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Voice of San Diego's weekly arts and culture roundup (Tuesdays)
City mulls removing Balboa Park sculptures, arts/culture commission chief steps down and more in our weekly arts roundup.
A series of artworks that resemble whimsical street signs along Park Boulevard may come down. The city paid $11,000 in 1989 to display the series, called “Night Visions,” for 10 years. They’ve been up for 23.
Now, as we report, “the vinyl’s peeling, the aluminum is torn and holey in places and the poles are scratched and faded. Some of the sculptures are wobbly and askew. And two of the sculptures are just missing entirely.” It could cost between $12,000 and $40,000 to repair them.
Artist Roberto Salas wants to keep the sculptures up. But the city’s public art manager, Dana Springs, concluded it’d cost more to restore the art than they’re worth. She recommends the city de-install them.
One of our readers agrees. “I think we need to be able to let go of things, even pieces of art, once they’ve exceeded their lifetimes,” she wrote.
You’re reading the Culture Report, our weekly compilation of the region’s arts and culture news.
• The eight Central Elementary kids who came to dance before the City Council a couple of weeks ago were very cute. But it was murky for me how their performance connected to the actual issue the council was deciding on — increasing funding for arts and culture nonprofits, not schools.
Here’s what I found out about how the funding would work and how the council wants to add an education focus.
• With that arts funding measure, “Penny for the Arts,” under her belt, the city’s longtime chief of the Commission for Arts and Culture is stepping down, the city announced. Victoria Hamilton has been at the commission’s helm since its inception in 1988.
• San Diego’s arts funding increase got a shout-out in a Florida newspaper, during an interview with Americans for the Arts’ Randy Cohen. (Sun-Sentinel)
• How do arts organizations interact with San Diego’s military community? This was a persistent question in Mo’olelo’s production of “How I Got That Story,” which we dove into earlier this year.
This Thursday, a group of arts professionals is sponsoring a conversation about the intersection of arts and the military in San Diego. You can find more info here.
• Local artist Jenna Ann MacGillis wants to have you over. Justin Hudnall tells you more, in CityBeat:
“The 15 or so lucky patrons who RSVP to MacGillis’ show in time will be brought into her studio apartment, where she’ll reveal the skeletons and unanswered questions of her family’s past through sculptural manipulation, dance, storytelling and a live Americana house band.”
• UC San Diego’s Department of Theater and Dance is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year; The Rancho Santa Fe Review has a rundown on the school’s calendar of plays and dance performances.
• The indefatigable Chuck Perrin found a new home for his popular jazz series, and it’s not where you might think. Perrin’s series, called Dizzy’s, is a local institution. Now Dizzy’s will settle into new digs at San Diego Jet Ski Rentals in Pacific Beach.
“After months of searching and … finally leaving myself open to the value of spontaneity and inspiration, I found it. I live in the neighborhood and, driving by one day, I looked over and saw the space and it just hit me,” Perrin told the San Diego Reader.
Around the County and the World
• Are San Diego’s theaters haunted? KPBS dove into the history of the “ghost light,” the traditional light left onstage even after casts and crews depart, and found a veteran security guard at The Old Globe who doesn’t always feel like she’s alone when she’s the last worker in the theater.
• The U-T posted some great photo galleries of cultural events around the county. Mayor Jerry Sanders tapped an unruly keg at a San Diego Beer Week celebration. A traditional Day of the Dead celebration happened at a National City cemetery on Friday. And a third photographer headed to a rehearsal for City Ballet.
• Those rehearsals were for the ballet company’s 20th season, which dance critic Janice Steinberg called “hugely ambitious” in her preview. (U-T)
• The city and philanthropists are working to create a 60-acre arts and culture district in southeastern San Diego. I really liked what one of them told the U-T about the effort:
“People might think art is for the more fortunate and those who have time for leisure and recreation,” said Kristine Breese, director of strategic partnerships for the Jacobs Family Foundation and Jacobs Center for Neighborhood Innovation. “But we found (to this community) it is core and central.”
• Twin 10-year-olds borrowed their mom’s hobbit-style slippers to shoot their second-place-winning photograph for a Balboa Park contest.
• A 26-year-old local photographer is stationed on a research ship with the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, and filed some images from the Equator. (U-T)
• We’re in the middle of two film festivals, focused on Asian and Italian films, respectively, and Beth Accomando’s your guide to them both. (KPBS)
• Last year, a musical meant to feature the music and life of Pete Seeger suffered a major setback: Seeger didn’t want to be the focus anymore. The creators at the San Diego Repertory Theatre put together a plan B and created “A Hammer, A Bell and a Song to Sing” with a broader focus on folk music and social change. Now, the show’s back, “in an expanded version, no less.” (U-T)
• An internet breakdance sensation is coming to San Diego this weekend to perform at a yoga party at a private La Jolla residence. And apparently the 21-year-old’s a big fan of Louis Kahn, the architect behind the Salk Institute. (La Jolla Light)
• CityBeat profiles a makeup artist known for her Day of the Dead designs whose mother and brother both died before she turned 30.
• Three museums collaborating on a new show of their American art — the San Diego Museum of Art, the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego and the Timken Museum — hope the exhibition brings new attention to what they’re all about.
The show’s curator, Amy Galpin from the San Diego Museum of Art, told the U-T:
“It’s so important for the people who live in San Diego to realize that you don’t have to go to New York, Madrid or Paris to see great art,” she said. “We here in San Diego have these fabulous permanent collections, and people should be proud of that and excited about what they have here. That’s a big part of the impetus for this show.”
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