Trulee Hall

She Shells

 February 22 – March 30, 2024
2245 E Washington Boulevard, Los Angeles

Artforum review

Press Release

François Ghebaly is proud to present Los Angeles legend Trulee Hall’s latest exhibition, She Shells, at the gallery’s downtown location. 

Hall’s first presentation with the gallery critically examines the friction between our glorified fantasies and unchangeable realities. Through her immersive multimedia installations Hall invites viewers into an overtly artificial world where traditional perceptions of reality are playfully upended. In a practice built upon libertine sampling from many different mediums, Hall creates gleeful and cutting works that braid together performance, video, and music. Fantastical sets, costumes, puppetry, claymation, kinetic scenographies, CGI, and original musical compositions have become hallmarks of her practice. In She Shells, Hall takes viewers to the beach in multipart installations that center the ecofeminist potential of water and the creatures that take to it.

Central to the exhibition is the motif of water, depicted in two major installations, She Shells and Three Flavors. In She Shells, the gallery is transformed through the envisioning of a mystical purple beach. The environment, conceived in hues of purple and black, is a stylized departure from the traditional representation of the beach, introducing overt elements of camp and punk. She Shells depicts an individual's attempt, and subsequent frustration, to capture the perfect moment at the beach only to be confronted by her dissatisfaction with the imperfections of the environment around her. Unable to snap the perfect selfie, the ensuing scene, comedic and overstated yet goth in appearance, reflects a broader human tendency to romanticize our online presence by staging our surroundings. 

The exhibition also features Three Flavors, an installation that incites a critical examination of societal constraints on the feminine body through a queer, mythical lens. Rendering the gallery in shades of pinks, blues, and purples, Three Flavors depicts a girl band’s trip to the beach turned popsicle orgy. Their performance, marked by the symbolic use of popsicles, transitions into a chaotic celebration of desire, culminating in the emergence of life-sized, anthropomorphic popsicles joining in the lusty revelry. Teeming with sexual dynamics and toeing the lines between playful, comedic, and erotic, the installation critiques traditional notions around female representation by focusing on psychosexual tensions and historical depictions of women.

Also incorporated into the exhibition are Octopussy and Crocodile Orgy, two works pairing painting and video that explore fantastical mermaid mythologies, and the concept of hybrid identities. Octopussy pulls inspiration from hentai, a style of Japanese pornographic animation, rendering a female octopus engaging in a dance of unity and communion with five female figures. Through themes of eroticism and myth, Octopussy presents interactions that are both peculiar and affectionate. In Crocodile Orgy, sonic waves are emitted from a woman’s body, luring in the surrounding crocodiles. The traveling sound soothes the typically aggressive creatures as they lay tenderly beside the woman. Their bodies are peacefully entwined in a mystical pool of water, dissolving the barriers between creature and being. 

She Shells is a submission to the absurd, the unusual, and the grotesquely beautiful. It is an immersive experience that brings viewers face-to-face with the mind of Trulee Hall and is a ceaseless exploration of sexuality, our unchangeable realities, and the boundaries that separate humans from nature.

The exhibition acknowledges and gives thanks to the artist Michelle Antonisse aka She Shell (@shellygoesintothefield).


Trulee Hall (b. 1976 in Atlanta, Georgia) lives and works in Los Angeles. She received her BFA from Atlanta College of Art in 1999 and her MFA from CalArts in 2006. Hall’s richly textured practice spans video, painting, sculpture, sound, dance, and immersive installation, routinely employing diverse technical skills gleaned from her prior work in various creative industries. Hall began working in performance, music, and video as an adolescent and developed a complex practice involving set design, elaborate costumes, puppetry, claymation, CGI, and sound. Her paintings, sculptures, and installations integrate with and inform facets of her videos and soundtracks. Her choreographed videos of non-narrative, surreal, feminist, erotic, philosophical, and symbolic systems employ a fiercely playful sense of humor, a patient appreciation for the mundane, and a love of the absurd.

Recent solo exhibitions include Rusha & Co, Los Angeles (2023); Los Angeles Nomadic Division (LAND), Los Angeles (2022); Villa Schöningen, Potsdam, Germany (2021); Zabludowicz Collection, London (2020) and Maccarone, Los Angeles (2019). Hall’s work has been shown at Kunsthalle Wien, Vienna (2023); Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), Los Angeles (2023); Rubell Museum, Miami (2023, 2018); Queensland Art Gallery of Modern Art (QAGOMA), Brisbane (2023); Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles (MOCA), Los Angeles (2022); Torrance Art Museum, Torrance (2022); Jeffrey Deitch, Los Angeles (2020); Barrick Museum of Art, Las Vegas (2019); Long Beach Museum of Art, Long Beach, (2011); and Hammer Museum, Los Angeles (2007). She Shells is her first presentation with François Ghebaly.



Trulee Hall, Octopussy, 2024. Acrylic, oil, and collage on panel, 74 x 95 x 2.5 inches (188 x 241.5 x 6.5 cm.)

Trulee Hall, Three Flavors (Painting), 2024. Acrylic, oil, and collage on panel, 72 x 98 x 3 inches (183 x 249 x 8 cm.)

Trulee Hall, She Shells (Painting), 2024. Acrylic, oil, and collage on panel, 73 x 95.5 x 2.5 inches (185.5 x 243 x 6.5 cm.)

Trulee Hall, Crocodile Orgy, 2024. Acrylic, oil, and collage on panel, 74 x 95 x 3 inches (188 x 241.5 x 8 cm.)