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Gala Porras-Kim presents "Open House" at The Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA), Los Angeles

The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, California, USA
October 7, 2019 – May 11, 2020

In the spring of 2019 and as part of the museum’s 40th anniversary celebration, MOCA debuted a new series of exhibitions called Open House. This series invites Los Angeles-based artists to organize exhibitions drawn from the museum’s extensive collection of more than 7,500 objects. The artists work together with MOCA curators to explore how the museum’s permanent collection can continue to serve, educate, inform, represent, and delight the diverse and extensive community of artists in Southern California. It also gives visitors a chance to see the depth and breadth of MOCA’s collection, focused through the unique lens provided by the community of artists that it serves. In its first iteration, Open House: Elliott Hundley, multimedia artist Elliott Hundley explored the architecture and origins of collage, exploring how the visual and material logic of this technique has informed artists in MOCA’s collection, as well as his own practice.

Open House: Gala Porras-Kim is the second iteration of this exhibition series, opening fall of 2019. Gala Porras-Kim’s practice explores how the history of art is built from remnants and fragments of information from the past. More specifically, she explores how our indexes or records are often flawed or willfully misdirected, and how these gaps and lapses in human knowledge have supported colonialist endeavors and global inequality.

For her exhibition at MOCA, Porras-Kim seeks to explore the ways in which museums act as stewards of the art it owns. Her exhibition brings together a diverse set of artworks (and other ephemeral materials) to shed light on the role the museum and its staff of curators, registrars, and conservators play in the life of the works in its permanent collection. To do so, she has sought out artworks that challenge the perception that a museum’s permanent collection is comprised of immutable objects frozen in time. Using artworks that are ephemeral, transitional, malleable, decaying, or even made to expire, Porras-Kim’s exhibition will showcase the ways in which museums play an active role in the conservation, display methods, archiving, interpretation, and even the physical form of the works in its permanent collection. The exhibition will include works by artists such as Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Walead Beshty, and Dove Bradshaw.

Open House: Gala Porras-Kim is organized by Gala Porras-Kim and Bryan Barcena, Assistant Curator and Manager of Publications, with Karlyn Olvido, Curatorial Assistant, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.

Exhibitions at MOCA are supported by the MOCA Fund for Exhibitions with major funding provided by The Offield Family Foundation and generous funding provided by Dr. Alexander and Judith Angerman, Earl and Shirley Greif Foundation, Sydney Holland, founder of the Sydney D. Holland Foundation, Nathalie Marciano and Julie Miyoshi, Steven and Jerri Nagelberg, and Jonathan M. Segal through the Rhonda S. Zinner Foundation.


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