Weekender: Jazz, Violas, Flavors, Monet; Remembering Neri

Band and trombonist in split shot
Delfeayo Marsalis will be joined by Uptown Jazz this Saturday night at the Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts. (Courtesy photo)

This is a great weekend for art and music at UC Davis and the surrounding region. Jazz is coming, again, to Mondavi this weekend (don’t miss the LEGO). To get that connection, you must read on.

Delfeayo Marsalis and the Uptown Jazz Orchestra is Saturday at Mondavi, violas at Pitzer today, and it’s the last weekend for the exhibition “New Flavors…” at the Manetti Shrem, which shows off some prized 1960s art. Also read about an alum's exhibit. His work is inspired, he said, by first-generation UC Davis artist Wayne Thiebaud.

Another from that elite 1960s-origin group, UC Davis first-generation artist Manuel Neri, died this past Monday. His art will live on. We will have more next week on Neri’s contributions to the art world as well as the UC Davis world and surrounding community. He is the UC Davis artist perhaps best known for his figures, many of which dot the landscape outside the museum, which I will leave you with below. 

Karen Nikos-Rose, Arts Blog Editor

Art figures on the west side of the museum among plants
Manuel Neri's figures dot the landscape on the west side of the Jan Shrem and Maria Manetti Shrem Museum of Art. (UC Davis)

Trombonist Delfeayo Marsalis at Mondavi Saturday

Oct. 23, 7:30 p.m., Jackson Hall, Mondavi Center

Trombonist Delfeayo Marsalis is committed to the idea that optimism and progressive musical thought can — and should — coexist in modern New Orleans jazz. The Uptown Jazz Orchestra stretches big band boundaries, playing with a spirit of joy and fun that could only come from the Crescent City. Their repertoire consists of material that spans more than 100 years of American music, with influences from Louis Armstrong to Count Basie, James Brown to J Cole. Prepare for a big party, with second line numbers and audience participation that creates a spirit of celebration at every performance. 

Find more information and purchase tickets here


LEGO Mondavi Center on display in Mondavi lobby

by Stephen Crouse

Mondavi Center visitors have a new way of getting a great view of the building, and it’s in the lobby.

A LEGO recreation of the Mondavi Center, built by Stephen Crouse from more than 37,000 pieces, was first displayed during last week’s opening night performance. The 42-inch-long model sits in a lighted display in the Yocha Dehe Grand Lobby, and will remain there, having been donated by Crouse.

LEGO Mondavi Center model
Courtesy photo

The smaller scale and perspective showcase how the formal elements of the structure work together, while the use of the various blocks inspires an awareness of the patterns and materials (such as the stones) that give the building its distinctive visual character. 

No details were left out. The interior stairs are visible from the windows, signs and posters are in mini display cases. There's even a fully developed Jackson Hall stage and a catwalk in the interior of the Vanderhoef Studio Theatre!

Not surprisingly, the model was a huge hit of the night, generating conversation and lots of shared stories about LEGO-building memories. Much in the way that live performance can inspire and connect us, Stephen’s model generates a sense of universal wonder, unlocking all the magic of the limitless potential of our imaginations. 

Read more about it, along with a Q and A with its creator, in the Mondavi Center Blog.

Viola quartets today at Pitzer Center

12:05-1 p.m., Free, A Shinkoskey Noon Concert, Recital Hall, Ann E. Pitzer Center

Ellen Ruth Rose, viola, and UC Davis lecturer in music; Kurt Rohde, viola and professor of music, Zoe Kemmerling, viola (‘07), Matthew Curtis, viola and graduate student in biomedical engineering, and principal viola of the UC Davis Symphony Orchestra, Maya True-Fogel, viola and undergraduate student in music, Samantha Sharp, viola and graduate student in civil and environmental engineering.

The program includes Daniel Rudning’s Variations on a Theme by Holst and Ichiro Nodaira’s Ciaccona, a transcription of Partita No. 2 for Solo Violin, BWV 1004, by J.S. Bach (2000)

Last weekend for 'New Flavors'

Just a handful of days remain to see “New Flavors: Collected at the Candy Store|Selections from the Manetti Shrem Museum” before it closes on Oct. 24.

Celebrating the lesser-told stories of the Candy Store Gallery, the 11 featured artists include Luis Cruz Azaceta, Luis Jimenez, George Longfish, Joan Moment, Gladys Nilsson, Jim Nutt, Maija Peeples-Bright, Pam Scrutton, Sandra Shannonhouse, Ann Leda Shapiro and Glenn Takai. Their work was first championed by gallerist Adeliza McHugh from 1962-92 at her beloved Folsom space that fostered an emerging arts community.              

These artists demonstrate the diversity of artistic practices that made the Candy Store such a unique space. “The works on view express the whimsical, colorful, humorous and lighthearted nature of the gallery but also explore serious themes of feminism, sexuality, violence and our collective place in the world,” says Jenna Blair, who co-curated the exhibition with Susie Kantor.

The museum is open Thursday through Sunday. Advance timed tickets recommended; walk-up visitors are welcome based on capacity. Visit manettishrem.org.

UC Davis alum art exhibition on view in D.C.

Krazy Times, a solo exhibition of new paintings and watercolors by artist and UC Davis alum Vonn Cummings Sumner (MFA 2000), is on view at Morton Fine Art in Washington D.C. through Nov. 3. Reflecting the artist’s longstanding interest in the career of famed American cartoonist George Herriman, Sumner’s recent works render the eponymous protagonist of Herriman’s Krazy Kat comic strip in settings and circumstances evocative of contemporary life. It is also available to view online.

Artwork from exhibit, coral above beige figure
Vonn Cummings Sumner, Krazy Dreams, 2021. Oil on panel. 18 x 18 inches.  Robert Wedemeyer. (Courtesy the artist and Morton Fine Art).

Sumner was first introduced to Krazy Kat by his mentor, painter Wayne Thiebaud, whose love of Krazy Kat was shared by peers such as Philip Guston and Willem de Kooning. Appearing in newsprint from 1913 to 1944, Krazy Kat remains a keystone in the history of American cartooning, owing to its widespread cultural influence. Today, Sumner's reinvigoration of Krazy Kat highlights its relevance to 21st-century themes — partly created in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Sumner describes Krazy Kat as an “empathetic effigy” for processing a moment of great global change and loss. 

View the Krazy Times exhibition online here.

‘The California Aggie Photo Archives: Gems of Student Photojournalism’ on display now

Through March 18, 2022

Peter J. Shields Library, Lobby, near Archives and Special Collections, Free

Unearthed from The California Aggie's “photo morgue”— a rich collection of photographs produced for the campus newspaper and stored for many years in its office in the basement of Freeborn Hall — this exhibit celebrates the talent and hard work of UC Davis' student photojournalists.

Visit the exhibit at Shields Library anytime the library is open. And watch for a full story on this in the Arts Blog next week. 

Sneak Peek here:

Musician performing in black-and-white photo.
The Flaming Lips performing at the Coffee House. Andrea Terrenzio captured this shot of the alternative rock group The Flaming Lips to accompanied the concert review article by Elizabeth Kieszkowski published on October 24, 1989. The venue was the Memorial Union Coffee House, a beloved, intimate campus spot for live music. (Courtesy photo)
  • The Flaming Lips performing at the Coffee House. Andrea Terrenzio captured this shot of the alternative rock group The Flaming Lips to accompany the concert review article by Elizabeth Kieszkowski published on Oct. 24, 1989. The venue was the Memorial Union Coffee House, a beloved, intimate campus spot for live music. See the original story.

Wu Tsang presents 'Moved by the Motion' at SFMOMA

Through June 5

Since 2013, artist Wu Tsang has collaborated with “Moved by the Motion,” a constellation of interdisciplinary artists who work fluidly between language, movement, image, and sound. For this exhibition, Tsang and members Asma Maroof, Tapiwa Svosve, Patrick Belaga, Fred Moten, Serpentwithfeet, Tosh Basco, Ahya Simone, Daniel Pineda, and David Quam present an experiential sound installation that explores the concept of the B-side.

The soundscape will collage minor compositions, fragments of spoken word poetry taken from rehearsals, recent tertiary recordings, and other improvisatory moments. This exhibition furthers their interest in exploring the affective possibilities of sound and the gravitational pulls that brings us in proximity to one another.

Find more information and purchase tickets here.

 Art Social Media of the Week Pick: Crocker Art Museum


Crocker Art Museum's Monet exhibit featured with impressionist painting

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