LACMA Explores Design Dialogue Between California and Mexico

Peter Shire, Mexican Bauhaus teapot, 1980, Collection of Ava R. Shire, © Peter Shire, photo © Museum Associates/LACMA

An upcoming exhibition at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) will survey the design dialogue between California and Mexico during the twentieth century, featuring more than 250 pieces including furniture, murals, graphic design, textiles, architectural drawings, photographs, and films by over 200 artists, architects, designers, and artists. Structured around four central themes—Spanish Colonial Inspiration, Pre-Hispanic Revivals, Folk Art and Craft Traditions, and Modernism—Found in Translation: Design in California and Mexico, 1915–1985 will explore how modern and anti-modern design movements defined the intertwined history of the two locales.

Po Shun Leong, Uremex, Chaise lounge, 1971, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Gift of Po Shun Leong (M.2015.217a-b), © Po Shun Leong, photo © Museum Associates/LACMA

Showcasing a selection of works from celebrated architects such as Richard Neutra, Luis Barragán, Charles and Ray Eames, and John Lautner, the exhibit will examine how the relationship between California and Mexico shaped the material culture of each place, conveying the potential for art and culture to spread in spite of physical borders and political conflicts.

Francisco Artigas and Fernando Luna, House at 131 Rocas, Jardines del Pedregal, Mexico City, 1966, photograph by Fernando and Roberto Luna, 1966, courtesy of Fernando Luna, © Roberto and Fernando Luna

photo © 2017 Barragan Foundation, Switzerland/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

“Found in Translation demonstrates LACMA’s ongoing commitment to Latin American art from the pre-Hispanic period to the present day,” said LACMA CEO and Wallis Annenberg Director Michael Govan. “This groundbreaking exhibition highlights the unique strength of an encyclopedic museum. Curators from many different departments leveraged their expertise to contribute to the catalogue and advise on object selection, from works of decorative arts and design, art of the ancient Americas, and Latin American art to costume and textiles, photography, and Modern art.”

Wallace Neff, Arthur K. Bourne House, Palm Springs (exterior perspective), 1933, The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens, San Marino, California, archNeff

Found in Translation: Design in California and Mexico, 1915–1985 will debut on September 17 and run through April 1 at LACMA’s Lynda and Stewart Resnick Exhibition Pavilion.

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