Aurelien Levitan July 30 2017
KM Fine Arts Los Angeles is located in West Hollywood on the East side corner of La Cienega and is curated by Evelyn Cantacuzène-Spéransky.
'Hanging out In California' the New exhibit at KM Fine Arts features photographic Art work by Carinthia West.
Carinthia West is a friend of Art curator Evelyn Cantacuzène-Spéransky. The two knew each other from Chelsea arts Club days. What interested Evelyn in this very personal archive of iconic people and moments is that it harks back to an age of innocence and fun, before the self conscious age of celebrity, smartphones and selfies. Carinthia just hung out with her friends and unfortunately this carefree time is no more.Evelyn sees this with her millennial children who are burdened with so much now.
In the late 70's Evelyn worked at LIGHT Gallery in NY which was at the forefront of creating the Photography market. Later in London, Evelyn was the COO of the Chelsea Arts Club, a private members club for artists, overseeing the curatorial aspect of the Club. Most of Evelyn's projects are of artists whom she has come to know as friends.
Serendipity took Evelyn to Geneva where she focused on introducing UK and US artists to the Swiss market. Evelyn's last exhibition being at the UN of the American artist Ross Rossin on a humanitarian platform.
Evelyn has a Masters in Art History and Arts Administration from London University and views art as just another key to understand the world we live in.
Carinthia West's 'Hanging Out in California' has been extended at KM Fine Arts until August 30.
Damaged Magazine X Carinthia West
Damaged / Goods: Carinthia, where you are originally from?
Carinthia West: I am British but born in Austria, due to my father’s diplomatic posting. I have had many professions - Model, Actress, Writer, Editor, Photograher and now attempting a novel.
Damaged: Can you tell me what inspired you to pickup a camera?
Carinthia: I was given a box brownie when young and started to document my mother, father, friends, houses we lived in, animals, landscapes etc. I loved to paste them into albums which went with me from place to place, people seemed to like looking at them and told me that I had ‘an eye’. When I started modeling in stills commercials, I finally broke the ice to take a camera on location or on set with me. It also meant I has something to do in between takes rather than sit around getting bored. I was my own inspiration.
Damaged: How did the exhibit at KM happen?
Carinthia: I was lucky enough to have a show at KM last year. I was sharing the space with another artist and could not display all the images I had brought with me, so when Ana Holligner offered me the whole gallery this spring, I jumped on the occasion. I chose the title Hanging out because that’s exactly what we did. We hung out! They were my friends and in those days, there wasn’t the self conscious celebrity circuit that you see now. In fact, we were all rather innocent and very un-starry.
Damaged: A 2012 article in Vogue US describes you as a "Model, Actress, Photographer, Journalist and occasional muse". What describes you best?
Carinthia: I like occasional muse because I would have never dared to call myself that. I was brought up not to brag or make an exhibition of myself, I seemed to have been doing both.
Damaged: How did you select the images for the exhibit from your archives?
Carinthia: Finding images I’d forgotten I’d taken or re-discovering an image to be better than I thought is the fun part! Luckily, I have had one or two excellent young assistants who have spotted images that I have overlooked. I always say that if the young had not liked my work, the negatives would have stayed in their box.
I’m ashamed to say I’ve moved to digital, just for the ease of it. Although I am sentimentally attached to film. That whole thing of waiting a few days for the lab to develop the film. The anticipation is the best part of Analog.
Damaged: Do you still mostly work with analog or have you made the transition to digital?
Carinthia: I’m ashamed to say I’ve moved to digital, just for the ease of it. Although I am sentimentally attached to film. That whole thing of waiting a few days for the lab to develop the film. The anticipation is the best part of Analog. I am supremely lazy so I relied on experts in labs. The good news is that I biked to the lab in those days so it was god for my leg muscles.
Damaged: What advice would you give to a young photographer starting out?
Carinthia: Shoot what interests you but above all be truthful, Forget about being ‘clever’ or relying on tricks. You will be found out.
What's your damage?
Carinthia: God, so many! But on balance, friends, music and the sea make up for a lot…