Weekender: Photo Contest Winners; Baroque Christmas and More

Arena with bullfight and crowds
"Palm Sunday Bull Fight at the Mecca of Spanish Bullfighting,'' won in the PLACES category of the UC Davis Global Affairs Annual Photo Contest for those studying abroad. See story below. (Courtesy Joshua Hoye).

UC Davis Study Abroad Photo Contest winners announced

The annual UC Davis Study Abroad Photo Contest aims to recognize and celebrate student photography taking place on the many study abroad programs offered throughout the year at UC Davis. Over 300 photos were submitted this year. The 2022 finalists were broken up into two categories: Places and People.

Joshua Hoye ’23, (winning photo, 'Palm Sunday Bull Fight at the Mecca of Spanish Bullfighting,' in the places category) and Esther Perez Paz ’23 (winning photo, 'Walking to Waterfalls,' in the people category) were top winners.

Says Hoye, a major in international relations, about his photo: "La Plaza de las Ventas is considered to be the pinnacle of Spanish bullfighting, only running events on special occasions. This particular bullfight was run on Palm Sunday to a packed crowd. It was truly a sight to see as it represented an important aspect of Spanish culture. Families came to the event dressed in their Sunday best to enjoy a classic event of Spanish culture and entertainment."

Person walking on bridge through bright green forest

Perez Paz, who is a major in animal science, describes her photo this way: Walking in The Nature, Arenal Volcano National Park in La Fortuna, Costa Rica. The path goes deeper into Costa Rica’s nature and leads towards a waterfall and happiness.” (Photo courtesy of Esther Perez Paz)

View all of  all of the finalists’ artwork and more information here

Listen to a Baroque Christmas at Mondavi

Saturday, Dec.17, 7:30 p.m., Mondavi Center, UC Davis (Student, faculty well-being special)

The program includes Georg Frideric Handel: Messiah (Part I “Christmas” portion), Giuseppe Valentini: Sinfonia per Il Santissimo Natale, Johann Christof Pez: Concerto Pastorale, Marc-Antoine Charpentier: La Nuit, Handel: “Hallelujah Chorus” from Messiah, Maya Kherani, soprano, Aryeh Nussbaum Cohen, countertenor, James Reese, tenor, Christian Pursell, bass-baritone and Lucas Balslov, trumpet. 

For years, the American Bach Soloists graced Jackson Hall with its stunning rendition of Handel’s Messiah. For this 20th Anniversary season, they return with a Baroque Christmas program packed with the “Christmas portion” from Messiah, as well as lovely works celebrating the season. Recognized worldwide as one of the foremost interpreters of the music of Bach and the Baroque, Jeffrey Thomas continues to inspire audiences and performers alike through his keen insights into the passions behind musical expression.   

Find more information and purchase tickets here. More about the well-being ticket deal here.



See The Nutcracker 'Sweet' at Woodland Opera House

Dec. 16, 7 p.m., 17, 2 p.m., 18, 2 p.m., Woodland Opera House, 340 Second Street, Woodland

Costumed girl holds a red and blue nutcracker
Adelaide Grandia in The Nutcracker Sweet in Woodland. The production is this weekend. (Courtesy Joshua Wheeler).

This annual production is considered a short and sweet retelling of the traditional Christmas Ballet, The Nutcracker. Young Clara is taken on a magical journey into a land of sweets by her favorite Christmas present, a Magic Nutcracker. All performers are members of the Woodland Opera House Education Program, ranging in age from 3 to 18 years. Music composed by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky.

Reserved seats are $16 for adults and seniors 62+, and $8 for children 17 and under. Balcony tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children. Flex Pass specials and group rates are available.

Tickets on sale here and at the Box Office (530) 666-9617.

At the Manetti Shrem Museum of Art

Just a few days remain to catch Young, Gifted and Black: The Lumpkin-Boccuzzi Family Collection of Contemporary Art while it's here through Dec. 19.

Fashion art with Lee Alexander McQueen, Ann Ray at Crocker

Dec. 17 – April 2, 2023, Crocker Art Museum

Brilliant, dynamic, and provocative, the British fashion designer Lee Alexander McQueen founded his eponymous label in 1993 and also led design at Givenchy between 1996 and 2001. Soon after he joined Givenchy, he met French photographer Ann Ray, whose stunning photographs recorded and inspired McQueen’s work behind the scenes and in runway shows for the next 13 years. Combining Ray's intimate portraits and backstage images, along with key garments from McQueen’s most celebrated fashion collections and design drawings, this exhibition provides a unique insight into the creative process of this influential and complex figure. Rendez-Vous is organized and produced by Barrett Barrera Projects.

Find more information here

New Exhibitions at SFMOMA

Bernd & Hilla Becher

Dec. 17 – April 2, 2023, SFMOMA

The renowned German artists Bernd and Hilla Becher (1931-2007; 1934-2015) changed the course of late twentieth-century photography. Working as a rare artist couple, they focused on a single subject: the disappearing industrial architecture of Western Europe and North America that fueled the modern era. Their seemingly objective style recalled nineteenth- and early twentieth-century precedents but also resonated with the serial approach of contemporary Minimalism and Conceptual art. Equally significant, it challenged the perceived gap between documentary and fine art photography.

Featuring some 200 works of art, this posthumous retrospective celebrates the Bechers’ remarkable achievement and is the first ever organized with full access to the artists’ personal collection of working materials and their comprehensive archive. The exhibition was organized by The Metropolitan Museum of Art, in association with Die Photographische Sammlung/SK Stiftung Kultur.

Find more information and purchase tickets here

2022 SECA Art Award Exhibition begins

Dec. 17 – May 29, 2023, SFMOMA

The 2022 SECA Art Award Exhibition celebrates Bay Area artists Binta Ayofemi, Maria A. Guzmán Capron, Cathy Lu, Marcel Pardo Ariza, and Gregory Rick. Each artist fills a different Floor 2 gallery with new, site-specific work showcasing their distinctive and exciting practices.

Ayofemi retunes the museum through material interventions and activations culminating in an immersive installation within the Floor 2 Learning Lounge to illuminate the influence of Black abstraction. The project expands her work with urban spaces to highlight Black and Indigenous presence and legacies of Black joy.

Constructed from a vibrant patchwork of hand-sewn textiles and applied paint, Guzmán Capron’s three-dimensional giantess descends from the ceiling and invites us into her dreamscape, where a series of powerful and vulnerable figures exist in a perpetual state of transformation.

Inspired by Nüwa, a Chinese creation goddess, Lu’s installation cascades from the ceiling in garlands of long-nailed hands and corner-store fruits, all deftly shaped from clay. The work extends Lu’s interest in manipulating Chinese cultural references to deconstruct assumptions about Asian American identity.

Pardo Ariza will honor Bay Area trans leaders in photographic portraits that appropriate Catholic altarpieces featuring saints. Exploring the relationship between kinship and queerness, the tender images hang on walls saturated with color and jeweled patterns.

Rick’s large-scale paintings depict complex scenes of racial conflict and community with vibrant, layered imagery. Figures battle, protest, and commune across canvases exploring the 1992 LA Riots, Black incarceration in the U.S., and other endemic cultural issues that remain fiercely relevant.

Since 1967, SECA has honored recipients of the SECA Art Award with an exhibition at SFMOMA and an accompanying publication. The award distinguishes Bay Area artists whose work has not, at the time of nomination, been accorded substantial recognition from a major institution. Recipients are chosen by SFMOMA curators after a series of studio visits attended by SECA members.

Find more information and purchase tickets here.

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