Anybody that has lived in Los Angeles has driven by this weird ass building on Wilshire with the giant, white, Colonial-era dude sculptures on it. Well, recently the Marciano family bought it and are using it to house a gigantic art collection they bought with all that Gap money. The interior of the building is actually creepier than the exterior suggests and that is a true achievement.
The collection of art they put in there is fun and Pop-y and pretty much family friendly unless you are freaked out by Disney characters being stoic or doing dodgy things, all crafted in exquisite materials. As pretty and expensive-looking as these things are, grouped together they feel like someone’s unvaried taste come to life as financial assets.
Things get more exciting in the back where the Freemasons or Mormons or whoever ran this place had a gigantic theater and a bunch of props and wigs and shit that they left behind when the Marciano’s scooped up the building. Apparently someone let Jim Shaw loose in the there and he went fucking bananas! Barbara Bush in a flaming avocado – GIVE IT TO ME! Did Shaw paint those snakes or the Scientologists?? WHO CARES?! I still got chills.
Shaw was so inspired by all this eerie crap that he built a small mini-museum inside the big museum and called it the “Wig Museum” and just vibed on the wigs. Who knows which wigs he made and which ones were worn for virgin sacrifices but the fact that you can’t tell really tell is exciting. I hope in the future the Marciano’s keep letting artists go nuts in this theater part of the building (hit me up Marcianos!), rather than just stuffing it full of whatever they bring back from Art Basel.