Anything L.A. Liberal Magazine
Nov 212012





Now on view through March 18, 2013 MOCA Grand Avenue

The Museum of Contemporary Art presents Jason Schmidt: Some Los Angeles Artists, now on view at MOCA Grand Avenue through March 18, 2013.

Since 1997, photographer Jason Schmidt has been making intimate portraits of artists around the world as part of his ongoing project Artists. Selected from over 500 photographs that currently make up this series, the 23 images on view at MOCA represent several generations of artists working in an array of disciplines—painting, sculpture, video, performance, and installation—all of whom are based in Los Angeles. Schmidt photographs each artist in a place significant to each artist’s work. ‚Unlike some other photographers of artists who work in series and record multiple images, Schmidt crystallizes his experience of the artists and their work into a single image. His ‘one shot’ approach results in some of the most iconic images of the leading artists of our time,‛ said MOCA Director Jeffrey Deitch.

Carting a Linhof 4×5 and Nikon cameras past warehouses and deserts, up and down several hundred flights of stairs, into living rooms and garages, next to beaches, canals, and pools (as well as in them), in fields and gardens, half-naked and barefoot, in cemeteries and next to stripper poles, Schmidt documents artists as they make their work. Both portraits and environments, each experience with an artist is singular—the resultant photograph is often a mixture of collaboration and on-the-spot inventiveness. Schmidt attempts to capture the artists in a concise, material way, given the restrictions that the studio or location provides.

Schmidt never editorializes, fakes scenarios or concocts clever, telltale demonstrations; he never imposes his conception of what an artist should be doing, but simply documents the sudden moment where the photographer enters into the special domain of the artist. Jason Schmidt is a New York City based photographer. He received a Bachelors degree in Art History from Columbia University in 1992. Schmidt specializes in portraits of artists and cultural figures as well as documenting interiors and architecture.

Since 2000 Schmidt has photographed over 500 contemporary fine artists, in their studios and with their work. His first book Artists was published in 2007, by Steidl. His second book on the subject will be published in 2013. His work has been anthologized and collected and the entire series of artist pictures is in the collection of Martin Marguiles. Schmidt regularly shoots for magazines and advertisers including The New York Times Magazine, Harpers Bazaar, Vanity Fair, Wallpaper, IBM, Microsoft and J.Crew.  Images: Jason Schmidt, Jason Rhoades, 2006, color photograph, 16 x 20 inches; Jason Schmidt, Liz Larner, 2001, color photograph, 16 x 20 inches THE MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART, LOS ANGELES (MOCA)    Founded in 1979, MOCA’s mission is to be the defining museum of contemporary art.

The institution has achieved astonishing growth in its brief history—with three Los Angeles locations of architectural renown; more than 13,500 members; a world-class permanent collection of nearly 6,700 works international in scope and among the finest in the nation; hallmark education programs that are widely emulated; award-winning publications that present original scholarship; and groundbreaking monographic, touring, and thematic exhibitions of international repute that survey the art of our time.

MOCA is a private not-for-profit institution supported by its members, corporate and foundation support, government grants, and admission revenues. MOCA Grand Avenue and The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA are open 11am to 5pm on Monday and Friday; 11am to 8pm on Thursday; 11am to 6pm on Saturday and Sunday; and closed on Tuesday and Wednesday.

General admission is $12 for adults; $7 for students with I.D. and seniors (65+); and free for MOCA members, children under 12, and everyone on Thursdays, from 5pm to 8pm, courtesy of Wells Fargo.

MOCA Pacific Design Center is open 11am to 5pm, Tuesday through Friday; 11am to 6pm on Saturday and Sunday; and closed on Monday. Admission to MOCA Pacific Design Center is always free.

For 24-hour information on current exhibitions, education programs, and special events, call 213/626-6222 or access MOCA online at  MOCA MEDIA CONTACTS Lyn Winter, Director of Communications Tel 213 633 5390