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Projects

Absolute Theatre produces world premiere plays, rarely produced works, or completely fresh takes on classics.  Absolute Theatre believes that collaboration is the key to the survival of theatre in Los Angeles, and continuously seeks out like-minded artists for co-production.

Actual Size Los Angeles is an artist-run gallery located in Chinatown, Los Angeles. Through collaboration with established and emerging artists, Actual Size encourages situations that activate the exhibition and engage the public. Opened in April 2010, Actual Size has organized over 40 exhibitions/curatorial interventions and has worked with over 100 artists. Projects curated by Actual Size have been profiled in the L.A Times, Art Forum, Mousse Magazine, and Flash Art International.

The American Chamber Philharmonic is a self-governing orchestra, seeking to revolutionize the management of American orchestras by creating an environment in which all people can have access to the best in music making from an early age. The orchestra will tackle the two major issues facing the world of classical music today: firstly, the orchestra will increase accessibility to the best in music at little to no cost to the attending public by raising the majority of its capital from donations, advertising revenue, and grants rather than relying on expensive ticket sales. Secondly, the American Chamber Philharmonic seeks to set a precedent for the creation of a larger Chamber Orchestra tradition throughout the United States. The inherently flexible nature of a chamber orchestra would allow for a higher quality artistic product without the overlying costs and organizational needs of a larger Symphony. By doing so, other communities will be able to follow suit in the creation of their own high-level chamber orchestras, offering the best in music making to their communities, and increasing public enthusiasm and support for American orchestras. As a self-governing orchestra, the American Chamber Philharmonic will be free of the limiting factors created by a management system that leaves the musicians out of decision-making processes. The autonomy of the orchestra to mold its own identity will only allow for creating a better artistic product, and the fundraising philosophy behind the organization will mean that the vast majority of the public will be able to access it.

Based in Pasadena since 2016, And/Or Gallery specializes in the exhibition of new media, computational, and internet art. The gallery originally operated in Dallas, Texas from 2006 to 2009 and is regarded as one of the first galleries in U.S. to possess the vision and the expertise to exhibit work created with the internet and evolving computer technologies. The gallery is also considered an incubator of talent. Several artists who had early shows at And/Or have since found critical and commercial success, including Cory Arcangel, Petra Cortright, and Ben Jones. And/Or is commissioning a new virtual reality project by the artist Kathleen Daniel.

Why do we sing the national anthem? This dynamic, original musical explores that question through the unique and personal stories of Americans throughout our history, inspired by actual letters written in times of war. Each song contains a few words from the anthem, woven together to form the song that represents our nation.

Aperture Duo curates fearless programs that explore new sounds, voices, and techniques through the lens of violin and viola chamber music. Lauded for their “precision and interpretation” along with their “distinct sense of unity and independence” (icareifyoulisten.com), Los Angeles-based Aperture Duo was founded in 2015 by violinist Adrianne Pope and violist Linnea Powell. Equally at home performing old and new music, Aperture Duo actively commissions diverse new works to expand the violin and viola duo repertoire.

ARID: A Journal of Desert Art, Design and Ecology is a peer-reviewed annual journal focusing on cross-disciplinary explorations of desert arts, design, culture and the environment for both scholarly and new audiences. ARID seeks submissions of scholarly articles, curriculum, visual essays and other media including sound and video that investigate diverse aesthetic, social, cultural, historical, ecological and political subjects related to desert regions of the American Southwest and beyond. ARID emphasizes the convergence of art, design, and culture with science, ecology, geography and other related disciplines to create a unique snapshot of and dialog about desert environs and cultures with a vested and active interest in the desert as a point of creative investigation.

ARKHIPOV is a 75-minute chamber opera to be composed by Peter Knell with a libretto by Stephanie Fleischmann.  The opera centers on Vasili Arkhipov, whose unsung heroism is all that stood between humanity’s existence and annihilation. The proposed opera tells the story of the events leading up to the fulcrum of the Cuban Missile Crisis—a moment when the future of the globe clearly hung in the balance—and conjures a portrait of the man responsible for defusing the conflict.

Arkhipov was the deputy fleet commander of a fleet of four submarines sent to establish a base in Cuba.  In an act of incomprehensible recklessness, the Soviet military equipped each sub with a 15-kiloton nuclear torpedo.  If fired, this “special weapon” would ignite a full-fledged nuclear war.

On October 27, a US carrier group forced the sub to make an emergency dive despite dangerously low battery power and debilitating conditions. The fleet of 14 US ships attempted to signal the submarine to surface by dropping “practice” depth charges. This convinced the submarine’s beleaguered captain, Vitali Savitsky, that World War III had broken out. Savitsky ordered the launch of B-59’s nuclear torpedo, an action that required the approval of the ship’s “political officer,” who supported Savitsky. But Savitsky needed the consensus of his deputy fleet commander as well. Archipov refused to fire the torpedo, accepting instead the humiliation of surfacing under the control of the American forces. And so the world continued spinning on its axis.

Arquivo Vivo Pasadena (“living archive” in Portuguese) makes visible the ways stories, relationships, and memories create meaningful places. Part one incorporates interviews and photographs that focus on thestories of eight distinct Pasadenans. Part two consists of an eclectic body of imagery that I solicited from the Pasadena community in response to the question, “What does Pasadena mean to you?” Through itsinvestigation of place, memory, and culture, “Arquivo Vivo: Pasadena” celebrates our identities, pluralities, and intersections.

Through a powerful multi-media artistic event, Art of the Cosmos bridges art and science to provide a dynamic educational and creative experience meant to activate inquiry and generate enthusiasm about Space and the answers it holds for humanity.

Art of the Cosmos is a 4-month long event featuring International artists from vast and varied disciplines including painting, sculpture, photography, music, light, video, glass, multi-media and digital; all inspired by the powerful images of the Hubble Space Telescope.

The philosophy at the foundation of The Art of the Cosmos is that Art and Science are a part of a powerful Creativity spectrum, with Art existing at one end of the scale and Science at the other. The intersection where these two disciplines merge is where true and powerful Creativity is activated. Innovation, Imagination and Intuition emerge out of that center point and authentic discovery is made.

True Art has strong science built into it – and elevated Science at its heart, contains a great deal of art … at their highest and best, neither can exist without the other. Art of the Cosmos cultivates this common ground to plant seeds of curiosity, creativity and collaboration in the artists and audience alike.

In addition to the multi-faceted art collection, the show will also feature ‘Art of the Mission’, which highlights some of the vibrant history and science behind the Hubble quest and introduces some of the future projects in development. Funds raised by Art of the Cosmos will be dedicated to Arts and Science scholarships and education.

The Black Association of Documentary Filmmakers West (BADWest) is a professional organization providing people of African descent working in documentary film, video or other media the opportunity to network professionally, share resources, exchange ideas and meet socially in order to enhance the development, production, promotion and exhibition of documentaries. BADWest also advocates the recognition and professional advancement of Black documentary filmmakers.

Barak Ballet is dedicated to two major objectives: creating new and exciting dance works led by talented choreographers, and maintaining a company culture conducive to drawing full artistic and creative potential from its dancers. The company often presents new, diverse works by dancers who are not only capable of displaying technique, but also expressing a broad range of movement and concepts.

The Betye Saar Catalogue Raisonné Project + Archives is an ongoing commitment to documenting the artistic practice of Los Angeles artist Betye Saar. The result of this extensive project will be a scholarly publication documenting the artist’s archives and oeuvre of assemblage, collage, installations, prints and drawings, and will include a comprehensive overview of Saar’s artwork, exhibition history, detailed provenance, and bibliography.

Big City Forum, founded in 2008, is an interdisciplinary, conversation based, curatorial research project that explores the intersection between design-based creative disciplines within the context of public space, the built environment, and social change. BCF produces events in partnership with institutions such as the Skirball Cultural Center, Armory Center for the Arts, Otis Art Institute, Santa Monica Museum of Art, and Woodbury School of Architecture.

BIRDS IN THE MOON is a traveling chamber opera staged in a mobile state of the art, self-contained, shipping container – a theatrical magic moving box. The storyline for BIRDS is loosely based on the eccentric theory by 17th Century scientist Charles Morton, who hypothesized that birds migrate to the moon. According to Morton, birds migrated every year to the moon. Some came back, the rest were lost in space. Morton’s eccentricity serves the libretto with its main theme, the journey of the migrant – using the bird as a metaphor for a person.

Some of the most important sociopolitical issues we will continue to face in this century are no doubt immigration, migration, human trafficking and human rights. Our BIRDS is certainly hinged around these larger topics, but focuses solely on a fantastical story of one migrant’s journey and her children’s fate.

Lights, sound, video and props are all powered by contemporary solar energy battery cells concealed in the bottom of the shipping container, and the work can be staged anywhere a container can be parked, without external power supply. With this ultimate flexibility, BIRDS IN THE MOON can be presented in remote locations, in theatrical spaces, inside or outside, essentially, bringing the theater to the people.

Bone Woman – The Play is a meditation on our vulnerabilities and on our mortality, but also on the life-affirming power of the human heart. The stories in Bone Woman come from folk tales from around the world, but with the universal truth that when stripped of our specific cultural stories, we are all but bone underneath. These are women whose voices we rarely hear – yet need to hear – for they bring us lessons of courage and humanity.

BoxoPROJECTS is a multi-program arts initiative based in Joshua Tree, California, dedicated to exploring contemporary art at the new frontier. BoxoPROJECTS is interested in the role of art and artists in creating community and in the power of art to shape the destiny of communities. We offer facilitated artist residencies and related programming at BoxoHOUSE in Joshua Tree, as well as exhibitions, installations and performances in various locations. BoxoPROJECTS was founded by Bernard Leibov in 2009.

The residency is distinct in that it invites one artist at a time to carry out a facilitated project that deals with site, community or the environment. The idea is not to suggest content however to promote engagement with place and community such that lasting links are created. Since 2012, twenty-seven residencies have been completed drawing artists from across the US, as well as the UK, South Africa, Australia and Germany. Disciplines include visual arts (painting, sculpture, photography, video), performance art, musical composition, and writing. Each residency concludes with an open house for  artists to meet the community and share their work. Approximately 250 attend open houses at Boxo annually.

Five exhibitions have also been mounted on site, several artists have been placed into remote exhibitions and Boxo also promotes artists’ work at Art Palm Springs as a cultural partner.

CALLED UP: The Emmett Ashford Story, is a one-hour documentary being produced by the filmmaking team of Raymond Bell and Doug Harris (Five Bellz Entertainment and Doug Harris Media). Bell is an Emmy Award winning producer for CBS Los Angeles with over 30 years of experience in the television industry. Doug Harris is an acclaimed documentary filmmaker who has produced and directed over twenty documentaries dating back to 1999.

The mission of the CALLED UP documentary is to raise public awareness about American sports pioneer Emmett Ashford’s tough journey to becoming Major League Baseball’s (MLB) first African American umpire (1966) during the turbulent Civil Rights Movement. The documentary will serve to educate viewers about how MLB afforded Emmett Ashford the authority to become the first of his race to make key “on field” game decisions as an umpire.

Watkins” is a 530-page biography of the artist and photographer Carleton Watkins by Tyler Green. It will be published by University of California Press in the fall of 2018.

Starting in the late 1850s, when California’s allegiance to Union was tenuous, Watkins and his work were central to the building of bonds between the West and the East. Over the course of the 30-year career during which he was the artist who most influenced America, Watkins joined the remote, mining-satellite West with the dominant East, with its art, its science, its business, its finance, and its public policy. During the decades when America, including Westerners, were interested in Western lands for their extractive potential and not much else, Watkins’s work repeatedly, insistently urged America to see not just ore and timber, but new species of trees, a new topography, the nation’s first glacier, the role glaciers played in forming Yosemite, the West’s agricultural potential, and more. Watkins substantially invented an idea that we now take for granted, that the West wasn’t just land, but that its landscapes were awesome enough to care about.

“Watkins” also features the first new history of the preservation of Yosemite and thus of the national park idea since Hans Huth’s landmark 1948 “The Story of an Idea.”

Century Arts & Culture Project is an art gallery and event space at Century Books in Pasadena. Their mission is to provide quality art exhibits for local artists, performing arts, and cultural events, including lectures and speaking engagements for both educational purposes and also fun and informative community events.

Community Art Machine improves communities with art and hard work through two programs: Machine Community Art Studio and the C.U.T.S Crew. Machine Community Art Studio invites the public to create and view art at the studio in San Pedro seven days a week. The studio also hosts various free events including movie screenings, art contests and workshops. The C.U.T.S Crew (Cleaning up the Streets) specializes in murals and neighborhood cleanups. All of the Crew’s projects are open to the public to participate on a volunteer basis to help get the projects done and learn how these murals are created.

Contemptorary is an arts writing website covering the practices of women and queer people of color and their navigation of the art world. Our focus is to address the racial dynamics of museum collections, biennales, exhibitions and art practices. In our writing, we refuse “bird’s eye” accounts of events, rather we position ourselves as co-conspirators for racial justice within arts and museum spaces. We see our arts writing as journalistic gatecrashing: demanding fundamental change towards racial justice in the museum and arts spheres.

Eastside International (ESXLA) is an artist-run contemporary art kunsthalle and international artist residency based in Los Angeles, California, directed by artist Jason Ramos.

Founded in 2014 by Ramos and artists Michelle Carla Handel and Molly Shea, Eastside International’s artist in residence program hosts up to five artists to live, work, and immerse themselves in the Los Angeles art community. ESXLA’s parallel exhibition program features the work of local, national, and international emerging and established artists in a non-commercial, alternative venue.

ECHO Community Arts engages students to change the world. Finding ways to encourage literacy, intellectual thought and artistic excellence, students will shine as voices for the underprivileged. ECHO is based on a powerful idea: that one person’s voice can change the world. The project works to close opportunity gaps for low-income communities by preparing youth for professional opportunities.

Fallen Fruit is an art collaboration originally conceived in 2004 by David Burns, Matias Viegener and Austin Young. Since 2013, David and Austin have continued the collaborative work. Fallen Fruit began in Los Angeles with creating maps of public fruit: the fruit trees growing on or over public property.   Fallen Fruit uses cartography and geography as an indexical platform to generate serialized and site-specific works of art that often embrace public participation.  The work of Fallen Fruit includes photographic portraits, experimental documentary videos, public art installations, and curatorial projects.  Using fruit as a method of reframing the familiar, Fallen Fruit investigates urban space, ideas of neighborhood, and new forms of citizenship.

Music & Arts ReSound (M.A.R.S.) is an interdisciplinary festival that highlights new music, applied arts and independent film, with the target of creating platforms for internationally established musicians and artists to promote their work and open new perspectives on seeing music through cross-artistic pairings. These platforms welcome voices from outside the arts, featuring esteemed voices from Quantum fields that embrace space time and the Art’s place within in.

Friends of the Rialto is committed to the preservation, restoration and potential operation of the Rialto Theatre as a multi-use venue serving South Pasadena and the surrounding area. The group is made up of architectural historians, theater and music industry professionals, and local community members, all sharing the goal of reopening the Rialto Theatre as an arts venue, making it once again a cultural and social hub of South Pasadena.

GuestHaus Residency offers free housing to artists and scholars who are visiting Los Angeles in conjunction with a project, education, or research and with the support of a local institution, non-profit organization, and/or artist-run space. The project was conceived as an alternative economic model to support the production of culture and transform the economic conditions of artistic and cultural activities in Los Angeles by offsetting the cost of housing for visiting cultural producers. The residency is located in the verdant hills of Mount Washington, near Downtown Los Angeles, where the resident(s) can find repose away from work, to both rest and contemplate.

HOCKET is one of today’s most exciting chamber music groups. Brought together by their love of chamber music and simple joy of playing together, members Sarah Gibson and Thomas Kotcheff are committed to bringing contemporary, two piano and piano four hands music to a wider audience. Sarah Gibson and Thomas Kotcheff are both pianist-composers dedicated to commissioning and performing contemporary music and have been featured performers of University of Southern California Thornton Edge for many years. Together, they have premiered dozens of chamber and solo piano works and have collaborated with the premier new music ensemble eighth blackbird. In 2014, HOCKET made their professional debut alongside Firebird Ensemble as a selected chamber group under Firebird Ensemble’s Outstanding Young Artists Initiative.

homeLA brings dance process to interior space.

homeLA provides a platform for independent dance makers and body-based artists to develop new works in conversation with residents, co-artists, and guests in various neighborhoods throughout the city.

homeLA artists work in a collective mode during a dedicated rehearsal period to form one-of-a-kind performances in response to the architecture and ethos of a home.

Combining site-sensitive dance with salon-style performance, homeLA seeks to contribute to a dialogue about performance, domestic space, and Los Angeles’ particular landscape.

 

The Hope Chronicles is dedicated to cultivating compassion through conversation. The project creates Community Listening workshops that invite people to ask their neighbors one question: “What do you hope for?” Then,  those hopes are shared with their community through public art installations and media. Through this process, the entire community grows in compassion and understanding, and they learn that everyone is worth listening to.

John Williams is a living legend in the field of music today. His influence can be felt throughout chamber, film and concert music. 20 years ago John composed his concerto for trumpet which was originally written for Michael Sachs and the Cleveland orchestra. Unfortunately, this recording was never released and it is the goal through this project to make the definitive recording of this work. John Williams will conduct this recording session, and making this recording here with him and LA’s finest musicians will be historic and a first for this concerto.

The Joshua Treenial  is a weekend of art, installations, performances and community building which highlight all that Joshua Tree inspires and makes possible. Artists are invited to install work on the land surrounding BoxoHOUSE as well as in the studio/gallery. Performances take place at local sites of interest such as The Integratron, Joshua Tree Astronomy Arts Theater and Art Queen. Cultural partners, including select local artists and cultural initiatives, are invited to participate as Cultural Partners with programming of their own. In this way the entire area is activated and the full potential of Joshua Tree is made evident.

The first Joshua Treenial, co-curated/co-founded by KJ Baysa and Bernard Leibov, took place in May 2015 and featured artists from across the US as well as Mexico and Europe. The second edition, titled Event Horizon, took place in April 2017 and was a parallel project of DesertX. Cultural partners include Diane Best, Harrison House Music, High Desert Test Sites, Arts & Ecology,  JTHAR, Outpost Projects, and Aaron Sheppard. In addition, Joshua Treenial partnered with The Mojave Desert Land Trust and JT Lab to develop and launch guidelines for artists working on the desert lands and to further education about the land during the weekend. Audience numbers reached approx 500 people, most from outside of the immediate area and so the Joshua Treenial is demonstrating a contribution to the local economy.

JT Lab is a creative partner of the National Park Service. We employ the skills of artists and designers to work closely with NPS in our shared mission of protecting and facilitating access to the national parks and national park resources. JT Lab does this by means of providing creative assistance to park sites, generating and collaborating on special projects with parks, and helping to preserve the service’s modern design history.

Kewa Civic Concerts presents free and low-cost admission concerts for the community and for those who cannot get out to hear concerts. The group is currently presenting subsidized professional music performances in pediatric hospitals and has curated the Free Admission Glendale Noon concerts, which presents twenty-four subsidized concerts a year to the public.

KNOWLEDGES is an artist-organized curatorial initiative into the expanded field. KNOWLEDGES at Mount Wilson Observatory features site-oriented art installations and performances at the historic astronomical observatory June 3 & 4, 2017. The 2017 exhibition is curated by KNOWLEDGES founding director Christina Ondrus, with additional programming curated by John Hogan, Ian James, Gabie Strong, and Brica Wilcox. KNOWLEDGES is a recipient of an inaugural 2016-17 Artist Project Grant from the Mike Kelley Foundation for the Arts.

The L.A. Zine Fest (LAZF) is, at its core, an opportunity for So-Cal zinesters—makers of self-published magazines— to come together en masse and meet and exchange ideas with people from all over the country. The Fest itself is an annual event organized by a collective of zine-enthusiasts dedicated to promoting zine culture as a means to connect communities in Los Angeles and beyond.

The Los Angeles International Student Film Festival is dedicated solely to screening work created by students enrolled in high school, undergraduate and graduate programs.  By focusing on student films on an international level the festival is bringing together a global community of filmmakers who share the common goal of education and artistic expression. The festival will give talented students a sound board from which to be heard and motivate them to further explore their craft and grow as artists.

LAND AND SEA is a small press based in Oakland California run by Maria Otero and Chris Duncan. LAND AND SEA began during the final days of 2009 and have consistently been publishing small editions of books and records by artists from the bay area and beyond. Under the same moniker, Chris and Maria organize gatherings that celebrate the artists they work with as well as the communities they are a part of. As an extension of our printed objects and editions, we opened the doors of our storefront studio in Oakland to host sound and art events at the beginning of 2015. Since we have opened our space our mission has been to provide an inclusive space which works outside of institutional red tape and to maintain a physical platform that facilitates intimate, often non-commercial performances and gatherings. As we move forward, our goal is continue our open and vast programming with a more stable financial reality.

Light on Shadow is developing “Artur Schnabel: No Place of Exile”, a cinematic and musical portrait of one of the twentieth century’s iconic musicians and composers. Through Schnabel’s music (performed at a major commemorative concert in Berlin by pianist Markus Pawlik, singer Dietrich Henschel, and the Szymanowski String Quartet) and letters (read by the eminent actor Udo Samel), the film reveals an essential artist displaced by the catastrophe of the two World Wars and the Holocaust and inspired by the possibilities of modernism. The film is directed by Matthew Mishory and will premiere in fall 2017.

New plays aren’t scary.  Little Candle creates new, intelligent, story-centered theatre for both the hesitant and enthusiastic audience member.

Long Shadows will be a six-hour audio mini-series that explores centuries of cultural encounter and erasure, and the resulting writing and re-writing of California history. It interweaves narratives from early encounters between Native, Spanish, and Anglo cultures with present-day manifestations of that past: public celebrations, history classes, geopolitical divisions and civic policy, resurrections of ancestral languages and culture, California tribes struggling to obtain Federal recognition, and historians working to re-construct the old narratives.

It is organized around three moments of cultural displacement, examining the influences which shaped events during those encounters and then went on to shape how their history was written. The first act explores the start of European colonization through the biography of Juan Cabrillo, tracking his boyhood in Seville (the first European gateway to the West) through his involvement in the overthrow of the Aztecs to his death in 1543 off the California coast while leading the first European voyage to California. The next focus comes two centuries later, examining the struggles of native tribes under Spanish settlement. The last is on the Anglo supplanting of Californio culture in the mid-19th Century and how romanticizing the culture of earlier conquerors obscured harsher waves of enslavement and extermination.

A sound-rich, essayistic collage exploring how the biases of the past continue to constrain our understanding of the present, it will be available as a podcast and be used as the basis for a series of live performances.

Los Angeles Artist Census addresses the lack of knowledge of the life of working artists in Los Angeles. Part research project, part public art—this project involves collecting basic financial data on LA-based artists to gain a better understanding of need versus resources-available to artists in the city.

Modeled after the US Census Bureau’s American Community Survey, which collects data on people in the US to determine how federal and state funds are distributed each year, the LA Artist Census will provide much needed statistical information on the quality of life of artists living in Los Angeles. The data will include information like total debt, debt from student loans, monthly income and expenses, and employment status.

Lot 2001 is a short-term artist retreat located in an industrial neighborhood on the Eastside of Los Angeles. Inspired by artist friends who can no longer afford to live in LA, Lot 2001 provides cost–free temporary accommodations for visual artists, writers and performers who have an urgent need. Curated by multi-disciplinary artist Margie Schnibbe, Lot 2001 seeks to provide multiple levels of support for visual artists, writers and performers with limited financial means.

The Love House originated from artist Alexandra Grant’s collaborative proposal to transform the Johnson family home on E. 107th Street in Watts, California, into a living artwork that blends public and private spaces across the street from the Watts Towers monument. Originally created under the invitation of Watts House Project in 2008, the Love House is now ready to be completed as an independent project. The Love House team includes Moneik Johnson and her children as well as architect Jason Robinson, designers Arktura, Project Manager, Trinidad Ruiz, and Alexandra Darraby of Art Law Firm.  Together, the team has created a masterful renovation plan that adds value to both the public space as well as interior family life.

Mars has fascinated humanity since early in our history. It enthralls us even more now, because it is the only planet in the solar system which could support human life. With the amazing discoveries of the Mars Curiosity Rover and Mars landers and orbiters from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory; NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center; and European, Russian, and Indian space programs, people throughout the world are riveted by the exploration of Mars. Mars: Astronomy and Culture is an exhibition and accompanying catalogue organized by curator Jay Belloli that will be presented at the Williamson Gallery at Art Center College of Design beginning in October 2017, and will then travel internationally. In addition to reproductions of early astronomical drawings of mars and numerous historical and recent photographs of Mars, the exhibition will also include written fiction and narrative film.

Merge Collaborative’s mission is to bring together musicians with various other artists, curating interdisciplinary salon-style performances around socially relevant themes that cater to the diverse Los Angeles community. Merge bridges the flagrant gap of inequality in art, both for artists and for whom art is presented. Our curated performances address themes varying from social inequities and political conflict to universal human conditions, presented by a diverse group of musicians/artists, including those from marginalized groups whose voices deserve a platform. As we believe that representation matters, we bring low-cost (sometimes free) performances to unconventional venues throughout Greater Los Angeles. In doing so we ensure that art as a birthright is being shared with everyone in our community, regardless of socioeconomic status. We strive to highlight the abundant art landscape of our great city, where inspiration comes just as easily from the city streets as it does from high-end institutions.

The Mojave Project is an experimental transmedia documentary by Kim Stringfellow exploring the physical, geological and cultural landscape of the Mojave Desert. The Mojave Project reconsiders and establishes multiple ways in which to interpret this unique and complex landscape, through association and connection of seemingly unrelated sites, themes, and subjects thus creating a speculative and immersive experience for its audience.

Monte Vista Projects is an artist-run space based in Highland Park. Through exhibitions, lectures, events and performances, MVP has served as a space to share ideas and cultivate exhibitions articulated in experiments and play. We also encourage forms which break entirely from these existent threads.

The Moving Mountain is a performance-based project created by artist Rachel Mason for fiction, science, and autobiographical stories. This interdisciplinary series of programming aims to make complex scientific ideas relatable through personal stories and evocative staging with engaging production design integrating dance, music, costume and storytelling.

The Museum of Awe is a unique blend of art, science, theater, and surprise whose goal is to remind people of the gift and privilege of being alive. The Museum is in the early stages of developing this concept and see the potential of the project to be a laboratory for the study of awe. The “Museum of Awe Workshop/Prototype” researches the feasibility of this initiative, leading towards the creation of a prototype.

Music Lifeboat delivers music education to the world by way of educational apps.

The founders of Music Lifeboat believe that visions of education, music, technology, entertainment and creativity have to be married with the visions of humanity, compassion, and justice. They have created engaging online applications for both games and music lessons to enable everyone to enjoy free access to music education.

Opera Posse is a cooperative of professional opera singers exploring ways to refresh the relevance of opera by celebrating, innovating, giving back to the community, and mentoring, interfacing, and collaborating with the emerging artist through performance. This season consists of a new opera, a holiday opera, and an opera in a historical Pasadena venue.

Science is a creative—even artistic—process. The Palomar Observatory Book is about the pioneering men and women who almost single-handedly laid the foundations of modern astrophysics and jump-started the rise of world-class science and technology in southern California.  Yet, the bulk of those exquisite discoveries are buried in technical journals.  The Project’s intent is multifold: to make the discoveries more accessible to the public, to inspire and educate the public about the scientific process, and to celebrate and chronicle three-quarters of a century’s worth of ground-breaking scientific achievements.

Pasadena Opera is committed to revolutionizing the presentation and perception of opera. They provide theatre experiences that are contemporary and relevant to all members of the community while maintaining standards of the highest artistic excellence. Pasadena Opera strives to entertain and delight their audiences in a comfortable, accessible environment.

 

Pasadena Schubertiade is an annual city wide classical music and arts festival loosely based on the repertoire of Franz Schubert, who with his friends, shared great music in intimate and informal settings known as “schubertiades”.

PasadenaPhotographyArts is dedicated to the promotion of photographic arts in the Pasadena environs; encouraging and supporting established and emerging fine art, documentary and conceptual photographers through promotion, exhibitions, publications and educational programs.

Piano Summer Intensive is a weeklong music camp aimed at creating a social, motivational, and intense learning experience for piano students (ages 9-18).  Each day, students engage in five 40-minute music sessions that range from lessons, peer-practicing, rehearsals, special guest presentations and masterclasses, and concentrated practice.

The Portraits of the Fallen Memorial has a mission to tell the story of those who serve our country, with the painting of the California Fallen from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Each soldier is matched with a professional artist, who creates a portrait in the medium of his or her choice. The long-range vision is to develop a traveling exhibition that will address issues of patriotism and tell the stories of these American heroes.

Public Matters is a Los Angeles-based, award-winning social enterprise. We design and implement long-term, place-based, socially engaged art, media, education, and civic engagement projects that advance social change. Our team—made up of artists, educators, media professionals, cultural planners, and Fellows—works on projects across disciplinary boundaries to build social, creative, economic, and civic capital in communities. Public Matters connects people to their neighborhoods; cultivates shared ownership of place; builds capacity to shape communities.

QiPO is a team of international curators, artists and cultural producers, who have joined forces to realize exhibitions, events and various arts related projects around the world with the purpose of promoting dialogue and social engagement.

Queer Artist Dinner (QAD) was created in 2017 to bring together Los Angeles-based LGBTQ artists for a meal and conversation. The evening’s objective was simple, to create a space for queer artists to meet as peers outside of an exhibition opening and without the presence of curators, gallerists, and collectors. Situated within an intergenerational and diverse room of over 100 artists, the dinner became an informal context for individuals to meet new friends, foster meaningful connections, and make plans for the future.

Queerfest is a free annual street festival that brings the cutting-edge creativity of Los Angeles’ queer community to center stage while celebrating the city’s internationally significant queer history and culture.

RARARA is the umbrella project for Edgar Arceneaux’s live performance works.

Until, Until, Until… investigates the infamous 1981 performance of Broadway legend Ben Vereen, televised nationally as part of Ronal Reagan’s inaugural celebration.
Boney Manilli, where Disco meets Rasputin meets Milli Vanilli, in a drug induced historical mash-up, inspired by pop stars and mystical icons whose rise and fall have become synonymous with infamy. The play explores how dangerous Entertainment has become, when feelings are more trustworthy than facts — the conditions of our current political reality.

Real93543 is a creative placemaking project for the Southeast Antelope Valley, designed to engage residents and artists in a collaborative, arts-based process of strengthening local ownership and social connection. An homage to the 93543-zip code, the project focuses on highlighting community specific narratives through documentary media, art education programs and public art.

Our mission is to create public murals that will engage and inspire the communities in which they are created. The Rotating Mural Exhibition is located at Jones Coffee Roasters in Pasadena, which will introduce the community to a new artist every three months over the course of a year. Artists will be invited to paint a large-scale public art piece within a painted frame. The aim of the project is to contribute to a dynamic, vibrant, and growing community, while simultaneously providing artists with a unique platform to exhibit their work and gain public working exposure.

Serving Artists in Process (SAIPRO) is an organization that helps to nourish the artist through individual coaching, classes and workshops, showcases, exhibits and performance, and other expressions and documentation through the visual, writing and performing arts. SAIPRO believes there is an artist in everyone in whatever field of the heart’s desire.

The Salastina Music Society is dedicated to presenting world-class performances of chamber music. Incorporating the goals of broad audience appeal and innovative programming, Co-Founders/Artistic Directors Maia Jasper and Kevin Kumar purposefully design each program to be slightly shorter than the average classical music concert.

Scholarship Audition Performance Preparatory Academy (SAPPA) is a music and arts preparatory program for youngsters in under-served communities. SAPPA delivers a musical experience through workshops, clinics and mentoring and instructional programs.  SAPPA works to increase community awareness and student participation in existing programs, provide support systems for families, and assist students in personal development. Their instrument loan project makes instruments available to students and schools in need.

An outgrowth of the Pasadena Gun Buy Back, Sculpture For Peace is creating a sculpture from melted guns. Guns are transformed into beauty.  Swords into plowshares.  Fear into hope.  By removing guns so they cannot be used for accidental or intentional shootings, and turning them into a work of art, Sculpture For Peace sends a strong message that  the Pasadena community will not stand for gun violence.

Selah Gospel Choir (SGC) was founded in 2007 as a haven for people who want to sing high-quality gospel music, but are either unable to find it in their own churches or do not identify with being in a church at all. SGC is a non-auditioned secular community choir based in Pasadena, CA. Our vibrant and fun ensemble strives to remain authentic to traditional roots and contemporary forms of Black gospel music.

While SGC is not religiously affiliated, our membership consists of individuals with various spiritual, theist and non-theist belief systems – Christians from varying denominations, Jews, Atheists, Buddhists, religious and secular Humanists, and many others. We are diverse, both racially and generationally, and wholly inclusive of those who identify as straight, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, gender-fluid, gender-queer, and everything in between. And everyone calls it home. SGC is a safe place where all are welcomed and shown respect despite our many differences.

The Shed Research Institute is a multidisciplinary art and design studio committed to researching and intervening in the forces that define place, landscape, and site, through independent and collaborative research, community-based projects, and site-specific projects.

SIPAUSR is the Society of Interesting People for the Advancement of Unique Social Recreation, a collective for the experimental practice of recreational arts. SIPAUSR is prototyping SAUSR, the Space for the Advancement of Unique Social Recreation. This future art space is for the formation and experimentation of unique social recreation concepts.

Sites Of Sanctuary: The Negro Motorist Green Book is a multimedia project based on The Negro Motorist Green Book, a travel guide for African Americans during the Jim Crow era. The “Green Book” listed up to 1500 restaurants, hotels, hair salons, barbershops, taverns and service stations that were willing to serve African Americans. Funded in part by a grant from California Humanities, Sites of Sanctuary will present an event featuring Green Book businesses that were in Los Angeles and record stories about the people who operated and patronized businesses that were listed in the Los Angeles section of the Green Book.

The Southland Institute is an unaccredited two-year postgraduate workshop and evolving public online repository of educational resources, built around a central curricular helix consisting of the tools, processes, histories, and discourses of typography and critical art-making. It is also intended to be a forum for inquiry into the processes, potentials, and complications of education and its attendant structures and systems.

SPArt is a funding initiative that supports Los Angeles-based Social Practice Art projects. SPArt provides financial resources to artists who intend to create social change through socially engaged art. These projects work in cooperation with communities and address or respond to current social issues and conditions. SPArt aims to empower the artists and the work as agents of change.

 

Using multimedia and the written word, Stage Raw is a digital journal dedicated to discovering, discussing and honoring L.A.-based arts and culture. Using and expanding on a core of current and former L.A. Weekly contributors, Stage Raw initially is focusing on theater, but soon will broaden its coverage to include dance, music and the visual arts. The site offers complimentary searchable event listings, reviews, features, profiles, humor and essays.

In our culture, most of the stories arriving from the airwaves are created to sell products. Stage Raw will focus on the many voices and visions otherwise muted by this theology of marketing: We stand behind the actor on the unadorned stage; the director forging undiscovered meanings in a classic; the dramatist, painter, comedian and composer who may not have an agent, but who have something authentic to say. Stage Raw is here to provoke, and to serve artists and their audiences in the larger struggle to discern the purpose of our lives, and the meaning of our city.

Ten West is an ensemble dedicated to creating and performing original, cutting edge shows which provoke, inspire, and entertain with a humorous look at the human experience. Their multi-disciplinary style, with a strong emphasis on non-verbal physical comedy, unites audiences of all language, cultural, and socio-economic backgrounds. Ten West also applies this philosophy to education and creates shows for youth, exploring vital life skills such as conflict resolution, character and good manners.

The Trailer Trash Project operates out of a vintage trailer to bring free mobile concerts, shows and exhibits to local neighborhoods around Los Angeles.  It is a collaborative effort, comprised of a multicultural, multidisciplinary group of artists who share a common interest in using art to explore the meaning of home and community.

Trop is an online literary magazine based in Los Angeles. It features serialized creative writing, literary criticism, pop culture criticism, interviews, personal essays, and reviews of fake movies, as well as humor writing of many varieties in The Weather.

Unconfirmed Makeshift Museum [UMM] is a flexible project space with a playful utopian sensibility, conceived as a cultural intervention in suburban Irvine, CA. UMM’s mission is to provide a shifting, creative platform for contemporary art through exhibitions and free public events for the community. Inspired by the generative history of artist collectives and alternative spaces, UMM is artist and community-centered, bringing together hybrid conceptual and poetic strategies, abstraction and politics. UMM is sponsored and directed by Abstraction at Work, an entity created by artist Mariángeles Soto-Díaz.

Vicente Chamber Orchestra is a quality chamber orchestra, largely comprised of volunteer musicians who are passionate about music, excited about performing, interested in playing in a chamber orchestra, and committed to making great music that will excite local audiences.

VOLUME is a collective of creative individuals dedicated to presenting time-based work by emerging and established artists engaged in sound based practices, including performance, experimental music, field recording, voice, radio, movement, and technology. Through performances, concerts, exhibitions, screenings, and workshops, VOLUME aims at fostering a critical understanding of politics and aesthetics in relation to sound and sound based practices.  As a curating body, VOLUME intends to cultivate social and public activities, contributing to the contemporary sonic arts scene of Los Angeles.

WasteLAnd presents music which explores the extremities of instrumental and vocal performance techniques and both reconsiders and expands conventional modes of musical expression while searching for something new. The project name is a hat-tip to outsider misconceptions that Los Angeles’s contemporary/experimental music scene lacks artistic invention, quality, and community. WasteLAnd’s concerts will shine a spotlight on chamber music composed in the last decade performed by world-class musicians who live and work in Southern California.

For over 50 years composer and saxophonist Wayne Shorter has shattered the limitations of jazz with his transcendent musicality.  As Wayne Shorter turns 80 years old this year, his immense contribution to music, his vision and legacy are celebrated in the feature-length documentary film Wayne Shorter: Zero Gravity.

What’s Next? Ensemble is a post-classical music collective based in Los Angeles. Created in the spring of 2008 with the mission of bringing together talented emerging artists to perform exciting, cutting-edge music from Southern California and beyond, What’s Next? is building a reputation as a leader in the Southern California music scene.

Wild Art Group is a project based art and performance company dedicated to supporting the development and creation of new art works by Allison M Keating. Wild Art Group creates artistic projects that are relevant to NOW, charging people to examine and question our current contemporary moment, to provoke community engaged discussion and instigate change in our society. Our art works herald unfettered self expression and are daring, ambitious, visually striking, exciting and never without a sense of danger. We work to ensure the experimental arts (works of art in which the outcomes are unknown) has a thriving future in America by fueling a culture of collaboration, resource sharing, support and sustainability, both economic and environmental.