MOCA Louis Vuitton Art Talks

“MOCA Louis Vuitton Art Talks” Combine Top Artists, Beautiful Homes and Cozy Conversations


Surrounded by paintings by superstars of today’s art scene: Damien Hirst, Robert Rauschenberg, Anish Kapoor and more, supporters of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles gathered for brunch and an intimate salon-style conversation with Ed Ruscha and MOCA director Jeffrey Deitch. The Oct. 9 event, held at the Bel-Air home of Lilly Tartikoff Karatz and Bruce Karatz, was the second in a three-part series of “MOCA Louis Vuitton Art Talks,” presented by the museum and the French fashion house, with internationally-acclaimed artists, such as Ruscha.  

Sitting beneath one of his paintings, Ruscha talked with Deitch of his Los Angeles cityscapes; his photographic record of the Sunset Strip; his recent series, “Psycho Spaghetti Westerns,” and his words, including the iconic paintings of the Hollywood sign. On seeing a slide of the work, “Scratches on the Film,” Deitch pointed out the artist’s embrace of pop culture, consumer products and something else he believed fundamental.  

“You’re also fascinated with debris, with imperfections with the scratches on the film,” Deitch observed.  

With Michael Chow among guests, the audience also learned that Ruscha’s painting, “Mr. Chow L.A.,” had originally been done in soy sauce. It had to be changed, however, because the sauce wouldn’t dry.

As to the solution, Chow said “In the right hand corner in the dot (on the painting,) there’s a secret ingredient.”    

“I love this event,” co-chair Lilly Tartikoff Karatz said in an earlier conversation. “When all these people who so appreciate art come together to experience a unique home and an individual’s collection – and then get to sit down with Jeffrey (Deitch) and these incredible artists – it’s beyond compelling. It’s like eating the best meal you’ve ever had; it’s the perfect experience in an imperfect world.” 

For Tartikoff Karatz, a high point of the series was learning that John Currin, guest artist at the Sept. 25 Art Talk, found inspiration for a painting in a Sears catalog. “There’s no way you could imagine that,” she said. “To hear John (Currin) describe his work, it’s so different from what you might think.”  That Art Talk took place at the Bel-Air home of gallery owner Larry Gagosian, which had  originally been designed by the architect A. Quincy Jones for Gary Cooper.

This year’s third and last of the MOCA Louis Vuitton Art Talks is scheduled for Oct. 16 with artist Barbara Kruger at Jeffrey Deitch’s home. Other co-chairs are Maria Arena Bell, Nancy Marks and Edye and Eli Broad.

Louis Vuitton sponsors the series as part of the company’s international cultural program, according to Charles Delapalme, senior vice president of stores for the western region. Delapalme said the talks are part of Louis Vuitton’s longstanding commitment to the arts through product design collaborations with artists, in-store art installations and the company’s new Visiting Artist Program, which offers educational outreach to the community.

Photos, from top: from left, event co-chairs Lilly Tartikoff Karatz and Maria Arena Bell with Lauren King; MOCA director Jeffrey Deitch, left, with artist John Currin;  from left, Charles Delapalme of Louis Vuitton, artist Ed Ruscha, Sandra Santiago and Daniel Paltridge. All photos by Alex J. Berliner/ABImages.



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MOCA Louis Vuitton Art Talks

Published Oct. 11, 2011 – Ellen Olivier, Society News LA