Friday, July 9, 2010

Check It. Dennis Hopper Double Standard at MOCA.

By his later years, Dennis Hopper was known most for his rogue acting roles in such films like Blue Velvet and Easy Rider, but behind the scenes he was actually a very important player in the art world scene. After gaining a bad reputation in the '60s among Hollywood studios and filmmakers for being difficult to work with, Hopper immersed himself in photography, painting and sculpture, and began collecting art as well. Most notably, he was an early proponent of Pop Art, and actually bought one of Andy Warhol's infamous Campbell's Soup Cans for the unimaginable price of $75.

His impact on pop culture undeniable, Hopper has made for a perfect debut subject for Jeffrey Deitch's inaugural exhibition as the new director of MOCA. Dennis Hopper Double Standard is curated by fellow artist Julian Schnabel and is the first comprehensive survey of Hopper's artistic works. The exhibition has gained a lot of attention in light of Hopper's recent passing and because of the Deitch expectations, but nevertheless is sure to follow through on simply being a great, memorably and not-to-be-missed art show.

Dennis Hopper Double Standard is set to open this Sunday at the Geffen Contemporary branch of MOCA (the one in Little Tokyo, at 152 N. Central Ave.). There will be a special tribute to Hopper on Saturday with a cash bar and DJ set by Eddie Ruscha (yes, the son of artist Ed Ruscha), and on the official opening day of the exhibit on Sunday, curator Schnabel himself will be on hand at 3 p.m. to discuss the exhibition. The show will run until Sept. 26.

-- Chau Tu

Photo credit: Dennis Hopper, Double Standard. 1961 gelatin silver print © Dennis Hopper, image courtesy of the artist and Tony Shafrazi Gallery, New York

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