David Hammons Returns to Los Angeles

45 Years after his last exhibition in Los Angeles, David Hammons returns to the city that was his home for more than a decade with a solo show at Hauser & Wirth. Known for his elusive character, the artist lives up to his reputation with his press release (pictured above). The only comprehendible words being ‘This exhibition is dedicated to Ornette Coleman’ and ‘Harmolodic Thinker’, Hammons refuses to give you any more information than what his work provides and wants the viewers to do the work themselves. Just a few blocks from Skid Row, Hammons fills the courtyard of the blue-chip gallery with tents stenciled with the phrase ‘this could be u’. Manuela the fancy eatery at the gallery continues its day-to-day routine with the minor change of it being surrounded by tents, and Martin Creed’s neon sign ‘Everything is going to be alright’ hangs in its usual place with the exception of the tents that sit underneath it. Two gallery spaces are filled with a vast variety of his work- from film, paintings, sculptures and assemblage, to scribbled phrases on a wall, packets of Kool-Aid, a bowl of water and a letter from an insurance company refusing to insure a snowball. The work uses humor and puns as a tool to highlight his known disdain for the art world. Yet he simultaneously brings forward critical and imperative themes of the erasure of African American histories and the complexities of being black in America. His involvement with mega galleries has been on his own terms, as he remains unrepresented by any one institution. The exhibition is on view from May 18th, 2019- August 10th 2019.