Paul Thomas Anderson’s Inherent Vice is one of the most stylish and evocative movies to come out in a long time, and a lot of that comes from the time and place in which it’s set. The film takes place in 1970 Los Angeles, a time where hippies and beach bums littered the streets, covering up the seedy underbelly of crime and malfeasance. If the film, based on a Thomas Pynchon private eye novel, is to be believed, there was a very heavy drug culture too. It’s not like hippies are just hippies for no reason, you know. All of these elements have joined together for a new art exhibit happening in three different cities worldwide, including L.A.
From now until January 11, 2015, the Ace Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles is holding a gallery of new art inspired by Inherent Vice entitled “Contemporary Psychedelia,” which is a mixture of styles, textures, themes, and ideas showcasing both specific scenes and characters from the movie and just the overall feel and aesthetic of the hazy ’70s mentality of Southern California. There are 24 different pieces from artists The Haas Brothers, Steve Harrington, Lili Lakich, Travis Millard, Alia Penner, Dustin Santon, and John Van Hamersveld.
Tuesday night, a gala opening was held in the space which I was lucky enough to attend. The relatively-small space was filled with art-lovers and film buffs of all ages looking to see how the various artisans interpreted Anderson’s latest film. There was even a woman painting a model who was supposed to be Katherine Waterston’s character from the movie. I don’t think she’ll be there until the 11th, but the rest of the art will.
Below is a gallery of the things you’ll see if you attend. Not all, but some.
As well as Los Angeles, similar galleries are on display at the Ace Hotel in New York (What’s The Alternative: Alternate reality environment immersive installation by Jonah Freeman & Justin Lowe featuring vintage and found objects, as well as ephemera, art and props) also until the 11th of January, and at the Ace Hotel London (The Joshua Light Show: Created by Joshua White, trailblazer of liquid light shows and psychedelic art. For the London opening, Joshua Light Show is staging an original composition to Greenwood’s soundtrack) from January 19th to the 25th.