On View at the Getty Center: Pacific Standard Time: Crosscurrents in L.A. Painting and Sculpture, 1950-1970
Ken Price, a student of sculptor Peter Voulkos in the 1950s, was fascinated by craftsmanship, finish, and color, as well as the possibilities offered by industrial techniques. As his work matured, Price eschewed the physical monumentality of Voulkos’s ceramic sculpture, as well as his teacher’s tendency towards earth tones. In the early 1960s, he started to use industrial enamels and automobile lacquers to achieve vibrant, glossy colors and an immaculate finish. The resultant egg-shaped forms incorporate brilliant color combinations that speak, according to curator Walter Hopps, speak of the influence of jazz and be-bop, as well as the Southern California surfing subculture, of which Price was a part. Price was one of the key artists associated with the influential Ferus Gallery and had three important solo exhibitions there.