A Year After It Was Founded, Superposition, LA’s Roving Pop-Up Gallery, Is Only Just Getting Started

Storm Ascher, the founder of Superposition.

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A year ago, the now 25-year-old artist and curator Storm Ascher founded Superposition, a Los Angeles gallery that would represent emerging artists but would have no permanent home. An LA native, Ascher developed her itinerant business model as a possible solution to catch-22 relationship between the art world and gentrification.

Artists move around a lot, from residency to studio, and are getting priced out just as quickly as the low-income residents,” Ascher told artnet News last year, on the cusp of Superposition’s first exhibition. “So how do we not get pitted against one another?” 

A year later, Ascher appears to have found a way. Collaborating with existing local organizations to find temporary exhibition space, Superposition has hosted three large-scale shows since it was founded, and has tripled the number of artists it represents. “All we need from them is white walls,” Ascher says. “We bring everything else.” 

Marcus Leslie Singleton, Getting Ready (2018). Courtesy of Superposition Gallery

Marcus Leslie Singleton, Getting Ready (2018). Courtesy of Superposition Gallery

On the eve of the opening of “Boiling Point,” its first-anniversary exhibition, Superposition appears poised to break through to an even larger audience.

In a “borrowed” space on Fairfax Avenue, the exhibition presents the work of 26 emerging artists for what are sure to be a fever-pitched five days during the final week of August. “A third of the artists in ‘Boiling Point’ have been involved since day one,” Ascher says. “I’m excited to see how they can help the newcomers get acclimated to the gallery scene.”

Jake Couri, Find Your Ritual. Courtesy of Superposition Gallery.

Jake Couri, Find Your Ritual. Courtesy of Superposition Gallery.

For many of the artists included, Superposition has offered them their first public exhibition, acting as a kind of launching pad for those seeking alternatives to the traditional gallery system. The gallery accepts submissions on a rolling basis, and will continue to do say, Ascher says.

Sinjun Strom, Linda and Barbara from the "Hot Mamma Series" (2016) Courtesy of Superposition Gallery.

Sinjun Strom, Linda and Barbara from the “Hot Mamma Series” (2016) Courtesy of Superposition Gallery.

“Boiling Point” present a mass of voices. There are computer-based explorations of the consequences of mass migration into digital space by Jake Couri; sculptures rooted in narratives of the African continent by Layo Bright; and large-scale photographic prints on hanging fabrics that transform space and explore ideas of identity by Jaklin Romine.

Layo Bright. Courtesy of Superposition Gallery.

Installation by Layo Bright (2019). Courtesy of Superposition Gallery.

With this dizzying range of styles and subject matters, “Boiling Point” seems at once a celebration of this thriving experimental gallery and a very real response to the tumultuous political climate and identity-driven world we currently inhabit. Intersectionality is at the core of Superposition’s identity and Ascher has worked hard to cultivate a roster of artists across a wide range of demographics.

Women, non-binary people, peoples of color, and the disabled are especially supported. In the new show, however, there is often less a sense of threat than that of ritual healing. 

These artists have so much ambition, producing a lot of artwork in bursts, almost out of a state of shock that the world we live in currently needs these massive therapeutic gestures,” Ascher says.

Revasanto, Cracked Open. Courtesy of Superpostion Gallery.

Reva Santo, Cracked Open (2019). Courtesy of Superpostion Gallery.

At the moment, Superposition is planning some significant gestures of its own. In the coming year, the gallery is planning to expand its art fair and auction presence and is reaching its influence beyond the West Coast.

“I’d love to explore doing pop-ups in new cities in the Midwest and internationally, which I think will play to our mission of representing under-appreciated talent,” Ascher says. Also on the docket for 2020 is a subsidized two-month residency program in Riverhead, New York. 

For now, there will be no slowing down. Looking back on the lessons of the past year, Ascher says: “Waiting is unnecessary and it’s better to just start acting like your objectives already exist.” 

Boiling Point” is on view with Superposition Gallery at 1056 S Fairfax Avenue, August 23—28, 2019. 

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