Art Los Angeles Contemporary 2020


Art Los Angeles Contemporary 2020 | February 13 - February 16, 2020

Opening Night | February 13, 2020

Edward Cella Art & Architecture is proud to present the work of Aili Schmeltz and Amir Zaki at Art Los Angeles Contemporary 2020 from February 13–16, 2020 that takes place at the Hollywood Athletic Club on Sunset Boulevard. The gallery’s participation in the eleventh annual edition of Art Los Angeles Contemporary provides the opportunity to exhibit new work of two Los Angeles artists whose practices converge at the intersection of art and architecture. Both Artist’s unique processes utilize the technologies and methodologies of their respective mediums to connect contemporary art to architecture. Offering new and unfamiliar points of view of the artificial environments that make up California’s landscape.

The research-based practice of Aili Schmeltz alludes to utopian ideologies that inform the development of the American West and the vast artificial environments in which we now live. Reflecting on Modernism and its obsessive engagement with architectural forms; Schmeltz’s ongoing project, Object/Window/Both/Neither seeks to collapse the spatial differentiation of interior and exterior; depth and flatness; wall and window into series of paintings, drawings and sculptures. In the newest works built intuitively using line, mass and fields of color; Schmeltz creates simple compositions to evoke complex experiential phenomena manipulating and reducing these ideas into massive hangings of overlapping flaps of canvas and paint. Contrasting with these will be a presentation of small format painting studies.

Amir Zaki has dedicated himself to exploring the suburban landscape of California though his photographic practice often taken from unique points of view. His newest and most ambitions series to date, surveys a quintessential California architectural form, the concrete skatepark. Within two complementary bodies of work, Concrete Vessels and Broken Vessels; Zaki plumbs the tensions between solidity and fragility; intentional and accidental; monumental and minuscule and seeks to create compositions that he describes, “appear to be wholly instantaneous, yet reveal subtle clues regarding their extended temporality.” ECAA’s presentation coincides with a more expansive exhibition of the new series entitled, Empty Vessel – Amir Zaki currently on view at the Culver Center of the Arts at UC Riverside though April 5, 2020 and is accompanied by Zaki’s first international monograph California Concrete: A Landscape of Skateparks. Published by Merrell Publishers the hardcover book features essays by legendary pro skateboarder Tony Hawk, and Los Angeles based architect Peter Zellner along with 72 color plates.


Aili Schmeltz lives and works in Los Angeles and Joshua Tree, CA. She received her MFA from the University of Arizona and a BFA from the Kansas City Art Institute. Solo exhibitions include Espronceda Center for Art and Culture, Barcelona, Spain (2017), Grand Central Art Center, California State University Fullerton, CA (2013); Prescott College Art Gallery, Arizona (2013); Museum of Contemporary Art, Tucson, Arizona (2011); Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts, Omaha (2008). Group exhibitions include Friedman Benda Gallery, New York (2014); The Hoxton Gallery, London (2014); Torrance Art Museum, Torrance, California (2014); Commonwealth & Council, Los Angeles (2013); Galeria La Miscelanea, Puebla, Mexico (2013); Zatoka Sztuki, Sopot, Poland (2012); Asihlquaiss Offspace, Zurich, Switzerland (2011); and Golden Parachutes Gallery, Berlin (2009). She is the recipient of awards such as the Scuola Internazionale di Grafica Venezia in 2015, the California Community Foundation Fellowship for Visual Arts in 2013, the Foundation for Contemporary Arts Grants, New York as well as the Creative Capacity Fund Grant of San Francisco in 2011, and the Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant in 2009.


Amir Zaki received his MFA from UCLA in 1999 and has been actively exhibiting photographs and videos nationally and internationally since. He has had solo shows at the MAK Center Schindler House in West Hollywood, ACME gallery in Los Angeles, Perry Rubenstein Gallery in New York, James Harris Gallery in Seattle, and Roberts and Tilton in Los Angeles. He has been included in many group exhibitions including The California Biennial: 2006 at the Orange County museum of Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, Andreas Grimm Gallery in Munich, Germany, and the San Jose Museum of Art. Zaki’s work is part of numerous public and private collections including the Whitney Museum of American Art, New Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, UCLA Hammer Museum, the Henry Art Gallery in Seattle, Washington, the Orange County museum of Art, and the Santa Barbara Museum of Art. Recently, he has been included in both an Aperture anthology organized by Charlotte Cotton called “Photography is Magic,” as well as the anthology titled “Both Sides of Sunset: Photographing Los Angeles.”


The eleventh annual edition of Art Los Angeles Contemporary will take place February 13 – 16, 2020 at The Hollywood Athletic Club on Sunset Boulevard. ALAC 2020 will span the Club’s two floors, inhabiting both its vaulted ceiling ballroom and its athletic infrastructure, including a gymnasium and racquetball courts. Reenvisioning the space’s original, 1920s architecture will be Mexico-City based PRODUCTORA in collaboration with Part Office. In the spirit of the Club where stars once met and mingled, ALAC 2020 will open its doors to a new boutique style art fair. The 11th edition of Art Los Angeles Contemporary will present 45 galleries in an open format floorplan.


Edward Cella Art & Architecture is committed to supporting significant established, mid-career, and emerging artists, architects, and designers. Nurturing this hybridity, the gallery uniquely exhibits photography, painting, sculpture, architectural drawings, models, and design objects with an emphasis on the intersection of these disciplines. Founded by Edward Cella in 2006, building on his background as an architectural historian with a decade of experience in art advisory and collection management and a passion for collecting architectural drawings and ephemera, as well as contemporary art and erotica. The gallery sustains a curatorial emphasis on discourses surrounding issues of cultural and conceptual significance and has represented historical and under-recognized estates and collections.