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Wk #11 – Classmate Conversation – Alexandria Sandoval

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This week for my classmate conversation I had the pleasure of meeting CSULB sophomore Alexandria Sandoval. Alexandria is currently working towards a kinesiology degree in order to become a physical therapist. I really enjoyed talking to her as we both had quite a few things in common! First off we both were student athletes in high school and still continue to play our favorite sports even though we both had to stop playing due to injuries. However while I played volleyball in high school, Alexandria ran track and field AND played soccer! I honestly have no idea how she did this as I absolutely HATE running, but I also think it’s great for her as it’s great exercise. Along with sharing an interest in sports, both of us have siblings. Although I have to deal with only one frustrating sister, Alexandria has 3. Finally the last thing we have in common is that both of our fathers were in the Marines. I thought it was pretty cool to meet someone else who has a family and life that pretty similar to mine especially because Alexandria was pretty friendly and I really enjoyed talking to her.

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Wk #10 – Architecture Art Activity – The Wedge

For the Architecture Art Activity this week I chose to re-design The Wedge. Being a freshman and not fully comfortable with everywhere on campus yet, I had no idea where The Wedge was until we had to do this project. Up until now I hadn’t even noticed it as I usually walk the main path so I was confused as to why it was such a big deal. After seeing this area the only thing I could ask myself was “Why?” “Why did a team of architects when building our school, think that this little walk way was a good idea?” I couldn’t find a good explanation as to why, so I thought of a redesigning solution to the problem. If I were to redesign this area, I would first remove the concrete bench behind The Wedge for the reason that it honestly is a very inconvenient place as it is blocking part of the walk way. Secondly, I would pull back the Wedge away from the planters to make more room for people to walk through. I think this would be a good solution to the lack of room for the path and keep people happy that the Wedge is still a part of our campus. Also, I think a year from now  people would be happy that FINALLY they would have enough room to comfortably walk around that previously inconvenient corner and they would still be happy the cultural artifact was left intact.IMG_1448.JPGIMG_1449.JPG

Wk #10 – Artist Conversation – Amy Duran

 

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Artist: Amy Duran

Exhibition: Forever By Your Side

Media: Ceramic and wood

Gallery; Marilyn Werby Gallery

Instagram: @Polkadot.pony

 

Amy Duran is currently a senior attending CSU Long Beach for a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree with an emphasis in Ceramics. As ceramics is one of her passions, her exhibit Forever By Your Side was made entirely of ceramics. Duran’s work displays a fairy tale story of a young girl becoming a woman and discovering herself while learning to let go of her childhood.

The materials used throughout this exhibit were clay and paint that were fired to create her ceramic figurines that were atop moving wooden pieces. Each scene had a wooden lever attached to the base that would allow the audience to move the scene to see different transforming parts of the story. The writing and exhibit both were styled to resemble a fairy tale as every section was introduced by a large golden book placed on a table and light happy music playing behind the scene to induce the fairy tale feeling.

Forever by Your Side is meant to resemble the same journey Amy Duran went through when she transformed from girlhood to womanhood. For example, in her exhibit there is a scene of the young girl standing with her beloved studded animal by her side and when the audience spins the scene they see her transform into more revealing clothing symbolizing her reaching adulthood. Duran’s work showed the audience about how while growing up she had to come to realize that although she would have to let go of her childhood imaginations when growing up, she can still carry those memories with her throughout her life.

I really enjoyed Amy Duran’s exhibit Forever By Your Side as I found it quite unique and it was obvious that lots of work and effort went into her pieces. Clay is not an easy medium to work with and I thought that Duran did really well with the figurines. I also really enjoyed that her exhibit was interactive as not many art exhibits allow you to interact with their creations. However although I loved the visual aesthetics of her work, my favorite aspect of her exhibit was that I was able to relate to her story. Every child grows up and eventually has to struggle with this realization that they have grown out of their childhood and must discover themselves, and I adored the way Duran creatively visualized this story. IMG_1433.JPGIMG_1432 2.JPGIMG_1431 2.JPGIMG_1427 2.JPG

Week #6 – Flip Book

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For this week’s art project we were to make a “Zine” or a Flipbook. Having no idea what a “zine” was, naturally I Googled the phrase and here is the definition : A zine (/ˈzn/ zeen; short for magazine or fanzine) is most commonly a small-circulation self-published work of original or appropriated texts and images, usually reproduced via photocopier. (according to Wikipedia). Once I read the activity page and saw that we were to create our own Zine or flip book, I got kind of excited because this is something you can completely personalize and create absolutely whatever you like! I decided to use regular while printer paper that I folded and then stapled into the center to create my very own zine while I began brainstorming my ideas. After a long internal debate on what the topic of my zine should be, I decided to make it a comical showing of all of the reasons people get roadrage with funny cartoon illustrations. Starting off with the most common causes of roadrage such as being cut off by some inconsiderate idiot and ranging to extreme cases of roadrage caused by getting bird poop-bombed through the sun-roof of your car (true story – happened to my dad one day coming home from work), my zine covers as many causes of roadrage that I could think of and every one is accompanied with a small image portraying the frustration of the situation. I really enjoyed this process and I really like how my project turned out as it did a great job of showing the frustrations that come with driving in California!

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Week #6 – Art Piece Fictional Short Story

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*Interactive Sculpture*

Ariel Maldonado

Fired clay, remote controlled glowing LED lights

Approximately 12″ x 13″ x 7″

2017

CSULB School of Art, Dr. Maxine Merlino Gallery

 

As Sam cautiously stepped into the damp and eerie mouth of the cave, he heard the echoing sound of water droplets dripping off of the hardened rock icicles protruding form the ceiling, and falling to their death on the unforgiving rock beneath them. Drip…drip… drip. “We have to find the Fallen Stone, lets keep moving,” Sam says to his best friends Anna and Brett. As the trio continue their venture into the dark endless cave, they begin to hear sounds that let them know they are not alone. Brett grabs both Sam and Anna’s hands and stops suddenly. “What’s up Brett? We have to keep going, the sooner we retrieve the Stone, the sooner we can get the hell out of this creepy cave and go back home,” says Anna. “I don’t know why, but I ‘m getting a bad feeling about this…” Brett replies taking a few steps back towards the entrance. “Nah man we have to keep going, if we don’t find the Fallen Stone before the Soldiers do, then the whole Rebellion has no chance. We have to keep going.” Sam says pulling his two partners towards the mazes of the cave. After a few hours of walking, they decide to take a break and eat some food to replenish their energy. “How do you even know we are going the right way?” Brett questions Anna. “Because we are following the map the Ancients gave us, and they are the ones who paved these tunnels,” Anna replies. Once finished with their meals, Brett, Anna, and Sam pack up their things and continue following the path through the trails leading to the center of the cave. After another hour of walking through the treacherous paths, they reach two massive metal doors extending all the way to the ceiling. Slowly Sam and Anna push through these doors revealing a long set of stairs leading to a podium illuminated by a single ray of light from above the cave. “Great, more walking,” Brett sarcastically remarks as the three begin their ascension up the stone stairs. Reaching the top finally, Sam, Brett, and Anna surround the podium to get a closer look at the Fallen Stone. Shining bright purple, they see the Fallen Stone brightly illuminate the room and then see it begin changing colors. “Wow, I never imagined it could be this beautiful. I’ve never seen a stone that shines as bright as this one before!” Anna exclaims. “It’s amazing! A stone that could change colors from blue to green to red instantly!” Brett says. “Alright guys, lets bring it home…we’ve got a Rebellion to fight!” Sam exclaims as the group begins their long journey home.

Week 5 – Automatic Drawing

At first sight I really thought this project would be kinda boring because I’ll admit, I’m not the best draw-er and I get annoyed when I can’t get my drawings to look the same as I picture them in my head. However, this project was so much fun! My boyfriend and I have been dating for almost 2 years now and there’s never a dull moment with us, so I knew this project would be perfect to do with him because we would be laughing and having fun the whole time (which we did!). I started out with taping the sheet of paper to a blank canvas, and laying it in between our legs while we both sat criss-cross-applesauce and had our knees touching. Next I grabbed my really nice Pentel Art colored pens and we chose our first color which ended up being green (my bf’s favorite color), then succeeded by red (my favorite color), blue, pink and finally purple. Once we got started, we both couldn’t stop laughing at how random the piece was coming out, but in the end I kinda liked it! Most of the lines are fluid and have the essence of a spiral, while on rare occasion there are jagged uneven lines forcing a break between the fluidity. I really like the colors we chose and eventually I’ll probably color some of the shapes in to make the piece look more absttract, but for now I really just enjoyed the experience of this project. Overall, I really liked the way our drawing came out and I’m totally excited for the next art project we get to do!!

Week #5 – Artist Conversation – Emily Barnett

Artist: Emily Barnett

Media: Printmaking/Lithographs

Exhibition: Recent Works on Paper

Gallery: Dr. Maxine Merlino Gallery

Website: N/A

Instagram: @Emily_b_anne

Emily Barnett, originally from Northern California, is currently a CSU Long Beach student enrolled in and loving the Printmaking program. However before studying at CSULB, Barnett previously attended Humboldt State University where she began her artwork that focuses on the struggle she’s faced while coping with mental illness. The amount of work that goes into every single one of her pieces is extensive and the process can take anywhere from a couple of days to almost a month to create.

In her exhibit, Barnett had several drawn and painted prints in dark frames that severely separated the prints from the white walls. All of the pictures were hand-drawn and painted, most portraying her as a child holding her teddy-bear as a sense of security. Each picture, although based on the innocence of Barnett as a child, is painted uniquely giving each an individual work of art its own tone and impression. While some of the prints in the beginning of the exhibit were colored in perfectly, they gradually became more splattered and unruly to illustrate the conflict with mental illness.

In Emily Barnett’s exhibit, she strives to show her audience the feelings she has experienced through dealing with the obstacles presented by her mental illness. When speaking of her work, Barnett expressed how her pieces are based on her personal experiences with her condition and how she wanted to shed light on this subject by illustrating her emotions throughout the stages of her life. She stated how she purposefully chose to have her young childhood self as the base of her prints to keep the pieces innocent and light while still illustrating the pain through the expression in her eyes and the almost chaotic brush strokes of paint.

Personally, I found it hard yet inspiring to see and hear of Barnett’s story with mental illness as it made me completely admire her bravery in sharing her experiences with the world. My father struggles with mental illness and has expressed his frustration in how helpless and alone you feel suffering through a mental issue and experience no one else can truly understand. As mental illness runs through my family, it was increasingly hard hearing Barnett’s story and seeing her struggle knowing my father feels the same way. I was in awe however at how much courage it must take for Barnett to share her own story with strangers and how even though she has suffered so much, she still is optimistic and empowered in her fight to inform people of the struggle with mental illness she and others face every day.

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Wk#4 – Artist Conversation –

 

Artists: Elmer Guevara & Robert Nehemiah

Exhibition: Immaterial

Media: Canvas, unprimed cardboard, paint, tarp/mesh, metal, unprimed wood

Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Gatov West Gallery

 

Elmer Guevara and Robert Nehemiah were both from Los Angeles and attended different colleges; Nehemiah attended Rio Honda College where as Guevara attended East Los Angeles College. Nehemiah originally aspired to become a firefighter, but while in college he realized how passionate he was becoming about painting and different forms of art. However while Nehemiah was discovering his passion for the arts, Guevara always had a strong interest and connection with art and decided that was what he wanted to pursue for his career. Both men met in one of their shared  classes for this project and immediately hit it off as friends due to their shared interests in forms of art and decided to collaborate for this exhibit. They are both currently attending CSULB and graduating this semester with a BFA in Drawing and Painting.

Both Elmer Guevara and Robert Nehemiah use mostly dark colored oil based paints throughout their works of art to illicit a solemn and wistful feeling. However both enjoy using different forms of media; Guevara typically favors using large canvases for his portraits, while Nehemiah uses a variety of different unprimed media from cardboard to wood to even tarp. Both artists also have differing textures due to the forms of media they selected to do their portraits on. While most of his paintings are smooth, Guevara also utilizes a rough material he paints over on his canvases to accent certain areas such as the roughness of a man’s denim jeans. Nehemiah also uses texture in his works by not priming his paintings before creating them. This leads to them having a visibly rough weathered texture on top of the reused materials.

The underlying message both artists are trying to convey to their audiences is an attempt to have people really break from materialistic ways and to see the beauty in every day blessings we take for granted. Hence the title of the exhibit “Immaterial”. This is why Robert Nehemiah chose to paint everyday people in our lives such our grandmothers, friends, and mentors. Guevara became inspired for his work by his desire to detach from material and his creative exploration of overlooked people and materials. He also is striving to shed light on different materials that are discarded when instead they can be reused creatively to form new types of art. Through his use of cardboard, unprimed wood, and old discarded tarps Nehemiah did an amazing job painting such realistic and emotional works of art. Elmer Guevara however drew his inspiration from the city of Los Angeles and the hardship surrounding the city. Guevara in his paintings captures the movement and depiction of mental illness that he photographed while in LA. After taking multiple shots of the area and people he interviewed, Guevara then created a collage from the pictures taken and enhanced the important parts he wanted to call attention to. Once this was finished the final step was to transfer his collage, and paint his incredible painting on the large canvas.

This exhibit has been one of the most creative, inspiring, and interesting exhibits I have seen so far and I really enjoyed seeing the different forms of media incorporated and reused in this exhibit. The different media really caught my eye as it added a new and different texture I have never seen before done with painting. I also really enjoyed how much effort was obviously put into every single painting showcased in this exhibit. It honestly looked fantastic enough to be placed in a museum! I really appreciate the amount of work that went into the LA paintings as well as the time that went into every interview and collage Guevara created. The dark colors in both paintings really helped shed light on the pained expressions of the subjects’ faces, as well as contrasting nicely with the rough browned background. I truly enjoyed every piece in this exhibit, and I wish the best of luck and the greatest of thank you’s to Elmer Guevara and Robert Nehemiah for sharing their amazing work with us!

Wk #4 – Art Care Package

My Art Care Package (ACP) is being sent to my boyfriend Paul who lives in Los Alamitos. Paul and I have been dating for over a year and a half now, and so I decided to make my package a collection of the printed items and pieces I’ve kept and collected while we’ve been together. First I lined the box I sent with a glow-in-the-dark space themed cloth to make it look more fun. Then I went and collected some little trinkets from my bulletin board and keepsakes box to add to my ACP. The picture above is the final Art Care Package and some of the items you can see are: photo-booth photos with the tickets to my high school senior Winter Formal and Prom, Golf N’ Stuff mini golfing arcade tickets, mini letters he’s written me on past gifts, along with other novelties including a plethora of past movie tickets. Although most of the items are from the past, some are from the activities we’ve partaken in recently such as the newspaper article describing the big storm that hit Long Beach this weekend and the ticket from a movie we saw this past week.

Q & A

Q1. How is sending someone an ACP similar to sending someone a Snapchat?

A1. Sending someone an ACP is similar to sending someone a Snapchat in that the person receiving the Snapchat/package doesn’t generally know what it will contain. Since the contents of the package/Snapchat are a mystery to the receiver,  it leads to anticipation and excitement when they finally get to open them! Also since my ACP was sent in a box, it reminded me how sending this package is also like sending a Snapchat because the person receiving it will be opening a box looking package that looks like the symbol when you receive a Snapchat.

Q2. How is sending someone an ACP different from sending them a Snapchat?

While sending an ACP is similar to Snapchat, they are also very different. I believe that sending an ACP is more heartfelt as the amount of effort and time that goes into making one is much more extensive than the amount of effort that goes into making a 5 second Snapchat. However I do believe that sending a Snapchat is less wasteful than sending an ACP,  in that you don’t have to spend money on postage or excessive amounts of packing tape to send a Snapchat. Also, another difference between the two is that sending a Snapchat is instant, where as sending an ACP can take days both for creating and waiting for it to be delivered.

Q3. What do you think of ephemera? Is it precious? Or trash? Does it gain in value over time? Does your grandma’s parking ticket from half a century ago mean something to you? What about her tickets from Woodstock? What might your grandkids think if you one day gave them the bead bracelet you wore at Coachella?

A3. I think ephemera is interesting as it shows that art is completely based on perspective. What some see as useless trash, others see as incredibly important items that contain memories. For example, after visiting the movies most people choose to throw away their movie tickets as they are seen as disposable and only good for one-time use, where as many people (like me) see these stubs as written tangible evidence and reminders of the memories shared during and after the movies and choose to keep them as memorabilia. Along with perspective, the memories attached to certain items also deems them as save worthy or trash worthy. That is why grandma’s parking ticket would be seen as trash where as her Woodstock tickets would be seen as a prized possession. The parking ticket reminds us of the universal feeling of frustration when discovering a ticket placed beneath the windshield wipers on our cars, where as a ticket to Woodstock has the positive memories of exploring new music, art, and culture during the late 1960’s. Also a Woodstock ticket is seen as more culturally relevant due to it’s reflection on the era through music and art, where as a parking ticket is nothing more than a citation or violation that you’ll have to spend your heard earned money on. I believe that if I gave my grandchildren the head bracelet that I wore at Coachella, they would be very excited as it would probably would show them some of the art culture of my time. It also shows that these items also gain value over time as they are then perceived as antiques.

Q4. Is there a difference between art that is seen by many people, like a painting in the Museum of Modern Art, and art that is seen by few, like the ACP you send to someone?

A4. I do believe that there is a difference between the art seen by many people in a Museum and the art that is seen by few like our ACPs, in that there is a difference in formality. With our art projects, they were somewhat informal and although unique in their contents and significance, the idea of them is not new or different. However I do believe that both forms of art are equally important as they both show the view and perspective of the artist and the experiences they have had in their lives.

Q5. You can take a Snapchat and a friend on the other side of the globe can view it, all within seconds. To make an ACP and send it even to a nearby friend will take days. Does this time and effort difference mean something? How is fast better? How is slow better?

A5. I do believe time and effort make a difference because they show your friend that you are thinking of them and that they are worth your time, effort, energy, and money. It also means more because you are giving the person an actual object/piece of writing that you put emotion and work into that they can keep forever, where as a Snapchat is fast and gives you instant gratification but the art you send is gone forever after less than 10 seconds.

Q6. People sometimes say things like prepare a meal with love. Can you prepare a meal with love as fast as you can get food at a McDonald’s drive-thru? Does an ACP have the possibility of containing a sort of “love” different from a Snapchat?

A6. I do believe that you can prepare a meal with love as fast as you can get food at a McDonald’s drive-thru. For example a quickly made sandwich by your mom or dad in the morning before school is made with as much love as a time consuming gourmet meal they prepare for a holiday dinner. I however don’t believe that an ACP has the possibility of containing a different kind of love but rather expresses a more serious commitment to  demonstrating appreciation than sending a Snapchat.

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Wk 3 – Artist Conversation – Mimi Haddon

 

Exhibition Information:

  • Artist: Mimi Haddon
  • Media: Discarded T-Shirts
  • Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Gatov West Gallery
  • Website: http://mimihaddonart.com
  • Instagram: @Mimihaddon

 

Mimi Haddon is a Master of Fine Arts student studying Fiber Art through CSULB’s Fiber Department. Haddon became interested in using discarded t-shirts as a form of media over a year ago, after becoming interested in how indigenous cultures utilize native materials throughout the world. What really piqued her interest was at discovering how these people braided, weaved, and knotted those natural fibers to create structures. Through this discovery, Haddon also ties her pieces to her studies of the work of Ghanaian sculptor El Anatsui, who used discarded water bottle caps in his sculptures as an acknowledgement of the wasted human made products. When discussing her art, Mimi Haddon was very passionate about her pieces and her fascination of how every discarded t-shirt has its own story was unmistakable.

Within the gallery, Haddon had many works of art placed in contrast among the stark white walls. Her pieces were all constructed from recycled colorful t-shirts; some cut into strands for weaving, while others cut into shapes made for reshaping. The recycled clothing was collected by Haddon through donations and her local Goodwill, then to be repurposed into colorful works of art. In the top picture located above, you can see the overall appearance resembling the carnival game of popping balloons with darts. This piece has bright colorful shirts that are tied near the top to resemble deflated balloons pinned to the solid white background. Although we were not allowed to touch the material, it appeared soft and most likely made of cotton.

From my understanding, Mimi Haddon’s work is meant to make use of a taken-for-granted material by turning it into something new. Something that shows its’ audience that this material isn’t some bland, useless, waste of resources, but something that deserves attention and brings life and excitement by bringing an abundance of color. Through breaking down and reconstructing the structure of the fabric, Haddon showed her audience that even this media can be reshaped into something worthy of being deemed art. I believe that during her creation of these pieces, Haddon was also trying to expand her color palette and learn to be more embracive with the wide spectrum of colors.

Mimi Haddon’s work is truly one-of-a-kind and in a happy and vivacious way. After walking out of her gallery, I felt happier and uplifted due to how colorful and bright her work was. I thought that the extensive use of luminous colors was refreshing as it contrasts the darkness our nation is surrounded in currently. I also believe her piece that was strung from the ceiling somewhat looked as though it was recreated from a Dr. Seuss book. While looking through the gallery, the bright color and use of fabric reminded me of the Cat in the Hat, and the section of the book containing the machine that sucks up the children’s t-shirts from the floor. Overall I really enjoyed the gallery, and recognize how much work, effort, emotion, time, and energy must have gone into creating these pieces.