The long-awaited affair is finally here! The sixth year of MOPLA, Month of Photography Los Angeles, breaks away from tradition by introducing a series of exhibitions all throughout its opening event. The theme, this time around, is Communities and Cultures, which will feature artwork all about environments, cultures and lifestyles. In a previous article, we gave a profile of the artists whose work was showcased earlier this year for a preview of MOPLA, namely, Domenico Foschi, Sol Hill and Sara Jane Boyers. However, MOPLA has more exciting plans up its sleeve!
To open up MOPLA on April 3rd, Mr. Musichead Gallery will be alive with events during the weekend, the first of which is entitled Symphony for the Devil by author Charlie Newton. It’s an must-see event, a politically-charged and controversial exhibition that is sure to provoke thought and discussion with everyone in attendance. Also featured are 1960s icons, legendary Rolling Stonephotographer Baron Wolman and graphic artist Robert Buccarelli.
Says Sam Milgrom, owner of Mr. Musichead Gallery: “Symphony For The Devil is groundbreaking artistic expression utilizing classic photographic portraits, brilliant writing, and edgy design. All elements combine to form a volatile statement that questions our community and the media’s culture of distorted messages. This kickoff event for the Lucie Foundation‘s MOPLA is an opportunity to sound an alarm that awakens all communities who would join in the call for an honest, meaningful discussion of important topics that affect us all.”
On the next day, April 4th, One Shot: One World – People, Places, Things, is on exhibit at The Loft at Liz’s. The winning works from the 2013 International Photography Award‘s (IPA) annual single image competition, One Shot, will be showcased. Eric Schwabel, an LA-based photographer, will also be featured, as well as Matt Henry, Christian Sinibaldi, and many other internationally recognized photographers. Performance artist Amy Kaps will take the stage as well. “Month of Photography LA unifies our photographic community, bringing focus and exposure to important artists from across the globe,” says Liz Gordon, of The Loft at Liz.
Aesthesia Studios, along with Genlux Magazine, is next in line to kick off MOPLA’s opening weekend celebration on April 5th, with the exhibition of The Analogue Portrait Project. The film-based portraits of competition participants alongside the presentation of prizes to the competition’s top three winners will be featured as well as a projection curated by Pocko, entitled Pro’jekt LA (MOPLA’s projection series). “Just as the photographic community inspired us to create a home where great work is hosted every day, we hope to inspire photographers through the sanctity of emulsion and celluloid and challenge them to burn an indelible image on our consciousness”, says Grant and Tiziana Mitchell, Founders of Aesthesia Studios.
To finish off a spectacular opening weekend, LA-based photographer Jay Mark Johnson will present his work alongside CicLAvia‘s Iconic Wilshire Boulevard route. Centered on the idea of time, space and their connections to cultural and societal functions by utilizing photographic experimentations, the installation, entitled #inwheeltime, will be exhibited in front of 5900 Wilshire. Photos of cycling cultures from Los Angeles and Siem Reap hope to highlight MOPLA 2014’s theme of Communities and Cultures. “We use lightning fast technologies to speak with each other, collapsing the space and time that separate us. Fortunately, we still move our bodies around at a slower pace, allowing us to experience distinct places and, with them, our distinct identities”, remarks photographer Jay Mark Johnson.
“The large-scale format of the work entices viewer participation, while the simplicity and the dynamic interplay of color, line and image invites one to linger and explore its narrative”, says Linda Dzhema, Programs Director of the Lucie Foundation.
Last but not least, in remembrance and celebration of 180 years of U.S. alliance with Thailand and with support of the Royal Thai Consulate-General Los Angeles, MOPLA will showcase select works from the 180 Photographs celebratory exhibit, featuring photographs by both Thai and American photographers. Curated by Hossein Farmani, Founder of the Lucie Foundation, and Manit Sriwanichpoom of Kathmandu Gallery, the exhibition will be presented during the April 6th celebration of the Thai New Year Songkram Festival. “The 180 Years of Friendship photographic exhibition has been curated to visually explore and highlight cultural similarities and cultural uniqueness of both cultures. Our goal is to create a deeper cross-cultural understanding through the natural accessibility of the photographic image”, explains Hossein Farmani.
In April 2009, the inaugural Month of Photography Los Angeles (MOPLA) showcased the enormous photography community, inclusive of commercial, fine art and photojournalism. As the second largest photography community in the United States, Los Angeles provides a distinctive backdrop to the celebration of the photographic image. MOPLA was established and exists to advance the celebration of Photography through a variety of events and programs designed to inspire and invigorate the photography professional, enthusiast, emerging professional and collector.
About Lucie Foundation The Lucie Foundation’s mission is to honor master photographers, discover and cultivate emerging talent, and promote the appreciation of photography worldwide. In additional to Month of Photography LosAngeles (MOPLA), the foundation presents year-round programming to support high school studentsthrough SNAPSHOP!, emerging and professional photographers through the Lucie Scholarship Programand master photographers through The Lucie Awards. The Lucie Foundation is a 501(c)3 non-profit charitable foundation.