October 2018 Community News and Events
Top: Elfin Forest Chaparral Through the Seasons. Below: Pushing Up Daises. Photos: Ruth Wallen
Ruth Wallen’s “Daylighting Escondido Creek Watershed,” a part of Public Address’s DesEscondido No Longer Hidden, at California Center for the Arts, Escondido Museum.
Currently much of Escondido Creek is hidden by chain link fences and the original creek bed obscured by a cement channel. What happens when a community turns its back on its waters? “Daylighting Escondido Creek Watershed” helps create a watershed moment by encouraging a shift in thinking where interrelationships are recognized and the well-being of all life in the watershed prioritized. Large photomontages line exhibition walls and tree stumps bear witness to what has occurred, sharing stories of community members or fitted with touchscreens where visitors can write letters to the trees or view tree rings based on models of future climate.
Funded in part by a grant MFAIA-VT faculty advisor Ruth Wallen received this year from the Puffin Foundation and is part of an exhibition of Public Address, a dynamic, diverse group of public artists from the Californias who have been meeting together for many years.
Additionally, in front of the museum, Pushing Up Daisies, created in collaboration with NIna Karavasiles, serves as a memorial to the trees that are dying while providing a locus for new life and a lesson in compositing and regeneration. Employing Hugelkultur, a form of permaculture which uses fallen logs and branches to regenerate the soil and sequester moisture, logs of cut trees have been placed in the form of a fallen tree and seeded with plants to create butterfly and bee gardens.
Exhibition Dates: Sept 28- Nov 18, 2018. Ruth will give a public talk with fellow artists Nina Karavasiles and Doris Bittar at 1:00 PM on Oct. 21.
Hear a talk with Ruth Wallen: Confronting Development and Climate Change on “Let’s Talk about the Weather”.
A workshop of STORY TRAILS in the Port Richmond neighborhood of Philadelphia. Credit: John Hawthorne
Swim Pony receives $400,000 for its upcoming project STORY TRAILS
Alumna Adrienne Mackey (MFAIA-VT ‘16), founder of Philadelphia-based Swim Pony Performing Arts, has received two major grants for her upcoming immersive audio project STORY TRAILS. $150,000 from the Barra Foundation and $250,000 from the William Penn Foundation’s Watershed Initiative will support development of an original App for mobile phones that will bring original stories to trails throughout the Philly region. Stories will be created and GPS tagged specifically for the walking paths chosen and curated/directed by Mackey to include music composition, performance readings by professional actors and a unique soundscape recorded through binaural audio. The App will premiere in May 2020.
Images top left: Devora Neumark in Iqaluit, Nunavut in September. Top right: A view from the beach, a short five-minute walk from where Devora currently lives. Below left: First snow last week. Below right: the tent where the group warmed up between simulated rescue missions during the two-day wilderness survival course. As Devora notes “It’s hard to get a sense of scale since there are no trees as markers… we were ten people in the tent most of the time, often with one lying down being ‘treated’ for injuries.” Photos courtesy of Devora Neumark
MFAIA-WA faculty advisor Devora Neumark is delighted to announce that as of September she’ll be relocated to Iqaluit (Place of Many Fish), Nunavut to work as Economic Development Officer with CanNor — The Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency (CanNor) was established in 2009 to foster growth and development in the North by delivering economic development programs and by collaborating with and aligning the efforts of partners in northern and southern Canada to respond to economic challenges and opportunities in the North.
Devora is looking forward to continuing her art practice while following up with opportunities to learn about the Nunavut environment and the people who have been living in the region for millennia. She aims to do this by getting out on the tundra as often as she can and taking wilderness survival courses as often as they are offered (which have increasing levels of difficulty and specificity). Devora is on leave temporarily and looking forward to coming back to teach soon.
Ryan Conarro, Justin Perkins, and Gary Upay’aq Beaver in Ping Chong + Company’s ALAXSXA _ ALASKA. Photo: Adam Nadel
ALAXSXA | ALASKA
Alumnus Ryan Conarro (MFAIA-WA ‘15) is touring Alaska communities this fall with Ping Chong + Company’s ALAXSXA | ALASKA, an interdisciplinary performance and community engagement project he co-directed with Ping Chong and co-created with Justin Perkins and Gary Upay’aq Beaver (Yup’ik). After last year’s successful Alaska tour and Off-Broadway run at La MaMa, several Alaska communities and organizations invited the project back to engage new audiences in exploring questions of cross-cultural encounter. The piece opens at the Alaska Center for the Performing Arts in Anchorage October 5, 2018, then tours to five rural communities in the south-central and Bering Strait regions. The production has also been invited to the First Alaskans Institute Elders & Youth Conference in Anchorage October 16. More info on ALAXSXA | ALASKA and the tour is available here.
Ryan Conarro leads a Story Facilitation Workshop for Cook Inlet Housing Authority staff in Anchorage. Photo: Sezy Gerow-Hanson
Ryan Conarro is also leading an ongoing community engagement project with Cook Inlet Housing Authority in Anchorage, as part of their participation in ArtPlace America’s Community Development Initiative Program. In the project, CIHA STORIES, Conarro is guiding and supporting the organization in creating concrete practices and products that sustain and amplify CIHA’s organizational value of storytelling, and its mission to develop community through the lives of its housing residents. Last June, Conarro kicked off the project in Anchorage in a 2-week residency. In November and December 2018, the project will continue with the development of a CIHA Stories podcast (to launch 2019) and an annual live storytelling event.
Naila Keleta-Mae and the KalmUnity Vibe Collective creating a new song together. Video link courtesy of Naila Keleta-Mae
WE ARE FREEDOM
Community member and former MFAIA faculty advisor Naila Keleta-Mae along with the KalmUnity Vibe Collective creating a new song together called WE ARE FREEDOM. Petit Campus is in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The event occurred on August 21, 2018.
Navigating & Rerouting – A Walk Unafraid Project
As part of the Feverish World Symposium, a Symposium and Convergence in Burlington, Vermont, from October 20 to 22, 2018, artists Gabrielle Senza and alumna Jen Berger (MFAIA-VT ’12) come together to create an embodied experience of what prevents us from, and pushes us towards Walking Unafraid. This installation is an immersive experience within an 8’x8’x8’ tent. An audio recording, exploring relevant questions will play on a loop while the insides of the tent are available to scribe on. In an era where media is as much a part of our days as eating and breathing, using an intimate platform, such as audio and handwritten texts, can give participants an opportunity to contemplate questions that are on our minds.
For more information please visit Navigating & Rerouting – A Walk Unafraid Project
Poster Design: SJBaugh. Photo: BTBaugh
Objects & Experience
Alumna Stephanie J. Baugh (MFAIA-WA ’14) presents a solo exhibition of recent collage work at the Len G. Everett Gallery at Monmouth College. Stephanie is an Assistant Professor of Art at Monmouth where she teaches foundations and graphic design courses, and she also holds the position of Coordinator of the general education, freshman-seminar course, “Introduction to Liberal Arts.” The exhibition is on view from October 1 to November 2, 2018.
Images from Girl Gods by the Pat Graney Company. Photo courtesy of Peak Performances, Montclair State University
Pat Graney Company performs excerpts from Girl Gods for Velocity Fall Kickoff!
Current MFAIA-WA student Pat Graney’s company performs excerpts from Girl Gods for Velocity Fall Kickoff! Saturday, September 29th, 8pm, Velocity Dance Center, Seattle, WA 98122
Girl Gods explores the ancestry of women, individuals and family—and the idea of rage. Both a visual installation and time-based performance, Girl Gods has connections to feminist artists and art practices of the 1970s, influenced by Judy Chicago’s installation projects and the Earth-Body work of Ana Mendieta.
Keeping the Faith/The Prison Project by the Pat Graney Company, at Mission Creek Corrections Center for Women. Photos courtesy of Pat Graney
Keeping the Faith/The Prison Project
Pat Graney’s Keeping the Faith/The Prison Project (non-religious) is an arts-based educational residency program designed to enable incarcerated women and girls to discover a sense of identity and to develop that identity within the context of community–through the vehicles of performance, video documentation and a published anthology of their writings.
The Pat Graney Company has conducted this three-month program of movement, writing, and visual art in Washington State Corrections Centers for over twenty years. Each year, the program culminates in performance of the women’s own movement, writing, and visual art for 100 members of the general public as well as for over 300 of their incarcerated peers and prison staff. Keeping the Faith creates a rare forum for cultural development among incarcerated women by facilitating the exploration and expression of both individual and collective identity.
It will be held at Mission Creek Corrections Center for Women from Sept 10 to November 20, 2018 with performances on November 16 and 17 at the Prison – OPEN TO THE PUBLIC (with security clearance). www.patgraney.org/education
Image top: photo: Lawrence Radecker. Postcard Design: Kimberley Campisano. Image below: photo: Jesse Weiner. Postcard Design: Diana Lara. Images courtesy of the artists.
The Space Between and Being Good is OVERrated
Diana Lara and alumna Joy Cosculluela (MFAIA-WA ’14) present The Space Between and Being Good is OVERrated, two Performances at NOHspace in San Francisco, Friday October 26th and Saturday October 27th, 2018, at 8pm.
The Space Between: Espacio de Transicion / Sa Tunga Sang Lugar / Ano basho to kono basho no aida is presented by the Wayfinding Performance Group with Joy Cosculluela as the Artistic Director, with Performers/Collaborators: Diana Lara, Tomoko Hiraoka; and Visual Artist: Stacey Goodman. Performers embody border dwellers dislocating the margins of immigration. In order to survive, border dwellers cross borders and negotiate multiple identities: Who am I and where do I belong? Crossing the Space Between: where immigrants, women, daughters and persons of color make visible what has been made invisible. An open space: where they dance their desires and grief, resist dominant narratives, empower and redefine themselves.
Being Good is OVERrated, directed by Diana Lara, with performer/collaborators: Joy Cosculluela and Diana Lara, is about searching for strategies to peel the layers of guilt and shame from our catholic Spanish-colonized countries of origin.
For tickets click here for Brown Paper Tickets.
Diana Lara is a choreographer and Body-Mind Centering practitioner, originally from Honduras.
Joy Cosculluela is a choreographer and Tamalpa Life Art process practitioner, originally from the Philippines.
Alumna Chelsea Weidmann’s (MFAIA-WA ’18) article “New Dialogue in Ballet Pedagogy: Improving Learner Self-Sufficiency through Reflective Methodology” was published in the Journal of Dance Education in May. She has been invited to present her research to the MFA students at the University of Utah this coming October.
Image from Kenneth Prestininzi’s TIMBUKTU, USA. Photo: David Marshall
Sleeping Weazel at Boston Playwrights’ Theatre
Boston-based theatre company Sleeping Weazel co-directed by alumna Adara Meyers (MFAIA-VT ‘18) premiered Kenneth Prestininzi’s new comedy, TIMBUKTU, USA. Playwright/director Prestininzi is a Sleeping Weazel affiliated artist, and this production marked his third with the company (Birth Breath Bride Elizabeth in ArtsEmerson’s The Next Thing Festival; Ugmo and Eenie Go Down The Ruski Hole in Sleeping Weazel’s Doubles, Demons, and Dreamers festival). Read the preview in The Boston Globe. Runs from August 25 to September 2, 2018.
Image courtesy of Salvage Vanguard Theater
Adara Meyers at Salvage Vanguard Theater
Adara Meyers’ play Tryouts will receive its world premiere at Salvage Vanguard Theater, directed by Diana Lynn Small. Inspired by the documentation and veneration of Saint Anne, Tryouts casts a satirical gaze on women, femininity, and motherhood. Two mothers and three teenage girls maneuvering the confines of a prestigious and draconian high school. In a tragicomic turn of events, the mothers throw themselves into the work of forming a pseudo-religious order focused on topiary, while the girls decide to confront head-on the primly grim version of adulthood they’ve been taught all too well.
Tryouts has been previously developed and supported by Great Plains Theatre Conference, Rhode Island State Council on the Arts, and Sleeping Weazel. Runs from October 11 to 27, 2018.
Image courtesy of The Public Theater
Eve’s Song at The Public Theater
Current MFAIA-VT student Stefanie Batten Bland is Movement Director for Eve’s Song, at The Public Theater, written by Patricia Ione Lloyd, and directed by Jo Bonney. October 23rd – December 2nd
In the aftermath of a messy divorce and a daughter coming out as queer, Deborah is trying to keep things normal at home. But as black people continue to be killed beyond their four walls, the outside finds its way in, blurring the lines between family dynamics, politics, and the spirit world. How long can family dinners keep the dangers outside at bay?
Business Coach for Creatives. Image courtesy of Pi Luna
Transform your Artistic Practice into a Thriving Business
Alumna Pi Luna (MFAIA-WA ‘12), is a business coach who teaches creative individuals how to make money doing what they love. She helps her clients with marketing, finance, web design, time management, organization, and much more. She meets with clients in person in her Santa Fe office or online. The first session is free. To learn more visit www.pilunapress.com.
Ollom Art Festival Nov 10-15, 2018. Image Design: Elizabeth Hack
Ollom Art Festival
The 2018 Ollom Art Festival celebrates 15 years of creating art and helps raise monies for their 2019 Art Heals Workshops. The festival will present works from fifteen artists and writers, featuring workshops, panel discussions, performance art, sculptures, film and installations.
The theme of the festival is The Hole Project: Mining Portals of Vulnerabilty. This multi-disciplinary art experience encompasses inquiries into literal and metaphoric holes in our somatic bodies and our psychic selves. Alumnus John Ollom (MFAIA-VT ’13) is the director of the festival.
Featured artists include: R. Bremner – Gary Michael Collins – Don DeMauro – David Fischweicher – Vaughan Grey – Regan Drouin Halas – Jeanette Hardie* – Neena Massey* – Lindsay Metcalf* – Richard Jeffrey Newman* – Dennis Nauert – John C. Ollom* – Jim Sable – Lisa Samalin* and Marlene Tholl
(* Artists presenting workshops)
Our opening reception fundraiser on November 10th at 6 PM features a wine and cheese reception, a live performance by current MFAIA-WA student Neena Massey, the showing of the award winning short film Pierced Heart and music by DJ Boni D. Meet the artists and discover how art moves you. Tickets are $100 ($80 early registration) and all proceeds go to funding our Art Heals Workshops in the next year.
Runs from November 10 to 15, 2018 with the Opening Reception at 6 to 8 PM on Saturday November 10th.
Ten Different Things Symposium at Emily Carr University of Art + Design. Photos: Anne Riley
Ten Different Things Symposium
MFAIA-WA faculty advisor Laiwan presented at the Ten Different Things Symposium on September 15, 2018 at the Reliance Theatre at Emily Carr University of Art + Design. The symposium aimed to share the results of the Ten Different Things series. Participating artists Colleen Brown, Instant Coffee, Laiwan, Khan Lee, Holly Schmidt, Henry Tsang, Janet Wang, Casey Wei, Jen Weih, and Denise Holland and Pongsakorn Yananissorn gave short presentations about their work and findings that was followed by lunch and an afternoon panel. The project was curated by Kate Armstrong, with Adrian Sinclair as production coordinator.
Ten Different Things invited ten critically-engaged artists and collectives to prototype and test new visions of art and civic life in Vancouver. Each project explored conditions of how culture is experienced in Vancouver or investigate the role of culture as a critical ingredient in the construct and vitality of our city. The projects were temporary and took a variety of forms—events, installations, residencies, interventions—which were realized in the spring of 2018. Through CityStudio Vancouver, the artists had opportunity to engage with City of Vancouver staff and protocols as part of the exploration and creation process, ultimately producing work that will be sited in the public realm.
Living Labs is one of four research centres at Emily Carr University of Art + Design. The Lab develops projects and partnership models that use art and design as a mechanism for innovation and community building.
CityStudio Vancouver is an innovation hub where City staff, students, and community co-create experimental projects to make Vancouver more sustainable, liveable and joyful.
The City of Vancouver Public Art Program produces contemporary art for public spaces throughout the city. It supports excellence in public art of many kinds, by emerging and established artists, in new and traditional media, and through award-winning commissions and artist collaborations.
Image left: Cover page from the Northeast False Creek Public Art Plan. Image right: first page from Laiwan’s artist’s pages. Images courtesy of the NEFC Public Art Plan
Northeast False Creek (NEFC) Public Art Plan
Laiwan’s work is included in The Northeast False Creek Public Art Plan, which is one component of many that constitute the Northeast False Creek Area Plan, in Vancouver, Canada, a comprehensive planning document that will guide future development for the area of Northeast False Creek (NEFC) which includes Chinatown. Prepared by Cole Projects for the City of Vancouver Public Arts Program, the NEFC Public Art Plan will be available as a printed publication and for download as a three-part PDF, it presents a framework to guide public art commissioning in this area over the next 20 years of more. Laiwan’s pages show her recent projects that include research in the NEFC, found in the Northeast False Creek Public Art Plan on pages 116 – 123. A PDF download link will be made available soon.