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NEGOTIATION OF OBJECTS New work by Sean Kennedy, Natalie Labriola and Kenneth Tam


September 17 - October 8, 2011


"Kowledge is not made for understanding, it is made for cutting."

- Michel Foucault


Actual Size Los Angeles is pleased to present, Negotiation of Objects, a two-part group exhibition featuring the work of Sean Kennedy, Natalie Labriola and Kenneth Tam.


The two parallel installations will take place at the 741 New High Street location and Art Platform LA. The exhibitions feature sculptures and wall-mounted works that explore cultural reflexivity in objects. The works by these artists, exhibited in two venues, dialogue to explore the act of marking surfaces, and how a variety of everyday materials respond to the artist’s influence and the effect of time passing. Finger marks on suede, emoticons imprinted in clay, and the contours of wood grain act as meditations on our contemporary symbolic language, and the media that conveys it.


Exhibition at Actual Size Los Angeles September 17th - October 8th, 2011
Exhibition at Art Platform LA September 30th - October 2nd, 2011


Opening Reception: Saturday, September 17th, 7-10pm. Gallery Hours: Sat- Sun 12:00- 5:00pm; Weekdays by appointment. Actual Size Los Angeles, 741 New High Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012.


Co/Lab at Art Platform LA, presented by Artra Curatorial at the LA Mart, Concourse Level, 1933 S. Broadway Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90007. Opening Preview: Friday, September 30th, 3-5pm, General Admission: Sat-Sun 11am-6pm, Mon 11am-4pm. For more information go to:


Sean Kennedy’s practice often harnesses dust, light and circumstance to create works that comment on the ephemeral. Kennedy uses the vocabulary of minimalism to create his suede “paintings." These monochrome works continue his structured investigations of the visual traces of time. The artist stretches leather over a framework much in the same way a canvas is prepared. The suede is left vulnerable to alteration, from deliberate handling, or by accidental brushes against the surface.


Natalie Labriola's ceramic tablet offers a playful index of emoticons, exhibiting letters, numbers and other symbols that create casual markers of a range of emotional reactions. The mimetic symbols, 21st century calligrammes imprinted upon the “stone,” suggest a commemorative plaque for the internet age. Labriola’s work treats modern technology with an ironic reverence. In one work, a gravestone-like pedestal rests on the floor, engraved with the sardonic statement, “Did I shave my legs for this?” Her carefully studied drawings of cracked iPhone screens appear as luminous monoliths.


Kenneth Tam molds and carves his sculptures as if he were tracing the contours of a body. Tam pushes the limits of his materials, which include Bondo, concrete, shopping bags, and deodorant, by relating to their inherent physical qualities. In "Drunken Map," he carves along the grain of a plank of wood, resulting in a fluid, frame-like structure that leans delicately against a wall. Kenneth Tam’s artistic practice is intuitive, subtle and playful. His works navigate between the object's natural state and the artist's drive to alter it. This give-and-take between accepting and pressing the limits of the media is also displayed in his video work, which documents encounters with individuals he meets through the internet. Tam captures the challenges of negotiating with strangers as they perform tasks together.

Sean Kennedy (b. 1983, Akron, OH) currently lives and works in Los Angeles and holds an MFA from The University of Southern California (2010). Kennedy also studied at Staedelschule, Frankfurt, Germany, during which time he had a solo exhibition at Tschoperl, Ffm, DE, and participated in a residency at the Lademoen Kunstnerverksteder in Trondheim, Norway. More recent exhibitions include his MFA Thesis at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, a solo exhibition at Jancar Jones Gallery in San Francisco, CA, and Beige and Plastic, a group exhibition curated by Leila Khastoo, Santa Monica, CA.


Natalie Labriola (b. 1987 in Mesa, AZ) lives and works in Los Angeles. She received her BFA from New York University, Steinhardt School (2010). Labriola also studied at the Yale University Summer School of Music and Art, The New York Studio Program, and the The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Selected exhibitions include BRUCEFORMA, organized by The Bruce High Quality Foundation, New York City, New Work, Rosenberg Gallery, NYU, New York City, and Nepotistically Yours, curated by Karen Archey, MWNM, New York City.


Kenneth Tam (b. 1982 in New York, NY) currently lives and works in Los Angeles. Tam received his MFA from the University of Southern California (2010) and BFA from The Cooper Union (2004). Selected solo and group exhibitions include Casual Encounters, Roski Gallery, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, LACE Annual Benefit – Curated by Michael Ned Holte, LACE, Los Angeles, CA, Work After Work, MAK Center for Art and Architecture, Los Angeles, CA, The Los Angeles Initiative - Rema Hort Mann Foundation Launch, Honor Fraser, Los Angeles,CA, Imitation of Action at Latned Atsar, Los Angeles, CA, and a forthcoming exhibition at Pauline Gallery, Los Angeles, CA.

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