July 15, 2005

California Center for the Arts Announces Four New Exhibitions

Live with History: Photographs from the ‘New York Times’ Photo Archives

Piece Me Together With a Needle and a Thread: Quilts by Patrice Longmire

10 North: An Artists Group

Alcancia de Coco en Mexico

ESCONDIDO – One hundred photographs that have captured historical figures and events, from Babe Ruth, the Wright Brothers’ first flight, President John F. Kennedy, the World Trade Center to numerous other people and occurrences, will be part of Live With History: Photographs from the ‘New York Times’ Photo Archives at the California Center for the Arts, Escondido Museum from July 22 through September 4, 2005. The Museum will also have on view the exhibitions Piece Me Together With a Needle and a Thread: Quilts by Patrice Longmire, a display of quilts by the Escondido-based artist; 10 North: An Artists Group, watercolor works by ten North County-based artists; and Alcancia de Coco en Mexico, finely carved coconuts that are thought to have been crafted into coin banks by Mexican prisoners in the 19th and 20th centuries.

Live With History: Photographs from the ‘New York Times’ Photo Archives

A total of 100 black and white photographs from ‘The New York Times’ Photo Archives capture bits of history — from the Wright Brothers first flight to the Hindenberg exploding to rounding up wild horses in California in 1930 — in a sweeping iconic survey of the changing face of America.

Works by major photographers Alfred Stieglitz, Edward S. Curtis, Berenice Abbott and Andreas Feininger are included in the exhibition. Most of the photographs come from the vast picture library of ‘The New York Times,’ the repository for more than seven million prints and negatives.

  The photographs dramatize the power of the image to delight, shock, inspire and inform. Lodged in our collective memories, they remind us how profoundly photography has shaped our perceptions, and how important it can be to remember.

Piece Me Together With a Needle and a Thread: Quilts by Patrice Longmire

“When I look at a quilt, I see the dreams that go along with every stitch,” the artist Patrice Longmire states. “How an old coat or a favorite skirt can become a blanket for a new baby. There’s something so human about using what we know to create something new. I feel like these quilts have helped piece me together.” The Museum will display a selection of quilts made by the artist that have been created over a number of years.

Patrice Longmire has had a love for sewing since she was a child. Twenty-eight years later she is still quilting. She has had a successful career that includes teaching doll making, publishing twelve “how to” quilting books, which were sold throughout the world, selling patterns and finished products through her pattern company to Nordstroms, and seeing her designs fully realized on many magazine covers. Patrice has recently broken into the art market with three gallery shows in 2005.

10 North: An Artists Group

Founded in 1993, “10 North” is an artist group composed of 10 women residing in North County San Diego. Working primarily with the medium of watercolor, all 10 artists will explore and adopt The Center’s theme (Explore. Escape. Experience.) and create a body of new work that echoes, ties, and binds together The Center as an artistic whole.

The art of 10 North is primarily traditional subjects rendered in a realistic or representational style. Although the goals of its members vary from national recognition, financial success as a professional artist, to creative growth on a purely personal level, 10 North strives to offer an environment in which its members can blossom and explore their own unique possibilities.

Alcancia de Coco en Mexico

Alcancia de Cocos en Mexico is a collection of intricately carved coconut shells that display motifs ranging from memories of loved ones, mythology, references to Mexican Independence, scenes of San Juan de Ulua in Veracruz, and many more. Prisoners in the infamous jail of San Juan de Ulúa carved the coconuts into coin banks during the 19th and 20th centuries. This exhibition is guest curated by Mexican Folk Art specialists Marta Turok and Joanne Stuhr. The text information on this exhibition in the Museum will be bilingual.

The prison at the fortress of San Juan de Ulúa, Vera-cruz, on Mexico’s Atlantic shore, was considered one of the most brutal in history, yet a fascinating folk art tradition seems to have grown out of its squalor. Cultures from around the world have used coconuts to make bowls, cups, masks, buttons, combs, picture frames, and an array of other adornments, ornaments and implements. Coconut palms grow in abundance along the coastline in Mexico, and their fruit is a natural material for the making of art here.

During the 19th and 20th centuries, primarily in the state of Veracruz, Mexico, coconuts were carved into coin banks as souvenirs for tourists. These marvelous banks have become highly desirable to collectors of Mexican folk art for the imagination and sophistication they demonstrate. Each has a face at one end comprised of the natural “eyes” of the coconut and a mouth created by cutting away a small patch. This is also used for removing the liquid and meat from the coconut. The banks characteristically have a dark patina, the result of wear from carving, and are elaborately decorated with floral motifs and varied imagery. Popular images include riders mounted on horseback, figures in colonial dress, religious personages and animals of all sorts.

Reception

The California Center for the Arts, Escondido Museum will host an opening reception for the exhibitions on Saturday, July 23, 2005 at 6:00 pm. California Center for the Arts, Escondido Museum, 340 N. Escondido Blvd., Escondido. Ph. (760) 839-4120

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