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For Immediate Release:  December 29, 2010

Beacon Arts Presents
Pieceable Kingdom
A Seven Artist Exhibition Curated by David Pagel
Saturday, February 5, 2011 – Sunday, March 20, 2011

LOS ANGELES, CA — Beacon Arts continues its Critics-as-Curators series with Pieceable Kingdom curated by art critic David Pagel, opening Saturday, February 5, 2011. The exhibition features works in a range of media by seven artists – Erin Cosgrove, Asad Faulwell, Maxwell Hendler, Laura Krifka, Mimi Lauter, Devin Troy Strother, and Matt Wedel –  who capture the complexity of everyday life by giving form to its down-to-earth beauty and uplifting ordinariness, its tribulations and triumphs, its pleasures and pains. As a group, they piece things together, sometimes literally and sometimes figuratively, creating singular pieces that are complete unto themselves yet also openly invite all sorts of stories, from other times and places, to echo across their sensuous surfaces.

Pieceable Kingdom runs from Saturday, February 5, 2011 to Sunday, March 20, 2011.  Exhibition special events include an opening reception on Saturday February 5, 6:00 – 9:00pm, an artists’ panel discussion on Sunday, March 6, which starts at 2:00pm, and a closing reception on Sunday, March 20, 1:00 – 4:00pm, which will include a catered brunch and a critics’ panel discussion.  Beacon Arts is located at 808 N. La Brea Ave., Inglewood, CA 90302.  Regular gallery hours are from 1:00pm to 6:00pm Thursday through Saturday, Sundays 1:00pm – 4:00pm.  All Pieceable Kingdom events are free.  For additional information please call 310-419-4077 or visit as well as  For additional Pieceable Kingdom photos, please see

Pieceable Kingdom Curator’s Statement –
Pieceable Kingdom is about the relationship between the past and the present, particularly the way that contemporary reality sometimes seems to be connected to the past by having fallen away from it. This seven-artist show refers to the Biblical idea of the Peaceable Kingdom by way of a misspelling to suggest that age-old ideas often take shape in the present in ways that distort their original meanings, calling them to mind while signaling the unbridgeable distance between the world they were once a part of and the present, which is different — for better and for worse. The rapid pace of modern life has a lot to do with these changes. The same goes for the sheer number of images that bombard our eyeballs and brains, making it easy for attention spans to diminish, perhaps beyond the point of no return. But even more is due to the increasing volume—and increasing brevity—of everyday communication, which leaves more room for misinterpretation and misunderstanding.

“Mujahidat #4″ by Asad Faulwell
(courtesy Dean Valentine Collection)

People seem to be increasingly comfortable with what I think of as “horseshoes and hand-grenades” language: a sloppy looseness of choosing words and phrases that are not exactly right for conveying the sentiments and intentions of the writer or speaker, but close enough to get the general idea across—at least until the next message comes back, asking what the first one meant, demanding clarification, or revealing that the damage has been done and that there’s no way to go forward because it’s too time-consuming and annoying to have to hear everything two or three times. The Tower of Babel may not exist, but its spirit seems to inhabit the atmosphere around every cell tower and satellite.

The upside to this potentially grim situation is that it opens up some space in which unusually inventive artists can play fast and loose with business as usual, transforming misperceptions into insights, turning misinterpretations into magnificently mixed-messages, and twisting misunderstandings into multilayered revelations — not those of the Bible but ones within arm’s reach, right here and right now. – David Pagel

pagel-laura-krifka-the-river“The River” by Laura Krifka

David Pagel, Critic-as-Curator
David Pagel writes regularly for the Los Angeles Times.  He is an associate professor of art theory and history at Claremont Graduate University and an adjunct curator at the Parrish Art Museum in Southampton, NY.  Pagel has published catalog essays for such artists as Wendell Gladstone, Darren Waterston, Ron Nagle, and Michael Reafsnyder. He was the recipient of an Andrew W. Mellon Fellowship in Contemporary Arts Criticism in 1990 and was a Macgeorge Fellow at the University of Melbourne, Australia in 2002.

Critics-as-Curators Series
Critics-as-Curators is the inaugural art exhibition series at Beacon Arts.  In recognition of the gallery’s first year, esteemed art critics and writers — recognized locally, nationally and internationally — have been invited to conceive and curate shows of their choosing at the Beacon Arts Building in conjunction with discussions, lectures, catalogues, or other ways to reveal the thought process behind why exhibition works are chosen with insight into their importance to the curator. The individual expertise and personal taste developed by the curators’ world-view will be on exhibit throughout Beacon Arts’ first year. Critics-as-Curators strives to enrich appreciation of contemporary fine art by critically engaging in art. This series of shows provides a wonderful opportunity for artists and art audiences to learn what individual critics look for, how they think about the art they choose to focus on, and what catches their eye. The series kicked off in October 2010 with Ghost Stories: Happenings, Hauntings, & Curiosities curated by art writer Shana Nys Dambrot.