Newsletter. Sept. 2003
& Social Change
A R T F O R
A C H A N G E
1) - JUAREZ PORQUE...
(Juarez, Why?) A special day of art for Mexico's murdered
and missing Women
2) - TREINTA... 30 Years of Chicano
Printmaking & Social Justice
3) - REQUIEM FOR WAR...
The Paintings of Hans Burkhard
4) - AT WORK... American art about labor from 1900 to the
5) - ¡REVOLUCION!... The art of the Cuban Poster
ARTINO's month long
exhibition honoring Mexican Independence Day, ¡El Grito!
- Liberacion del Espiritu, has been a great success. The
exhibit's Sept. 27th. Closing Party will commemorate Mexico's
murdered and missing Women of Juarez.
PORQUÉ (Juarez, Why?) is the name of a very special modern
dance performance to be offered by The SPONDA Dance Troupe during the Closing Party.
"JUAREZ, PORQUÉ" is a feast of nontraditional
movement, spoken word, and ethereal music delivered with unbridled
passion. The dance piece is a trenchant social commentary
against the savage brutalization of women by men who have
lost their humanity. The work commemorates the murder of some
370 young Women in Juarez Mexico who have been slain by unknown assailants
In commemorating the women of Juarez, SPONDA avoids condemnation
in favor of spiritual healing. SPONDA derives it's name from the Tantric Yoga term that
describes the universal life force, it refers to a vibration
that enlightens the whole being. Directed by Dancer Ruth Goodman, the troupe... Goodman, Sofia Balme, Elizabeth Sullivan, Beth Lulu Stewart, and Tanja Skala... will be accompanied by Musicians Shannon Machael Terry & John Ossman.
CLOSING PARTY: SATURDAY SEPT. 27th. 3 - 6
"JUAREZ, PORQUE" DANCE PERFORMANCE - 4:30
Lankershim Art Gallery
5108 Lankershim Blvd., NoHo Arts District. North Hollywood,
TREINTA: 30 Years of Chicano Printmaking
& Social Justice is an exhibit of new & vintage Prints from
the collection of Self-Help Graphics & Art in East L.A..
Christina Ochoa, the exhibit
will focus on Prints created over the years having
to do with social justice issues... war, labor struggles,
and self determination for the Chicano community.
Artists include Barbara Carrasco, Ricardo Duffy, Chaz Bojorquez, and many
others. Works by Mark Vallen will also
be on display.
Reception will be held Saturday, Sept. 20th., from 7
to 10 pm. The opening will include a special performance
by Guillermo Gomez-Peña. The exhibition runs until October
12th, 2003. Self-Help is located at 3802 Cesar E. Chávez
Avenue. Phone (323) 881-6444. Web: www.selfhelpgraphics.com
REQUIEM FOR WAR, a retrospective of the works of Hans Burkhardt now on view at the Jack Rutberg Fine Arts Gallery in L.A.
collection of paintings focuses on the subject of war...
and Burkhardt has seen the face of war from WW1 to the
first Gulf War. More than a few of Burkhardt's paintings
caused a controversy over the years.
The Los Angeles
County Museum of Art took down
one of his paintings in the early 1960's ("One Way Road"-shown
above) when reactionary patrons complained that the
work was "communistic" (due to it's red road leading
to a red sun). Another work shown at Northridge
University in the 60's
was attacked by a woman who succeeded in slashing the
large canvas in two places. The work, "War, Agony in
Death"... was a general condemnation of war the artist
painted in 1940.
works about the Spanish Civil War along with condemnations
of Hitler and European Fascism. He painted expressionist
visions of hell on earth with his "Hiroshima" and "Bikini"
paintings. He railed against the imperialist adventures
in Korea and Vietnam... producing a modern art masterpiece
with his painting "My Lai"... a sculptural painting
that made use of actual human skulls affixed to the
canvas. He focused on the U.S. backed wars in Central
America and their bloody massacres. Late in life, he
even managed to protest against the first Gulf War,
creating a series of mixed media American flags sullied
and stained in blood and oil.
These and other
paintings are quite astonishing for their visceral anger
and anguish. Taking in the many paintings in the show
is mentally exhausting. Sometimes Burkhardt's works
veered over into the inaccessible area of abstract expressionism
were the representational dissolved into fields of color
and the artist's action painting technique. But overall
Burkhardt relentlessly confronts, challenges, and provokes.
"Requiem For War" runs until Sept. 30th, 2003. The Jack
Rutberg Gallery is located at: 357 North La Brea Ave.
Phone: (323) 938-5222. Web: http://www.jackrutbergfinearts.com
AT WORK is an exhibit that explores the rich history of
Art as it pertains to California Labor history. Actually
two separate exhibits, "At Work" traces the importance
of Worker's struggles to artistic output throughout
the 20th century. "There was a time when all the famous
artists in California made art about labor," explains
Mark D. Johnson, Professor of Art at San Francisco
State University. Presenting 100 recent and historical
pieces, the exhibition includes work by Diego Rivera, Rupert Garcia, Emmy Lou Packard, Tina Modotti, Dorothea Lange, and Otto Hagel.
runs at the San Francisco State University Fine
Arts Gallery until Oct. 11th, 2003 (where the contemporary
works are located), and at the California Historical
Society (CHS) through Dec. 20th, 2003 (where the historical
works are housed). For more information
on this groundbreaking show, visit the CHS webpage:
¡REVOLUCION! - Cuban Poster Art,
is an amazing new book from graphic designer/archivist,
Lincoln Cushing. Whatever
you may think of Cuba's government, it must be acknowledged
that the modern Cuban Poster reached the highest artistic
standards, impacted the global community, and helped
to transformed the world of graphic design.
In the years following Cuba's revolution, the new
government sponsored the publication of over 10,000
public Posters, and Cushing presents 120 beautiful
examples in his book.
Cuban Posters are a far cry from the
dreary official propaganda one might expect from an
authoritarian regime. The Prints are colorful and
energetic works that are the result of a striving, not
just for a new society... but for a new independent
aesthetic. Sometimes humorous, oftentimes acerbic, but
always thought provoking, Cuban Posters are full of
surprises. Cushing's book presents Posters opposed to
the U.S. war in Vietnam, for third world liberation
struggles and proletarian internationalism, as well as
Prints extolling Baseball, Dance, and Cinema. Anyone
seriously interested in the theory and practice of a
socially committed art will want to make this
unprecedented book part of their
To find out
more about the book and how to purchase it,
|Mark Vallen's ART
FOR A CHANGE website serves as a resource center for Art
Activism. It encourages and promotes the creation of artworks
that envision a just, peaceful world. Please inform others of
this site, and forward this notice to all appropriate lists
and individuals. If you wish to be added or removed from the
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"I am a citizen artist,
not a bohemian. I don't believe in a world where each artist
is a little God, each one with his own philosophy, each one
with his own little kitchen to fry his abstract ham and eggs.
The only bad painting is the one dominated by the individual
ego." ~ David Alfaro Siqueiros.