Los Angeles based artist Dana Weiser’s exhibition at Walter Maciel Gallery, Without you, I couldn’t be me…, focuses on her experiences as a member of an interracial family. Weiser was adopted from Korea as an infant by a Jewish-American family and raised in the Midwest . She has a sister who was also adopted from Korea.
From the press release-
…Weiser’s work explores lost identity, multiple identities, and racial identity with her emphasis of being an outsider in a predominantly white community where she never felt a strong affiliation to any group or faith. The inevitable questions like “Have you met your real parents?” and “Is she your real sister?” are often the opening liners upon introduction and these phrases become the subject matter as literal text interpretations spelling out the racist remarks. In one series using large sheets of vintage lace as the surface, pearl beads are stitched into the fabric to spell comments like “I’m not racist or anything but…” or “I don’t mean to sound racist but…” The delicate and intimate technique of traditional beading challenges Weiser’s skills much in the same way as her ability to pacify her true emotions and refrain from bleak replies.
In addition to the beaded work, she also addresses some of her relationship with Korean culture in three self portraits- Enacting my Koreanness, (self-portrait performance). There are also two neon sculptures- one that reads “adopt” with an “a” over the “o” to create “adapt” and the other the title of the show in a circle. The different mediums make the exhibition feel a bit chaotic but perhaps that also keeps with the theme of having an identity that is hard to pin down.
In the other gallery are Greg Mocilnikar’s colorful abstract paintings and works on paper have a lively energy.
Both of these shows close 2/27/16.