On the occasion of the 2023 edition of Frieze Los Angeles, Blum & Poe presents a walkthrough of Alma Allen's recent exhibition at the Los Angeles gallery, led by writer and curator Douglas Fogle.
About Alma Allen
Alma Allen began his practice by hand carving salvaged materials into unique small objects. Allen moved to New York in his early twenties and sold the miniature carvings on the street in SoHo, before catching the attention of designers nearby. After almost a decade in New York, Allen relocated to Los Angeles where he began designing furniture and creating large-scale sculptures. After repeated injury from obsessive over-carving left Allen unable to use his hands for extended periods, the artist built a robotic system out of spare assembly line parts and developed its proprietary software as a mechanized extension of hand-carving. Primarily constructed in stone, wood, and bronze, Allen’s sculptures are reminiscent of those by Constantin Brancusi and Isamu Noguchi, reflecting their ardor for experimentation, expressiveness, and originality. Allen’s process is organic and the material itself often dictates the final form—whether anthropomorphic or non-representational.
About Douglas Fogle
Douglas Fogle is a writer, curator and co-founder of the curatorial office STUDIO LBV in Los Angeles. Fogle's essay "Hooked on a Feeling" was included in a comprehensive monograph devoted to Alma Allen's work, published by Rizzoli Electa in 2020.