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Tom Lawson Discusses SoCal Art of the ’80s and ’90s at Laguna Art Museum

Five-panel collage of participating artists' work, including photography and graphic design
Courtesy of Laguna Art Museum

On Saturday, April 15, School of Art faculty and former dean Tom Lawson joins an artist panel (and pizza party) at the Laguna Art Museum (LAM) in Laguna Beach, California.

Lawson and LAM’s Curatorial Fellow Rochelle Steiner co-moderate a discussion about Southern California’s artistic community of the late 1980s and 1990s, their individual “wide-ranging artistic approaches,” and more. The conversation coincides with the exhibition Contemporary Art: Gifts from the Stuart Spence and Judith Vida-Spence Collection, running now through July. Among the panelists are five artists whose works are currently on view in the museum, most of whom have a CalArts connection:

Elizabeth Pulsinelli (Art MFA 92)

Pulsinelli is the editor of the Los Angeles-based art quarterly X-TRA, which she joined shortly after receiving her MFA at CalArts. As an artist, she works primarily in drawing and sculpture.

Allen Ruppersberg (Chouinard 67)

A preeminent conceptual artist and Chouinardian, Ruppersberg is known for his collages, drawings, collages, and immersive installations fashioned from various media. In 2019, the Hammer Museum held the major retrospective Allen Ruppersberg: Intellectual Property 1968-2018, which spanned three decades of his work.

Rena Small (Art MFA 77)

Small is a conceptual artist and educator working in photography, painting, and drawing. She is perhaps best known for her ongoing series The Artists’ Hands Continuum.

Jeffrey Vallance

Vallance is a Los Angeles-based artist whose Californian upbringing is reflected in his drawings, installations, sculptures, and performance-based works. He is also a former School of Art Visiting Artist.

Bruce Yonemoto

Yonemoto is an educator, writer, curator, and artist who works in video and digital media installation. His work explores the convergence between art and the commercial.

Attendees are invited to view the exhibition and help themselves to complementary pizza after the discussion. 

Picture of Taya Zoormandan

Taya Zoormandan

As digital content and social media producer, Taya enjoys lifting up the stories and accomplishments of CalArts' students, alums, and faculty. She fancies herself a visual artist but is really more of an overzealous collector of art supplies.

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Tom Lawson Discusses SoCal Art of the ’80s and ’90s at Laguna Art Museum