Iconicity • Documentary, Special Interest, 01-Jan-2020
A voyage into a surprising frontier for creative expression - the Southern California Deserts. Fringe communities of artists and radicals thrive amidst the wide open, lawless spaces of North America’s driest desert. In a brutal land of dust, rust, and concrete, some explore new worlds while others delve into their own darkness, drawing seemingly limitless inspiration from their surroundings. This road trip takes us beyond the reaches of civilization to places that exist out of time. We are treated to in-depth looks at work as diverse as Leonard Knight’s “Salvation Mountain” in the squatter outpost of Slab City, Noah Purifoy’s political assemblages in Joshua Tree, gripping installations by Desert X in the Coachella Valley, and Ricardo Breceda’s gargantuan metal sculptures in Borrego Springs. The film concludes with the Bombay Beach Biennale, a renegade festival of art and music founded in 2016. Set against the Salton Sea’s dying shoreline, artists transform abandoned housing and vacant lots to reveal the beauty in decay. A kaleidoscope of history, art, and personal experience, Iconicity serves as a complex examination of the mark we leave on our environment and the mark it leaves on us.