Sacha Baumann is an artist and designer living and working in Los Angeles.

MOCA and Mama

MOCA and Mama

Walked up to MOCA Saturday afternoon and was delighted to find I had arrived on the occasion of the re-opening of the first two rooms of their stellar The Art of Our Time exhibition, curated by Helen Molesworth. I was absolutely blown away by the thoughtful groupings. In the main room on either side of the doorway is a collection of photographs of circus/carnies by Brassai and children doing as they do in the city by Levitt. The pairings continue—it is a room of couplings.

Pollock, Ernst, and Krasner, a gorgeous view when entering the room. 

I was struck by the visual message of Pollock's painting having a stanchion and Krasner being left unprotected. It would have been so easy to extend the barrier.  Instant declarations of economic and cultural value are made for the viewer by not doing so.


Close up of Pollock, a joy to behold.

Close up of Pollock, a joy to behold.

Krasner. No stanchion for the lady painter.

Krasner, Ernst, Giacometti.


Pollock, Krasner, Giacometti.


The views are stellar from every angle of the room: Miro, Ernst, Pollock, Krasner, Giacometti, others. 

Another couple in the room. It's a romance, everywhere you look.

The first room is all earthtones and softness, but entering the second is an immediate jolt of black and white. Another stunning arrangement with beautiful looks from every vantage point. 

Danny Lyon, Chamberlain, Kline, Nevelson.

Kline, Chamberlain, Nevelson.

Chamberlain upclose.

Nevelson, the queen.

Guston. Just to the left of this small painting was more Chamberlain, also small works with a bright palette, hung directly on the wall.

I didn't notice any significant changes to the rest of the exhibition. Some of my favorite pieces are below, but I've left out a lot. It's the kind of exhibition that is easy to revisit many times, slow down in front of particular works and pause on newly discovered relationships between pieces in a gallery. It's not the standard, chronological exhibition, but rather a show about relationships. Stellar all around.

Cornell. Love to see collage in a museum.

Rosenquist, I love his work. Reminds me of eons ago working at Postrio—there was a huge painting by him in the main dining room.


Cornell, the master.

Johns. Just amazing.

Pittman, the wild man. Who loves to paint penises.

Guyton. I'm a big fan.

Pittman loves to paint penises.

Guyton side view. Inkjet print on linen.

Owens. So different from the more recent work. Bucolic.

Wangechi, my hero. Detail of an amazing work on mylar.

Powerful Ligon. Whenever I'm working his room at The Broad I will often suggest guests go across the street to check out MOCA's double America. They speak well to each other.No selfie taking in front of this one.

Flavin. A wonderful mirrored Smithson is on the floor to the right. It's a great room.

Martin. Across from her is a beautiful blue and green Kelly and and black McCracken.

Tuttle, my hero. But that faceplate—kills me. (I've got a whole series of images of artwork competing with outlets and faceplates at MOCA.)

JMB in a gallery with Ligon and Opie.

And my favorite picture of the day: this stranger gazing long and lovingly at Rothko. Here's to long, color-coordinated looks at art.

After my walk through I decided to hop on a Metro Bike and cruise home. It was a super hot day and the breeze of going down hill felt good. It was so fun, I just pedaled right by the turn onto my street and kept going. Biked around Little Tokyo and the Arts District. Popped into Mama to catch another look at Ren Hang's wonderfully subversive photographs before the show closed that day. Then slowly made my way back home. It was a great afternoon of walking, arting, and biking around my beloved #dtla.

Still of our time

Still of our time

Couch Collages

Couch Collages