2654 La Cienega Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90034
T: 310 856 0532



Quack (Polaroid), 2013




April 13 - May 11, 2013
Opening Reception: Saturday, April 13, 2013, 6-9pm

Greene Exhibitions is pleased to present Marcus HerseGalleria. The title comes from a series of videos Herse created at various commercial complexes in the greater L.A. area. In this new body of work, the artist navigates the interior spaces of shopping malls, seeing the public carrying out its actions on this elaborately constructed stage. The gallery will be transformed into a viewing room to feature a selection of different videos from the series throughout the run of the exhibition.

                                “Utter ambiguity of the Arcades: street and house.”
                                “What is ‘always the same thing’ is not the event, but the newness of the event.”
                                                                                                           Walter Benjamin, The Arcades Project
                                “Meatless options at Hot Dog on a Stick”
                                                                                                           Hot Dog on a Stick
As a model of city life, the shopping center mirrors an experimental arrangement, a living environment inside a chimerical plan, an anthropological park (or fish tanks in a fish tank?). Like most architecture, we perceive the shopping center with lessened opacity and instinctively perform our everyday moves within this semi translucent encrustation. Its quasi-invisibility is due to our desires, our looking for a latte and a muffin on a Saturday afternoon at the bottom of the tank - to entertain the analogy. We’re looking forward to new handrails.

In the late 1950s Dutch artist Constant Niewenhuis thought the future of the architectural mega-structure to be a brighter one. Flaneuring the boulevards of Paris, he developed the situationist ideas of psychogeography and the drifter into a new breed and landscape: Homo Ludens, the playing man, inhabiting the endless corridors of a global construction he named New Babylon. This nomadic human being, freed from labor by automation was supposed to engage in the activity of endless creative play. Unfortunately however, nothing could be known of the ludic pleasures and the types of creativity that would emerge in such a structure, or if they’d serve vegetarian sausage.

Food in Jacques Tati’s “Playtime” closely resembles what is deemed acceptable in 2013: packets in spectral colors, whose content is hard to make out through the layers of gauzy cellophane wrapping with clouds of French dressing dispersed along the insides. In his film, Tati’s character Monsieur Hulot circumnavigates the maze of a crystalline-corporate-glass-and-steel-faced-future-Paris with equal measures of intention and awe. Everyone here joins him like a dance partner, more or less gracefully averting the obstacles of a confounding, modern city. At any moment in the film, the frame is full of several vignettes showing these chance encounters and their performers lively strung together into the film’s staccato rhythm. If people in this 70’s vision are mocked for having the dream of living large by means of a consequential modernism, today our options have at least tripled; Live large, medium, small.

Certainly architecture has lost the allure of the universal remedy that it had some 50 years ago, when it was assigned the audacious power to heal society as a whole, based on angles and planes. The idea of the architectural structure as a playground seems antagonistic as most public places one frequents on a regular basis now fit in one's pocket. The corridors passages and spaces we construct are psychological and mental connections, morphing entities of lists, images and places connected by short-lived wormholes and other volatile perforations. One and zero. Likenolikelikenolikelikenolike. The Leitmotif is the entirely invisible architecture of the Digital. And so one wonders: Why doesn’t everybody stay at home and order online?

This is a question that might arise when viewing Galleria. Or it might not. Herse’s continued attraction to the mall certainly lies in its connections to the aforementioned, but at the core of this body of work lies the malls immediacy as an image of images. The artist’s unobtrusive techniques enable him to present a portrait of his path through the compound. Along the way we see the crowds candidly milling about the corridors and shops in a continuous, single-level, point-of-view shot. The slow and relentless forward motion of the shot provides the viewer with the opportunity to consider the interactions between people, spaces, objects, and his or her own position within this continuously changing mesh of signals, options, and compositions. As the video leads one through the different commercial experiences, Herse’s passage resets the expectations and possibilities for appropriating public spaces.

Born in 1975 in Dinslaken, Germany, Herse studied painting at UCLA and at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf, where he earned an MFA in 2004. His videos and photographic works have recently been exhibited at Schnaky White Gallery, Germany, Kunstverein Düsseldorf, Germany, Villa Romana, Florence, Italy, Torrance Art Museum, CA and the Schmela Haus, Düsseldorf, Germany. Herse has been compiling exhibitions since 2007 in Germany and Los Angeles. He is the co-founder of the artist run Gallery JB Jurve and currently constellates exhibitions for Chapman University.

For more information please contact the gallery at + 1 323 876 0532 or