The University Art Museum at UC Santa Barbara plans to continue "Margins," a program showcasing new directions in art, presenting a total of four shows each year, said curator Phyllis Plous.
The "Margins" program, which began with the museum's current show, "Fred Fehlau: A Pictorial Installation" (through Feb. 25), was financed this year by a $7,500 grant from the South Pasadena-based Flintridge Foundation. Plous said the foundation has invited her to reapply for a grant next year, and that she will also seek awards from other foundations and the National Endowment for the Arts to continue the program on a yearly basis.
"This is something that we've been wanting to do for years," said Plous, adding that "now with the security of this funding, (our exhibitions) don't have to be regional. We can go beyond the security of (artists from) California, and that's important to me."
Plous said the program will focus on emerging artists, but will also feature "mid-career artists who start to do something totally different from what they've done before." Already scheduled are shows by Oakland painter Rick Arnitz (March 6-April 29), and Los Angeles installation artist Megan Williams (in November and December). Those under consideration for future shows, Plous said, include French sculptor Patrice Caire, East Coast installation artist Steve Appleton, New York sculptor Dean McNiel and Los Angeles artists Maura Bendett and Sarah Seager.
Plous said that with the exception of the summer months, the museum's 15x30-foot South Gallery will be devoted entirely to "Margins" shows. That way, she said, the artists will be able to work with a contained space "where they can do anything they want--as long as the walls still stand."
" 'Margins' really formalizes an irregular program that we've been doing on an under-funded basis for sometime," said Plous. "It's exciting for us."
LATINO GALLERY: A new downtown gallery dedicated to the vision of Chicano and Latino artists opens Saturday with an inaugural show of works by the gallery's co-owners, Chicano artists Linda Vallejo and Ramses Noriega, as well as works by self-taught newcomer Daniel B. Salazar.
"The Chicano and the entire Latino community are behind us," said Consuelo F. Norte, administrator of Galeria Nueva. "They really want to have this take off, not only because it will open the door to their own personal art, but because it will better communication between (Latinos) and the international community. Art speaks to all nationalities."
Consuelo said that the inaugural show will run through April 7, during which time the gallery would "gather a bank of Latino artists" for future shows. An invitational show will be held in the coming months, she said, as will shows by both emerging and established artists of Latino descent.
"There is a wealth of art and a wealth of artists that have never been addressed because there has been no forum for them," said Norte. "We want to provide a forum for these incredibly talented artists.
Galeria Nueva's grand opening reception will be held Saturday from 6:30-9 p.m. The gallery is at 312 E. 3rd St.
ART IN THE THEATER: Painter and sculptor Richard Artschwager has designed the scenery for the West Coast premiere of Orson Welles' adaptation of Christopher Marlowe's "The Tragical History of Doctor Faustus." The play, the inaugural production of USC's new Contemporary Artists in Theater series, will be performed at USC's Bing Theatre Thursday-Saturday and Feb. 15-17 at 8 p.m.; and next Sunday and Feb. 18 at 2 p.m. The Contemporary Artists in Theatre series, which will consist of one production each year, matches visual artists with drama classics. The visual artist selected that year will then create his or her own personal vision of the play through the scenic design. According to USC's Division of Drama, artists under consideration for future productions include sculptor and painter Jim Dine and conceptual artist John Baldessari. Tickets: (213) 743-7111.
PRINTMAKING: The Fine Arts Foundation of Scripps College today will present "Hands On," a printmaking festival, from noon-4 p.m. in the rear courtyard of the Claremont Graduate School Art Building, 251 E. 10th St., Claremont. Prints on display will include limited editions by artists such as Millard Sheets, Phil Dike and Alan Blizzard. Artists will demonstrate the processes and the equipment used by contemporary printmakers, and children will be able to make a print to take home. Proceeds from the $8-per-person ($4 for children) event will go to the Millard Sheets Scholarship fund. (714) 941-8566 or (714) 624-1778).