5 pm Happy Hour 7 pm Performance Referred to by the Los Angeles Times as "an utterly engaging performer," Davy Rothbart, a frequent contributor to National Public Radio's “This American Life,” will read hilarious and heartbreaking excerpts from his acclaimed magazine Found, and essays from his book My Heart Is an Idiot.
ADMISSION IS FREE
Forum Lounge is a series of free, performance-based events that reflect CAF’s mission to sustain and encourage the artistic process by presenting art in the form of exceptional music, dance, video, and other multi-media to our community. The series encourages experiences with unique performance pieces ranging from the theatrical to the avant-garde that are normally found only in large metropolitan venues.
Special thanks to: Endever Music Productions, Santa Barbara, CA; Franciscan Inn, Santa Barbara, CA; KCSB, Santa Barbara, CA; National Endowment for the Arts, Washington, DC; Paseo Nuevo Shopping Center, Santa Barbara, CA; Santa Barbara Independent, CA; and Warbler Records & Goods, Santa Barbara, CA. Forum Lounge is presented in association with the Santa Barbara Downtown Organization’s 1st Thursday.
Saturday, April 13, 6-8 pm Opening Reception Join us for the opening of THINGS THAT TURN YOUR BRAINS TO MUSH and Bloom Projects: Glen Fogel, Recent Video
Exhibitions on view: April 14 - June 16
THINGS THAT TURN YOUR BRAINS TO MUSH featuringDavid Cooley,Petra Cortright, Yoon Chung Han, Katy McCarthy, Chris Silva, Tellef Tellefson, and Jonny Troyna
“...people have always had a tremendous fear about the impact of new technology on language. When the printing press was first invented, people thought it was an instrument of the devil that would spawn unauthorised versions of the Bible.“ - David Crystal, author of Language and the Internet
Culture and language evolve faster than individuals can adapt. Parents worry when their children participate in “new” media. This reluctance is of course not new. From their inception, cartoons and television were purported to “turn kids' brains to mush”. This conventional wisdom spawned years of cultural criticism revolving around the supposed “negative effects” of television, cartoons, and later, the Internet. In his book Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man Marshall McLuan famously said, “Each innovation is not only commercially disrupting, but socially and psychologically corroding, as well.” Today, there is still fear of the corruption of “traditional” English by the widespread adoption of communication tools like Twitter and texting, which make regular use of abbreviations and shorthand. One only has to think of LOL (laughing out loud) or YOLO (you only live once) which are pervasive terminology shortcuts to traditional communication.
The artists in this exhibition create work that addresses society’s reluctance to embrace new media and language. They will explore this phenomenon through the lens of a complex and rapidly growing medium: the animated GIF (graphics interchange format).
An animated GIF is a multi-frame (moving) image that can be viewed in any web-browser. Used to add motion to simple icons in early web-design, the GIF has metastasized into something more culturally complex. Today, a GIF may be a savvy response in a comment thread, a stand-alone visual joke, or a simple act of teenage vanity. GIFs have become mesmerizing cultural artifacts, and like all such new media they are controversial to the status quo.
Artists such as Jonny Troyna investigate repetition, expectations, and correlation via projected loops, while Petra Cortright’s work suggests a passive and possibly ambivalent attitude towards consumption of media, narcissism, and community. By showcasing work that uses the GIF as a point of reference—whether it be projected, painted, sculpted, or pixelated—the 7 artists in this exhibition challenge audience to think critically about the “fear of the new” in a broader cultural and historical context.
Special thanks to: The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, New York, NY; Casa Magazine, Santa Barbara, CA; The James Irvine Foundation, San Francisco, CA; Paseo Nuevo Shopping Center, Santa Barbara, CA; Santa Barbara Independent, CA; Santa Barbara News-Press, CA; and Wayne McCall & Associates, Santa Barbara, CA.
ADMISSION IS FREE
Tags: Culture, language, David Cooley, Petra Cortright, Yoon Chung Han, Katy McCarthy, Chris Silva, Tellef Tellefson, and Jonny Troyna, adapt, inception, tv, cartoons, television
Synthesizing artistic and ecological concerns, Penelope Gottlieb’s paintings are visually alluring while teetering on an apocalyptic brink. Her detailed renderings of both real and imagined plant and animal life are derived from notions of loss, language, and the fragility of nature. Gottlieb’s compositions reflect the detailed renditions of historical studies of botany, yet upon closer examination are vibrant abstractions referencing early modernist ideals. The artist states, “My work tries to sound an alarm about the grim prospects of a future in which extinction is a way of life.”
Penelope Gottlieb received her MFA at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Exhibiting widely, her most recent exhibition was at Edward Cella Art+Architecture Gallery in Los Angeles in 2012. Her work is in various collections including the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, CA.
ADMISSION IS FREE
The smART Talks program serves to increase awareness of local artists through a series of three talks a year by local artists about their work, careers, and creative process. The series, begun in 1996, was created in honor of Helen Rosenberg, mother of Susan Rose, and grandmother of Julie Weiner, and honors artists who live and work in the Santa Barbara area.
Museum of Contemporary Art Santa Barbara (MCASB), formerly the Contemporary Arts Forum (CAF), is a non-profit, non-collecting institution dedicated to exhibiting the highest quality of contemporary art while recognizing "the artists of tomorrow," and was founded in 1976 by artists and art supporters seeking a venue dedicated solely to contemporary art. What once began as a grassroots, artist-run organization with nominal funding now serves as the leading contemporary arts presenter in Central California. MCASB offers its innovative education and exhibition programming to the region primarily free of charge. There is no admission fee because MCASB believes that the arts should be accessible to all audiences of all persuasions.
MCASB advances creativity and inspires critical thinking through meaningful engagement with the art of our time.