Missing Parts: Alison O’Daniel, Pau S.Pescador, Kenneth Tam and Rodrigo Valenzuela
Organized for 18th Street Arts Center Gala video program
Nyke and the New York Kite Enthusiasts, 2015
Pau S. Pescador
The Founding of Los Angeles, 2018
The Crane and the Snake, 2021
* This work was commissioned by The Shed’s Open Call
Missing Parts presents the works of Alison O’Daniel, Pau S. Pescador, Kenneth Tam and Rodrigo Valenzuela, as they analyze established systems of representation and inclusion. Facial recognition technology, male archetypes, unknown Los Angeles history and musical gatherings reveal broader reflections on visibility and belonging, and how we collectively construct community.
In Tertiary, Rodrigo Valenzuela presents a group of aspiring actors who call attention to the film and television industries' flawed method of diversity casting, and the discriminatory facial recognition technology that struggles to properly capture those with darker skin.
The lack of inclusion in such industries naturally determines limited options for self-identification and reinforces traditional American forms of assimilation, a theme further explored in The Crane and the Snake by Kenneth Tam. Investigating the violent contradictions of Asian American fraternities, Tam uses Taoist principles of simultaneously opposing forces to explore how these antagonist cultural practices affect the body, especially those of young men as they search for self-identity and acceptance.
In Nyke and the New York Kite Enthusiasts, Alison O’Daniel presents an intimate, musical gathering that further examines physical belonging through alternate modes of perception. Featuring the deaf performer Nyke Prince, the scene’s separation of visual and aural explores silence, deafness, sound, and hearing. The scene subtly reveals different realities existing side by side, as hearing people close their eyes while Nyke gazes on. As part of O’Daniel’s larger body of work, The Tuba Thieves, the work reveals the hidden politics of a culture that takes hearing for granted.
Unseen realities are further unearthed in The Founding of Los Angeles, a film by Pau S.Pescador. Bringing together interviews with 45 artists, writers, and historians, the film recounts lesser recognized moments, both historical and personal, that present alternative narratives presented in civic society and popular media. Juxtaposing these stories, Pescador presents a collaged vision of history that is adequately subjective, dynamic, and far more inclusive.
Alison O’Daniel is a visual artist and filmmaker. She has screened and exhibited in galleries and museums internationally, including the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; Garage Museum of Contemporary Art, Moscow; Centre Pompidou, Paris, FR; Centro Centro, Madrid, Spain; Renaissance Society, Chicago; Art in General, New York; Centre d’art Contemporain Passerelle, Brest, France; Tallinn Art Hall, Estonia; Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts, Omaha; Shulamit Nazarian, Los Angeles; Samuel Freeman Gallery, Los Angeles. She lives and works in San Francisco and Los Angeles, CA.
Pau S. Pescador is a trans-nonbinary artist who works in film, photography, and performance. Select exhibitions and screenings include: Biquini Wax, Mexico City; Deslave, Tijuana; LADRÓNgalería, Mexico City; UV Estudios, Buenos Aires; 5 Car Garage; 18th Street Art Center; Armory Center for the Arts, Pasadena; Angels Gate Cultural Center, San Pedro; Human Resources; Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; Los Angeles County Museum of Art; the Main Museum; The Pit; LAND at The Gamble House; Park View; Tyler Park Presents; X-tra Online; all within Los Angeles County. Select performances include Guggenheim Gallery at Chapman University, Orange; LADRÓNgalería, Mexico City; Performa New York; University of California, Berkeley Durham Studio Theater; Los Angeles Contemporary Archives; Machine Projects; PAM Residencies; Hammer Museum (with KCHUNG TV); REDCAT; and ForYourArt at 6020 Wilshire Blvd. Their first collection of writing, CRUSHES: A NOVELLA, was published by Econo Textual Objects in Spring 2017.
Rodrigo Valenzuela (b.Santiago, Chile 1982) lives and works in Los Angeles, CA, where he is the Assistant Professor and Head of the Photography Department at UCLA. Valenzuela has been awarded the 2021 Guggenheim Fellowship in Photography and Smithsonian Artist Research Fellowship; Joan Mitchell award for painters and sculptors; Art Matters Foundation grant; and Artist trust Innovators Award. Recent solo exhibitions include: New Museum, NY; Lisa Kandlhofer Galerie, Vienna, AU; Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art, Eugene; Orange County Museum; Portland Art Museum; Frye Art Museum, Seattle. Recent residencies include: Core Fellowship at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture; MacDowell Colony; Bemis Center for contemporary arts; Lightwork; and the Center for Photography at Woodstock.
Kenneth Tam works in video, sculpture, installation and photography, using the male body as a starting point for discussions about performance, physical intimacy and private ritual. Tam received his BFA from the Cooper Union. He has had solo exhibitions at the Minneapolis Institute of Art; MIT List Center for Visual Arts; the Visual Arts Center at UT Austin, Commonwealth and Council, LA; Night Gallery, LA; Queens Museum, NY and at the ICA LA. Tam has participated in group shows at 47 Canal, NY; Hollybush Gardens, London; the Hammer Museum, LA; InPractice at SculptureCenter, Queens The Shed’s Open Call. He has participated in residencies including Artist Lab at 18th Street Arts Center; LMCC Workspace; The Core Residency Program at The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Pioneer Works; and at The Kitchen. Tam is a Lecturer at Princeton University, Visiting Lecturer at Harvard University and film/video faculty at Bard MFA. He was born in Queens, NY and currently lives there.