In an era spanning the early 20th century, through depression ridden times and a dust bowl, one form of revelry thrived – the circus. Traveling from coast to coast, rail cars packed with canvas, exotic animal menageries, strongmen, fat ladies, and roustabouts brought a much needed relief to millions of Americans. Now visitors at the Ontario Museum of History & Art’s new exhibition, Step Right Up! Behind the Scenes of the Circus Big Top, 1890 – 1965, opening February 4, 2016, will get to explore another side of this thrilling spectacle and a history fraught with intrigue and majesty.
As one of America’s oldest theatrical traditions, the circus started as a European transplant in the late 1700s and was perfected in the United States by the likes of John Bill Ricketts and P.T. Barnum, who first introduced us to sideshow oddities like the Feejee Mermaid and Tom Thumb. By 1900, there were more than 100 circuses crisscrossing the country and they were adept at using all of the advancements of America’s industrial revolution - the railroad, color lithography, and mass marketing strategies. The romanticized imagery, backstage stories, and photographs featured in Step Right Up! reveal both the fantasy and reality of circus life, exploring the illusions that played to the imaginations of so many.
Special Events that will be held in conjunction with the exhibition:
Prepare to be MYSTIFIED! Saturday February 13, 2016 (1 PM to 2 PM)
Join the Museum for an afternoon full of magic with illusionist Allen Oshiro. This unforgettable illusion act will entertain kids of all ages. This is a free event. Reservations are required.
Film Screening: Dumbo (1941), Saturday, February 20, 2016
(Refreshments/crafts at 2:30 PM, Film Screening at 3:30 PM)
Join the Museum for the classic film Dumbo (1941). Light refreshments, crafts and other fun activities will be available prior to the film screening. This is a free event. Reservations are required.
Circus Poster Presentation and Circus Diorama Workshop, Saturday, February 27, 2016 (2 PM to 4 PM)
Learn about the history of the circus poster from Greg McWhorter, teacher, pop-culture historian and private collector of vintage posters and books. After the lecture, create a small diorama inspired by the intrigue of the circus. To participate, bring a small box. Other materials will be provided. This is a free event. Reservations are required.
Family Discovery Day: Circus Spectacular! Saturday, March 12, 2016 (Noon to 4 PM)
Explore the exhibit Step Right Up! Behind the Scenes of the Circus Big Top, 1890 – 1965 and participate in art workshops, a photo booth, entertaining acts and face painting for the whole family! This is a free event.
Step Right Up! Behind the Scenes of the Circus Big Top, 1890 – 1965 takes viewers behind the scenes of the circus, exploring the dramatic pageantry, colorful past, and living presence of this grand American theatrical tradition. The exhibition is toured by ExhibitsUSA, a national program of Mid-America Arts Alliance. ExhibitsUSA sends more than 25 exhibitions on tour to more than 100 small- and mid-sized communities every year. Mid-America is the oldest nonprofit regional arts organization in the United States. More information is available at www.maaa.org and www.eusa.org.
The Ontario Museum of History & Art is located at 225 South Euclid Avenue, Ontario, CA 91762. Gallery hours are Noon to 4 PM, Thursday through Sunday. Admission is free. For information, call (909) 395-2510. The Ontario Museum of History & Art, is a public-private museum operated by the City of Ontario with support from the non-profit Ontario Museum of History & Art Associates.
The new fund will be listed in "Voluntary Contribution" portion of 2013 California tax returns
"This is wonderful news for California's young people," said Craig Watson, Director of the California Arts Council. "We hope all those who know arts education results in future success for California's children will take advantage of this opportunity to directly contribute to arts education via their tax return."
He continued, "We are grateful to Senator Carol Liu for shepherding the enabling legislation that allows Californians to directly contribute to arts education through voluntary contributions on their tax form."
Individuals may make tax-deductible contributions in amounts of $1 or more. Arts supporters who use accounting services should tell their tax preparers about contributing to the "Keep Arts in Schools Fund," and encourage others to pursue this opportunity to support California arts education. The California Arts Council will provide detailed information and tutorials on how to contribute as tax season approaches via their website www.arts.ca.gov.
Previously, the California Arts Council participated in the voluntary contribution program through the "Arts Council Fund," but was eliminated after 2011 tax year contributions fell short of the $250,000 minimum required to stay on the form.
"With the improved fund name and designation of all contributions to support arts education in California communities, the ‘Keep Arts in Schools Fund' is sure to succeed in bringing much needed support to arts education in the state," Watson said.
The 2013 tax return form (to complete in 2014) from the Franchise Tax Board will allow California taxpayers to contribute to the "Keep Arts in Schools Fund" in the "Voluntary Contribution" section. Senate Bill 571 was originally authored and introduced by Senator Curren D. Price, former chair of the Joint Committee of the Arts. Authorship was assumed by Senator Carol Liu when Senator Price was elected to the Los Angeles City Council earlier this year.
Californians can also support arts education by purchasing the "Arts Plate," the iconic license plate with a sunset and palm tree motif designed by California artist Wayne Thiebaud. More information is available at www.artsplate.org.
The Mission of the California Arts Council, a state agency, is to advance California through the arts and creativity. Members of the California Arts Council include: Chair Wylie Aitken, Vice Chair Susan Steinhauser, Michael Alexander, Christopher Coppola, Andrew Green, Charmaine Jefferson, Terry Lenihan, William Turner, and Rosalind Wyman
- See more at: http://www.cac.ca.gov/newsroom/prdetail.php?id=157#sthash.Jz4kAJLp.dpuf
RANCHO CUCAMONGA, CA -- A new exhibition, Sam Maloof Woodworker: Life | Art | Legacy, will open February 14 in the Jacobs Education Center gallery at The Sam and Alfreda Maloof Foundation for Arts and Crafts.
Conceived as part of a year-long celebration of the Maloof Centennial, the exhibition will bring together more than 60 objects including examples of Maloof furniture, drawings, photographs, works of art, documents, video excerpts, ephemera and other items.
Although Maloof furniture has been displayed in dozens of exhibitions over the years at museum venues nationwide, no previous exhibition has been more ambitious in its efforts to chronicle Maloof’s lifelong journey as an artist and craftsperson. The exhibition will be organized thematically in four gallery spaces offering insights into Sam’s art, mentors, innovations and lasting impact.
A new book, Sam Maloof: Thirty-six Views of a Master Woodworker by Fred Setterberg and published by Heyday Books, will accompany the exhibition. A special tour of the exhibition, Maloof Historic Home, and Discovery Garden, will be offered on Wednesday, February 17 as part of Palm Springs Modernism Week 2016.
In early 2015, the California Arts Council announced a competitive grant for projects that would enrich the lives of California's veterans, active-duty military and their families through the arts.
It's official, the city of San Bernardino has a new arts center! The building, which originally began as a cultural arts center in 1935 has come full circle.
Claremont, CA – Where were you in September 1990? That was the year that President George H.W. Bush and Soviet President Gorbachev met in Helsinki to discuss the Persian Gulf crisis, the first Pizza Hut opened in the People’s Republic of China and, closer to home, the Inland Valley Repertory Theatre (IVRT) was founded by Donna Marie and Frank Minano.
This year on September 29, IVRT celebrates its twenty-fifth anniversary with a party at the Candlelight Pavilion, where the company has performed since 2008. Claremont residents Gloria Slosberg, David and Ahlene Welsh and Kay Koeth, all subscribers since 1990, remember the early days of IVRT. “Productions were held in different locations then,” said Gloria Slosberg. “It has been thrilling to witness IVRT’s growth in popularity through the quality theatrical productions they present.”
Inland Valley Repertory Theatre has become a critically acclaimed regional theater company, garnering widespread honors for its theatrical works. A non-profit arts organization seeking to entertain, educate, enlighten and employ great people through great theatre art, IVRT receives funding from the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, the Claremont Community Foundation, and from private and individual donors.
For season tickets or more information about productions, refer to the website at www.ivrt.org or telephone (909) 859-4878.
"Putting on the Ritz" with the Joshua Tree International Film Festival
By Hilary Sloane
Does it get any better? We have Hollywood, the Palms Springs Film Festival, and the Joshua Tree National Park. Now we have our own International Film Festival.
by Hilary Sloane
The High Desert offers dark skies filled with meteorites, the milky way, constellations, and deep space objects that inspire visitors to make the journey and artists to create. It’s not hard to imagine when you’re standing outside in the warmth of the summer (transitioning to fall) months and stare up at an unpolluted night sky.
The National Park Service (NPS) dedicated to protecting and sharing, what the NPS calls “natural lightscape,” maintains a ban on light pollution in the Joshua Tree National Park. Natural Lightscapes exist when artificial lighting is absent. According to the U.S. National Park Service website, it is estimated that only around 10 percent of the population of the United States can see the night sky in its natural state.
The park is the perfect place to perch on a rock or bring a mat, and watch the stars dance around you and let your mind drift. The universe invites you to explore its vastness and discover it’s beauty. On a dark night you can see thousands of stars without a telescope. Even the Andromeda galaxy, which is 2.5 million light years away, is visible. It’s amazing to stand there in the quiet of the night and suddenly become aware that you’re part of this universe.
The "Joshua Tree Astronomy Arts Theater" located at the Joshua Tree Lake, RV, and Camp, Park offers starry night events and parties. The theater was founded by the Southern California Desert Video Astronomers (SCDVA), a group of local amateur astronomers that meet monthly for astronomy-related talks and events at the Yucca Mesa Community Center. Riveting images of nebula and various galaxies are projected on a 24’ long by 9’ tall screen with the use of extremely sensitive video cameras. Chairs are provided, or you can bring your own. The amphitheater is large and spacious; add Beethoven or sometimes live music, and it’s an unforgettable experience, complete with the romance of a starry night.
While attending the Perseid Meteor Shower on August 12th, I met two young men from Orange Country who were camping at the RV park. They brought friends, cameras, an appreciation for the desert and an appetite for learning. I met a mother with her three children ages, 5, 8, and 18. The age range of the approximately 250 attendees was from toddler to Senior. No one was too young, or too old.
For the dedicated astronomer and interested novice, club members provide a variety of telescopes, including computer-driven astro-imagers designed to capture deep space in almost real-time conditions. Some visitors bring their own telescopes, and members of the SCDVA give assistance when needed. One of the founders and manager, Tom O’Key, provides explanations about the images projected on the screen and adds informative and entertaining stories about the star constellations and their mythology. He has a wealth of information and generously shares it.
Leonard Holmberg, the second telescope operator, created the Starcart that houses six computers and projects 3D images. Families, neighbors, strangers - everyone huddles together, and it feels like a family reunion.
Larry Filke, a visitor to the theater said, “The Astronomy Theater events have long been an integral part of my ability to fully realize the Mojave Desert as the place on Earth where I am most attuned to my final oneness with all things. These events feed me spiritually, intellectually and communally. I am grateful.”
"Sky’s the Limit, Observatory and Nature Center" in 29 Palms is a grassroots, all-volunteer nonprofit dedicated to education. The Center sits on 15 acres of land and is located on Utah Trail at the southernmost edge of the Twentynine Palms entrance to the park. Volunteers have erected a 15-foot dome housing a Celestron telescope, a welcome center/gift shop, workshop, orrery, nature trail and meditation garden.
On a typical Saturday over 200 people will be coming and going all evening. Small groups congregate around personal telescopes while informed volunteers explain what is happening in the sky. Everyone is helpful, full of passion and excitement.
I was captivated for a good 30 minutes by a 13-year-old astronomer named Sam Deen, who was visiting the high desert with his family. Sam was eagerly waiting for the appearance of "2 mass j-18352154-312338.5," a binary star, about 25 light years away. The sighting would be of monumental importance since no one has ever seen this star. He discovered it through X-rays. Sam and I saw something shooting through the night. It just might have been Sam’s personal discovery or it might have been a Perseid Meteor. He will keep looking, I’m sure of that.
The next scheduled Saturday night session is August 22nd, “Observing the first quarter moon.” On September 5th, “Take a “grand tour of the cosmos,” with guides manning the telescopes and teaching the subject they love the most. On September 12th, the team of volunteers will talk about “Galaxies and Globular Clusters.” On September 19th, observe a Crescent Moon. Add the views of lunar landscapes, binary stars and deep space objects and you will be mesmerized for hours, or at least until it gets light.
The SCDVA also provides private parties and special group events along with Astro camping either in a tent, car, truck, van or RV. Check the website for future showings.
Joshua Tree Astronomy theater website is: http://www.joshuatreetheater.com
Southern California Desert Video Astronomers: scdva.org.
The Joshua Tree Lake RV and Camping Park is located at 2601 Sunfair Rd. Joshua Tree, CA. 92252
Sky’s the Limit’s website is http://skysthelimit29.org
Arts & urban policy expert , Dr. Maria Rosario Jackson and County Supervisors Josie Gonzales and Chair James Ramos to Headline Arts Connection Annual Conference
San Bernardino, California- Arts professionals from throughout San Bernardino County and surrounding areas will convene on Saturday, September 26 in Rancho Cucamonga for a full day of networking, presentations, and workshops about creative placemaking as well as cultural planning and public art.
Creative placemaking is a growing field of practice that leverages the arts to revitalize communities while also addressing broader social and economic issues. The focus will be on developing creative placemaking strategies which artists and organizations can implement in their own communities, sparking creative entrepreneurship, engaging new audiences and strengthening individual municipalities and the County as a whole. Opening remarks will be delivered by James Ramos, Chairman of the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors.
We are very pleased to share that Dr. Maria Rosario Jackson will be our keynote speaker. She is an Arts and Urban Policy Specialist with expertise is in comprehensive community revitalization, systems change, dynamics of race and ethnicity and the roles of and arts and culture in communities. She is Senior Advisor to the Kresge Foundation and also consults with national and regional foundations and government agencies. In 2013, President Obama appointed Dr. Jackson to the National Council on the Arts. She is on the advisory board of Lambent Foundation and on the boards of directors of Alliance for California Traditional Arts and LA Commons. Dr. Jackson has been adjunct faculty at Claremont Graduate University and University of Southern California, and the 2014-2015 James Irvine Foundation Fellow in Residence at Luskin School of Public Affairs, University of California, Los Angeles. Dr. Jackson will be moderating our first panel, titled "Growing a Creative Culture." Panelists include Rhonda Lane Coleman, Director 29 Palms Art Gallery; John Worden, Director of the Ontario Museum of Art and History; Catherine Tessier, Jeved Inc.; and Kathleen Gallego, artist and Founder/Director of Avenue 50 and The California Arts Council.
Our second panel of the day will feature artists and organizations from a variety of disciplines sharing their projects and experiences with community engagement. The panel, titled “Artists and Organizations Creating Community,” will be moderated by photographer and Cal State San Bernardino Professor of Art, Thomas McGovern. It will include an impressive line up: Kim Stringfellow, artist, educator and Guggenheim fellow; Johanna Smith, puppet and performance artist and Professor of Theatre at CSU San Bernardino; Josiah Bruny, musician and CEO of Music Changing Lives; and artist/activist Michael Segura of San Bernardino Generation Now. This will be followed by three afternoon breakout sessions: “Art Making as City Making, an interactive workshop”, with James Rojas, an urban planner and founder of Place it!; “Technology to Temporary: Public Art Pursuits”, with public art expert and consultant, Lesley Elwood of Lesley Elwood and Associates; and “Making Greater Impact,” with Daniel Foster, who served as a founding Board Member of Arts Connection and former Executive Director of Oceanside Museum of Art.
“The arts and culture play a critical role in the economic recovery of the Inland Empire. This conference is a great opportunity to bring ideas and partners together,” states Kathryn Ervin, Arts Connection’s Board Chair and Professor of Theatre Arts at Cal State San Bernardino. “Artists and organizations will be discussing their projects alongside civic leaders, urban planners and private industry. Creative placemaking calls upon these diverse sectors to come together and engage communities through the arts, sparking change and innovation in their wake while bringing programming to communities that are often underserved.”
The conference will provide the most current, practical information and tools available to help visual and performing artists, administrators, organizations, educators and students develop creative placemaking strategies across sectors, which they can then implement in their own communities. The conference is being organized by Arts Connection, the non-profit Arts Council of San Bernardino County, in partnership with the Victoria Gardens Cultural Center. It will be held on Saturday, September 26 from 9 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. at the Victoria Gardens Cultural Center located at 12505 Cultural Center Drive, Rancho Cucamonga, CA 91739.
The conference is free to all members of Arts Connection. One-year membership start at only $25 for individuals (and $10 for students). Pre-registration for the conference is highly encouraged. Registration is available on the Arts Connection website, at http://artsconnectionnetwork.org/events/conference-registrationor by phone at 909-537-5809.
MAY UPDATE! Governor Jerry Brown revised the state budget to include a 5 million dollar permanent increase that pushes the state's arts speding to about 24 cents per person. While that is a a definite improvement from 3 cents per person, California still lags behind the national average of $1.09. It's a start!
Now nearing the end of its 65th season, the Redlands Symphony is continuing to impress audiences with its musical excellence even as it prepares for the retirement of its music director and conductor, Jon Robertson.