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July 1, 2011 / Claremont Art Events

Claremont mapped by art collective Fallen Fruit

There’s something special (and economical) about eating fruit warm off the tree. My son and I once ate the four best tasting oranges we’d ever eaten on our walk home from school one day, thanks to a friendly neighbor who gave us a couple of bags worth. In our neighborhood we have also found free bags of persimmons and loquats on front lawns. As I type, I’m sitting next to a bowl full of ripe plums from a friend’s tree in North Claremont. We have a ridiculous amount of food growing in our neighborhoods that our friends love to share. But what about the fruit falling off trees on public land? My son tried his first juicy fig off a tree that hangs over into the alley around the corner & I’d never buy a kumquat, but I eat them all the time off the trees on the college campuses.

This brings me to the topic of Fallen Fruit maps. Fallen Fruit is an art collaboration of David Burns, Matias Viegener and Austin Young that has taken the confluence of fruit and public land to a new level. I saw their exhibition at LACMA last year, and have been following them on Facebook ever since.

“Using fruit as our lens, Fallen Fruit investigates urban space, ideas of neighborhood and new forms of located citizenship and community. From protests to proposals for new urban green spaces, we aim to reconfigure the relation between those who have resources and those who do not, to examine the nature of & in the city, and to investigate new, shared forms of land use and property. Fallen Fruit is an art collaboration that began with creating maps of public fruit: the fruit trees growing on or over public property in Los Angeles. “

Last year Fallen Fruit visited Claremont for a Public Fruit Jam at Scripps College. I’d love to have them back to create some Claremont infused alcohols. Stay tuned.

“Over time our projects have expanded from mapping public fruit to include Public Fruit Jams in which we invite the citizens to bring homegrown or public fruit and join in communal jam making; Nocturnal Fruit Forages, nighttime neighborhood fruit tours; Community Fruit Tree Plantings on the margins of private property and in community gardens; Public Fruit Park proposals in Hollywood, Los Feliz and downtown LA; and Neighborhood Infusions, taking the fruit found on one street and infusing it in alcohol to capture the spirit of the place. “

Here are the two fallen fruit maps that have been created for Claremont; one for the city and one for the colleges (click to enlarge). If you go picking, please remember the Fallen Fruit etiquette & don’t go picking off private property:

  • take only what you need
  • say “hi” to strangers
  • share your food
  • take a friend
  • go by foot
July 1, 2011 / Claremont Art Events

See you in the park on the 4th of July, 2011

June 19, 2011 / Claremont Art Events

“American Portraits” at the Ginger Elliott Exhibition and Conference Center on July 4th, 2011

We’re in final stages of planning for the art exhibition in Memorial Park on July 4th and we now have available some short bios and links to further information on the five selected artists (image by Mike Sinclair). See you there:

John Lucas is a Claremont-based photographer and documentary film-maker who specializes in issues of American identity. For the last several decades he has photographed flags, festivals, and protests across the country. His images can be found at His work has been exhibited in galleries in the United States, Belgium, France, and Mexico. Information about his current project, a documentary about the American criminal justice system and four young felons from Akron, Ohio known as the “Cooler Bandits”, can be viewed at

Dan Tague is a New Orleans-based artist whose work focuses on the idea of Freedom and the financial costs of war. Represented by the Jonathon Ferrara Gallery in New Orleans, his pieces are in the permanent collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, The New Orleans Museum of Art in Louisiana, and the Frederick R. Weisman Foundation in Los Angeles, among others. His latest work, a series entitled “Live Free or Die” features a series of crumpled up dollar bills, with the lettering aligned to spell out words and phrases, such as “I HATE WAR” and “YES WE CAN.” Images can be seen at

Mike Sinclair is an architectural and fine art photographer based in Kansas City, Missouri. His photographs are frequently published in Dwell, Architectural Record, The New York Times and Interior Design. His work is part of several public collections including The Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, Kansas City, and The Museum of Fine Arts Houston. Examples of Sinclair’s lushly colored candid photos of public gatherings can be seen at

Jonathan Traviesa is a traditional portrait photographer who has spent the past few years documenting the people of New Orleans, the city where he lives. Jeff L. Rosenheim, Curator, Department of Photographs at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, has this to say about Traviesa’s work: “Traviesa’s photographs delight the eye and thrill the heart. In addition, they reflect something often lost in contemporary art practice: patience and real communication between artist and sitter. In essence, Traviesa allows himself to be a medium through which he and the residents of New Orleans can express their desires, worries, thoughts, and dreams.” Traviesa’s book Portraits: Photographs in New Orleans, 1998-2009 is available at

David Olivier is a New Orleans blogger who has been documenting his family and the city he loves since just before Hurricane Katrina flooded his house. The images of his young daughters living and playing in the city after the worst man-made disaster in American history are both beautiful and haunting. The images we intend to exhibit are primarily family portraits that David has shared on his long-running blog. Examples of relevant work can be seen in the 2006 images from The blog has received hundreds of thousands of hits to date, but this will be the first time David has shown the photos in a gallery setting. His blog titles and text will be exhibited alongside the images.

June 12, 2011 / Claremont Art Events

Coming soon…

Save the date for “American Portraits”, a group photography exhibition curated by Teresa Wilmott

Here’s a photo of the empty gallery at Garner House here in Claremont. In 22 days, on the 4th of July, this space will be filled with amazing photographs by local documentary film maker and photographer, John Lucas, and the works of several other photographers that we’ve gathered from across America. We’ll be presenting images of patriotism in its many forms, and showing varied portraits of the American experience. The exhibition complements the myriad of July 4th activities happening in Claremont that attract thousands of visitors every year. There will be activities in the adjoining park all day, and a parade going by on Indian Hill Blvd., in front of the Claremont Heritage building where the exhibition is being held. More details will be available as the show nears. See you there!

June 4, 2011 / Claremont Art Events

Solo Exhibition by Kim Schoenstadt at Pitzer College through June 12, 2011

Kim  Schoenstadt is a rising star in the Los Angeles contemporary art scene and a Pitzer College graduate who is showing her work at this year’s Pitzer alumni reunion. The Pitzer gallery is officially open Tuesday through Friday, but a little bird tells me that you should try to see the exhibition during alumni weekend (details below) to be sure the doors are open. Schoenstadt’s work was recently shown at the LACE Gallery in downtown Los Angeles and the LA Times did this very thorough review of the show in March.






The Pitzer College Office of Alumni Relations and Pitzer Art Galleries Present

Notes, Odd Lots, Restoration Selections, etc.
A Solo Exhibition by Kim Schoenstadt ’95
June 1-12, 2011

Kim Schoenstadt ’95 is a visual artist who lives and works in Venice, CA. Her works have been featured in solo and group exhibitions in museums and galleries across the world.

In Notes, Odd Lots, Restoration Selections, etc., Schoenstadt merges the real with the imaginary. Blending diverse architecture from locations around the world, she creates a fusion of fresh styles that experiments with elements of existing architecture and virtual reality.

Artist Talk with Kim Schoenstadt ’95 During Alumni Reunion Weekend

Saturday, June 11, 2–3 p.m.

Extended Gallery Hours During Alumni Reunion Weekend
Friday, June 10, Noon–7 p.m.
Saturday, June 11, 9 a.m.–5 p.m.
Sunday, June 12, 10–11:30 a.m.

June 1-12, 2011
Nichols Gallery, Pitzer Art Galleries; Broad Center, Pitzer College
1050 North Mills Avenue, Claremont, CA 91711

Gallery Hours:
Tuesday–Friday, Noon–5 p.m., or by appointment

May 24, 2011 / Claremont Art Events

All you need to know about being an Artist in Residency

I promised you a summary of Adam Davis’ lecture last month on Artist in Residencies and now seems like an appropriate time to post the details as summer begins. Adam Davis is an art professor at Scripps College working in video, photography (see photo), and the written and spoken word (follow this link for more). Adam was kind enough to send these links to the best resources he knows for Artist in Residency opportunities:




Also, google these references:

Artists Communities: A Directory of Residencies that Offer time and Space for Creativity
by Alliance of Artists’ Communities and Robert MacNeil  (Apr 1, 2005)

We Love Artists: Artist in Residencies Around the World  (Jan 2009)

If you are considering a residency, Adam reminds you to consider the following questions:

What’s your goal? Are you mainly looking for a quiet place to work, are you looking to travel, meet other artists, conduct research?

Do you have any special considerations that would steer your decision to accept a residency? Transportation to and from the site for you AND your art? Dietary restrictions? Are you the type of person who can only live in the country or the city?

And don’t forget the basic considerations. Are there fees to apply? What are the facilities like? How long can you stay?

This is a meager summary, at best, of Adam’s lecture, but there was some interest on the blog and I hope this helps some of you on your way to a residency.

See you there.

May 24, 2011 / Claremont Art Events

Summer is here!

For those of us who live in the Village of Claremont, this time of year marks the passing of another school year and the beginning of a very quiet few months. Commencement exercises at the 5Cs have come and gone and our town has lost a few young thousand residents until classes begin again in August. That means that art lectures and gallery openings have come to a halt – almost. There are a few events I’ll be telling you about, but, importantly, there are many permanent art works in Claremont that are more fixed than the student body. I’ll be posting our weekly suggestions on art experiences you can have relating to site specific work that exists here in Claremont. There is a James Turrell skyspace that is best enjoyed during summer months, I’ll be posting interviews with local Claremont artists, and there are several important mosaic murals you’ll have to wait to hear more about. There is also an art exhibition during Pitzer College’s alumni reunion weekend, this little thing coming to Los Angeles in August called  Pacific Standard Time, and a photography show we’re curating. So keep checking back.

May 10, 2011 / Claremont Art Events

Preview of the Sam Maloof Huntington Library exhibition at Scripps College on May 11, 2011

Sam Maloof called himself a woodworker, which was such an understatement. He was also a pioneer in Southern California modern furniture design and the Inland Empire community lost an icon when he died in 2009 at the age of 93. His handcrafted furniture and distinctive rocking chairs are in museum collections and private homes around the world. The next planned exhibition of his work is at the Huntington Library in San Marino in September. Fortunately for us, there’s a lecture (free) and luncheon ($25) this week at Scripps College that they’re calling a “preview presentation” of Huntington exhibition. Before I get to that, though, I’d like you to see some examples of Maloof’s work. You can have any of these pieces custom made for you by contacting the Sam Maloof workshop through this website:

This isn’t a heavily advertised event & I don’t know yet who will be speaking or what the program looks like. When I find out, I’ll post it in “comments.” See you there.
Sam Maloof and Art in the Pomona Valley, 1945-1985: “The House That Sam Built”

Wednesday, May 11, 2011 at 1:30 PM

Hampton Room at Malott Commons,  Scripps College (see map)

345 E. 9th Street 9th and Columbia

Claremont, 91711

To buy tickets for the luncheon call  Paul Myers at (909) 908-2877

May 8, 2011 / Claremont Art Events

First Street Gallery Art Center’s current exhibition: Staff Selects

This Friday was the First Friday Art Walk in Claremont and the Village Blues & Brews event. Streets were closed off, music was overflowing from every corner, and crowds stayed late into the night (that means until after 9:00 in this sleepy little town). The main art event that I want to share from Friday night is the new exhibition at the First Street Gallery, a place I’ve written about before. First Street is an art studio run by the Tierra del Sol Foundation, established in Sunland in 1971 to enable adults with disabilities to develop their full potential. The satellite gallery and art center located here is a Claremont was established in 1989 and provides a place for people to develop and exhibit their art. Many of the artists have been there for 10 or 15 years and have exhibited around the country. Tom Lamb, for example, received an award for a group show he participated in at the Smithsonian Institute and Kennedy Center in Washington D.C.  Click here to read some of their bios and view some of their art for sale. When you stop in the gallery (which is only open Monday through Friday, 8-5) be sure to tell them hello from us. See you there.

The mixed media piece shown above is on sale now at the gallery. It’s by Willette Wilson, untitled, 2011.

Staff Selects

This annual exhibition showcases both the talented staff and clients of First Street Gallery Art Center. Staff members have selected artwork by a client artist to exhibit alongside their own.

Staff Selects explores the exchange of ideas that occurs within the studio and provides the opportunity to view works by artists with a variety of experiences.  A range of media will be featured in this show, including painting, drawing, ceramics, mixed-media sculpture and video.

Exhibition Dates: May 6th through July 22nd, 2011

May 7, 2011 / Claremont Art Events

If you go to see the Orozco mural, don’t forget to save time for the Lebrun

I’ve written about the Orozco mural at Pomona College and I’ve written about the Alfredo Ramos Martinez at Scripps College, but did you know we have another notable mural in Claremont? I was reminded of it because of a write-up on the Jose Clemente Orozco in this week’s Claremont Courier. (Don’t even try to find the article online, they’ve started charging for access.) Here’s how you find the black and white fresco by the famous artist Rico Lebrun: when you walk up the stairs to the dining hall on Pomona’s campus, you have to stop, turn around, and look behind you. If you don’t know about it, you may not notice it until you exit the building to leave. The Rico Lebrun mural is hidden behind the arches inside the dining hall building. This isn’t an architecture blog, but still, just spend a minute soaking in the structure as well.

Painted in 1960 by the Naples born artist, Pomona literature says Lebrun visited the campus in 1956 and expressed the desire to paint something for the campus. He wrote to the president of the College that he wanted to paint a work that would “tend more toward the serious and tragic than toward the decorative and superficial… I can only say that to be in the same area with Clemente Orozco makes me wish to honor him with my highest possible tribute.” And so Pomona students now dine with not one, but two incredibly beautiful but somber murals around them. Lebrun’s painting, Genesis, depicts the story of creation, complete with imagery of Adam and Eve departing Eden, Cain and Abel entwined into one body, Sodom and Gomorrah falling in judgement, and Noah surrounded by the ravages of The Flood. Below is an image of the mural from the Pomona website which shows far more detail than my iPhone camera (click to enlarge). It would be a wonderful way to spend the afternoon visiting all of the murals I’ve mentioned on the Claremont campuses (see map). See you there.