Monday, April 2, 2012

New Los Angeles Art/Books/ Photography Gallery I Love

Winged Energy of Delight: LEADAPRON
In Los Angeles recently, with two free hours, I discovered a superb new art gallery/books collection / photography gallery of rare distinction and focus on Melrose Place, LEADAPRON.

Highly recommend. 

Jonathan Brown’s new gallery presents his astute and obsessed eye on all the hard-to-find classical photography books by Avedon and Penn. LEADAPRON (formerly a showroom for Rose Tarlow’s furniture line) has a pair of altars to these photographer greats on each side of the front door, displaying fine copies of Allure and Moments Preserved and other must-haves for collectors. 

Also on the shelves: Japanese fetishist photographers and highly collectible books on and about Basquiat, Andy Warhol, Sugimoto, Francis Bacon, Bill Brandt, Donald Judd, and Arbus, Cy Twombly, Ruscha, Peter Beard and Atget and Arbus.

Oh, my. I lingered. 

LEADAPRON owner, gallerist and collector Jonathan Schilder Brown

“I called the gallery LEADAPRON because it’s the traditional work gear of people who work with their hands—and it reflects my love and admiration of artisans, crafts, hands-on art, the humility of creation, a love of unique visions,” said the owner, Jonathan Schilder Brown, a life-long collector of art, photography and books. His fine-tuned collection includes many signed and inscribed books and prints. 

I found a fine copy of OBSERVATIONS by Richard Avedon with commentary by Truman Capote. I had it shipped.

I already have a copy of it that I bought some years ago in Berkeley. It’s somewhere (I have a lot of books)—but rather than disturb the perfect shelves and stacks and collections of books on design, fashion, architecture, style and biography and interiors, I snapped up Jonathan’s copy.

Love it…swooning all over again on each page, the layouts and the images of Anna Magnani, Charlie Chaplin, Somerset Maugham, and the divine Karin Blixen.

Capote’s text is lyrical, with uplift in every word.

The book was designed by the great Alexey Brodovitch who is given lavish, lavish applause by Avedon at the end of the book. Generosity, creation, and classical style.

It’s everything I admire. 

Founded by Jonathan Brown in Los Angeles, LEADAPRON is a hybrid occupying the territory between gallery and bookstore.

This sunlit gallery specializes in rare art, photography and design volumes in exceptional condition. Look for classic photography and books on Helen Levitt, Walker Evans, Joyce Tenneson, Noboyushi Araki, Bruce Weber (of course), along with Martin Parr, Karl Blossfeldt, Brassai and my favorite, Jacques-Henri Lartigue (I have a collection).

Jonathan Brown is a dedicated collector, expert in the field, and he offers consultation of existing libraries or building collections from the ground up. 

On the gallery side he exhibits his selection of contemporary artists and photographers, both emerging and established.

Also on display: an eclectic mix of secondary market material, including original works, prints and ephemera of all sorts, even surprises like a small Basquiat, one-offs, limited-edition works, an delicious and exquisite pieces on paper. 

Joshua Simpson at the gallery is incredibly helpful with book shipping and selection. Sign up for the newsletter. 

8445 Melrose Place
Los Angeles, CA 90069

323 782 1888
323 782 1883 fax


A Super Dilettante said...

My dear Diane, thank you so much for bringing LEADAPRON to our attention. Both gallery and bookstore look fantastic! As always, reading your post is always educational and delightful. Thank you. said...

As always you bring our attention to the hidden talents and stores of the world...


peggy braswell said...

I must go in person to LEADAPRON! LA is such a treasure trove + Thank you.

Philip Bewley said...

This is an outstanding resource, and yes! I can see why you loved it! You have an eye for the best. We purchased a book there for a client, a set in three volumes on architectural mouldings that was fabulous. Thanks to your post, I will sign up for the newsletter.