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Curated by Kelly Thompson

Coagula Curatorial | Shizu Saldamando | Heads Will Roll



Coagula Curaotrial is pleased to present HEADS WILL ROLL -- a group show curated by Kelly Thompson, and featuring artists: Alice Bag, Diane Gamboa, Meg Madison, Shizu Saldamando, Lorraine Scognamillo, Kelly Thompson and Sashiko Yuen. An opening reception will be held for the HEADS WILL ROLL group show on Saturday, August 2 from 7 - 11pm at the gallery, located at 974 Chung King Road, in historic Chinatown.

This show brings together emerging as well as established artists from different backgrounds and cultural experiences. Alice Bag was the lead singer of The Bags, a punk band that helped to spearhead the West Coast punk revolution of 1977. After spending many years as a working musician in Los Angeles, she moved to
Arizona in 2006, where she pursued a variety of creative outputs. Diane Gamboa has been producing, exhibiting and curating visual art in Southern California since the 1980s, in a multitude of galleries and museums. Throughout most of the '80s, Gamboa was associated with ASCO, a conceptual multi-media performance art group. Meg Madison is an artist who uses photography to conceptually examine contemporary life. The LA Times called her recent body of work "a poetic visual essay that explores the most common of daily activities with fresh eyes." Shizu Saldamando is a Los Angeles-based artist who has exhibited her drawing, painting, sculpture and video work both locally and internationally. She received her B.A. from UCLA's School of Arts and Architecture and her Masters degree in art from California Institute of the Arts. Lorraine Scognamillo has been in and around the art world for the last several decades. She studied in the 80's at Otis Parsons and worked on a variety of different committee based art projects. Kelly Thompson is a community based artist who's work is inspired by the people and situations around her. As a feminist and artist, women's rights and socially political issues are an ongoing strong influence in her work. Sashiko Yuen, aka Wishcandy, is an odd nomad currently located in Southern California. Often going on adventures in SF, NYC, DC, and Baltimore to refuel, she spends her time creating work referred to as "a candy-coated horror show," inspired by retro culture, street fashion, kitsch, beauty and the grotesque.

Heads Will Roll -it's not a concept, it's an attitude! These 7 strong, talented artists are united in their passion for living a creative lifestyle. Not always satisfied with just one form of creative outlet, they are not afraid to explore, experiment, and organically evolve, traits seen in the evolution of "Heads Will Roll" itself.

Heads Will Roll runs thru August 12th

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Alice Bag: When I considered the title of the show I thought of phallic heads, patriarchal symbols and figure heads. Heads Will Roll brought to mind a punk band I used to play with in the early eighties called Castration Squad. The titular castration was never aimed at men, it was aimed at male privilege and gender inequality, it was aimed at infiltrating male dominated spaces and doing it with the irreverence and creativity of punk rock. My paintings focus on the women of Castration Squad who will always be my sisters and who continue to be audacious in their personal and professional lives.

Meg Madison: “Letters to mother” explores cultural ritual and myth in the form of the traditional birthday card. This series includes 31 birthday cards, one for each day of the supposed birthday “month” celebrated by the mother depicted in the series. The abundance of birthday greetings helps the viewer observe the underlying dysfunction of family relations. Cultural ritual dictates that birthday cards call for best wishers and express fondness for the recipient. In these pictures the artist’s letters the body of text, in neat catholic school handwriting, illustrating the never-ending quest for parental approval. With a nonchalant tone the cards make statements in direct contradiction to the cultural norm of both the exaltation the mother, and the celebration of the birthday. The text reveals unresolved family drama in  emotions bubbles of family secrets.

Shizu Saldamando: I am interested in the way subculture function and manifests itself through fashion and music. Visual codes are re-interpreted and remixed with new generations by recontextualizing seemingly outdated fashion, music and language. This remix within subculture is often in contrast and a response to mainstream marketing and co-optation. I am interested in capturing specific fleeting social moments within local backyard parties, independent music shows, and the like, but I also am considering the pervasive and problematic context of binary subjectivity (good vs. evil) by depicting personal moments of reflection and contemplation that resist this limiting categorization. I view portraiture as a means to reclaim self image and subjectivity not only in response to mainstream media's flattening and one dimensional gaze, but also as a pro-active process in that enables and gives agency. I use a mix of materials within the process such as wood, bed sheets, color pencil, washi paper and ball point pen, to give nod to the varying contexts and situations I depict. My overall objective is to create images with unconventional materials, honoring people and moments that resist categorization and question the existing archetypal and hierarchical norms.

Lorraine Scognamillo: For this show, I am influenced by vintage postcards depicting mischievous devils. I used recycled and vintage material to recreate the modern trickster. At times, challenging someone or something to change using a sense of humor can allure one into viewing a different outlook acknowledging heads can roll in laughter too!

Kelly Thompson: I'm excited to expand on my Feminine Deportment painting series for the “Heads Will Roll” exhibition. In this new work, I’m exploring how clothing, uniforms, and outerwear communicate ideas that may challenge the feminine illusion. These simple articles of clothing can change and shape the way the world and society view a woman, and, as women ourselves, inevitably mold our own personal reactions. One of my new works is in honor of the "Gulabi Gang", Hindi for the “Pink Gang.” This group of heroic and fearless women in India that has taken it upon themselves to protect the poor and call out the country’s most corrupt officials, popularizing their actions by wearing a commonplace pink sari. Another painting in the show is titled “Girl Scout Uniform”. This simple uniform invokes a myriad of personal experiences among American women of all cultural backgrounds.

Sashiko Yuen: My work is a double-edged sword. It's bright, colorful, and fun but it tackles darker subjects. I enjoy exploring both the beautiful and the grotesque. They're not mutually exclusive. I'm currently creating work based on juxtaposing opposites, listening to the subconscious, and emotions. Some of the themes include rebellion, ridiculousness, indulgence, restriction, sadness, violence, and femininity. Encouraging others to reject standard societal expectations and create their own stories. Building a collection of women with bad attitudes. It's definitely semi-autobiographical, powerfully packed with metaphors and a sense of humor!