When a man stopped her and warned her that shed dropped something, Margie blurted out, I know, Im taking it for a walk.
When a man stopped her and warned her that she'd dropped something, Margie blurted out, "I know, I'm taking it for a walk." Courtesy of the artist and Luis De Jesus Gallery Los Angeles

The Seattle painter Margie Livingston has a show coming up at Luis De Jesus Gallery in LA called Holding it together, in which she deploys her dry sense of humor. She harnessed stretched canvases to herself using a contraption she sewed based on bodybuilder harnesses. Then she set out on the streets. (Did you see her? Did you think you might be dreaming?)

From the press release: "History lionizes macho gestures, but she's looking for something more personal: new insights into the mashup of irony, humor, emotional pain, and earnestness that has driven her work over the past eight years."

Livingston says the work references Jackson Pollock's action painting technique, and Christian Marclay's Guitar Drag (which Marclay said referenced the lynching/dragging death of James Byrd Jr. in small-town Texas in 1998). What also jumped to my mind were William Pope.L's epic crawls revealing tensions of race, class, and geography; and, you know, Christ.

Those are some heavyweight associations. If you're in LA, go to the exhibition and see whether Livingston's new work earns them.