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Continuing its string of excellent exhibitions, Los Angeles-based Known Gallery presents a dual showing this month with openings by Pose 1 (RUMBLE) and FORCED REBELLION by KC Ortiz, both premiering on May 22nd, and running through June 12th, 2010. A bit of insight from each is available below, complimented with a video leading up the opening this Saturday.
441 North Fairfax Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90036
Born and raised in the Windy City, Pose came of age during Chicago’s hard knock golden years of graffiti—molding him into the person he is today. Having put in endless work in the streets, the lines, and the train yards, he solidly secured his name well before any outsider took notice to his unique style. The show title “RUMBLE” comes from the slang term meaning, a street fight between rival teenage gangs. When you look at one of Pose’s paintings you get the sense of a clash, but one which is noticeably classic, knowingly juvenile, polished, and American.
Rebels, Communists, CIA agents, and the legacy of a never ending “Secret War” all played their part in KC Ortiz’s photo reportage on the remaining Hmong in the jungles of Laos, which opens at Known Gallery on May 22nd. For three weeks in December 2009 and January 2010, Ortiz lived with the jungle Hmong in order to document their plight and living conditions. Over a year of planning, secret meetings, and a clandestine entry into Laos brought him to the Hmong rebels and a world unseen by outsiders. Ortiz’s photos document the remaining Hmong in the mountainous jungles of Laos. The Hmong live a life constantly on the run from the Laos Peoples Army (LPA) and Vietnamese forces, systematically targeted for having served for the CIA during the Vietnam War. During that time they went where no American or ally could be, behind enemy lines in Laos, in what is referred to as the “Secret War”. Their missions varied from rescuing downed American pilots to fighting off the North Vietnamese soldiers. Recognized as some of the world’s greatest guerilla fighters, they served their American bosses, the CIA, with bravery and honor.