Critical Distance: “Pacific Standard Time” and the History of RememberingMay 2012
In the fall season of 2011, the expansive reach of the Getty and its cultural capital are relentlessly visible signs in the landscape throughout Los Angeles. Traversing the mythically vast reaches of Southern California in the customary manner—by automobile—one is likely to encounter any number of thoroughfares lined with hot pink banners advertising Pacific Standard Time, each emblazoned with the initiaive’s logo: a radial design immediately recognizable as a clock’s face. To a cultural participant, it’s an almost-comically constant, stress-inducing reminder of the exhibitions one has yet to see. Likewise, the initiative’s website informs its users of the current day, time, and number of PST “exhibitions open right now”—meaning, each of these shows (forty-seven, as of this moment of writing) will eventually close. Tick, tick, tick…
This ubiquitous logo, the Getty’s seal of approval, not only graces the city’s boulevards, but marks each of the sanctioned PST exhibition sites and officially affiliated commercial galleries, as well as numerous exhibition catalogues and countless pieces of ephemera. I was also greeted by the clock at Los Angeles International Airport, upon returning home from a trip to New York, and—most alarmingly—on the screen of a Bank of America automated teller machine, as I withdrew money from my account. It turns out the corporate giant has provided support for PST, and indeed the bank’s exponentially more ubiquitous logo frequently joins those of the Getty and PST as a formidable, albeit complicated superbrand. The Althusserian complexity of this overdetermined relationship struck home on October 1, the official opening day of Pacific Standard Time that was, coincidentally, also the first day of the Occupy Los Angeles protest: Standing at the ATM in a supermarket near my home in West Los Angeles, I was startled to see a photograph by Harry Gamboa, Jr., of a 1974 performance by his Chicano collaborative group Asco titled Instant Mural, in which the artist Gronk taped collaborator Patssi Valdez to an otherwise blank wall in East Los Angeles. The image of this street action by the once-obscure band of outsiders, known for performative works that blurred the line between art and activism, was now recontextualized as an advertisement for Pacific Standard Time and Bank of America. Bewildered, I extracted my cash and wondered how unlikely— or, perhaps, how inevitable—it is that these clocks would synchronize at this moment, circa 2011.
Asco’s narrative thread, thoroughly considered in the exhibition Asco: Elite of the Obscure, a Retrospective, 1972–1987, at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, represents only one among dozens of compelling stories one might follow throughout the sixty exhibitions that comprise the PST initiative; it is also one of the most remarkable. In 1972, three members of the group (Gamboa, Gronk, and Willie Herrón) signed their names on the entrance to LACMA with red spray paint—a Duchampian gesture (signing the museum as a kind of readymade), as captured in Gamboa’s photograph Spray Paint LACMA (East Bridge), with Valdez standing above the names—pointedly protesting the marginalization of Chicano artists by the museum.Thirty-nine years later the group was not only given a proper retrospective inside the museum but made central in the marketing of PST, from printed matter and banners to, well, automated teller machines. It should perhaps be pointed out that the show, organized by C. Ondine Chavoya and Rita Gonzalez, was already in the planning stages before becoming enveloped in the Getty’s far-reaching mission. But Asco is also implicated in the historical contexts presented in numerous other PST exhibitions, including Under the Big Black Sun: California Art, 1974–1981 at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MoCA); Los Angeles Goes Live: Performance Art in Southern California, 1970–1983 at Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions (LACE); and State of Mind: New California Art circa 1970 at the Orange County Museum of Art, with several related performances. This multiplicity of appearances also points to a dynamic of complexly woven histories that define Pacific Standard Time—a networked dialectic of the one and the many.
Pacific Standard Time, a $10 million undertaking, represents the externalized out- put that follows from years of the ambitious research and development that evolved quietly and largely beyond the public eye in the sanctity of the Getty Research Institute. The initiative represents a decisive shift by the Getty (including the Getty Center, the GRI, and the Getty Foundation—its funding arm), an institution initially known for its founder J. P. Getty’s fondness for antiquities, toward the concerns of modern and contemporary art—and particularly local examples of it. For roughly a decade preceding PST, the Getty embarked on numerous targeted research projects; began compiling an oral history of aging Los Angeles artists and scene-makers; secured significant archival papers, photographs, collections, and related materials; and reached outward to other institutions more explicitly addressing (and exhibiting) modern and contemporary art, frequently providing crucial funding or parallel programming in the form of lectures, panels, and related scholarship in the process.
“All of this activity is directed toward displaying and writing the art history of Southern California,” states the editorial team behind the exhibition catalogue for the Getty Center’s Pacific Standard Time: Los Angeles Art, 1945–1980, an exhibition of painting and sculpture that also lends its name, if not time frame, to the wider effort. “Pacific Standard Time also encapsulates two ideas that drive these efforts: postwar American art history is fundamentally different when told from a West Coast perspective, and it is time for that history to be told.”There is, I think, a concern implicitly embodied in the PST mission: a notion, perhaps a popular myth, that Los Angeles is a city that perpetually loses track of its collective history. This notion is most fully examined in Norman M. Klein’s significant and provocative book The History of Forgetting: Los Angeles and the Erasure of Memory (1997), a self- described “docu-fable” that brilliantly stages Los Angeles as a city that continually rewrites its own collective mythology, a system of erasure driven first by boosterism, and soon thereafter, the cinematic imaginary: “Los Angeles,” Klein observes, “is a city that was imagined long before it was built.”
This sense of erasure has not been lost on the artists who have lived and worked in Los Angeles. Some three decades ago, Edward Kienholz, an artist well represented in PST, noted the city’s apparently disposable mentality (and therefore, perhaps paradoxically, its potential):
That’s one of the reasons I like Los Angeles, because Los Angeles throws away an incredible amount of value every day. I mean, it’s just discarded, shit-canned. From automobiles to desks, to clothes, to paint, to—you know, half bags of concrete that are hardened up. I mean, whatever it is, there is an incredible waste in the city of Los Angeles, and if you’re living on the edge of the economy like that, all the waste filters through your awareness and you take what you want.
Pacific Standard Time follows this narrative closely, apparently imagining Los Angeles as a city that has “shitcanned” its art history as well. Perhaps, then, it should come as no surprise that the Getty’s massive initiative is only the latest attempt to account for a particular “Los Angeles” or “Southern California” strain of art production. Paul Schimmel’s exhibition Helter Skelter: L.A. Art in the 1990s, prophetically presented at MoCA near the outset of the decade in 1992, is one example; another is Art in Los Angeles—Seventeen Artists in the Sixties, organized by Maurice Tuchman at LACMA in 1981. (Both shows were accompanied by catalogues and significant art historical scholarship; the Kienholz quote above can be found in the catalogue for the latter.) Additionally, several significant exhibitions considering the history of art in Los Angeles have been organized by institutions far from home. In 1997 Lars Nittve and Helle Crenzien curated Sunshine and Noir: Art in L.A., 1960–1997, at the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Humlebaek, Denmark. (I saw the show when it traveled to Los Angeles’s Hammer Museum the following year.) In 2006 the Centre Pompidou presented Los Angeles, 1955–1985: Birth of an Art Capital, organized by Catherine Grenier. The exhibition, which effectively predicted Pacific Standard Time, coincided with the Getty’s oral history project. The Pompidou’s catalogue for the exhibition featured an extensive timeline, along with texts by a number of scholars who would also write for PST-funded publications. A 2010 photograph by the Los Angeles artist Brian Kennon, titled . . . and Milk (in homage to Ed Ruscha’s 1970 artist’s book Various Small Fires and Milk), presents a grid of sixteen of these publications, individually photographed against a gray backdrop, like so much overwhelming evidence in a criminal case of the Los Angeles art world’s collective amnesia.
So, clearly, Pacific Standard Time is not the first effort to reconsider—even rewrite—the art-historical account of Los Angeles—but it is safe to say the initiative, fueled by the Getty’s substantial support, is indeed unprecedented in scale and scope. This can be measured in dollars, but, more important, in the number of participants, individual and institutional. As a collective cultural effort in Southern California, it worth examining how PST was foreshadowed by the 2008 exhibition Allan Kaprow—Art as Life at MoCA, and the extensive, related program- ming. That show was organized by Stephanie Rosenthal and Eva Meyer-Hermann and was first exhibited at the Haus der Kunst, Munich, in 2006, before traveling to the Van Abbemuseum, Kunsthalle Bern, and Museo d’Arte Contemporanea di Villa Croce, Genoa, before arriving at MoCA.The Southern California venue represented something of a posthumous homecoming for Kaprow (who died in 2006), an artist who held influential teaching posts at the California Institute of the Arts and the University of California, San Diego, and realized many of his Happenings and activities within this geographical and cultural context.The Los Angeles version of the exhibition, in spring 2008, included a wide range of Kaprow’s performances, realized by twenty-nine institutions in Southern California, including art schools and universities, nonprofit galleries, and other museums—most of which are also participants in the PST initiative. Here it’s also worth mentioning that Kaprow’s substantial archive is held by the Getty Research Institute, which produced that show’s accompanying catalogue, and that Andrew Perchuk, the deputy director of the GRI, is an editor of the catalogue for Art as Life as well as Pacific Standard Time.
This is particularly noteworthy because, in several significant but unacknowledged ways, Allan Kaprow—Art as Life served as a trial balloon for PST. The exhibition, at MoCA’s Geffen Contemporary site, brought together the artist’s paintings and sculptural assemblages and “environments,” archival materials (notes and ephemera culled from the GRI’s collection, displayed under glass on tables arranged chronologically), and a number of Kaprow’s works remade or adapted by well-known Los Angeles artists including Allen Ruppersberg, John Baldessari, Barbara T. Smith, and Suzanne Lacy. Curiously, there was little sense of hierarchy suggested in the exhibition design: traditional art objects such as paintings took no apparent precedent over ephemeral printed matter under glass, providing an unruly variety of viewing experiences. A similar sensibility recurs at the same venue with Under the Big Black Sun: California Art 1974–1981, a sprawling affair where paintings Ed Ruscha and Llyn Foulkes adjoin videos by Ilene Segalove and Howard Fried which mingle, somewhat awkwardly, with displays of Raymond Pettibon flyers (some “original,” some xeroxed) for the southern California punk band Black Flag and of Gerald Ford’s presidential pardon of Richard Nixon. The last of these, while obviously not an artwork, emerges as one of the most provocative items in the entire PST initiative.
Perhaps it is no surprise that Paul Schimmel, the curator of Under the Big Black Sun, previously organized the 1998 Out of Actions: Between Performance and the Object 1949– 1979, a significant exhibition of performance art that juxtaposed a similarly diverse selection of artifacts. As the subtitle of the show telegraphs, the objects exhibited (paintings, photographs, audio cassettes, video, and more) exist in an anxious limbo state of between—in other words, less as art proper and more as relics that provide a conduit to the art experience and to the past. In the years since Out of Actions, which looks prescient from the vantage of the present, museums have devoted increased attention to the exhibition of performance and its relics, negotiating the paradoxes of recuperating works of “live” art: Allan Kaprow— Art as Life is one useful example; the much-publicized 2010 exhibition Marina Abramović:The Artist is Present, at the Museum of Modern Art, is another.
Kaprow was notoriously resistant, if not antagonistic to the museum context, particularly for “live” art—“‘Life’ in the museum,” he once opined, “is like making love in a cemetery”—and in a way that was appropriate to the artist’s ethos, much of his retrospective happened outside MoCA’s walls. It is noteworthy that the exhibition (and its website) also served as a hub or information kiosk advertising a wide range of the artist’s performance works, reconsidered with varying degrees of adherence to their original versions by artists, students, and voluntary participants at twenty-nine venues throughout Southern California, while simultaneously connecting them to the larger exhibition context. Kaprow’s remarkable archives, maintained by the Getty Research Institute, were brought into broader public view at another institution (MoCA), while a selection Kaprow’s performance works were reenacted at institutions across southern California—establishing a regionally appropriate network that closely tied scholarship, represented by the Getty and a handful of art schools, and exhibition, represented by MoCA, but also an array of other museums and nonprofit spaces. (Perhaps not surprisingly, Kaprow’s estate, represented by the New York gallery Hauser and Wirth, followed shortly thereafter with a series of reinterpretations of the artist’s 1961 installation Yard, and presumably new sales possibilities for the artist’s work.) Expanding well beyond the notion of a museum exhibition, Allan Kaprow—Art as Life provided a significant, new, networked model that would become fully defined by Pacific Standard Time. In a similar sense, the Getty Museum’s Pacific Standard Time: Los Angeles Art, 1945–1980 (and particularly its catalogue) can be seen as the central exhibition that points outward to dozens of other exhibitions and events, including several other shows at the Getty and GRI (among them Greetings from L.A.: Artists and Publics 1945–1980, drawn from the institute’s vast collection, as well as a literal information hub for PST located in the Getty Museum).
In the interest of full disclosure, I was a participant in one of these reconsidered Kaprow performances—18 Happenings in Six Parts, 1959, a work of significant historical import, originally performed over six evenings at Reuben Gallery in New York, and reperformed over five evenings at LACE in 2008. I have written about this experience elsewhere—specifically attending to my discomfort in the shift from critic to performer—but I eventually came to the conclusion that our reinvention (Kaprow’s term) of 18 Happenings was a curious act of scholarship, a kind of scholarship that enacts a delightfully complex blurring of research and exhibition, performance and spectatorship. In enacting that scholarship, I also concluded that the reenactment of historic works of performance should attempt to emphasize the inherent instability of those works, rather than attempt to fix them in time, like photographs—or bronzes. One of the most striking aspects of 18 Happenings, which occurs amid its audience in three contiguous spaces, is that nobody, including a performer, is able to experience the entire thing. And, over the course of five (or six) nights, the work is never the same thing twice.
In 1964 Kaprow realized the Happening Household at the Ithaca city dump—a site far removed from the usual art context. With Household, which was also reinvented by the artist Robby Herbst (working with the nonprofit Outpost for Contemporary Art) for the 2008 Art as Life exhibition, the participants in the performance are also the audience. In this important equation, critical distance is not possible, and there is no notion of a “neutral” observer because the observer is inside the work—and too busy performing to experience everything else happening around him or her. Similarly, as a critic and scholar, and as an admittedly eager audience for the PST exhibitions, I must also acknowledge my role as a participant and a stakeholder in these intersecting histories of art in Los Angeles. I don’t think it’s much of an exaggeration to say that nearly every critic and scholar in Southern California is affiliated with at least one institution, whether museological or educational—not to mention the various publications for which we write. In this densely woven network, it is nearly impossible to escape conflicts of interest, real or perceived. Even in writing the present text, I am adding to the bibliography of friends, peers, co-workers, and even students, while implicitly acknowledging the significance of the subject matter and the Getty’s initiative.
In this sense, PST is an exhibition that treats history—or at least the relics of history, such as Ford’s pardon of Nixon—as a kind of performance, a past event that can be framed or displayed, if not fully recuperated. In viewing many of the exhibitions under the PST banner, I have noted the preponderance of ephemeral material (surely the phrase is another paradox) unearthed and presented in vitrines. In many of the exhibitions, there is an enormous amount of text—in the objects on display as well as in the didactic material contextualizing them. While exhibitions such as Under the Big Black Sun, or State of Mind: New California Art Circa 1970 at the Orange County Museum of Art, blur the distinction between art and other kinds of relics, a significant number of these shows are dominated by vitrines filled with ephemera, printed matter, and didactic information only occasionally punctuated with art objects—not the other way around. She Accepts the Proposition: Women Gallerists and the Redefinition of Art in Los Angeles, 1967–1978 at the Crossroads School, Sam Francis Gallery; Sympathetic Seeing: Esther McCoy and the Heart of American Modernist Architecture and Design at the MAK Center for Art and Architecture at the Schindler House; and Doin’ It in Public: Feminism and Art at the Woman’s Building at Otis College of Art and Design, Ben Maltz Gallery, exemplify this tendency. All are fascinating and loaded with dizzying amounts of information—too much information to assimilate, and perhaps that is the whole point. Like performance, it can’t be fully recovered.
The Experimental Impulse, at the nonprofit REDCAT gallery, organized by a class of the same name at CalArts, with the guidance of dean Thomas Lawson and REDCAT assistant curator Aram Moshayedi, consists entirely of reproduced texts, interviews, and archival material: history itself is the only auratic “object.” Even an ambitious reconstruction of Kienholz’s Five Car Stud, a horrifying lynching tableau, previously exhibited only at Documenta 5 in Kassel, Germany, in 1972, is provided a thorough contextualization through historical documents and photographs (many in—yes—vitrines), as well as a civil rights timeline, in its re-presentation at LACMA. Visiting one of these shows—not to mention all of them—is an experience demanding considerable time, and I’m not even including the travel time from Pomona to downtown Los Angeles, or San Diego to Pasadena. In the season of PST one might have to jettison the art activity of the present (presumably ongoing) in order to absorb the sheer amount of past that has recently resurfaced.
If one can’t absorb the past in the context of the exhibition, there’s a good chance a publication, largely replicating the documents in the show, is available— the amount of scholarship and number of newly published catalogues manifested by the PST initiative is truly astounding. Most of the exhibitions will not travel, but the scholarship—effectively, a rewriting of art history in Los Angeles—will exist in perpetuity, for a much larger audience than will engage the collective effort in situ. (Is it safe to assume that while an image in a catalogue surely doesn’t accurately represent a painting or video, it presumably works just as effectively as a photocopy found in an exhibition?) After visiting about a dozen of these exhibitions and purchasing five or six of the mostly hefty exhibition catalogues, I became acutely aware that Pacific Standard Time is less an exhibition of artworks made in Los Angeles than an exhibition of scholarship conducted in Los Angeles, and as such a demonstration of the Getty’s increased reach in shaping (or reshaping) the entire field of art history, not only in Southern California, but, really, everywhere: no small feat.
In this sense, Esther McCoy, the architecture historian and subject of the MAK Center’s exhibition Sympathetic Seeing, is a metonymic embodiment of the larger scholarly undertaking in which, to quote Klein, “the scholar [is] both reader and character in the same text.” Organized by the writer Susan Morgan and MAK director Kimberli Meyer, the show focuses on McCoy’s remarkable career, which manifested in numerous works of significant architectural scholar- ship that literally define California modernism, but also on McCoy’s drafting work (for R. M. Schindler), her fiction writing, and her activism (e.g., her valiant, but failed campaign to rescue Irving Gill’s Dodge House from brutal demolition—a significant erasure from the local culture). No single figure reconsidered under the auspices of PST more clearly exemplifies the blurred boundaries of scholarship and participation.
As a resident of Los Angeles for over sixteen years, who has experienced the art and cultural world of Southern California as both spectator and participant, it would be impossible for me not to feel implicated—and frequently moved—by the narratives of McCoy or Asco (to name only two of many) and to understand the value of these exhibitions and accompanying scholarly texts in expanding the historical discourse. So much for critical distance. My students at CalArts have perhaps been a more useful gauge for assessing the relative success or value of Pacific Standard Time. I visited several of the exhibitions with them and asked them to write their critical takes on one or more of the exhibitions. A recurring refrain in their responses is a sense of feeling overwhelmed—often by one show, not to mention the entire initiative. (MoCA’s vast Under the Big Black Sun is a frequent target of complaint.) I share this concern: even as a professional, who wears his investment in the ostensible subject like a badge, I have occasionally felt frustrated by the sheer number of shows spread across the landscape, many of which demand several hours (or, in a few cases, days) to fully absorb. Many of these students are newly transplanted to Southern California, and if nothing else, Pacific Standard Time is providing them an opportunity to learn the lay of the land—at least for those with cars. I have wondered, as have some of my students (if I may paraphrase them), whether there might be a law of diminishing return in effect: what is the use of unearthing all of this history or reenacting historic performances if they are only to be missed all over again? Yet, despite these concerns, I know these exhibitions have already deeply affected many artists and artistic communities given the spotlight, often belatedly. It remains to be seen if PST’s expansive networking connects all its constituents in meaningful ways across generational, ethnic, and racial gaps, or more fully entrenches those divisions. It may be too soon for many of my students, who are only beginning to come to terms with being artists—let alone “Los Angeles artists”—to critically evaluate the historical rewriting underway and their particular relationship to it.
As much as the clock is ticking now, I am personally curious about the long- term impact of the PST initiative. Whether or not the effort draws tourists to Los Angeles specifically for the occasion, I have little doubt it will draw art historians to the Getty and the Getty Research Institute for years to come. The scholarship already completed will enter libraries, here and elsewhere, and add substantially to the existing literature on Los Angeles art history and its many players. I also suspect that many artists brought into the spotlight in this collective effort—and even a few who have yet to be—will receive greater attention in scholarship fueled by this mission.
Still, I am most interested in this question: how will Pacific Standard Time affect young and emerging artists in Southern California? The exhibition Once Emerging, Now Emerging, a PST-“affiliated” show at Cirrus Gallery, organized by the artist Aaron Wrinkle and Cirrus director Jean Milant, provides some tantalizing clues— or at least reframes the question in a useful way. Charged with re-presenting Cirrus’s extensive archival materials (and, implicitly, spotlighting the gallery’s longevity in a frequently fickle field), Wrinkle acted here as both artist and curator, thoroughly blurring the distinction between those categories, and in the process invited a handful of emerging artist peers, including Vincent Ramos and Fiona Connor, to contribute works or intervene in the space, alongside historical videos, artworks, and ephemera by the better-known artists Barbara T. Smith and Guy de Cointet.The show, frankly, looks like a work in progress—but provocatively, and rather modestly, it represents the rewriting of history as a performance, predicated on that medium’s inherent instability. The most pointed thing in the show—and perhaps the most poignant in the entire Pacific Standard Time enterprise—is a stack of battered cardboard boxes filled with the gallery’s unused exhibition announcements and invitations, dragged out of storage and positioned, appropriately enough, in the center of the installation. The gesture suggests an antagonistic relationship to the past for a young artist for whom history is a (literally) heavy burden—surely, we’ll still be sorting through this history well into the future—but also an opportunity to participate in giving shape to an inchoate present.
In January 2012 another wave of PST exhibitions hit Los Angeles, along with an eleven-day Performance and Public Art Festival, organized by LAXART, driving home the notion of history as a kind of performance. Among the works realized for the festival is Black Box, an artwork posing as a late-night performance club (complete with a cash bar) orchestrated by the artist Liz Glynn, a 2008 graduate of CalArts who was included in the generation-defining exhibition The Generational: Younger Than Jesus at New York’s New Museum in 2009. Glynn’s project quietly called attention to Public Spirit, a sprawling festival in 1980 of some seventy performances, organized by the Highland Art Agents (Barbara T. Smith, Paul McCarthy, John Duncan, Chip Chapman, and Linda Frye Burnham) along with LACE: an original poster for the event was discretely hung on the wall of the Black Box, roughly between the performance space and the bar.
Black Box might have captured the energy of Public Spirit, but there was little about it that seemed overly reverential or rehearsed. McCarthy and Smith were there, on one evening, to discuss Public Spirit, but little of it—at least what I witnessed—would count as reenactment. On each of its eleven nights, Black Box was packed mostly with young Los Angeles artists and collaboratives (Lucky Dragons, My Barbarian, OJO), many of them also serving as performers in the festival. For a generation of artists increasingly defined by social networking, Kaprow’s blurred notion of observer as performer has shifted to a new paradigm of inclusion. By all appearances, the youthful crowd gathered by Glynn—many of whom received Facebook invitations from the artist on each of the eleven days— seemed entirely content in each other’s company, encamped in a venue that, for its short run, offered a dark refuge from the burden of so much history.
1. See www.pacificstandardtime.org/exhibitions (viewed May 9, 2012).
2. See Rebecca Peabody, Andrew Perchuk, Glenn Phillips, Rani Singh, and Joan Weinstein, preface to Pacific Standard Time: Los Angeles Art, 1945–1980, exh. cat. (Los Angeles: Getty Center, 2011), xx.
3. Norman M. Klein, The History of Forgetting: Los Angeles and the Erasure of Memory (London: Verso, 1997), 27.
4. Kienholz interviewed by Lawrence Weschler, Los Angeles Community Group Portrait: Edward Kienholz, 1977, Oral History Program, University of California, Los Angeles, vol. 1, 109; rep. Anne Bartlett Ayres, “Berman and Kienholz: Progenitors of Los Angeles Assemblage,” in Art in Los Angeles: Seventeen Artists in the Sixties, ed. Jeanne D’Andrea, Aleida Rodriguez, and Stephen West, exh. cat. (Los Angeles: Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 1981).
5. Some historical accounts were scholarly texts without corresponding exhibitions: Peter Plagens, Sunshine Muse: Contemporary Art on the West Coast (New York: Praeger, 1974) immediately comes to mind, as do more recent volumes such as Hunter Drohojowska-Philp, Rebels in Paradise: The Los Angeles Art Scene and the 1960s (New York: Henry Holt, 2011).
6. “What is a Museum? A Dialogue between Allan Kaprow and Robert Smithson” (1967), in Robert Smithson: The Collected Writings, ed. Jack Flam (Berkeley: University of California Press).
7. In my forthcoming essay “Happening Again: Reinventing Allan Kaprow,” in Live Art in LA: Performance in Southern California, 1970–1983, ed. Peggy Phelan (Routledge, 2012). The anthology was developed in conjunction with the PST exhibition Los Angeles Goes Live: Performance Art in Southern California, 1970–1983 at LACE.
8. Klein, 7.
9. LACE’s exhibition, Los Angeles Goes Live, includes several performance reenactments or reconsiderations by younger artists such as Heather Cassils and Dorian Wood, each of which allows for (or, perhaps, demands) an intergenerational confrontation with the past.
10. A more explicit homage to Public Spirit took place at LACE on March 29, 2012. The event, titled Spirit Resurrection Performance Night, included new performances by artists such as Stephanie Allespach, Elizabeth Folk, Margaret Haines, and Elizabeth Leister, all “inspired by” the original Public Spirit performance scores.