April 21 – June 30, 2001
The work of D’Ette Nogle is characterized by a strong autobiographical streak, in which activities such as vacations, documentation of her grandparent’s mobile vacation home, and wrenching, intimate conversations become transformed and integrated into art. “Cheap Therapy,” for example, is a 27-minute video containing loosely scripted reenactments of conversations between the artist and her husband, ending ambiguously, without clear resolution. Raising uncomfortable topics in a self-appraising manner, “Cheap Therapy” mirrors the voyeuristic appeal of mass media confessional daytime television. Its use of low-tech video techniques combined with its frank straightforwardness makes “Cheap Therapy” a strong example of how Nogle’s artistic interests are manifested.
While still a graduate student, Nogle first gained recognition for an ambitious, large-scale project that combined sculpture, public art and portraiture. First, she spent months knitting a huge cozy designed to fit over her grandparent’s beloved motor home. Following that, she videotaped her grandparents proudly giving a private tour of their new mobile home. The result–a large outdoor sculpture and a tender portrait–is a complicated pair of pieces that skillfully balance poignancy and whimsy.
Nogle later produced “Columnhouse,” another piece that combines video and sculpture. “Columnhouse” is a structure that was designed to fit around a column in the New Wight Gallery and was created for Nogle’s MFA thesis show at UCLA. Rather than making use of the column as a tool to reinforce the strength of the structure, as would happen with conventional architecture, Nogle dealt with the column as a kind of hindrance. She undermined the idea of using the column as structural support by building the house off center. Within this domestic structure, the column took on a kind of metaphorical value, akin to the skeleton in the closet or the family secret everyone knows but of which no one speaks.
Collaborating with her family has become something of a stylistic signature for Nogle. For her project in Sonsbeek 9, the prestigious outdoor art exhibition in Arnheim, Holland, Nogle built a stage in a park to be used for a variety of public performances. The stage was inaugurated by a performance of a folk band that consists of the artist and her parents..
Nogle created new work for her exhibition at Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions.