20th Anniversary Celebration – March 2nd

Grand Central Art Center 20th anniversary logo

 

GIVEAWAYS, INTERACTIVE PERFORMANCE, OPENING RECEPTION, CAKE + MORE

 

GRAND CENTRAL ART CENTER CELEBRATES

20TH ANNIVERSARY

SATURDAY, MARCH 2ND from 7-10PM

 

OPENING RECEPTIONS

Lost Islands of Philadelphia

Jennifer Levonian

To the artist Jennifer Levonian’s surprise, she recently learned there were once two lively islands in the Delaware River right beside Philadelphia. Smith and Windmill Islands were best known for their amusement park and baths, accessible via a quick ferry ride. To make way for shipping traffic, the federal government removed the islands in 1894. Only one year later, a columnist for the Philadelphia Evening Bulletin was already wondering how long before the islands would become a vague memory. “It is curious,” the columnist wrote, “how soon our memories lose their hold on places.” The artist thought it was poignant that two islands could be removed and completely forgotten.

Levonian’s cutout animation Lost Islands of Philadelphia tells the story of the islands, touching on themes of obsolescence and transience. It follows a girl who, after reading about the islands in a library book, but is unaware of their destruction, sets off on her own to find them. Her mother pursues her frantically on rollerblades, her lack of skating skills causing mayhem all the way.

Jennifer Levonian makes animations near Philadelphia. Her work has been exhibited across the United States, including at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Telfair Museum in Savannah, GA, the Contemporary Museum in Baltimore and the National Portrait Gallery, Washington, D.C. In 2009, she was awarded a Pew Fellowship in the Arts. She has attended residencies at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Bemis Center for Contemporary Art, and the Atlantic Center for the Arts. Her animation Xylophone won the Ken Burns Best of the Fest award at the 2017 Ann Arbor Film Festival.

 

PROJECT MURAL WALL

Jon Haddock

Through an artist-in-residence, artist Jon Haddock will be creating a new mural on the GCAC Project Wall.

Jon Haddock lives, works and teaches in Phoenix, Arizona. His work has been exhibited internationally, in venues that include the Yerba Buena Art Center in San Francisco, ZKM Karlsrue, PaceWildenstein in New York, Witte Zaal in Ghent, Arizona State University Art Museum in Tempe, and The Whitney Museum of American Art in New York. Mr. Haddock’s work is in the collections of several institutions, including the Whitney Museum in New York, and the Henry Gallery in Seattle.

 

INTERACTIVE PERFORMANCE

Lucas Murgida: None of This is Real – Phase 4

7-10pm

Through an interactive performance that will premiere the evening of March 2nd, GCAC artist-in-residence Lucas Murgida will segment GCAC’s storefront gallery by creating an impasse that spans from the street facing the window and extends to a rear wall. Participants, with engaged instructional guidance from the artist, will work in teams of two to circumvent the impasse, utilizing high-speed grinders and saws to create a portal into the gallery interior. The participants will then be instructed in methods to repair the damage they have caused, allowing the next group of participants to experience the similar installation and engagement. The experience will be free and open to people of all ages and abilities.

 

GIVEAWAYS

David Greenberger CDs

Every Hour

The first 20 guests entering Grand Central Art Center at the top of each hour will receive a free CD of GCAC artist-in-residence David Greenberger’s latest project It Happened to Me. The CD includes 60-original song recorded with Greenberger’s trio Prime Len, based on actual conversations with senior citizens of the Santa Ana community. Cover design artwork for the CD was created by artist Ed Ruscha.

 

CAKE WILL BE SERVED

Throughout the Evening

GCAC will be producing 20 special cakes that will commemorate projects realized by artists with the center. Cake will be served throughout the evening to guests.

 

CONTINUING EXHIBITIONS

7-10PM

A Slow Conflict

Yevgeniya Mikhailik

 

Layers of the City

Angel Nevarez & Valerie Tevere

Manny Escamilla | From the edge to the center: A short history of Grand Central

From the edge to the center: A short history of Grand Central

with Manny Escamilla

Friday, February 22, 5:00 PM

Local historian Manny Escamilla will cover how the history of the Grand Central building reflects the history of changes within downtown Santa Ana.

Event is FREE and open to the public. Free refreshments and parking validation for all attendees.

For more information email: grandcentral@fullerton.edu

 

 

Jennifer Levonian: Lost Islands of Philadelphia

illustrated image of individuals inside a public bus

Jennifer Levonian
Lost Islands of Philadelphia
March 2 – May 19, 2019

Opening Reception: Saturday, March 2 from 7-10pm

To the artist Jennifer Levonian’s surprise, she recently learned there were once two lively islands in the Delaware River right beside Philadelphia. Smith and Windmill Islands were best known for their amusement park and baths, accessible via a quick ferry ride. To make way for shipping traffic, the federal government removed the islands in 1894. Only one year later, a columnist for the Philadelphia Evening Bulletin was already wondering how long before the islands would become a vague memory. “It is curious,” the columnist wrote, “how soon our memories lose their hold on places.” The artist thought it was poignant that two islands could be removed and completely forgotten.

Levonian’s cutout animation single-channel video Lost Islands of Philadelphia tells the story of the islands, touching on themes of obsolescence and transience. It follows a girl who, after reading about the islands in a library book, but is unaware of their destruction, sets off on her own to find them. Her mother pursues her frantically on rollerblades, her lack of skating skills causing mayhem all the way.

Jennifer Levonian makes animations near Philadelphia. Her work has been exhibited across the United States, including at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Telfair Museum in Savannah, GA, the Contemporary Museum in Baltimore and the National Portrait Gallery, Washington, D.C. In 2009, she was awarded a Pew Fellowship in the Arts. She has attended residencies at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Bemis Center for Contemporary Art, and the Atlantic Center for the Arts. Her animation Xylophone won the Ken Burns Best of the Fest award at the 2017 Ann Arbor Film Festival.

Yevgeniya Mikhailik: A Slow Conflict

abstract dark painting with subtle color accents
(Yevgeniya Mikhailik, A Slow Conflict, paintings, drawings, mural installation)

 

Yevgeniya Mikhailik
A Slow Conflict
February 2 – April 14, 2019

Opening Reception: Saturday, February 2 from 7-10pm

A Slow Conflict by Orange County-based artist Yevgeniya Mikhailik is a study of the forces that shape the Earth’s landscape, both naturally occurring and resulting from human activity. The immensity of the Earth and the slow pace of its development are impossible for an individual to fully grasp in a single lifetime, a comparative blink-of-an-eye to the age of the planet; but our ability to relate to events and changes that we personally struggle with – growth, aging, scarcity, instability, social conflict, etc. – can be a link to understanding and relating to phenomena in the natural world. By drawing parallels between geological events and personal-scale changes as experienced by an individual or a group, A Slow Conflict aims to evoke empathy towards the evolving natural environment in the same way we empathize with each other. It asks the viewer to imagine engaging with the real landscape as intimately and intensely as we do with ourselves and other human beings, to experience the natural world slowly by being present and attentive, to attempt to understand its processes, and to observe the ways in which our involvement in and disruption of the environment has a lasting effect.

The title piece of the exhibition explores the evolution of landscape, providing clues to the narrative of its origin, growth, development, consumption, and ultimate dissolution. Viewing it in its entirety takes time, a nod to the pace of formation of the natural world. The smaller works, being closer to the size of a human body and occupying a similar space to our own, offer a more immediate, conversational experience. They are quiet, introspective, and at times pathetic beings, unlike the dark, haunting, epic timeline of the larger piece that anchors them. Whether through intimately detailed moments or large geological passages, each piece serves to personify the conflict, imbalance, and converging forces that drive our world, and the connections that exist between events of all scales.

ABOUT THE ARTIST:

Yevgeniya Mikhailik is an artist, educator, and curator based in Orange County, CA. In her studio practice she explores our enduring physical and emotional connection with the natural world, our methods of interpreting it and identifying with it, and how both the natural and the built environment shape us. She has exhibited throughout Southern California, as well as New York, San Francisco, and Rome. Her work has been highlighted by KCET Artbound, OC Weekly, Hi-Fructose, Orange Coast Magazine, Orange County Register, CMYK Magazine and several other exhibition catalogues and publications. In 2016 she received the Emerging Artist Award from Arts Orange County, and in 2017 the Best Curator award from OC Weekly. She holds an MFA from CSU Long Beach where she currently teaches Illustration.

Angel Nevarez & Valerie Tevere: Layers of the City

a diverse chorus of people standing on a promenade looking straight to the camera
(Angel Nevarez & Valerie TevereLayers of the City, 4K video, sound, installation, window graphics)

 

Angel Nevarez & Valerie Tevere
Layers of the City
February 2 – April 14, 2019

Opening Reception: Saturday, February 2 from 7-10pm

During the summer of 2017, while artists-in-residence at Grand Central Art Center in Santa Ana, CA, Angel Nevarez and Valerie Tevere began research toward a new project that built upon their interests combining time-based media with songwriting, the voice, and civic participation.

In July of 2018, the artists held an open call for local singers and musicians to participate in the production, which culminates in the video and sound installation at GCAC.

They began their process with the question: How might we sing our way through the transformation of place?

Nevarez and Tevere’s new work Layers of the City reflects on spaces in Santa Ana, both inhabited and boarded up, of immigrant owned entities that passed through generations only to be pushed out by rising rents and revitalization plans. The stories of Santa Ana are the stories of Sunset Park in Brooklyn, of Pilsen in Chicago, and of Boyle Heights in Los Angeles – neighborhoods where real estate speculation supersedes communities.

With these processes in mind, Nevarez and Tevere wrote a song that follows the composition and form of a cumulative song. As the song progresses, so do the amount of voices singing the chorus. In the end, a larger assembly of bodies and voices come together, perhaps forming a community, a resistant cumulative process.

ABOUT THE ARTISTS:

Angel Nevarez and Valerie Tevere are multidisciplinary artists whose projects and research investigate contemporary music and sound, the electromagnetic spectrum, dissent, and public fora. Their interests lie in the spatial simultaneity of performance and enunciation, reflecting upon political agency through lyrics, audio, and transmission.

Nevarez and Tevere have exhibited and screened their work at international venues including MoMA, The Guggenheim Museum, Creative Time, and New Museum in New York; Manifesta 8/ Spain; Museo de Arte Raúl Anguiano, Guadalajara, Mexico; Casino Luxembourg, LU; Henie Onstad Art Centre, Høvikodden/Oslo, Norway, and elsewhere. The first US survey of their work was exhibited at Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia in 2016. Nevarez and Tevere have received fellowships and grants from Creative Capital, Art Matters, the NEA, and Franklin Furnace. Both were Studio Fellows at The Whitney Museum’s Independent Study Program, artists-in-residence at the International Artists Studio Program in Sweden (IASPIS), and recently at Pioneer Works, Brooklyn, and Grand Central Art Center, Santa Ana.

Tevere is Professor of Media Culture at the City University of New York, College of Staten Island. Nevarez is a musician, and Faculty at Parsons School of Design and the MFA Fine Arts Program at the School of Visual Arts, New York.

Orange Mountain Music to Release Vireo CD/DVD Package

portrait of a pensive woman dressed in green

Lisa Bielawa’s
Vireo: The Spiritual Biography of a Witch’s Accuser
First Episodic Made-for-TV & Online Opera
Composed & Conceived by Lisa Bielawa
Directed by Charles Otte | Libretto by Erik Ehn
Developed as a Grand Central Art Center artist-in-residence project

Orange Mountain Music to Release as CD/DVD Package
on February 28, 2019
Music Now Available Digitally Exclusively from Apple Music
Pre-Order on CD/DVD from Amazon

“an opera unlike any you have seen before, in content and in form” – Los Angeles Times
Read the Los Angeles Times’s feature on Vireo

Read the San Francisco Chronicle’s feature on Vireo

All Twelve Episodes Also Available Now for Binge-Watching at KCET.org/Vireo

Vireo: The Spiritual Biography of a Witch’s Accuser, composed and conceived by Lisa Bielawa on a libretto by Erik Ehn and directed by Charles Otte, will be released as a double package on DVD and CD by Orange Mountain Music on February 28, 2019. The music is now available exclusively from Apple Music. Vireo is an opera in 12 episodes, created for television and online viewing. It was first broadcast on KCET’s Emmy® award-winning arts and culture series Artbound in June 2017. Both Bielawa and Otte were nominated for 2018 Los Angeles Area Emmys, and the opera won the 2015 ASCAP Foundation Deems Taylor/Virgil Thomson Multimedia Award. Vireo Live, a hybrid film-opera experience, is currently in development and will be workshopped in March 2020 at The New School’s Philip Glass Institute, of which Lisa Bielawa was recently named inaugural Composer-in-Residence and Chief Curator.

Vireo removes the set limitations of a staged opera, visiting locations across the country – Alcatraz Prison, a monastery on the Hudson River, an abandoned train station in Oakland, the California Redwoods. An orchestra in the pit is replaced with world-class musicians on camera, inside the action. The eponymous heroine Vireo, played by Rowen Sabala, is a fourteen-year-old girl genius entangled in the historic obsession with female visionaries, as witch-hunters, early psychiatrists, and modern artists have defined them.

Vireo was shot on location from New York’s Hudson River Valley to California’s Redwood forests. Production began in February 2015 in the Los Angeles area at Santa Ana’s Yost Theatre and proceeded through January of 2017 in iconic locations around the country, including the 16th Street Oakland Train Station and San Francisco’s Alcatraz Island.

Vireo features the work of over 350 musicians including opera star Deborah Voigt, violinists Jennifer Koh and Vijay Gupta, cellist Joshua Roman, mezzo-sopranos Laurie Rubin, Maria Lazarova and Kirsten Sollek, baritone Gregory Purnhagen, tenor Ryan Glover, drummer Matthias Bossi, soprano Emma MacKenzie and in the title role of Vireo, teenage soprano Rowen Sabala. Additionally, the opera features notable groups and organizations from across the country including Kronos Quartet, the San Francisco Girls Chorus, Magik*Magik Orchestra, American Contemporary Music Ensemble, Alarm Will Sound, PARTCH, the Orange County School of the Arts Middle School Choir, and many, many more.

Vireo was an Artist Residency Project of Grand Central Art Center in Santa Ana, a unit of Cal State Fullerton’s College of the Arts shepherded by Director and Chief Curator John Spiak, produced in partnership with KCET and Single Cel.

A comprehensive Vireo online content hub is available at kcet.org/vireo, providing viewers of Vireo an immersive second screen experience. Featuring interviews with cast and crew, behind-the-scenes content and exclusive insights into the themes of the production, the online hub, and social media video content is also available on the @KCET28 and @LinkTV Facebook page. To learn more, please visit kcet.org/vireo or linktv.org/vireo or on social media use #OperaVireo

For a complete list of VIREO performers, see https://www.operavireo.org/

David Greenberger and Prime Lens: It Happened To Me

A vinyl record and a cd over a wooden surface

David Greenberger and Prime Lens
It Happened To Me

2-disc CD / Limited Edition 12 LP w/download
(PelPel Recordings #PL-8718) Release date: March 1, 2019
Original album cover artwork by Ed Ruscha

Live Performance April 27, 2019, in Santa Ana, CA

Artist David Greenberger is best known for creating the long-running periodical, The Duplex Planet, which started in 1979 and continued to 2010. Through his conversations with the residents of a Boston nursing home, the series developed into Duplex Planet Illustrated, a comic book adaptation of the material drawn by a variety of alternative artists and illustrators, including Peter Bagge, Drew Friedman, Dan Clowes, Jim Woodring, Chris Ware, and James Kochalka, published by Fantagraphics. The project developed further through differing approaches, including The Duplex Planet Radio Hour with New York Public Radio, a series of CDs, and books of the collective conversations.

Continuing to evolve, Greenberger now focuses on the development of new projects that become recordings and performances of monologues with music, what the artist refers to as “a band with a guy talking.” The work continues to develop from conversations, but now have him interacting with elderly in communities around the country, most often through residencies and commissions. The projects have led to a wide range of musical collaborations with individuals including David Hidalgo & Louie Perez from Los Lobos, Robyn Hitchcock, Ralph Carney, Glenn Jones, Wreckless Eric, Terry Adams of NRBQ, and Birdsongs of the Mesozoic. He has created new works for NPR’s All Things Considered, California Council for the Humanities, Kohler Museum (Sheboygan, WI), Erie Art Museum, Center on Age & Community at the University of WI in Milwaukee, The Tang Teaching Museum at Skidmore College (New York), Third Coast Festival (Chicago), Arts at St. Anns (Brooklyn), Portland Institute for the Arts, The Contemporary Jewish Museum (San Francisco), and elsewhere.

It is the mission of Cal State Fullerton’s Grand Central Art Center (GCAC) to focus on helping to reflect, through socially engaged artistic practices, the Santa Ana, CA communities in which the institution exists. David Greenberger was a natural fit as an artist-in-residence, invited by GCAC to create a new work drawn from Santa Ana’s richly diverse elderly population. Greenberger spent his time in residence visiting senior community centers, a museum, and senior living apartments. Through the support of GCAC, he developed text based on his dozens of recorded conversations that took place at the Santa Ana Senior Center, Tustin Senior Center, Heninger Village, Flower Terrace Apartments, and Bowers Museum. Individuals who participated in conversations include Andra Aguirre, Chinda Ayanaputra, Ron Bianco, Charles, Rose Hendley, Winnie Hsie, Susan Johnson, Chong Kim, Paul Kohn, Dorothy Korte, Tish Leon, Jose Magana, Mary Mitchell, Tomoko Mizusawa, Sam, John A. Spiak, Vera Toner, Chanida Trueblood, and Brenda White. Working with Prime Lens, the Chattanooga-based ensemble he assembled four years earlier, they went into the studio in the spring of 2018, collaborating to create It Happened to Me.

What emerged is twice the size of anything originally envisioned: 60 pieces, each one carefully composed and arranged to convey individual emotional potency, giving dignity to the small moments, as well as the larger overall narrative. Artistically it became the only way of expressing the breadth of the City of Santa Ana’s population and its varied and rich cultural identity. Throughout the nearly two-and-a-half hours of recorded stories with music, the recurring characters and themes begin to surface. The recordings of It Happened to Me assemble in full through a 2-disc CD release, with an additional smaller selection of the works available on a limited edition vinyl 12″ LP that is accompanied by a download of all 60 pieces. Both formats feature original cover art designed by renowned Los Angles based artist Ed Ruscha.

LIVE PERFORMANCE:

David Greenberger and Prime Lens will present a live performance with selections from It Happen To Me on the evening of Saturday, April 27, 2019. Complete details on the event will be released soon.

ABOUT THE MUSICIANS:

Prime Lens Keyboardist Tyson Rogers is the trio’s primary composer. He has led his jazz quartet, toured extensively with Tony Joe White and country legend Don Williams, records regularly in Nashville, and has his work featured on many soundtracks. Drummer Bob Stagner has worked with everyone from Derek Bailey to Bob Dorough, John Zorn to Rev. Howard Finster; as well he is a co-founder of The Shaking Ray Levis. Bassist Evan Lipson tours regularly with saxophonist Jack Wright and has worked with a diverse list including Pauline Oliveros, David Grubbs, Col. Bruce Hampton, Davey Williams, and Susan Alcorn.

ABOUT GCAC ARTIST-IN-RESIDENCE PROGRAM:

With a focus on artists working in socially engaged practices, Grand Central Art Center residencies are centered on discovery, creative process, and relationships through an open collaborative and immersed approach. Residencies support the creation of projects through a philosophy of listening, assisting and connecting. GCAC allows the artist as much freedom as possible, leaving open the potential for multi-visits, multi-site interactions, and partnerships. The duration of residencies are not limited, instead determined on project-by-project bases, with ongoing conversations throughout a residency. GCAC residencies to date have lasted from three-weeks to over four years. Residencies are not required to occur on-site, but provide the openness and opportunity for projects to be realized at off-site locations throughout the direct community, region and beyond. Generous support for the Grand Central Art Center artist-in-residence program has been provided by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts.

Additional info at www.davidgreenberger.com