LA Artists and Arts Organizations Unite forVisionLA ’15 Climate Action Arts Festival
A Citywide Celebration of the Power of Art to Make Change
In Venues Throughout the Greater LA Area
Monday, November 30 – Friday, December 11, 2015In Association with ArtCOP21 and SoCal 350 Climate Action
LOS ANGELES, CA – November 4, 2015 – In response to increasing concerns about the future of the planet due to global warming, Los Angeles artists and arts organizations are uniting for VisionLA ’15 Climate Action Arts Festival, a citywide climate-focused arts festival celebrating the power of art to make change. Happening throughout the greater Los Angeles area from Monday, November 30 to Friday, December 11, 2015, VisionLA ‘15 aims to stimulate a creative response to the climate crisis through arts engagement. The Los Angeles-based multidisciplinary festival has been timed to coincide with the United Nations 21st Conference of the Parties on Climate Change (COP21) in Paris and is inspired by the concurrent ArtCOP21, a Paris-wide arts festival expressing support for a strong international climate treaty and positive, sustainable change.
VisionLA ’15, the first festival of its kind in the Los Angeles area, is co-executive produced by Cheryl Slean and Guy Zimmerman in association with SoCal 350 Climate Action, the Los Angeles branch of environmentalist Bill McKibben’s 350.org climate activist organization, and Arts Earth Partnership. Events will be held in venues, city streets, public parks, river sites, galleries, and storefronts. The Festival and key partner, SoCal 350 Climate Action, will prepare educational and outreach materials to be presented at participating events to grow public awareness and enthusiasm for a strong and timely response to global warming. For additional information on the Festival, please visit http://visionlafest.org.
VisionLA ’15 –
Participating VisionLA ‘15 projects range from installations and performances interacting with the public space to formal gallery shows; from theatre and dance pieces to concerts, readings, films, street art, and pop-up art; as well as climate change-related lectures, workshops, and presentations.
Among the special events/programs being presented by the Festival are:
• VisionLA ’15 presents Art Makes Change, a group exhibition of 60 local artists, featuring over 200 environmentally-themed works in a pop-up gallery running the entire length of the festival. [Art]
• Concert for the Climate, a classical and new music event at the First Congregational Church of Los Angeles featuring Vicki Ray, the Street Symphony featuring members of the LA Philharmonic, performers from the LA Opera, and Don Preston (of the Mothers of Invention) performing on organ. [Music]
• The VisionLA ‘15 Film Series at the Helms Design Center in Culver City, the Armory Center for the Arts in Pasadena, and other venues, will screen 20 environmentally-themed documentary shorts and features, including 100 Mules Walking the LA Aqueduct, an exclusive simulcast with the Discovery Channel’s broadcast premiere of Racing Extinction, Merchants of Doubt, Soil Carbon Cowboys, Standing on Sacred Ground, student-made Green Shorts from Pomona College, The Breach, The Monsanto Years, The True Cost, The Wisdom to Survive, as well as other selections. Many of the filmmakers and other special guests will attend the screenings. [Film]
• Envision – VisionLA ’15 Closing Celebration hosted by Arts Earth Partnership, featuring poetry by LA Poet Laureate Luis Rodriguez, music by DJ Jedi, and an installation dance/concert by String Theory at La Plaza de Cultura y Artes. [Performance/Music]
VisionLA ‘15 presents Art Makes Change, a group exhibition of 60 local artists whose work strives to bring awareness to the climate crisis through various fine art mediums. The show will feature over 200 pieces of fine art, sculpture, photography and site-specific installations that inspire, provoke, confront and bring to light the many issues plaguing our world today. All works are for sale. Co-curated by Dale Youngman and Lilli Muller, two long-time Downtown curators, the exhibit – split into four themes of EARTH, WATER, RECYCLE and AWARENESS – illustrate how art can create and promote change by focusing on environmental topics including sustainability, reducing emissions, the California drought, ocean pollution, endangered species, activism, etc., while also reminding us of the beauty of the planet we need to protect.
Participating artists in the Art Makes Change group exhibit include:
Jacki Apple, Clara Berta, Om Bleicher, Qathryn Brehm, Bill Brewer, Gary Brewer, Wini Brewer, Wanda Boudreaux, Mark Brosmer, Nathan Cartwright, Michael Carrier, Morgan Chavoshi, Steven David, Ben Dewell, Karen Fiorito, Nicole Fournier, Barbara Fritsche, Anyes Galliani, Tom Garner, Brian Goodman, Patrick Haemmerlein, Michael Hayden, Erin Hansen, Sean Sobczak, William Hogan, Dave Knudsen, Jonna Lee, Aline Mare, Rick Mendoza, Colette Miller, Lilli Muller, Billy Pacek, Monica Mader, Rebecca Molayem, Michael Mollette, Jen Moore, Pamela Mower-Conner, Julie Orr, Miguel Osuna, Vinnie Picardi, Naomi Pitcairn, Jena Priebe, Catherine Ruane, Robert Rosenblum, Osceola Refetoff, Louise Russell, Elizabeth Saveri, Gwen Samuels, Winston Secrest, Moses Seenarine, Karen Sikie, Anna Stump, Jill Sykes, Rachel Van Der Pol, Andrea Villefane, Geoffry D. White, Rush White, Tami Wood, and Alexandra Underhill.
The Art Makes Change exhibit – free and open to the public – will be open daily Dec. 1st through Dec. 10th from noon to 8:00pm, with a gala opening on Nov. 30 at the VisionLA ’15 Home Gallery (location TBD).
Among the dozens of diverse arts and related cultural projects that will be presented during the Festival, drawing a new kind of attention to climate change, are:
• Chalkupy LA, a climate change community chalk art action, featuring an infographic designed by the Union of Concerned Scientists. [Community Action]
• Coalition for Educational Justice’s and SoCal 350’s Student Art Fighting Climate Change community art-making event at Frank Romero’s art studio. [Art]
• Diana Wyenn’s Compassio\N, mixed media performances that investigate the historical and contemporary uses, references, and definitions of compassion through the lens of climate change. [Performance]
• Domestic Apocalypse, a performance piece providing event cleansing and consciousness purification. [Performance]
• Dominique Moody‘s Nomad, a residence and art workshop that serves as a catalyst for conversations about the cultural, social, ecological, and economic challenges of our times at the California African American Museum. [Artist Residency/Assemblage Workshop]
• Green City Workshops and Tour at the TreePeople Campus on topics such as Citizen Forestry-Tree Planting and Rainwater Harvesting. [Workshops]
• Groundwork, a play by Mike Ostroski and Derek Davidson, which uses gardening as a metaphor for the journey to find meaning in life. [Theatre]
• LAMudpeople, performing an improvisational “walkabout” at the LA River. [Performance]
• Liquid Times, a multimedia staged reading of an epic, satirical romp on climate change by Brenda Varda. [Theatre]
• MorYork Gallery, presenting Clare Graham’s artworks made from discarded materials. [Art]
• Race to Waste, a humorous theatre piece that investigates the American home as ground zero for sustainability. [Theatre]
• Thriving in a Hotter Los Angeles, a panel discussion the future of water use in LA at the Hammer Museum. [Panel Discussion]
• William Close and the Earth Harp Collective’s Holiday Spectacular at City National Plaza. [Music/Installation]
• Words to Save the World, poetry and prose at Beyond Baroque with an environmental theme. [Spoken Word]
The full VisionLA ’15 festival schedule will be announced soon at http://visionlafest.org.
Los Angeles as the Festival Site –
As ground zero of the automotive economy, Los Angeles has a unique contribution to make in devising better ways to live. VisionLA ‘15 has invited the local arts and sustainability community to get involved in this vitally important project. By engaging the international dialogue on climate change, imagining creative responses, and building momentum for change, artists and storytellers and their audiences have a crucial role to play. The creative sector is key to raising awareness, engaging broad communities and imaginatively exploring how to actualize a sustainable, just, zero-carbon future. Together we can transform the slow-motion crisis of climate change into an inspiring call to action and a remarkable opportunity for positive change.
“I feel that each of us needs to come to the challenging work of climate action through the communities and activities we love the most, and for me, that’s the Los Angeles arts scene,” says VisionLA Founder Cheryl Slean. “The Festival invites all Angelenos, art-makers, and art-lovers alike, to step out of the stasis of helplessness and engage in the climate issue through the joyful, inclusive, open door of art. Around the world, projects like VisionLA ‘15 and ArtCOP21 in Paris are creating the cultural narratives that will inspire us toward a thriving future for all.”
Participating Venues –
Festival hubs are the Armory Center for the Arts (Pasadena), the First Congregational Church of Los Angeles (Koreatown), the Helms Design Center (Culver City), and VisionLA’s Home Gallery (DTLA). Additional venues include Against the Stream (East Hollywood), Amity Foundation (South Park), Beyond Baroque (Venice), California African American Museum (Exposition Park), California Institute of Technology (Pasadena), City National Plaza (DTLA), Erin Hanson Gallery (Elysian Valley), Hammer Museum (Westwood), La Plaza de Cultura y Artes (DTLA), MorYork Gallery (Highland Park), Pomona College (Pomona), Santa Monica Playhouse, Skylight Theatre (Los Feliz), Spoke Bicycle Café (Elysian Valley), The MET Theatre (Hollywood), Tod Lychkoff Art Gallery (DTLA), TreePeople Campus (Beverly Hills/Coldwater Canyon), Union Theater (Pico-Union), the Viaduct (LA River), and many others.
Organizational Partners –
Organizational partners and sponsors include Amity Foundation, Arts Earth Partnership, Climate Change Theatre Action, Climate Resolve, COlabs, Downtown LA Artwalk, HeatWave,LADADSpace, Otis School of Art and Design, Padua Playwrights, Refuge Recovery Centers, SoCal 350 Climate Action, and the Open Fist Theatre Company.
Cheryl Slean, VisionLA Fest Co-Executive Producer –
Cheryl Slean is a writer, filmmaker and educator exploring the intersection of the arts, sustainability, and contemplative practice. Her theatre history in Los Angeles goes back 25 years and includes dozens of award-winning shows as writer, director, producer, and actor. Her films have been programmed at over 50 international film festivals and received worldwide distribution. Recent theatre work includes two commissions from Seattle University and site-specific performance events in Koreatown and at the LA River.
Guy Zimmerman, VisionLA Fest Co-Executive Producer –
An award-winning writer, director, and producer, Zimmerman has served as artistic director of Padua Playwrights since 2001, where he has produced over forty productions of new work. He is currently completing a doctoral degree in Theatre and Dramatic Arts in the joint UC Irvine/UC San Diego PhD program and he has also received a graduate certificate in Urban Sustainability at Antioch University.
COP21 is the 21st Conference of Parties on Climate Change organized by the United Nations to establish cuts in carbon emissions across the globe. This year’s make-or-break international meeting will be held in Paris from Monday, November 30 through Friday, December 11, 2015. COP21 will be a crucial conference, aiming to make a strong statement about the need to limit global temperature rise to 2°C by 2100.
ArtCOP21 will connect hundreds of thousands of people to the climate challenge through an extensive global program of over 180 major public art installations, exhibitions, concerts, performances, talks, conferences, workshops, family events, and film screenings, taking place across Paris and around the world – with major events in 22 countries and counting. All of these events will highlight the need for governments meeting in Paris to support strong climate action and signal the end of the fossil fuel era.
VisionLA ’15 Climate Action Arts Festival –
The VisionLA Fest aims to engage the Los Angeles creative community in the international cultural dialogue on climate change, as the LA-based sister event to ArtCOP21. Based at “ground zero” of the automobile-centered way of life, LA’s arts community has a unique and creative role to play in transitioning to a just, sustainable society. The Festival invites artists to engage with climate and sustainability themes by presenting shows, performances, and events during the Paris time frame. VisionLA will function as curator, marketing umbrella, and aggregator, collecting citywide events in performing, visual, literary, dance, media, music, street, and public arts, as well as related cultural events, into a branded website with schedule, map, and information. Many events will also feature a climate action/education component appropriate to the venue.
VisionLA ’15 is sponsored by SoCal 350 Climate Action and Arts Earth Partnership.
SoCal 350 Climate Action –
SoCal 350 Climate Action is a coalition of individuals and groups from the Southern California area working together to fight climate change. Through collaboration, the organization aims to mobilize, support, and strengthen the efforts of different organizations and community members who are working toward solutions to dirty fuel dependence and who are battling the effects of global warming-caused climate disruption. VisionLA ’15 is sponsored by SoCal 350 Climate Action and Arts Earth Partnership.
Arts Earth Partnership –
Arts Earth Partnership (AEP) is a 501c3 non-profit whose mission is to harness the transformative power of the arts to help create sustainable cities. AEP is the first sustainable business certification program specifically for the arts and cultural sector in the world. The organization currently administers the green business certification programs for the arts and cultural sectors of Los Angeles and Santa Monica.
Get Involved –
Get involved at http://visionlafest.org/#get-involved.
“It’s time to actively put the genie of climate change back into the bottle,” says VisionLA Co-Executive Producer Guy Zimmerman. “By harnessing transformational magic of all kinds, including the power of art, together we can make the most of our moment in time.”
• VisionLA – http://visionlafest.org
• VisionLA on Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/VisionLAFest
• Vision LA on Twitter – https://twitter.com/VisionLAFest
• VisionLA on Instagram – https://instagram.com/visionlafest
• SoCal 350 Climate Action – https://www.facebook.com/SoCal350
• COP21 – http://www.cop21.gouv.fr/en
• ArtCOP21 – http://www.artcop21.com
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For more information, photos, to schedule an interview, or request press passes, please contact Green Galactic’s Lynn Tejada at 213-840-1201, firstname.lastname@example.org.
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VisionLA ’15 Climate Action Arts Festival
Mon. November 30 to Fri. December 11, 2015
In Multiple Venues
Throughout the Greater Los Angeles Area
VisionLA ’15 is a citywide, climate-focused arts festival
celebrating the power of art to make change.
Imagery from VisionLA ’15 Climate Action Arts Festival participants:
• Row 1: Ben Dewell, Gary Brewer, Liquid Times by Brenda Varda
• Row 2: DREMPELS by Evelyn Rudie, Lauren Bon’s 100 Mules Walking the Los Angeles Aqueduct, Jill Sykes [top white flower on green], Wini Brewer [middle: bees], Gwen Samuels [bottom: green pattern], Ron Zeno
• Row 3: Roberto Delgado, Aline Mare, Chalkupy, Union Theatre/The Velaslavasay Panorama
• Row 4: Osceola Refetoff, Jonna Lee, Brian Goodman
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