagery. Through March 7. 9105 W. Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood, departfoundation.com.
"Agents Provocateurs: A Selection of Subversive Skateboard Graphics and Artworks" at Subliminal Projects. Skateboard graphics produced by an array of skaters, graphic designers and contemporary artists. Through Feb. 21. 1331 W. Sunset Blvd., Echo Park, Los Angeles, subliminalprojects.com.
“Three Painters: Walpa D’Mark, Barbara Kaleta, and Ian Pines” at Coagula Curatorial. Works by three emerging Los Angeles painters collectively touch on subjects such as psychedelia, landscape and visceral bits of the human body. Through Feb. 14. 974 Chung King Road, coagulacuratorial.com.
“Elemental: Seeing the Light,” at Descanso Gardens. Taking on the subject of light, this group show looks at the ways in which artists are inspired by ethereal rays. Through April 5. 1418 Descanso Drive, La Cañada Flintridge, descansogardens.org.
“Guerilla Girls: Art in Action” at Pomona College Museum of Art. Posters, handbills, books and newsletters chronicle the actions of the longtime feminist art-activists. Through May 17. Tonight at 7 p.m., the Guerrilla Girls will be on hand for a performance and reception. 330 N. College Ave., Claremont, pomona.edu/museum.
Carolyn Castaño, "Mujeres Que Crean/Women Who Create: Medellin, Colombia" at the New Americans Museum. Known for lush paintings that touch on the drug war, Castaño has created a site-specific installation that features survivors of Colombia's armed conflict reenacting poses from historical artworks. Through March 21. 2825 Dewey Road, San Diego, newamericansmuseum.org.
FOR THE RECORD
3:08 p.m.: An earlier version of this post stated that the artist Charles Gaines would attend a lunchtime artist's talk on Feb. 18 at the Hammer Museum in Westwood. Gaines will not attend. Instead, assistant curator Jamillah James will lead the lunchtime discussion.