OPENING: Praz-Delavallade in Los Angeles


PRAZDELAVALLADE open a brand new gallery in Los Angeles*

January 29th, French gallerists René-Julien Praz and Bruno Delavallade officially open their new gallery in Los Angeles, in the so called “Miracle Mile” 6150, Wilshire Boulevard.

Sam Durant "You have the power" 2015 - Vinyl text on neon -courtesy Praz-Delavallade
Sam Durant “You have the power” 2015 – Vinyl text on neon -courtesy Praz-Delavallade


When it comes to find a place for a contemporary art gallery, Los Angeles becomes quite challenging because of its hugeness and variety of avant-garde possible places from the North East to the South West. In terms of location and space Praz and Delavallade made quite a good choice. It is spacious, and the other galleries they share the address with are as well dedicated to the same demanding aesthetic: Marc Foxx, 1301 PE, Peter Mendenhall. And  just a couple of steps from the gallery is the LACMA, ACE gallery or Sprüth Magers on the other way.

For their inaugural exhibition they show all together their American artists, who for some of them like Jim Shaw are part of the gallery since their inaugural show in Paris in the 90s.

Inaugural show featuring: Matthew Brandt, Kristian Burford, Matthew Chambers, Phil Chang, Sam Durant, EJ Hill, Julian Hoeber, Jim Isermann, Alexander Kroll, Joel Kyack, Dan Levenson, Nathan Mabry, Joe Reihsen, Ry Rocklen, Amanda Ross-Ho, Analia Saban, Jim Shaw, Marnie Weber, Brian Wills



René-Julien Praz (left) Bernad Delavallade (right)
René-Julien Praz (left) Bernad Delavallade (right), and Brian Wills on the walls


bAm: Since the 80s you had the chance to get to know the art scene of Los Angeles by coming on regular basis in LA, and you started from there to build very strong and successful relationship with art collectors from LA. Why did you decide to put one more foot in LA by opening a gallery? 

René-Julien Praz: Our commitment to Los Angeles is a natural extension of our interest in the artists we’ve been supporting since the mid nineteen’s. Some have already a representation, some haven’t, so we’re considering that it makes sense by putting one more foot in LA.

You’re right to underline our long commitment with Jim Shaw. I can recall the first  group show we made in Paris in 1996 with Jim, Mike Kelley, Paul McCarthy, Raymond Pettibon et Benjamin Weissman. A great show but with limited commercial success at the time! !

After second thought we came to the conclusion it would be fair to show some European artists we’re fond of and whom have not West coast representation

bAm: you usually show LA artists in LA, do you intend to show a little bit of French artists too?

René-Julien Praz: As I just pointed it out, we’ll for sure add to our LA roster some French and more likely European artists. We’ll deliver our up coming program in due time, but I can certainly let you know that we gonna show in the course of the year two Israelis’ artists; one is looked at as one of the best photographer of his generation, Adi NES, the other one is considered as the successful representative of the Tel Aviv figurative school, Guy Yanai. Both will show for the first time in Los Angeles. I can also mention the Swiss artist, Philippe Decrauzat, whose work is jut amazingly striking.  


bAm: as you know the LA art scene pretty well. Give me your opinion about the art made in Paris compared to the art made in LA. 

René-Julien Praz: Difficult to provide you with a satisfying or accurate response. Different approach, different style, different way of thinking, what we definitely found here is that Los Angeles will always be resolutely turned towards the future, a quality that generates a rock solid optimism which, in turn, leads to a wealth of creativity that grows on the fertile grounds of counter-culture.
Today the city’s artistic production is a model, the model of an alternative scene that retrospectively transforms out perception of American art by placing it outside the structural and theoretical frameworks of the major established movements.

bAm: What do you like very much in the art market from LA that is missing in France and vice versa?

René-Julien Praz: We’re filled with enthusiasm by the scene’s open-mindedness that is due to the ultra rapid and anarchic development of L.A. It is out of this original chaos that a unique artistic language was born, one that was completely free from the institutional constraints that weighed upon artists in New York and Paris. The weigh of art history, either in New York and more specifically in Paris is sometimes difficult to bear, the guys in LA have overcome this constraint with great wit and controlled madness.
Interview conducted by Beatrice Chassepot, Los Angeles, January 23d, 2017