art:inFOCUS Lecture Series
Immerse yourself in the world of art through this engaging series of presentations and open discussions with artists and art professionals.
Past Lectures | 2013-2014 Season
Stepping Up to the Plate: Perspectives on Printmaking
Kathy Aoki uses humor to explore gender and beauty issues via familiar formats such as cartoon styling or art historical references to lure in the viewer. Recent installations of her work were presented in the context of a futuristic beauty history museum set in the early 4th millennium. The museum framework allows for a free hand in commentary on today’s values. Kathy grew up on the east coast in the small town of Natick, a Boston suburb. She attended the University of California, Berkeley, followed by two years at Washington University in St. Louis for an MFA in Printmaking. Currently Kathy lives and works in the Silicon Valley where she is an Associate Professor of Studio Art at Santa Clara University. Past awards include fellowships from Kala Art Institute (1995), the MacDowell Colony (2001), Headlands Center for the Arts (2003), and Djerassi (2006). Her work can be found in major collections across the U.S. such as the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art, SFMOMA , the Harvard University Art Museums, and the New York Public Library. Past projects included a 2004 grant from the San Francisco Public Arts Commission for the Art on Market Street Kiosk Poster Project. Her series of linocut prints were transformed into 4 x 6 ft posters entitled “Champions of Market St.” showing Market St. pedestrians dressed in super-hero garb performing random acts of kindness. In January 2012, Aoki completed an interactive “Political Paper Dolls” art installation commissioned by the San Jose Museum of Art for the exhibition “Renegade Humor.”
Art of the Theatre: A Panel Discussion
The panel discussion to be held at the Council Chambers will feature a lively conversation with four Theater Arts professionals: Art Director, Larry Barrott; Costume Designer and Make-Up Artist, Elizabeth Poindexter; Scenic Designer, Jim Culley; and Lighting Designer, Randy Earle. Their discussion will bring us “backstage” to experience the stagecraft of set designers, costumers, make-up and lighting artists. In conjunction with our current exhibit Unmasking the Stage: The Visual Artists Behind the Theater Experience, discover the processes these artists use to create a sense of place and time, real or imagined, for their theater audience. Unmasking the Stage runs from January 28-March 30, 2014. Larry Barrott is an accomplished actor, director and scholar who served as SSTC’s Artistic Director from 2005 – 2012. He holds a BA in Theatre Arts from Santa Clara University, a Master’s Degree in Education from American Continental University, and is currently working on his Master’s Degree in Theatre Arts at San Jose State University. Larry received his certification in stage combat from Dueling Arts International and serves as the company’s resident fight director. Larry directed SSTC’s productions of Romeo and Juliet,The Comedy of Errors, Much Ado About Nothing, and Henry V. Larry continues to work with SSTC as its Resident Fight Director and Associate Artist. Elizabeth Poindexter’s professional career has been divided between her two great loves, teaching and designing. She retired from San Jose State University, Department of TV, Radio, Film and Theatre in 2009 where she taught costume and makeup for theatre and ﬁlm for 30 years. While at SJSU she designed costumes and makeup for over 200 productions, including classical and modern theatre repertoire, musical theatre, jazz and modern dance. Ms. Poindexter is equally well known in the San Francisco Bay Area as a professional costume designer and makeup artist. Some of her professional costume design credits include Opera San Jose, Santa Barbara Opera, Center Repertory Company of Walnut Creek, American Musical Theatre of San Jose, San Jose Repertory Theatre, among others across the country. Her numerous credits as a makeup artist include San Francisco Opera, San Francisco Ballet, Opera San Jose, The Mark Morris Dance company, and American Musical Theatre of San Jose. Ms. Poindexter’s involvement in Bay Area Theater Organizations is broad, but most notably, she is a founding member of The Bay Area Costume Alliance and long time member of the United States Institute for Theatre Technology. Jim Culley holds a Master’s degree in Technical Theater from San José State and a Master of Fine Arts in Theatrical Design from The University of Texas, Austin. For the past 15 years, he has designed professionally for San Jose Children’s Musical Theater for productions such as Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Honk, Rag Time, Tommy, Miss Saigon, Les Miserable, and Alice in Wonderland. Mr. Culley has recently retired from his position as Resident Scenic Designer and the Technical Director for the Department of Television, Radio, Film and Theater at San Jose State University. In addition to teaching theatrical design, scenery construction, 3D modeling, web graphics, and CAD drafting, he also was the Sna Jose State University resident designer for over thirty main stage productions including All My Sons, A Glass Menagerie, A Street Car Named Desire, One Flew Under the Cuckoo’s Nest, Of Mice and Men, Emma, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Bury the Dead. Mr.Culley has also served on numerous Department and College committees and designed for the Barn Theatre in Augusta, Michigan, the University of Texas in Austin, the Cabrillo Stage Company and the California Stage Company in Sunnyvale, among others. Randy Earle is a Theatre Consultant and partner with Pantechnicon LLC, a leading theatre consulting and design firm in San Jose. He has accomplished dozens of theatre consulting projects that range from work for public and private schools, universities, municipal governments and arts producing organizations since 1976. Significant work includes the Garden and Carriage House Theatres at Montalvo Center for the Arts, complete renovation of five Fremont Union High School District theatres and initial feasibility studies for the California Theatre in San Jose. Randy graduated from Purdue University with an M.A. in Theatre Design and Technology and has recently been recognized as a Distinguished Alumni from the Purdue College of Liberal Arts. He came to San Jose State University in 1970 where he had a thirty-eight year career as Professor of Theatre Arts with service as Technical Director, Head of Theatre Arts Program and lighting designer in the Department of Television, Radio, Film and Theatre. Other significant work has included the United States Institute for Theatre Technology where he served in a number of offices including President and was elected a Fellow. Currently, Randy is Chair of the USITT Fellows and a key member of the Grants and Fellowships Committee.
Craft as an Action Word: California Art Glass
Mary Bayard White is co-head of the Crucible Glass Department in West Oakland. She is a Bay Area sculptor/arts educator who likes to link art making and environmental issues, addressing issues of water resources, renewable energy, urban habitats for wild birds and affordable housing. She believes in the power of regeneration, transformation and reuse, uses salvage materials in her work, and often works with many varieties of recycled glass, and found metal parts. Mary has a MFA in Glass and Painting from California College of the Arts. From 1985-2005, she was head of the San Jose State University Glass Program and taught in the School of Art and Design and the Creative Arts Department at San Jose State University. She also has served as a board member and Oakland, CA site coordinator for the Glass Art Society conference, organized the California Glass Exchange in San Jose and currently serves on the board of the Women Environmental Art Directory. She has taught workshops at over fifteen institutions and is in many collections, including the Corning Glass Museum. Her current work includes solar powered bird baths, glass flood level markers, and glass watershed maps. At our art:inFOCUS lecture, Mary will discuss the history of art glass and share her experiences as an artist in the California Art Glass movement.
Past Lectures | 2012-2013 Season
The 2012-2013 art:inFOCUS lecture season featured diverse topics that were designed to complement an exciting new exhibition schedule at The Art Museum of Los Gatos. Five presentations were featured over the course of several months. The expert perspectives of our lecturers inspired audiences to take an informed look at art within the museum and beyond.
Brian is a Professor in the Department of Art and Art History at San Jose State University where he has taught photography for over 30 years. Known for his entertaining lectures, Brian will present a fast-paced, lively overview of the many topics in photography today. Contrasting traditional techniques with contemporary issues, we’ll enjoy a mad dash through the many styles and (often controversial) approaches to fine art photography today.
Johanna Movassat will introduce Islamic Art and Architecture with special focus on how artists depict Islam in art and architecture while representing ideas, desires, stories, and legends. Professor Movassat graduated from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, with a BA in Art History. She earned her MA and PhD in Near Eastern Studies: Art and Archaeology from the University of California, Berkeley. Movassat attended the Goethe Institute in Berlin, lived in Iran for five years, speaks Farsi fluently, and taught English at the Iran America Society. Professor Movassat has taught at UC Berkeley, City College of San Francisco and Santa Clara University, and for or the past 21 years has been teaching at San Jose State University, Department of Art and Art History. For two years she was the SJSU Coordinator of Creative Arts in the Humanities Department and taught courses on Arts in a Global Context. Movassat has written and lectured on numerous topics on the arts of the Middle East and published The Large Vault at Taq-i Bustan: A Study in Late Sasanian Royal Art (Mellen Press, 2005).
Susan’s childhood love of drawing and reading came together in her career as an illustrator of children’s books. Animals and people are her favorite subjects and she feels very fortunate to participate in the worthy profession of bringing art to children’s education and literature. Over the last several decades she has done artwork for textbooks, children’s trade books, religious publications, posters, puzzles, stickers and games for the children’s market. In addition to that Susan has done several Atari Game Box illustrations, as well as numerous gardening and cooking books for Sunset. Now she is pursuing an interest in fine art, concentrating on botanical watercolors and prints, and dog portraits, done in pastel. Her work may be viewed on her website, susanjaekel.com Panelist, Gennifer Choldenko – Gennifer’s first novel, Notes from a Liar and Her Dog, was a School Library Journal Best Book of the Year and a California Book Award winner. Her second novel, Al Capone Does My Shirts, was a Newbery Honor Book and a School Library Journal, Kirkus, and Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year. Al Capone Does My Shirts was short-listed for the Carnegie in the United Kingdom and has been on the New York Times, Booksense, and Publishers Weekly bestseller lists. Her most recent picture book, Louder, Lili(illustrated by SD Schindler), was published in 2007. If a Tree Falls at Lunch Period, an ALA notable recording, just came out in paperback and her newest novel Al Capone Shines My Shoes—a sequel to the beloved Al Capone Does My Shirts—is a Kirkus, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Chicago Public Library Best of the Best for 2009. Her newest novel No Passengers Beyond This Point is due out in February 2011. Gennifer is hard at work on the last book in the Al Capone trilogy right now. Panelist, Summer Laurie – Summer began her story in the San Francisco Bay Area, graduating with an English degree from UC Berkeley. After an eye-opening stint as an account executive with an investor relations agency, she set her sights on the world of book publishing. She began to gather steam down this path at Chronicle Books where she worked in both the marketing and editorial departments during her three-year tenure in the children’s division there. In 2000 she crossed the bay to join Tricycle Press, the children’s imprint of Ten Speed Press in Berkeley, California. As Senior Editor, Summer worked on over 50 books—picturebooks, board books, novels, activity books, fiction and non-fiction for young people up to age twelve. After seven years she took yet another fork in the road and is now an independent editor, working to strengthen each and every word her clients write. Summer is also a children’s specialist at independent bookseller Books Inc. where she has started the “Wild Girls Mother-Daughter Book Club.” And just for the fun of it, Summer produces the children’s and teen programming for the Litquake literary festival and is a prior member of the board of the NCCBA (Northern California Children’s Booksellers’ Association). Moderator, Heidi Long - Heidi currently serves as Town Librarian at the Los Gatos Library. Here, she has focused on developing community relationships and transforming the Library into a community gathering space. Prior to that, Heidi worked as Director of Research for a boutique executive recruiting firm where she learned to appreciate people and connections as two great resources which bridge all fields. Heidi also worked as the District Librarian for a small, rural school district in southern Arizona, just after completing her MLIS degree at San Jose State University. With a Bachelors degree in Literature, the Library is the perfect space to blend her passions – people, books and research—into a fun and exciting career.
|Illustration from “Let’s go to the Aquarium! Vamos al Acuario!” at the Monterey Bay Aquarium.||
Illustrator Bob Barner
Past Lectures | 2011-2012 Season
A panel discussion regarding public murals, including street art: Jeff Appel, John Pugh (Artist), John C. Agg (Moderator)
Taylor Hall, California State University, Chico
Those columns aren’t really there
Painted by John Pugh
Cafe Trompe L’oeil, San Jose, California
This customer doesn’t leave at closing time
Painted by John Pugh