Visual Arts
From the urban typography of street graffiti to the Pop art provocations, California’s visual arts are as diverse as its population. Here, fine art meets multicultural folk traditions; digital design meets old world craftsmanship; and international styles merge with uniquely American ideas. It was here, after all, that oil painters captured idyllic images of the new American West in the 1890’s and the Culture Wars of the 1990’s made canvases and gallery walls into battlefields. Performance art considers the human body as a corporeal sculpture, canvas or a warzone, where ideas and ideals interact in the fles. Breaking from the European and New York old guard of art, California’s spirit of reinvention and exploration defines this state on the forever on the frontier.
How a 19th Century Painting Transformed California's Desert World
How a 19th Century Painting Transformed California's Desert World
In the late 19th century, Southern California's human and natural geography transformed as millions of new residents settled its semi-arid desert world, but artistic renditions of this region seldom get the attention of its northerly neighbors. But why is this the case?
The Unflinching Aperture of Arthur Tress
The Unflinching Aperture of Arthur Tress
A San Luis Obispo County resident for 20 years, Cambria-based photographer Arthur Tress is best known for the strikingly surreal works he created in the 1970s and '80s. But the glimpses of Bay Area life he captured during a stay in 1964 -- recently unearthed after decades in storage -- reveal a different side of the photographer.
From Wall Street to Salvation: Chris Potter's Painting Marathon
From Wall Street to Salvation: Chris Potter's Painting Marathon
Know anyone who traded a high finance job for plein air painting? Probably not. But in Santa Barbara, one man did just that. Chris Potter is an everyday painter who paints every day.
Perfect Documents: Mexican Pop Groups & High Society at the Border
Perfect Documents: Mexican Pop Groups & High Society at the Border
Photographer and Tijuana native Yvvone Venegas captures the tension between the authentic and the artificial that exists in places whose primary function is to entertain, mesmerize, and titillate - places like Disneyland, Las Vegas, and Tijuana.
Skid Row and Central Avenue's Culture-Based Activism
Skid Row and Central Avenue's Culture-Based Activism
Two culture-based events near Skid Row realigned conceptions of what space can be occupied.
My Own Private Museum: A Closer Look at Oxnard's Carnegie Art Museum
My Own Private Museum: A Closer Look at Oxnard's Carnegie Art Museum
With its collection of fine art and ethnographic artifacts and its quarterly exhibitions, the Carnegie presents, promotes and preserves a rich breadth of California art that stretches across movements and periods.
 Postcards from Tijuana: La Mona, A Concrete Tijuanense Queen
Postcards from Tijuana: La Mona, A Concrete Tijuanense Queen
Armando Muñoz Garcia's 18-ton, naked-as-the-day-you-were-born sculpture rises a triumphant five stories from a ravine in Tijuana. "La Mona" is the architectural incarnate of the ingenuity and absurdity that defines this most surreal of cities.
Pay to Play? Orange County's Vanity Art Spaces
Pay to Play? Orange County's Vanity Art Spaces
With the economic decline, and the folding of many exhibition spaces, more galleries are starting to switch to the "pay to play" model. If you pay for space on a wall, isn't that just like advertising? Who really benefits from this practice?
Breaking Bad with Jesse Wiedel
Breaking Bad with Jesse Wiedel
Step into the world of Jesse Wiedel and experience a wonderfully weird assortment of trailer trash, methamphetamine addicts, lot lizards, country music hacks, red necks, outlaw bikers, Vikings and more.
Exposed to the Elements: the Evolution of Plein Air Painting on the Central California Coast
Exposed to the Elements: the Evolution of Plein Air Painting on the Central California Coast
What makes California's Central Coast an irresistible destination for artists?
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section header: disciplines
icon, Architecture/ Design discipline

Architecture/ Design

California becomes an international export by redefining the concept of city and home.

icon, Community Arts discipline

Community Arts

Through workshops, education and placed based projects, art is the connective tissue of a community.

icon, Cultural Politics discipline

Cultural Politics

Funding bubbles, cultural deserts and the politics of access to the arts in the 21st century.

icon, Film & Media Arts discipline

Film & Media Arts

At the shadow of the entertainment industry, video artists and underground filmmakers take a stand.

icon, Literature discipline

Literature

Noir, sunshine and dystopia create a multi-ethnic narrative that is read, watched and admired around the globe.

icon, Multi-Disciplinary discipline

Multi-Disciplinary

Multi-hyphenate works that combine disciplines, remix dogmas, and reinvent the wheel.

icon, Music discipline

Music

A dialogue between cultures, the music of our state serves up the California dream like no other artform.

icon, Performance discipline

Performance

Staging the drama of California through dance, music and theater.

icon, Visual Arts discipline

Visual Arts

Breaking away from the European and New York vanguard, California reinvents the art world.


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