PROJECTION BY VINCENT LAMOUROUX
APRIL 26, 2015 - MAY 10, 2015
TIME AND SITE-SPECIFIC INTERVENTION BY VINCENT LAMOUROUX ON THE SUNSET PACIFIC MOTEL PROPERTY, LOS ANGELES
French artist Vincent Lamouroux is set to transform Silver Lake’s deserted and derelict Sunset Pacific Motel, also known as the “Bates Motel” into a temporary and ephemeral art installation that will radically punctuate the cityscape for two weeks. An unprecedented public art project for the city of Los Angeles, Projection will be a temporal intervention into an iconic piece of LA’s architectural history and urban lore. Lamouroux will cover the entirety of the building, including its flanking palm trees and billboard, with an opaque white limewash, effectively arresting the structure in a three-dimensional state of simultaneous disappearance, purification and ossification. The large bleached white structure will create a stark visual contrast set against the clear blue Los Angeles sky.
The notorious and famously reprobate “Bates Motel”, whose pseudonym is loaded with references to Hollywood, filmmaking, and Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho, has stood vacant for decades and is ultimately set for demolition. This, and Los Angeles’ state of perpetual cultural revitalization and adaptive change, inspired Lamouroux’s timely reinterpretation of the site. Transforming the materiality of the space by petrifying it literally, Lamouroux will visually calcify the structure, inviting an interpretive experience with an impossible point of physical entry. Ultimately, the artist will make a ghost of the motel, drawing attention to the vulnerable uncertainty of its much-contested future. The ecologically safe materials cloaking the building will eventually erode and dissipate in real time as the appearance of the site changes throughout the course of the installation’s finite life span. Just as the Silver Lake neighborhood itself has transformed radically in recent years, and continues to evolve, so too will the artist’s iteration of the motel embody a transformation, surrendering and passage; the white surface of its facade will be a symbolic invitation to project our ideas about both its mythic past and its indeterminate future.
“Los Angeles has become a center for contemporary art and culture, and Silver Lake, home to a growing and active creative community, is an important part of that transformation,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti. “This work by Vincent Lamouroux at the Sunset Pacific Motel property is a timely and symbolic gesture to our rich artistic and cultural landscape.”
Nicolas Libert, visionary co-proprietor of Downtown LA’s retail destination for curated culture, Please Do Not Enter, says of the project they have facilitated: “Lamouroux’s Projection immediately touched us. It interrogates the American dream and the mythical qualities of Los Angeles while at the same time revealing the city’s undeniable appeal and potential. Lamouroux’s celebration of this mythic and storied architecture is the greatest and most beautiful gift we could offer the city of Los Angeles, and its vibrant international art scene. Projection represents Please Do Not Enter’s desire and purpose to open an active, cross-cultural artistic dialogue.”
Conceived by the artist over a decade ago, and after more than a year of planning, Projection begins its highly anticipated lifespan on April 13th when installation begins. The installation process and completed work will be carefully documented, and will be the subject of several arts education programs in collaboration with Thomas Starr King Middle School, Silverlake Independent Jewish Community Center and Lycée International de Los Angeles. These workshops are intended to encourage critical engagement with the installation, and are designed to raise questions about our living environment and the mutability of our perceptions. Lamouroux’s interest in the creation of experiential encounters, and in the indeterminate potential of transitional spaces, will inform the larger conceptual framework of these dedicated art workshops. In keeping with the spirit of the project, the programming is an invitation to speculate, experience and question.
The Silverlake Independent Jewish Community Center will host free art workshops open to the community. The core programs of this institution are committed to education, arts and culture, and the support of community-based efforts on Los Angeles’ East side. The Projection programming will be held on a first-come first-serve basis, and is subject to advance sign-up. These workshops are made possible with support from the Silver Lake Neighborhood Council (SLNC).
Thomas Starr King Middle School will host student tours and comprehensive presentations of the Projection site. These workshops will take place during arts electives or after-school programming in conjunction with the school’s cross-magnet disciplines: Film & Media Magnet, Environmental Studies Magnet and Arts Magnet. Their photojournalism class will document the installation and provide photos to participating students for use in a Projection themed collage or painting project. The students will “project” their own desires and speculations by creating new artworks atop images of Projection’s blank walls. These workshops are made possible with support from the Los Feliz Neighborhood Council (LFNC) and from donated art materials from Blick Art Supplies.
The educational programming at Lycée International de Los Angeles (LILA) will consist of workshops, discussions and field trips to the installation site. For its elementary students, there will be a preparation visit and field trip for third, fourth and fifth graders at the Los Feliz campus. On the Burbank campus, there will be four, two-hour workshops and a field trip to discuss Projection with its French Baccalaureate and International Baccalaureate high school students, whose studies concentrate on film and art.
Projection is produced by Please Do Not Enter
Active support provided by Creative Migration. Generous support is provided by FLAX (France Los Angeles Exchange), Institut Français, Lycée International de Los Angeles, Lamar Advertising Company, Domino Recording Company, West Coast Arborists, University of California Cooperative Extension, TreeCareLA, Diversified Painting Contractors, Lextech and All Day Protection. Sunset Pacific Motel provided by Frost/Chaddock.
Opening events are generously supported by contributions from the Silver Lake Neighborhood Council, the Los Feliz Neighborhood Council, Greater Echo Park Elysian Neighborhood Council, the Silver Lake Independent Jewish Community Center, Mack Sennett Studios, Sustain LA, Juice Served Here, August Uncommon Tea, Haché, Wood, Pirozhki, My Vegan Gold and Purgatory at the Junction.
Digital support courtesy of ACNE.
More Information on the ecologically safe limewash used in the process can be found on creativemigration.org.