In the Studio: Amanda Ross-Ho
The work of Amanda Ross-Ho can be difficult to get a handle on from any one perspective: full of jokes, inversions and feedback loops, personal anecdotes and family history, obscure taxonomies and seemingly random associations, all routed through giddy myriad media. There are few obvious entry points, and the progression is far from linear.
One good place to start, however, is the studio itself, which serves as both a formal and a conceptual anchor to much of the work. Sheetrock figures prominently in her sculptures and installations, as do paint smudges and bleed-throughs, scraps of canvas, raw wood, boxes, stencils, tools, photographs of previous works and all the random objects that tend to land in a studio after piquing an artist’s interest somewhere in the world. Ross-Ho often arranges these elements as if to signify the residue of production but for a product that may or may not have ever materialized. When discussing the work, she speaks more often of “gestures” than of results or finished objects.“A big part of the work,” as she puts it, “is about watching myself work in the space.”
Ross-Ho’s actual studio is a former retail distribution warehouse just south of downtown that she shares with her artist partner, Erik Frydenborg, and an affectionate trio of cats. The space consists of a small office; a long, open space for Ross-Ho; an enclosed space for Frydenborg (who works in materials that are hazardous for the cats); and an enclosed courtyard filled with potted plants mostly donated by friends in transition. (“We specialize in plant rescue for traumatic situations,” she jokes.)
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— Holly Myers
Photo credit: Anne Cusack / L.A. Times.