Carmine Iannaccone is an adjunct professor in Claremont Graduate University’s Art Department. Squirreled deep inside a secret pocket of his handbag is a tape measure. Iannaccone never leaves home without it. It won’t provide cab fare if he’s ever stranded or repel a mugger if he’s ever attacked, but for this artist, it is critical. The portable ruler is a talisman for Iannaccone, whose painting and sculpture for the last 20 years have been engaged with the standards, yardsticks, and benchmarks we use to quantify reality and locate ourselves in the world at large.
With an MFA from Otis College of Art and Design, Iannaccone has been using his art to explore a whole range of measuring tools. Sometimes the measuring units are large conceptual paradigms; sometimes they’re actual concrete increments. Sometimes they derive from things that are given; sometimes the things are invented. He is interested in the history of these measuring systems, how they work, and why they are necessary. Measure is his primary preoccupation.
After an early lane change from his pursuit of drama (his acting resume includes Off-Broadway, film, and television credits), Iannaccone switched his trajectory to visual art. He has also included critical writing as part of his studio practice right from the beginning, contributing articles and reviews to a range of journals including Art Issues, Art & Text, L.A. Weekly, Frieze, The Art Newspaper of London, and Bijutsu Techno. In addition, he has written catalog essays for a diverse set of emerging and established visual artists. In 2003, Iannaccone received a Surdna Foundation Arts Teachers Fellowship to develop new approaches to painting and drawing for conservatory students at the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts.
Underlying all these activities, Iannaccone’s fascination with the intersecting interests of handcraft, mechanics, and natural history has generated a body of painting and sculpture in which viewers might see geological processes being re-routed through studio operations, artisanal object-making mated with the labor forces of heavy industry, or anachronistic skills being re-purposed through contemporary design. In Los Angeles, his work has been seen in gallery exhibitions at POST, SolwayJones, Sue Spaid Fine Art, Jan Baum Gallery and Shoebox LA, as well as in numerous group exhibitions at area colleges, municipal galleries, and alternative spaces.
Gravity. 2013. Group exhibition. Long Beach, CA: Long Beach City College.
Doing Pennants. 2013. Group exhibition. Los Angeles: 5th Floor.
IAmTheGravitySurfer. 2012. Solo exhibition. Los Angeles: Shoebox LA.
The Holodeck. 2012. Group exhibition. Los Angeles: POST.
La Casa Nostra. 2011. Los Angeles: Rheeway Gallerie.
Useable Histories. 2008. Solo exhibition. Los Angeles: SolwayJones.
Ideas of Contemporary Art