Wild Times Continue with Susan Robb @ GCAC!

August 8, 2014

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If you’ve been to Grand Central Art Center over the past few months, then you know just how “wild” it’s been, following artist Susan Robb on her journey to conquer the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) through her Wild Times project.

Susan began her trek in Campo, Mexico in April, recently passing the half way mark and today is making camp in Ashland, OR, on her way to the finishing mark of Manning BC, Canada.

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You can follow her travel through the “transmissions” on the Wild Times website and by visiting GCAC to see the 2D, 3D and written transmissions in person.

More details on the project at GCAC can be found on our blog at:
https://grandcentralartcenter.wordpress.com/2014/04/23/susan-robb-wild-times-opening-reception-53-gcac/

Wild Times is a project of Creative Capital and is supported by Grand Central Art Center, Palm Springs Art Museum, 826 Valencia, Tacoma Art Museum, Frye Art Museum, and the Henry Art Gallery.

Generous in-kind support has been provided by MakerBot, Microsoft, Projecteo, Washington Trails Association, and Whole Foods Market.

We look forward to having you join us!

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UNCOVERING THE PACIFIC CREST TRAIL, free public program, July 5 @ 6pm

June 25, 2014

UNCOVERING THE PACIFIC CREST TRAIL
A Grand Central Art Center Educational Outreach Program
in association with the current exhibition/residency
Wild Times with artist Susan Robb
Saturday, July 5 @ 6PM
Grand Central Art Center
FREE

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Join us as we demystify the long journey of Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) through hikers and their 2,650 mile trek from Mexico to Canada. As part of Grand Central Art Center’s educational outreach, REI in Tustin will partner with GCAC to present a public program about backpacking. Learn about ultralight equipment, items that make or break pack weight, and the basics of hiking the PCT. This educational program can help you prepare for your next day hike adventure or the journey of a lifetime.


Recapping A Grand First Saturday – Hike / Gallery Talk / Reception / Art Walk @ GCAC!

May 7, 2014

Saturday, May 3rd, marked another successful first Saturday art walk! The monthly art walk event in downtown Santa Ana provides a night of open galleries and institutions, studios and street vendors, great live music and all the wonderful food of local restaurants. It’s always an enjoyable way to spend a southern California evening!

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The day kicked-off a little early this month as Fallen Fruit. Fallen Fruit is an art collaboration originally conceived in 2004 by David Burns, Matias Viegener and Austin Young. Since 2013, David and Austin have continued the collaborative work. David and Austin led a day hike with participant collaborators Sue-Na G., Stephanie Kern, Emily Lacy, Husam Salman, Sarah Shewey and Faith Purvey, to Deep Creek Hot Springs in the San Bernardino National Forest. Fallen Fruit’s project, Rainbow Day Trip, was organized as a collaborative program of Susan Robb’s project and exhibition Wild Times, currently on exhibition at GCAC.

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The group of Rainbow Day hikers joined Fallen Fruit on the adventure to become “trail angels,” an effort to connect with Pacific Crest Trail hikers for encouragement and inspiration along the 5-month journey from Mexico to Canada (more details on Wild Times below).

Here is the way Fallen Fruit describes how their preparation and adventure unfolded:

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“Prior to Saturday, each collaborator chose a color to embody for the day hike.  They thought about each color and what that color means in the world.  They thought about flavors, histories and songs.  They constructed characters based upon our individual research and imagination.

The evening before the hike we connected to fine-tune our characters collectively.  We told each other stories and made embellishments to our color characters.  We used feathers and spray paint, working out the details of each of our individual performances, which we would reveal as a color performances to the group the next day. At the trailhead, we geared up and embarked on our experimental day trip to perform all of the colors of the rainbow.   Rainbows don’t last forever; they are fragile and temporal like our group.  We became a visual spectrum of color and spanned an arc within a landscape we couldn’t capture except by photographs.

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The Rainbow Day Trip was a mind-body experience that constructed a narrative created by individual experiences that was group authored.  Each color performed in independent ways, as meditations, as series of declarations about each participant, completely in song and through silence.  We realized that colors are many things.”

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Back at GCAC, we kicked off our evening with a 6pm gallery talk by current exhibiting artist Julia Haft-Candell. Julia shared insights into the current body of work included in her solo GCAC exhibition Fast and Slow, on exhibition in the Project Gallery through May 11th.   The artist provided insight into her process, her philosophies on art making practice and her current career activities. It was an appreciative audience in attendance who asked great questions, engaging the artist in wonderful dialogue.

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As the official art walk began at 7pm, we opened the doors to our three galleries. The night marked the opening reception for Susan Robb’s Wild Times project. In mid-April, Robb embarked on a 5-month adventure from Mexico to Canada on the Pacific Crest Trail. Using the trail as a nomadic studio and her experiences as inspiration and medium, she is creating digital works—photos, videos, and 3D files— sending them to Grand Central Art Center where they will be displayed. Over the course of the 5-months, the exhibition will continue to grow through physical object, engaged programming and hands-on activities provided by Robb through the Wild Times website.

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Thanks to a generous donation by Microsoft, we have numerous Surface tablets connected in the space, as well as a Microsoft Perceptive Pixel (PPI) touch screen device, allowing patrons the opportunity to browse the current activities of Robb on the trail. The connection to the project website also allows for individuals to post their own responses and interactions with the project, adding a truly collective voice to the project and gallery space.

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Through our new Makerbot 3D printer, we are actively printing objects Susan is scanning along the way and transmitting back to us. The objects are being printed in color codes that indicate the altitude on the trail where the object was discovered and scanned by the artist. We printed three rocks on Saturday evening that became, and will remain, part of the exhibition.

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The exhibition space also contains an Epson large format printer, being used by GCAC to print 2D images Susan sends from her journey. After being printed, the photos are framed and become part of the overall installation. Over the course of the exhibition the photos will begin to hang layered upon one another, creating a topographic map extending out from the gallery wall. The images and installation will provide a sense of the terrain the artist has traversed to date.

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If you haven’t seen it yet, we thought you might enjoy reading the interview with Susan regarding her Wild Times project on the Creative Capital blog. Creative Capital is a major granter of this project. Here is the link: http://blog.creative-capital.org/2014/04/susan-robbs-wild-times

In addition to Grand Central Art Center, you have the opportunity to see elements and programs of Susan’s Wild Times project at collaborative venues including: Palm Springs Art Museum, Palm Desert, CA; 826 valencia, San Francisco, CA; Tacoma Art Museum, Tacoma, WA; Frye Art Museum, Seattle, WA; and Henry Art Gallery, Seattle, WA.

We are excited to be able to support and to be on this journey with Susan. We hope you will join us throughout the project, to engage with its programming and to support the artist as well!

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Miracle Report

Saturday marked the last week of Julia Haft-Candell’s Fast and Slow exhibition, as noted earlier, and the last week of the extremely successful and well received exhibition by artists Julianne Swartz and Ken Landauer, Miracle Report. If you haven’t yet had the opportunity to see these exhibitions, stop by this weekend, as both exhibitions are open through this Sunday, May 11, when we close at 4pm. Lots of wonderful restaurants here in Santa Ana, so it could be a great way to celebrate Mother Day.

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And the activities and outreach of Grand Central Art Center on Saturday evening were not limited to Santa Ana. Current GCAC artist in residence Daniel Tucker was busy with his own activities in Los Angeles as well. During his residence, Tucker has been developing a documentary project entitled Future Perfect – Time Capsules in Reagan County, dealing with the legacy of Ronald Reagan and the phenomenon of time capsule burials in California. As part of his residency, the artist has been traveling the entire state of California, visiting research libraries, Reagan related monuments and parks, and presenting talks at various locations and institutions. On Saturday night, Daniel was part of the group exhibition PRESENTS that opened at Commonwealth and Council in Los Angeles, which runs through May 24th. For his contribution to the exhibition, Tucker created the project The Preface to Future Perfect, a photography installation presenting materials from his ongoing research while in residence at GCAC.

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You would think all those activities would be enough to fill a weekend, and you would probably be right, but not for us here at GCAC. Sunday we welcomed back our ongoing artist in residence Lisa Bielawa, who is in town this week for a series of meeting, arranged through our Director/Chief Curator John D. Spiak, in the development of her upcoming GCAC project, a serial Opera titled Vireo. Lisa also had time to connect with our new GCAC Cal State Fullerton graduate assistant Amanda Leader, who is working on her Masters Degree in Music, Voice Performance with emphasis in Opera. Amanda has been an excellent addition to the GCAC team and will be helping manage major components of Lisa’s serial opera as Project Coordinator. We’ll provide you more details on this project as it progresses.

So stop by Grand Central Art Center and be part of the action, we would love to see you!


SUSAN ROBB: WILD TIMES – Opening Reception 5/3 @ GCAC

April 23, 2014

SUSAN ROBB: WILD TIMES
What is wild? Where is wild? Are you wild?
May 3 through October 12, 2014

Opening reception: Saturday, May 3 from 7-10pm

Artist Susan Robb‘s Wild Times merges new media, social engagement, and a 2,650 mile hike as an invitation to explore wildness as a geographic ideal and a state of mind.

Robb will walk the Pacific Crest Trail from Mexico to Canada, making and sending digital artworks to Grand Central Art Center and collaborating West Coast museums and art centers.

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Only 3% of the contiguous United States is still considered protected wild space.

As our culture increasingly pressures us to maintain a personal “brand,” be in constant contact, and snapchat every moment, maybe it’s not just our geographic wild spaces that are endangered, but our internal wild spaces as well.

Artist Susan Robb‘s Wild Times merges new media, social engagement, and a 2,650- mile hike as an invitation to explore wildness as a geographic ideal and a state of mind.

Beginning in mid-April 2014, Robb will embark on a 5-month adventure from Mexico to Canada on the Pacific Crest Trail. Using the trail as a nomadic studio and her experiences as inspiration and medium, she will create digital works—photos, videos, and 3D files—periodically sending them to Grand Central Art Center and a series of additional West Coast art venues. There they will be printed, projected, and installed, evolving into cumulative exhibitions, a meditation on what it means to be wild today.

In addition to Grand Central Art Center, collaborative venues include: Palm Springs Art Museum, Palm Desert, CA; 826 valencia, San Francisco, CA; Tacoma Art Museum, Tacoma, WA; Frye Art Museum, Seattle, WA; and Henry Art Gallery, Seattle, WA.

At its core, Wild Times is a proposition to YOU to seek out and explore your own wildness. To aid this process, Robb has developed satellite events and programming. The project website features “Hack Your Wild” instructions for creative action, the results of which can be posted and shared. Additional experiential opportunities are being offered at the venues: a “hero’s journey” writing workshop, group “therapy” explorations, improv comedy situationist dérives, and a “trail magic” master class.

Collaborators include: artists Fallen Fruit, Eroyn Franklin, Mandy Greer, Anastasia Hill and Eric Olson, writer Michael David Lukas, psychoanalyst Nicole Wiggins, artist and improv comedian Graham Downing, designer Katrina Hess, radio producer Jenny Asarnow, and writer, filmmaker and cultural critic Charles Mudede.

To further deepen the conversation, Robb has collected stories from “everyday explorers,” individuals who investigate or embody wildness by their own light and mettle. These media-rich features, shared online and in print, explore disaster edens, portray the life of a dominatrix, and consider the social and emotional toll of wild fires, among other subjects. Together, they depict diverse paths taken in pursuit of, or in response to, the wild.

The exhibitions, programs, and participatory website will enable venue visitors and the public at large to serve as collaborators—interacting with the project, with Robb, and the broad Wild Times community.

From the untrammeled spaces of the PCT, and with the host venues and her collaborators, Robb hopes to plot the coordinates of wildness in contemporary life. Through Wild Times, she offers her body and work as a conduit between gallery and wilderness, public and trail, form and formless, as a way to cultivate the wild terrain that resides in us all.

Wild Times is a project of Creative Capital and is supported by Grand Central Art Center, Palm Springs Art Museum, 826 Valencia, Tacoma Art Museum, Frye Art Museum, and the Henry Art Gallery.

Generous in-kind support has been provided by MakerBot, Microsoft, Projecteo, Washington Trails Association, and Whole Foods Market.

ABOUT THE ARTIST:
Susan Robb’s work is an ongoing investigation of people, place, and our search for utopia. She orchestrates temporary, site-responsive, and socially-engaged projects to transform contemporary concerns—climate crisis, social isolation, high-speed daily living—into opportunities to re-envision and re-connect. Her projects include The Long Walk, ONN/OF “a light festival”, Parking Squid, Sleeper Cell Training Camp, and Warmth Giant Black Toobs. Robb’s work has been funded by a Pollack Krasner Foundation Grant, two Artist Trust Fellowships, a Stranger Genius Award, 4Culture, and the City of Seattle’s Office of Arts and Culture. In 2013, she received a Creative Capital grant to produce Wild Times. Her work has been collected and shown nationally and internationally.

More Wild Times details:
http://www.wildtimesproject.com

More information on Susan Robb:
http://www.susanrobb.com/


Susan Robb – GCAC Artist in Residence

November 5, 2013

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IMAGE CREDIT: STEVE RINGMAN / SEATTLE TIMES

Artist Susan Robb joins us today as Artist in Residence for a first site visit in the development of her Wild Times project. Beginning in April, GCAC will be a home base for engagement with the project – a site of virtual connection to Susan during her upcoming 5-month journey.

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We are truly excited to be the hub for Wild Times and are looking forward to sharing her journey with you!

Here is a little preview of Susan’s project in her own words:

Wild Times, merging social engagement, land art, and new media, is an exploration of wildness as a geographic ideal and a state of mind.

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Beginning in April 2014, I will embark on a 5-month, 2,650-mile hike from Mexico to Canada on the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT). Using my experiences as inspiration and medium, I will send “trail transmissions” to a series of art venues in proximity to the PCT. These host sites and their guests will serve as collaborators, interacting with the project, with me, and with the broader public via the Wild Times website.

Since I am entering a double wilderness of both place and production, my specific transmissions are as yet unknown. They could consist of anything from photos and videos, to liquors distilled from foraged huckleberries, to ephemeral trail-side sculptures beamed back to civilization and brought to life again via 3D printers.

At its core Wild Times is a proposition to my audience to explore the various wildnesses in their own lives. To aid in this exploration I will also be inviting the public to complete creative tasks and various other calls to action. These might take the form of messages I solicited from museum-goers and announced from the peak of Mt. Whitney, to a workshop where attendees create talismans to safeguard me on my journey.

To deepen this conversation, I will be collecting stories of “everyday explorers” – individuals who investigate or embody wildness through variegated means. Interviews shared online and in print will profile, among others, a breeder of endangered animals, a sex worker, a favela dweller, and an environmental policy maker. Together, they will tell the story of the diverse paths people take to follow the call of the wild.

From the untrammeled spaces of the PCT, and with the help of my collaborators, I hope to plot the coordinates of wildness in contemporary life. Through Wild Times I offer my body and work as a conduit between gallery and wilderness, public and trail, formal and formless, as a way to cultivate the wild terrain that resides in us all.