Interschool Class Notes
Liz Toonkel (Art and Theater MFA 12) is the production designer for Joe Swanberg's new film, Digging for Fire, premiering at the Sundance Film Festival in January.
Noor, a screenplay written by Nijla Mu'min (Film and Writing MFA 13), won the Best Screenplay Award at the 18th annual Urbanworld Film Festival competition. Four finalists competed for a $5,000 prize presented by BET Networks and HBO. Noor is a love story about a black woman who, following her brother's murder, develops an intense physical connection to a Palestinian bodega worker. It was one of 10 projects selected for the 2nd Annual Sundance Screenwriters Intensive.
Nikki Darling from KCET's Artbound recently interviewed Kenyatta A.C. Hinkle (Art and Writing MFA 12), and the interview is available online. Haunted Geographies: The Living Work of Kenyatta A.C. Hinkle has been picked by the editors to compete against another project to determine which one will be turned into a mini-documentary. The public can vote to determine which mini-documentary gets produced. In addition, Hinkle has started a $15,000 Kickstarter campaign to support an ongoing project known as the Kentrifican Museum of Culture, a space for dialogue about history, identity and acceptance, that she hopes to continue in a storefront in Leimert Park Village in Los Angeles.
Arianne MacBean (Dance and Critical Studies MFA 99) and The Big Show Co. will be performing at ODC in San Francisco from June 26 to 28 and will also be presenting a showcase of their work at the Roy and Edna Disney CalArts Theater (REDCAT) in downtown Los Angeles on June 20. Through indiegogo, they are raising $8,000 to finance the trip to San Francisco plus $2,000 to cover the showcase expenses.
Danielle Adair (Art and Critical Studies MFA 07) has won a 2014 Artists' Resource for Completion grants from the Center for Cultural Innovation.
Misadventure, a short story collection written by Nicholas Grider (Art and Critical Studies MFA 08) has just been released by A Strange Object, a small press in Austin, Texas.
Deluge, a film directed by Nijla Mumin (Film & Writing MFA 13), will have its world premiere on March 30 at the 4th Annual New Voices in Black Cinema Festival in Brooklyn.
Bella Bronson Fay (Art and Theater BFA 12) is living in New York and working as the photography production assistant on Saturday Night Live. To see some of her recent creations, check out her Facebook page.
Haley Franklin (Art and Theater BFA 12) has been hired into the costume design department of the Memphis Ballet, where she works on ballet and Shakespeare costumes.
Kenyatta A.C. Hinkle (Art and Writing MFA 12) has been selected as one of 10 finalists for the Los Angeles Artadia Fund for Art & Dialogue award. Hinkle is also one of nine artists from Los Angeles County, including Peiyi Wong (Theater MFA 13), to receive a 2013 Fourth Quarter Artists' Resource for Completion grant from the Center for Cultural Innovation. The ARC program provides rapid, short-term assistance to enhance work for a specific, immediate opportunity that may significantly benefit an artist's career. Her work was recently featured in Seven Sisters, an exhibition at the Jenkins Johnson Gallery in San Francisco. The show also included work by 2013 MacArthur Fellowships recipient Carrie Mae Weems (Photography BFA 81). Hinkle was also included in the Fall issue of ArtVoices Magazine in the feature 25 Artists to Watch & Collect. Hinkle was also included in the group show Connection-Reflection at the Charlie James Gallery in Los Angeles this fall.
Nijla Mu'min (Film Directing and Creative Writing MFA 13) is a guest columnist on film for Bitch Magazine. Her recent piece, The Butler, My Grandmother, and the Politics of Subversion has received wide appreciation.
Akosua Adoma Owusu's (Program in Film and Video and Art MFA 08) short film, Kwaku Ananse, was screened at the Toronto International Film Festival in September.
The neo-soul indie pop band Fitz and the Tantrums, featuring Michael Fitzpatrick (Film/Video 95) on vocals and James King (Jazz Reeds BFA 99) on the saxophone will be touring throughout the U.S. this fall. The band's song The Walker, recently was used in a TV spot for Laughing Cow Light Creamy Swiss Cheese.
The NEA-funded Long Beach A LOT Initiative has awarded Portable Potholes a grant to curate an animation festival in the City of Long Beach. Portable Potholes is a project by Stephanie Owens (Art and Film/Video MFA 08) and Lissa Sherman (Acting MFA 08). To submit work for review, send a link to or file of short animated films by September 1 to email@example.com.
After more than 17 years teaching in the fields of studio arts, critical theory, and the humanities, Rachel Schreiber (Art & Critical Studies MFA 95) has been appointed Dean and Vice President for Academic Affairs at the San Francisco Art Institute (SFAI). Schreiber joins SFAI from California College of the Arts, where she served as Director of Humanities & Sciences. A practicing visual artist and publishing historian, Schreiber's most recent book, Modern Print Activism in the United States (Ashgate Publishing), is an edited volume that looks at how print culture has been used as a form of social and political activism in twentieth-century U.S. history.
Kay Adams (Experimental Sound Practices and Integrated Media MFA 13) has completed her studies at the Institute and will be moving to Tokyo in September to begin work as a product and service designer for Netprice.com, an international e-commerce firm. She will be working with the company to create new online services and apps.
CalArtians from several schools are featured in Studio: Summer 2013, part of an ongoing series of interdisciplinary programs for new and experimental performance works produced by the Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater in Los Angeles. The curators for this edition, presented June 1-2, are Aaron Drake (Music MFA 07) and Ayana Hampton (Theater MFA 06). Performances include Tachyons by Bulbs, the multimedia duo of Jon Almaraz and William Sabiston (Film/Video MFA 12), who merge electronic percussion and processed guitar with projection mapping technology to generate site-specific improvisations, and Notes from the Underground by Kendra Ware (Theater MFA 09), a writer/performer who offers up a harrowing work of autobiograpical solo theater that parallels the autobiograpies of Assata Shukur and Angela Davis.
Under the auspices of Machine Project, the Echo Park art, performance, and culture space, Critical Studies faculty member Ken Ehrlich (Writing-Integrated Media MFA 99) will be leading a series of four walks through different neighborhoods of Los Angeles County, each accompanied by a different expert. The first walk, through Venice, takes place on Sunday, June 9. For more information and to make a reservation, contact Machine Project. Ehrlich also screened his experimental documentary La Huelga (2012) in March at the Echo Park Film Center and as part of the West Hollywood Aesthetics and Politics (WHAP!) series at the West Hollywood Public Library. La Huelga examines a student strike at Mexico's largest public university, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico (UNAM), in 1999-2000, by juxtaposing participant interviews with a lyrical portrait of the campus architecture.
Jingyin "Jon" He (Music Technology and Integrated Media MFA 13) is heading to Victoria University in Wellington, New Zealand to begin a PhD program in Sonic Arts, Computation, and Engineering, fully funded by the Victoria Doctoral Scholarship. In May, his poster/demo presentation "Kontrol: Hand Gesture Recognition for Music and Dance Interaction" was included in the New Interfaces for Musical Expression conference in Seoul. His paper "Formalization Using Organic Systemization for Musical Applications" will be presented at Computation, Communication, Aesthetics and X (xCoAx) in Bergamo, Italy in late June, while his paper "Playing the World through Citygram: Sonification and Beyond" will be presented at the International Computer Music Conference (ICMC) in Perth, Australia in August. More information about Jon is available on his website.
Performance/media artist Carole Kim (Integrated Media-Film/Video MFA 03) has received a City of Los Angeles (C.O.L.A.) Individual Artist Fellowship for 2013. Her C.O.L.A. project is an installation "to which one must bring imagination and sensory-openness," according to the fellowship announcement. Opening reception at the Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery is May 19, from 2-5 pm. The exhibtion runs through July 7.
Choreographer and filmmaker Natalie Metzger (Dance-Integrated Media MFA 11) is completing post-production on the film adaptation of her award-winning dance/theater work, Sacrament, originally started as her MFA thesis project. Sacrament, which features Erica Carpenter (Dance BFA 12), is about a woman dragged into a cult ritual surrounding the creation and destruction of a god. Most of the 17 dancers in the film are CalArts alumni or current students. In March, Metzger's film, Barely, screened at the Loikka Dance Film Festival in Helsinki, Finland. Barely was created in collaboration with CalArts faculty member Colin Connor and CalArts alumni Robert Allaire (Music MFA 09) and Melissa Bourkas (Dance BFA 09). Metzger is collaborating with Connor again this summer in a film adaptation of his 2009 critically-acclaimed dance work, ARENA. Metzger will be directing the film and Connor will be choreographing it.
Kwaku Ananse, a film by Akosua Adoma Owusu (Art-Film/Video MFA 08) won the 2013 Africa Movie Academy Award for Best Short Film on Sunday, April 20 in Bayelsa State, Nigeria. The Ghana-Mexico-U.S. co-production was selected from 184 short films submitted from around the world.
First Take, a workshop of six new operas, appears at the Hammer Museum on June 1, presented by The Industry, a home for new experimental opera in Los Angeles. Works include Winter's Child, with music by Ellen Reid (Composition MFA 11) and libretto by Amanda Jane Shank (Writing for Performance MFA 13), and The House is Open, with music and text by Alexander Vassos (Composition and Performance MFA 12). Performances feature the modern music collective wild Up, which includes many CalArtians. Wild Up will be led by the Industry's music director and CalArts faculty member Marc Lowenstein and wild Up's artistic director, Christopher Rountree. The Industry's general manager is David Mack (Acting MFA 08). The free performances will run from 2 pm-5:30 pm.
Jesse Lee Stout (Art MFA 2011; Film/Video BFA 2002) has been busy overseeing creative direction and directing video environments for numerous musicians. Creative direction projects have included work for indie pop band, The XX, for Beck, and for The Weeknd's 2012 tour. Stout directed video environments for Rihanna's Diamondsworld tour and for all of her televised performances in 2012; he directed video environments for Drake's Club Paradise tour in 2012; he directed video environments for Jay Z's numerous festival shows and for the Barclays Center opening in 2012; and he directed video environments for the televised appearances of Florence + the Machine in 2011 and 2012.
Christine Gump (Interschool BFA 03) is leader of the Santa Clarita Valley Holistic Moms Network.
Kenyatta Hinkle (Art & Writing MFA 12) has accepted the position of CalArts Community Arts Partnership (CAP) Program Coordinator.
Black Sunshine, the first feature by artist/filmmaker Akosua Adoma Owusu (Film/Video and Art MFA 08 ), was nominated for the first ever Tribeca Film Institute Heineken Affinity Award for African American filmmakers. Set in a village in Ghana, Black Sunshine is a film about the love triangle of a promiscuous Ghanaian hairdresser, her European lover, and her teenage albino daughter.
Anonymization: The Global Proliferation of Urban Sprawl (2012) features the photography of Robert Pitman (Art and Film/Video 02). Currently, he is working on a new documentary film about open-pit coal mining with with actor Martin Sheen.
Jory Prum (Music and Film/Video BFA 97) was responsible for the recording, editing, and mastering of the dialogue in 2012’s hit video game The Walking Dead: The Game, which has won numerous “Game of the Year” awards.
Aurora Guerrero (Interschool/D.T.V.C. MFA 99) directed and wrote Mosquita y Mari, which premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival.
Deaf Jam, Judith Lief's (Dance & Film/Video MFA 92) film about a "deaf teen introduced to American Sign Language (ASL) Poetry, who
then boldly enters the spoken word slam scene," has been screened at the Woodstaock Film Festival and on PBS' Independent Lens. Also, it will be shown in the New York Jewish Film Festival in January.
Amy Vuckovich's (Art & Film/Video BFA 85) sets for The Finder will be feautred in the Set Decorators Society of America's Day With the Set Decorator tour on February 11th.
Akosua Adoma Owusu (Art & Film/Video MFA 08) has won Expresion en Corto International Film Festival's Best Experimental Film Award for her film Drexciya.
Larry Eisenberg (MFA DTVC '99) is directing Dion Boucicault's The Poor of New York at the Group Rep at the Lonny Chapman Theatre in North Hollywood on June 3.
Aurora Guerrero (DTVC MFA 99) wrote and directed her new film, Mosquita Y Mari.
Rachel Schreiber's (Art & Critical Studies MFA 95) book Gender and Activism in a Little Magazine: the Modern Figures of the Masses was released by Ashgate Publishers in February, 2011. Shreiber completed her Ph.D. in History at the Johns Hopkins University in 2008 and is currently Director of Humanities and Sciences and Associate Professor of Critical Studies and Interdisciplinary Studies at the California College of the Arts in Oakland, CA.