925 North Orange Drive
Los Angeles, CA
“Double, double toil, and trouble! Fire burn and cauldron bubble!” Only such a menacing chant can capture the smoldering energy of this barnburner of a show. Its subject is irresistible —“witchy” art—and the work on view from scores of artists are as rare, exciting, and mind-bending as the delicacies that fill the stew of the occult women in Macbeth. Its organizers, photographer Laurie Simmons and curator Dan Nadel (both connoisseurs of the strange), deliver thrilling sights. There is a gargantuan Judith Bernstein painting of, well, fulsome penises surrounding an even larger vaginal form, a pedestal stacked with Greer Lankton’s meticulous dolls, and a four-panel altar-like piece from 1968 by the superb Juanita McNeely that shows nude women engaged in some mysterious psychosexual rituals (one squats and bleeds onto the ground). And that’s just scratching the surface! If I could have, I would have spent hours here while visiting Los Angeles, but there was, alas, a plane to catch. —Andrew Russeth
Ellen Berkenblit, Electric Lace, 2018. Courtesy Jeffrey Deitch.