May 7, 2009
Greetings from the Beatrice Wood Center for the Arts
and the Happy Valley Cultural Center!
Saturday, May 16th, 2009
from 6:00 - 9:00 pm
Greetings from Happy Valley!
I'm writing to invite you to a special event at the Beatrice Wood Center for the Arts. One of the joys of running the Center is the relationship with the Besant Hill School, where students learn "how to think, not what to think," and fully explore their intellectual and creative abilities. It is a private high school with a strong arts focus and we enjoy involving the students in our activities and workshops with artists.
On Saturday, May 16th, "Standardized Stupidification," a collaborative installation by Besant Hill School students, under the direction of Lucia Vinograd, and artist Robbie Conal will open at the Center. The student installation will be presented alongside Conal's guerilla art and posters.
Please attend the opening reception from 6 - 9 pm to view this exhibition and meet Robbie and the student artists: Grace Garlough, Griffin Davis, Rick Meredith, Connor Jones, Indigo Partch, and Yue Yu. The exhibition will be on display through May 30th.
"Standardized Stupidification" is a commentary on standardized testing and its implications in forcing the hands of educators toward a standardized curriculum, a force that can eclipse diversity, imagination and creativity. Students are lost to themselves in the struggle to fit into a cultural standard. They rebel to have their voice heard above the masses. The exhibition celebrates the arts and its expression of the "madness" of our world as we hand it over to our children.
The hermit said: "Because the world is mad,
The only way through the world is to learn
The arts and double the madness."
~ Robert Bly
Watching, Waiting, Dreaming by Robbie Conal
Robbie Conal is an American guerilla poster artist best known for gluing disturbing gnarled depictions of political figures to fixtures in the urban landscape. Bringing out the inner ugliness of his often morally bankrupt subjects, his posters usually include a portrait, and a slogan or one-liner of outrageous sociopolitical commentary. The posters are stealthily placed by Conal and his "volunteer guerrilla postering army," throughout public space in Los Angeles and beyond.
Robbie's art is "outrageous, unsparing, and constitutes a welcome offering to the struggles of Americans against war and injustice . . . his art is therefore to be celebrated by all who see the marriage of art and politics as playing a vital role in the movement toward a just society."
~ Howard Zinn
"My paintings are intended as satirical counter-infotainment. If they tickle people into thinking along with me about social and political issues, I'm a happy man."
~ Robbie Conal
As many of you are not able to attend our exhibitions, we always present them online with photographs and videos. We are creating a short documentary film of the students working with Robbie Conal and the resulting exhibition.
Click here to view an excerpt
WHERE: Beatrice Wood Center for the Arts
8560 Ojai-Santa Paula Road in Upper Ojai.
WHAT: Standardized Stupidification, a collaborative installation by Besant Hill School visual arts students and controversial political artist Robbie Conal.
WHEN: Opening Reception, Saturday, May 16th, 6 - 9 pm.
The public is invited to attend.
The exhibition will continue through May 30th.
We will be presenting a series of evening events this summer, as evenings in Ojai are wonderful and we want to share them. These will range from opening exhibitions to Saturday night concerts on the patio. When we opened the Center, we did so with an expansive view of the arts, inclusive of music, dance and theatre. Since that time, we've presented a number of performances.
Click here to view a happy song by Emy Reynolds
a talented young singer-songwriter we presented in concert last year.
Please place these upcoming events on your calendar:
Currents: Contemporary California Clay
Opening Reception, Saturday, June 6th, 6 - 9 pm
Swallow Song Festival
Saturday, June 20th, 7 pm (Performers to be announced soon)
Spring is turning to Summer in Happy Valley and the swallows are busy building their nests all around the Center. If you're able to, please come and visit sometime between now and June, when the baby swallows will fly off with their parents.
Thanks for your interest and support of the Beatrice Wood Center for the Arts!
Visit the Center!
The Beatrice Wood Center for the Arts is open to the public
Saturday & Sunday
11:00 am - 5:00 pm
Please call (805) 646-3381
Click for driving directions to the Beatrice Wood Center for the Arts
"It seems to me that everyone has a desire to express, which is the soul crying out in song to reach something. It's wonderful to have the opportunity to make a pot, to paint a picture, to design an airplane, to feel that you can go out in a visible, creative way and contribute to life.."
~ Beatrice Wood