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On 'the elusive vulnerability of things': Illustrator and Author Maira Kalman's Skirball Exhibit Unfolds an Inspiring Narrative of Life and Art

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Towards the starting point of a traveling installation exhibit of a body of work from illustrator, author, and designer Maira Kalman there is a loving sketch of a woman the artist once spotted on the street. "I saw her," the drawing reads in Kalman's famed handwriting.

Opening today at the Skirball, Kalman's "Various Illuminations (of a Crazy World)" will touch visitors in that same gently, simple, and stirring way, as the meticulously curated and charmingly eclectic installation will leave you feeling as though you stopped time to hold on to the ephemeral, and that you actually saw her...Kalman...through her work.

The installation space, meant to echo Kalman's home studio, is filled with curiosities, found objects, and 120 of the artist's pieces, arranged thematically in order to construct and evoke narrative, which is a core element of Kalman's work.