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Ex-colleague of Jeffrey Deitch to curate art show coinciding with his big MOCA moment

April 7, 2011 |  8:45 am

Show Jeffrey Deitch’s first big initiative as director of L.A.’s Museum of Contemporary Art is “Art in the Streets,” which opens April 17 at the Geffen Contemporary, billed as “the first major U.S. museum exhibition on the history of graffiti and street art.”

Turns out that a former colleague from his previous life as an art dealer is curating a gallery show in Culver City that's timed to coincide with her old boss' doings in downtown L.A. Kathy Grayson, who was gallery director for Deitch Projects, the New York City art business that Deitch liquidated so he could accept the MOCA job, has organized “Facemaker,” a show about contemporary artists’ conceptions of the human face, which opens April 14 at Royal/T, a 10,000-square-foot venue that features an art space, store and Japanese-themed cafe. 

The show’s announcement says the focus is on art that “challenges our assumptions and makes us consider the face in new ways.”  It aims to have its own street-art dimension, and the announcement promises a substantial overlap with figures whose work is included in “Art in the Streets.” Among the artists in the show at Royal/T are Shepard Fairey, Takashi Murakami, Barry McGee and Kenny Scharf. The title piece (pictured), by L.A.-based Ben Jones, is a large-screen video installation of shifting faces.

Along with Meghan Coleman, a former Deitch Projects colleague, curator Grayson is proprietor of the Hole, a Manhattan gallery launched last June, just as their ex-boss began at MOCA. They started it as a home for some of the artists who had been represented by Deitch Projects, naming it to suggest that his 3,000-mile jump had left a hole behind.


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-- Mike Boehm

Photo: Screen shot from Ben Jones' video artwork "Facemaker." Credit: Courtesy of the Hole (NYC).