“Things are getting worse for artists. There’s no government money for them,” says Perenchio. “Without art, who are we?”
Her own connection as an artist spurred her to open the gallery, which features emerging and established artists. She has also created an atelier in the center of the space with easels for herself and other visiting painters. Perenchio has styled the gallery as a European salon, where the community can attend guest artist lectures.
Far from working alone, Perenchio gets a little help from her friends: co-founder Ann Moss and singer/songwriter/emerging artist Carole Bayer Sager, who serves as an invaluable advisor with an eye for discovering new artists.
Perenchio takes all the profits from the sale of paintings and donates them to the Hammer Projects, the Hammer Museum’s program that exhibits emerging artists. In its ten-year existence, the program has given 80 local and international artists significant U.S. museum exposure.
“I love what Margie and her friends Carole and Ann are doing at LA Art House. The idea of a gallery/studio/salon is one whose time has come...again! They’ve introduced a whole new wonderful layer to the art world of Los Angeles,” says Ann Philbin, director of the Hammer Museum. “And, of course, we are enormously grateful to them for supporting emerging artists in our Hammer Project series.”
A brief look at some recently featured work reveals the vigorous brushstrokes of Zhang Haiyang’s Anti Vice #2, where an anguished girl is shown with her head bowed. Viewers can’t see her face; she’s anonymous except for her pain. On another wall, Taylor Montague’s Absent, Present pulls viewers into a serene architectural setting, where all the textures, including the wooden floors and furniture, upholstered sofa and chair, and the glass and brass fixtures, mingle harmoniously together.
The figure in Zhang Peng’s Si Si peers out seductively with huge, gothic eyes, scarlet lips and a lacey negligee but looks to be no more than nine. The subject of Robin F. Williams’ Neck Piece is a boy sporting a costume with an intriguing collar made of three tiger masks. But is he going to a party or to his execution?
It’s not uncommon to see Perenchio supporters like Academy Award-winning director James L. Brooks, LACMA Director Michael Govan, philanthropist Eli Broad, and an array of top celebrities mixing at an opening. The excitement is indeed contagious.
LA Art House photo by Sue Ganz/Courtesy of LA Art House.