Q&A With Mokha Laget

Monday, May 22, 2017 at 3:57 PM


Mokha Laget, "Southern Wing"

Kinzelman Art Consulting is celebrating the completion of a two-story geometrical wall mural, Color Field, commissioned by artist Mokha Laget, represented locally with Gallery Sonja Roesch. Although Laget was undoubtedly influenced by her time as Gene Davis’s studio assistant, her work is deeply rooted in her own distinct exploration of color composition and shape precision. KAC took advantage of Laget’s four day Houston visit to discuss her artistic process, cultural influences and life balance.

KAC: The painting commissioned for Johnson Law Group is part of a larger body of work. What was the catalyst for this series of forms and have they always been a part of your visual dialogue? 

ML: The image for this commission originated from several drawings based on mosaics. The idea was to scale up the tessellation to a monumental scale for the architectural space.  Last year I took a trip to Morocco and stopped in the historical ruins of an old Roman town. 2000 years later the mosaics were virtually intact, and the geometry is still universal. I made a series of works based on those patterns but exploded the rigid predictability so that the motifs began floating in space. I then integrated the idea of perceptual ambiguity so that depending on where you stand, the elements of the piece appear at once to come forward or recede to invisible vanishing points. Much of my work plays on perceptual ambiguity. 


Mapping out "Southern Wing", credit: Mokha Laget

KAC: This painting is much more complex than meets the eye and the completed work will be the result of multiple steps and extreme attention to detail. Will you please describe the process that goes into a wall painting like this? 

ML: As with all of my paintings, the preparation sketch is a small pencil drawing on graph paper. From these I select a specific configuration to further develop. Color, however, is never planned in advance. In the case of a mural, I create a more detailed sketch and envision several color schemes that can change at the last minute. For this project, I wrote software code to create a computer representation and refine the color selection. I work with an engineer who takes my program and generates what looks like pages of numbers but is actually a series of mathematical equations to generate coordinates that allow us to modify or laser plot the image in the correct scale onsite. 


Mokha Laget, "Gene's Jubilee" on 8th St. NW in Washington DC, credit: Mokha Laget

KAC: What is the largest painting you've completed to date?

ML: In 2007 I was commissioned by the Washington DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities to create a 450’ x 50’ street painting on 8th St NW. It was part of a citywide Color School revival.  I called it Gene’s Jubilee as a nod to Gene Davis, a Washington Color School painter. I worked as his studio assistant for 4 years and when he died suddenly, I was asked to design the first street painting below the National Museum of American Art where his memorial exhibition was. That was in 1987 then I reprised a different color scheme for the 2007 painting.  You had to be on a rooftop or in a helicopter to see the whole thing. 


Work in progress of "Sourthn Wing", credit: Bill Dolson

KAC: You've stated that you gather creative material from your travels. Are you gathering ethereal data such as light, awareness and emotion or physical data like architectural shapes and design form and color? How do you document your discoveries?

ML: I have moved around my whole life. Travel is lifeblood; it connects the planet. Humans are not so different worldwide but their cultures and creations are.  Every place I visit gives me ideas, whether it is an exotic land or my own back yard. I try to note them in my notebook every morning. They become a kind of library to draw from. I may be interested in the obscure historical use of red in India vs. Japan, or the plain shadows cast on a corrugated shelter in Africa.  Light sources are tremendously important in my work, going back to my early years growing up near the Sahara. Ultimately what I paint is the sense of place, real or imagined.


Mokha Laget, "Southern Wing"

KAC: Will you speak to how your secondary role as a simultaneous French interpreter informs your work and provides balance in your life as an artist?

ML: I’ve been fortunate to have a skill, which allowed me to work as another kind of bridge builder around the world. As a simultaneous interpreter, I am engaged in quasi performance art.  In art you often work alone but in language you are compelled to interact with the world and those in it. I greatly value my privacy as an artist, but I never wanted to spend my life in studio isolation. It’s important to live in your time, experience it, and strive to understand it.

KAC: What might we find in the corner of your studio?

ML: …Old maritime and aviation maps, Franco-Prussian war manuscripts, a yellow toy Citroen DS, a rusted civil war canon ball… 

Mokha Laget is represented in Houston, Texas by Gallery Sonja Roesch and in Santa Fe, New Mexico by Peyton Wright Gallery. 

KAC Project Announcements: Trammel Crow's Energy Center 5 and Vitol

Monday, November 28, 2016 at 3:49 PM

Trammel Crow's Energy Center 5

Kinzelman Art is proud to announce the completion of two site-specific commissions created for Trammel Crow's Energy Center 5 building lobby located in the Houston Energy Corridor. In May 2016 we installed these unique works of art by artists, Val Britton and Ara Peterson enhancing the elegance of the interiors and infusing energy into the lobby.

"Many of my colleagues are not familiar with the dynamics and environments of the art world, therefore it can certainly be intimidating to approach, but working with Julie and her team, we found that the process was very inviting and approachable. The two artists that were selected were highly vetted, and we all feel we selected two representative pieces that are spot on for the opportunity." - Cody Armbrister, Senior Managing Director, CBRE 


Ara Peterson, "Travertine Wavepack" and Val Britton, "Continental Collision"

Click here to view the video: Val Britton and Ara Peterson Site- Specific Installations.
 

Vitol

With more than 40 offices worldwide, international energy trading company, Vitol, has one of its largest operations in the Upper Kirby neighborhood of Houston, Texas. Kinzelman Art organized the relocation and exhibition of Vitol's art collection, (as managed by Kinzelman Art since 2010), to Vitol's new award winning offices designed by interior architecture firm, PDR Corporation. Successfully working in tandem with one another, the modern art collection and the sophisticated interior architecture expands one's experience of the typical corporate environment by creating a progressive, museum-like work place environment. 

"We have an appreciation and understanding of the unique role that art can have in the workplace.  Over the years, Julie and her team have been instrumental in the selection of new pieces to add to our collection.  Our new work space was designed to intentionally highlight certain works, so proper selection and placement was critical.  Kinzelman Art made that process very simple and the end result is better than what we had initially envisioned." -Scott Adams, HR and Administration, Vitol


Christian Eckart, "Hexagonal Perturbation​"


Ellsworth Kelly, "Oak Series"


Terry Winters, "Picture Cell", Rusty Scruby, "Family" and "Blue Bucket", and Hana Hillerova, "Houston Can You Hear Me?"


Andy Moses, "Kodachrome Basin"

KAC STUDIO VISIT: LIBBIE MASTERSON

Monday, August 29, 2016 at 10:46 AM

Hidden at the end of a beautiful lot densely populated by lush Houston greenery, Libbie Masterson's studio feels like her own personal oasis. The high ceilings and large windows yield a flood of soft natural light ideal for viewing her vast array of work including photographs, paintings, watercolors, glass mosaics and even stage set maquettes.


Outside of Masterson's studio 

Masterson's lively persona is a striking counterpart to her tranquil, contemplative work. Our studio visit began with a look at her new glass mosaics, an extended exploration of her large-scale installation at the Houston Hobby Airport. These works are heavily influenced not only by Masterson's affinity for nature, but also music. Masterson shared her life-long fantasy of composing a symphony, and explained to KAC how she incorporates this hidden passion into her work by listening to songs on repeat and allowing the music to dictate the emotional direction of each mosaic.  


KAC in Masterson's studio


Close up of Masterson's glass mosaics 

The imaginative glass compositions provide a splash of color to Masterson's otherwise monochromatic studio, filled with icy landscape photographs of deep grays, blues, and whites. These mesmerizing and meditative photos are back-lit and displayed as illuminated light boxes. Masterson walked us through the rewarding process of working with the light boxes, and calculating the perfect hue and strength of light to properly enhance the imagery without overpowering it. 


Masterson's light box photographs 

Masterson’s dream project: set design for an entire opera! Her infinite sources of inspiration and matching talent pose a promising future of endless possibilities and exploration. Be sure to attend her upcoming exhibition, opening September 10th 2016 at Catherine Couturier Gallery, who represents Masterson in Houston. 


Masterson's glass mosaic work station

KAC Current Project Highlights

Tuesday, July 5, 2016 at 9:49 AM

Corporate Collection Project

Kinzelman Art is celebrating the completion of a 4-year, comprehensive art management initiative for a corporate client collection. Managing this collection has been a significant opportunity for Kinzelman Art, and we are proud of our dedicated efforts and achievements through this ambitious undertaking. KAC is honored to have been selected to expertly lead this outstanding collection.


 
Chermayeff and GeismarRed "O" Tower


 Soo Sunny ParkCapturing Light

Hughes Landing Project

Recognized by the Houston Business Journal as the 2016 recipient of the Landmark Award in mixed-use development, Hughes Landing is a 66-acre master planned community located in The Woodlands that features numerous works of public art throughout. Continuing the collecting philosophy of The Woodlands, Hughes Landing retained Kinzelman Art Consulting to procure and commission several public works of art for select locations to further enhance the community.

 
Yvonne DomengeWind Waves

We were thrilled to add to the magnetism of Hughes Landing via the placement of invigorating works of art by such artists as Mexico City based Yvonne Domenge, and Washington State artist Julie Speidel. We find that the overall success is seeing these public works of art serve to unify the community through an artful experience.


Julie Speidel, Glacier Series

Soo Sunny Park "Capturing Light"

Monday, June 1, 2015 at 10 AM

KAC had the privilege of commissioning Korean artist Soo Sunny Park to compose an impressive site-specific installation in a corporate reception in The Woodlands. Capturing Light is made up of 22 individual panels and 12,000 dichroic acrylic tiles that scatter ever-changing patterns of refracted light through the space. We thoroughly enjoyed working with Park throughout the entire process from developing the initial concept, to creating digital and physical models. After months of careful collaboration and planning, it is wonderful to see this beautiful installation come to life and transform the surrounding environment.

Special thanks to CYNTHIA-REEVES, New York and TYart Art Handling.

See our time-lapse video of the week-long installation:

 

James Surls Speaks “Nature’s Language”

Wednesday, January 21, 2015 at 2:26 PM


James Surls and Adrienne Johnson

James Surls flourishes in Houston! We were excited to have the opportunity to work with this Texas art icon on his site-specific suspended work that measures an impressive 14’ x 25’ x 19”. Surls’ Nature’s Language resides in and enhances a corporate lobby in the Woodlands. 


TYart Art Handling expertly installing the sculpture

The Petroleum Club Houston: Art In Progress

Friday, December 12, 2014 at 12 PM


Troy Dugas's templates 

Houston's premier downtown private dining venue, The Petroleum Club, is moving to a new location, and we are excited to be working with them to commission artwork that is a reflection of their history, their mission, and their new space. The four artists selected, Troy DugasJoshua Goss, Reinhard Ziegler, and Nancy Lorenz are hard at work on their commissions, and we wanted to share some images of their progress. See the completed works on our blog or find them at The Club in early 2015.


Troy Dugas's cigar labels on top of of his templates 


Troy Dugas's cigar labels in place


Joshua Goss, piecing together the sections of his wall-mounted sculpture under a to-scale sketch


 


Reinhard Ziegler's photograph drying before the application of pastel


Nancy Lorenz has started to apply gold leaf to the upper portion of the work


Nancy Lorenz applies gold leaf over the blue and inlaid mother of pearl, then the gold is rubbed away to reveal the mother of pearl below