A new exhibition at Los Angeles Union Station called “The Makers: Portraits of Metro Artists Whose Work Enriches the Rider’s Journey” by L.A.-based Todd Gray opens on August 25 in the passageway connecting Union Station East and West.
The public is invited to attend the first of a new “Artist Conversations” series on Thursday, August 25, with Gray and two of his artist subjects to learn about the people behind the 150-plus artworks on L.A. County’s Metro System.
Gray, a professional photographer and internationally exhibited artist, works in multiple genres including photo-based works as well as sculpture, painting and performance. The artists featured in this exhibition span multiple generations and come from a variety of backgrounds, including emerging artists who are relatively new to public art. The range of the group is a testament to the high concentration of creative talent living and working in Los Angeles today.
“All of our artworks strive to humanize the transit environment and make the experience of riding Metro more engaging and enjoyable,” said Maya Emsden, Deputy Executive Officer, Metro Creative Services. “Todd’s portraits show the artists in their homes and studios, in their element. For over two decades, Metro Art has been commissioning artists to create work designed with great care and consideration for their transit sites. We’re excited to celebrate the artists who serve the communities that Metro serves.”
The artists’ work can be seen throughout the Metro system, from the San Fernando Valley to Long Beach, and from Santa Monica to Monrovia. Some of the work is permanently built into the station architecture, while other artworks have been temporary projects such as art posters inside buses and trains, or murals surrounding Metro construction sites.
Artists included in “The Makers” exhibition include Carmen Argote, Judith Baca, Bill Bell, David Botello, Charles Dickson, Roy Dowell, Martin Durazo, June Edmonds, Cheri Gaulke, Ken Gonzalez Day, Phyllis Green, Clement Hanami, Wayne Healy, Phung Huynh, Joe Lewis, Ron Llanos, Man One, Michael Massenburg, Jessica Polzin McCoy, Christine Nguyen, Noni Olabisi, John Outterbridge, Sam Pace, Sonia Romero, Sandra Rowe, Alison Saar, Shizu Saldamando, Peter Shire, May Sun, Cha-Rie Tang and Richard Wyatt.
On Thursday, August 25, the first of a new Metro Art-produced “Artist Conversations” series will kick off, providing a unique opportunity for the public to learn about the people behind the art in the fast-growing Metro system. Art enthusiasts can hear artists’ stories and learn about their concepts and processes.
- Conversation #1 – Thursday, August 25 with Todd Gray, Ken Gonzales-Day and Phung Huynh
- Conversation #2 – Wednesday, September 21 with Carmen Argote, Martin Durazo, Jessica Polzin McCoy
- Conversation #3 – Thursday, October 20 with Roy Dowell, June Edmonds and Michael Massenburg
All three conversations are free and will be held from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. in Union Station’s Historic Ticketing Hall.
About Todd Gray
Todd Gray was born in 1954 in Los Angeles. He works in multiple genres including photo-based works as well as sculpture, paintings and performance. His work is featured in the Hammer Museum’s “Made in L.A. 2016” exhibition, now on view. Gray is a 2016 Rockefeller Bellagio Residency Fellow. His work has been included in recent solo and group exhibitions at the Luckman Gallery, Cal State University, Los Angeles; Studio Museum, Harlem, NY; USC Fisher Museum of Art, Los Angeles, California African American Museum, Los Angeles; and The Renaissance Society, University of Chicago, among others. Gray maintains studios in Inglewood and Ghana.
Metro Art Program
Metro Art enhances the customer experience with innovative, award-winning visual and performing arts programming that encourages ridership and connects people, sites and neighborhoods throughout Los Angeles County. A diverse range of site-specific artworks are integrated into the growing Metro system, improving the quality of transit environments and creating a sense of place. From photography installations to onboard posters, art tours and live performances, our multi-faceted arts programs add vibrancy and engage communities throughout Los Angeles. Free docent-guided tours are offered the first Saturday and Sunday and second Sunday of every month. Tours for groups of fifteen or more are also available by special arrangement. For more information, visit metro.net/art and click on Art Tours, or call (213) 922-4ART.