Kandor in L.A.? Superman’s bottle city part of new art exhibit

Jan. 24, 2011 | 12:15 p.m.
kandor1 Kandor in L.A.? Supermans bottle city part of new art exhibit

"Kandor 10A" Mike Kelley (Gagosian Gallery)

Los Angeles Times art critic Christopher Knight reviews a new Mike Kelley exhibition in Beverly Hills that has special interest to Hero Complex readers. Here’s an excerpt, you can find the rest (and find details on exhibition dates and location) at our must-read sister blog, Culture Monster

For his first L.A. solo exhibition in nearly eight years — and his first with Gagosian Gallery here — Kelley shows a bracing array of 17 works made in 2010. (Earlier portions were a stand-out in the last Carnegie International in Pittsburgh.) A post-Pop extravaganza by turns trenchant, funny and self-deprecating, the work is a captivating meditation on origins in our insanely complex world.

The linchpin is Kandor, fictional capital city of Superman’s home planet, Krypton, which super-villain Brainiac shrunk to miniature size. In a 1958 DC Comic, published when Kelley was a kid, Superman retrieved little Kandor and kept it in a glass bell-jar pumped full of artificial atmosphere. Kelley’s sleek Kandor models, made from illuminated cast-resin, are a mind-bending metaphor for the synthetic, scientifically driven, highly infantilized and thoroughly mediated bubble in which modern life is lived…


— Christopher Knight


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