Blog written by Michelle Villagomez, UC Davis Media Relations Intern
Crocker’s 'Official Rogue Book Club' features Zora Neale Hurston tonight
Thursday, Feb. 25, 6 p.m. to 7 p.m., free, Register.
Each month, the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento holds the Official Rogue Book Club which brings together readers, art lovers, and special guests to discuss books that inspire folks to look at art and life in new and unexpected ways. To offer context to Betye Saar’s illustrations of short stories by Zora Neale Hurston, on view at the Crocker in Legends from Los Angeles: Betye, Lezley, and Allison Saar, and in recognition of Black History Month, the Rogue Book Club is tackling Hitting a Straight Lick with a Crooked Stick: Stories from the Harlem Renaissance, by Zora Neale Hurston.
Hitting a Straight Lick with a Crooked Stick is a collection of stories about love and migration, gender and class, racism and sexism that reflect African American folk culture. Brought together for the first time in one volume, the book includes eight of Hurston’s "lost" Harlem stories, which were found in forgotten periodicals and archives. These stories challenge conceptions of Hurston as an author of rural fiction and include gems that flash with her biting, satirical humor, as well as more serious tales reflective of the cultural currents of Hurston’s world. All are timeless classics that enrich our understanding and appreciation of this exceptional writer’s voice and her contributions to America’s literary traditions.
To learn more about this event, go to the Crocker Website.
Bring a piece of the museum home
Additionally, here's a tip: The Crocker Museum store is now online. Check out the latest exhibition catalog: Wayne Thiebaud 100, honoring UC Davis' emeritus professor or art, and other gifts here. We read a recent national story that art sales are up, with people decorating their homes and needing something on the wall behind their work-from-home desk — and, of course, with museums closed. If you can't afford art, get something at the store for your home that commemorates a Crocker exhibition you may have seen, or missed. The UC Davis Arts Blog
Shinkoskey Noon Concert introduces 'Arcomusical'
Thursday, Feb. 25, 12:05 p.m. to 1 p.m., free, via UC Davis Music’s Youtube Channel.
Projeto Arcomusical is a music of the world sextet reimagining the Afro-Brazilian berimbau through unique and powerful chamber music. The ensemble formed in 2013 specifically to interpret MeiaMeia, the composition cycle co-composed by ensemble co-founders Gregory Beyer and Alexis C. Lamb. Arcomusical released MeiaMeia as its first album in 2016 on Innova Recordings. That same year Arcomusical received a Chamber Music America Classical Commissioning Grant that produced Roda, the kaleidoscopic, twenty-minute, four-movement work by Elliot Cole. Roda is featured on Arcomusical’s second album, Spinning in the Wheel now available on National Sawdust Tracks. MeiaMeia was under consideration for a 2018 Best World Music Album for the Grammy Awards.
Projeto Arcomusical will premiere pieces by five doctoral students in composition:
Gregory Beyer, director
- Paul Engle: Air of a D String
- Orkun Akyol: isto é muito natural
- Joseph Peterson: Wretched
- Sarah Wald: Double Toil, Double Coil
- Jacob Lane: The Details of a Place
- Juan Diego Díaz: Berimbau Music: Homage to Steve Reich
To learn more about Acromusical and this event, go to the UC Davis department of music website.
Next week: ‘Brazilian Jazz’
Thursday, March 4, 12:05 p.m. to 1 p.m., free, via UC Davis Music’s Youtube Channel.
- Ricardo Peixoto, 7-string guitar
- Marcos Silva, piano
- Brian Rice, pandeiro and UC Davis lecturer in music
To learn more, go here.
U Penn professor addresses political theatre
Tuesday, March 2, 2021, 1:10 - 2:30 p.m.
The Department of Theatre and Dance will host a talk with University of Pennsylvania Professor Jennifer Ponce de Leon on the topic Another Aesthetics is Possible: Arts of Rebellion in the Fourth World War. The event is March 2 at 1:10 p.m. and is free and open to all. It’s available live here.
Ponce de León, assistant professor of English and faculty in Latin American and Latinx Studies, addresses the roles that art can play in the collective labor of creating and defending another social reality. Focusing on artists and art collectives in Argentina, Mexico, and the United States, she shows how experimental practices in the visual, literary, and performing arts have been influenced by and articulated with leftist movements and popular uprisings that have repudiated neoliberal capitalism and its violence.
Ponce de León is an interdisciplinary scholar whose research focuses on cultural production and antisystemic movements in the Americas since the 1960s. She is the associate director of the Critical Theory Workshop, which holds an annual summer program at the École des hautes études en sciences sociales in Paris, and an independent curator. She is the author of Another Aesthetics is Possible: Arts of Rebellion in the Fourth World War (Duke University Press, 2021). Ponce de León’s writing has appeared in American Quarterly, Philosophy Today, ASAP/Journal, Social Text, e-misférica, GLQ, and in multiple edited collections. She is currently working on a book on internationalist political imaginaries in 21st century literature, film, and visual art by Latinx and Latin American artists, and co-authoring with Gabriel Rockhill Revolutionizing Aesthetics: Composing a World beyond Art for Columbia University Press’s series New Directions in Critical Theory.
Basement Gallery Art Call
The UC Davis Basement Gallery is looking for art for the next Art & Conversation Podcast: New Beginnings. They want to hear from previous BG Members, first-year MFA and undergraduate students, graduating MFA students, graduating BG members, UCD alumni, but all majors/mediums are welcome to apply.
New Beginnings is their next virtual art show. The Basement Gallery wants to feature art on the BG Instagram and hear more of their listener’s thoughts.
Artists will provide images of their work that will be showcased on the Basement Gallery Instagram and if they like, also provide topics they would like to cover in the podcast.
- Your name and the name of your pieces on the submitted files
- If entering more than one piece please put a number on the file name
- Indication if specific pieces are for sale
- Artist statement/IG caption
The deadline to submit artwork is Sunday, Feb. 28, at 11:59 p.m and if accepted, you will receive a confirmation email after this date.
Catch up on de Young’s ‘Virtual Wednesdays’
Virtual Wednesdays is a weekly YouTube broadcast that brings unique viewpoints exploring diversity, resilience, and creative spirit in the arts as the de Young Museum aims to reframe their exhibitions and collections. View upcoming Virtual Wednesdays programs.
This week, they did a public screening of When We Gather (2021), a five-minute film that celebrates the women who have played an elemental role in the progress of the United States and offers a call to create a path forward for the leaders of the future. Following the film, there was a special conversation and Q+A session with speakers: María Magdalena Campos-Pons, Wendi Norris, hosted by Natasha Becker. Watch the event here to learn more about the making of the film and continue to explore the themes of healing, creativity, and unity.
Conceived by renowned artist María Magdalena Campos-Pons, in collaboration with LaTasha N. Nevada Diggs and Okwui Okpokwasili, the artists choreographed circular movements and gestures from diverse traditions evoking storms, spirals, and ancestral energy. The soundscape incorporates both lyrics and a poem written by Diggs for the project. When We Gather was originally inspired by the election of the country’s first female vice president and performed during a pandemic by seven artists in separate studios and outdoor spaces in Brooklyn, Houston, Boston, and Nashville then woven together by the film director Codie Elaine Oliver [Black Love, OWN]. The film project was produced over an eight week period by San Francisco based gallerist, Wendi Norris.
Go here to learn more about the event and the speakers.
Lunchtime art chat with Verge Arts Center this Friday
Learn more about the event here.
More next week...
HomeStage introduces virtual lecture about campus community book project
Monday, March 1, 4 p.m., free. Register.
Tune into this virtual presentation featuring Ellen Forney, author of the 2020-2021 UC Davis Campus Community Book Project selection Marbles: Mania, Depression, Michelangelo, & Me, the story of her diagnosis and struggle with bipolar disorder. A virtual question and answer session will take place immediately following the event.
The companion book of Marbles, Rock Steady: Brilliant Advice From My Bipolar Life, a handbook for mental health, was featured in the Journal of American Medical Association “Best of Graphic Medicine 2018,” and the book’s self-care framework is widely used by therapists and clinicians. Forney has given talks and lectures internationally at universities, conferences, and institutions, including her TED talk, “Finding Balance in Bipolar,” as keynote speaker at the Comics & Medicine Conference at Johns Hopkins. She was awarded fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, Civitella Ranieri, Artist Trust and the Hedgebrook Foundation. Forney grew up in Philadelphia and lives in Seattle.
Ellen Forney’s TED Talk is here.
Imagining America hosts 2021 event
Wednesday, March 3, 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m., via Eventbrite. Register.
The 2021 People’s State of the Union is a national event presented by the U.S. Department of Arts and Culture in partnership with MassCreative and The Theater Offensive, the 7th Annual People’s State of the Union. Communities around the country are invited to share their stories from the past year. Imagining America serves as a Davis host organizer for the PSOTU.
Through virtual story circles, the community will reflect on the interlocking crises of systemic racism, poverty, access to healthcare, and more laid bare by COVID-19, the roles of arts and the humanities during this time, and our visions for a just future.
For #PSOTU2021, Story Circle participants will share their take on the state of our union by reflecting on the following prompts, designed to affirm the essential nature of art and culture as part of a thriving and just society:
- Share a story about when the arts played an essential role in your life.
- Share a story about a time when you creatively connected with someone while remaining socially distanced.
- Share a story about how you and your community have been affected by the government response to COVID-19.
- Share a story about the future you envision for all of us this year. What do our communities look like? What has changed?
*Story Circles are often understood as deriving from indigenous traditions. There are many variations. We give special thanks and credit to John O’Neal of Junebug Productions (and formerly Free Southern Theater) and to Roadside Theater who have been central in developing the practice for use in creating original performance and in community telling and listening projects.
Learn more here.
Creative Writing Series features Carmen Machado
Wednesday, March 3, 4:30 p.m., via Zoom. Register.
Carmen Maria Machado is the author of the best-selling memoir In the Dream House and the award-winning short story collection Her Body and Other Parties (2018), which the New York Times listed as one of “15 remarkable books by women that are shaping the way we read and write fiction in the 21st century.” She has been a finalist for the National Book Award and the winner of the Bard Fiction Prize, the Lambda Literary Award for Lesbian Fiction, the Lambda Literary Award for LGBTQ Nonfiction, the Brooklyn Public Library Literature Prize, the Shirley Jackson Award, and the National Book Critics Circle's John Leonard Prize.
Her essays, fiction and criticism have appeared in the New Yorker, the New York Times, Granta, Vogue, This American Life, Harper’s Bazaar, Tin House, McSweeney's Quarterly Concern, The Believer, Guernica, Best American Science Fiction & Fantasy, Best American Nonrequired Reading and elsewhere. She holds a master of fine arts degree from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and has been awarded fellowships and residencies from the Guggenheim Foundation, Yaddo, Hedgebrook, and the Millay Colony for the Arts. She lives in Philadelphia and is the Abrams Artist-in-Residence at the University of Pennsylvania.
The UC Davis Creative Writing Series is organized by the Creative Writing Program, Department of English in the College of Letters and Science. This reading is co-sponsored by the Manetti Shrem Museum.
Learn more about the event in Manetti Shrem’s Winter 2021 Season Programs and Events.
Art Studio Visiting Series Ramekon O’Arwisters
Thursday, March 4, 4:30 p.m., via Zoom. Register.
Growing up in the Jim Crow South during the Civil Rights Movement, Ramekon O’Arwisters had a safe haven, where he was “embraced, important and special”—quilting with his grandmother. These early memories prompted his nascent series of unique crocheted/ceramic sculptures, Mending. Employing broken or discarded household or decorative pottery, O’Arwisters combines traditional crafts into a dimensional woven tapestry, stripping both cloth and ceramic of their intended function. He is the founder of Crochet Jam, a community arts project infused with folk-art traditions that foster a creative culture in cooperative relationships. He has been an artist-in-residence at the de Young Museum, the Djerassi Resident Artists Program and the Vermont Studio Center, and received grants and awards from Artadia: The Fund for Art and Dialogue, the San Francisco Foundation and the San Francisco Arts Commission Cultural Equity Program.
Organized by the Department of Art and Art History. Co-sponsored by the UC Davis College of Letters and Science and the Manetti Shrem Museum.
Learn more about the event in Manetti Shrem’s Winter 2021 Season Programs and Events.