Art as Life Happenings

Allan Kaprow

23 March - 30 June 2008
On View at Geffen Contemporary at MOCA
152 N. Central Ave., Los Angeles, California 90012

Happenings at various locations

The DCA, Public Art Division in partnership with the following art organizations; Avenue 50 Studio, Canoga Park Youth Arts Center, Los Angeles Poverty Department, McGroarty Arts Center, Sun Valley Youth Arts Center, Watts Towers Arts Center, William Grant Still Arts Center and Claremont University MFA Students with support of LA Freewaves, will be reinventing Allan Kaprow Happenings, or temporary performances, that deal with the themes of self-reflection and identity, social restrictions, relation of the self to public and private space, and cultivating storytelling and community dialogue.

Happenings are coordinated by the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, the City of Los Angeles, Department of Cultural Affairs, and made possible by generous support from the Getty Foundation.Allan Kaprow – Art as Life is organized by the Haus der Kunst, Munich, and the Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven. The exhibition is on view at The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA from March 23 to June 30, 2008.

These staged and spontaneous Happenings serve to translate Kaprow’s original work from the 1960s – 1980’s into relevant contemporary social issues within communities. Happenings offer a chance meeting and intriguing ephemeral interaction with passerby’s during their routine life. Happenings will occur indoors at art centers or venues, on busy public streets of respective communities, and on doorstops of private homes.

Happening Information by Date

Collaborator: Claremont MFA Students with support of L.A. Freewaves
Contact: Anne Bray, Jay Merryweather
Happening: Trading Dirt (ten occurrences)
Location: various sites throughout the city
Date: various
Description:Claremont fine art graduate students will trade dirt spontaneously throughout various sites in Los Angeles while simultaneously documenting their experiences. A blog serves as means to communicate with online audiences.

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Collaborator: Watts Towers Arts Center: 1765 East 107th St., Los Angeles, CA 90002
Contact: Rosie Lee Hooks, Rogelio Acevedo
Happening: Trading Dirt
Locations: Watts Towers Arts Center, Saul & Margarita Pichardo residence,
Augustine Aguirre residence, Kenzi Shiokava residence, Varnette Honeywood residence, and John Outterbridge residence
Date: March 25-28, 2008

Description:Trading dirt, conversations, and socialization. Begins with Simon Rodia via vintage footage; 2nd bucket Watts Towers; 3rd bucket Mr. & Mrs. Pichardo; 4th Augustine Aguirre; 5th Kenzi Shiokava; 6th Varnette Honeywood; 7th John Outterbridge. Simultaneously, a second bucket will acquire dirt from each informant and brought back to WTAC.

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Collaborator: Canoga Park Youth Arts Center: 7222 Remmet Ave., Canoga Park, CA 91303
Contact: Stuart Vaughn, John Paul Thornton
Happening: Graft
Location: NEW Academy Canoga Park Charter School, 21425 Cohasset St., Canoga Park, CA 91303 (Installation will be visible to the public from Canoga Avenue. The first will be a youth happening) This event is coordinated with New Economics for Women.
Date: April 1st, 2008

Description: Youth and adults will participate in the act of fixing bright hothouse greenery onto branches at NEW Academy Canoga Park Charter School.

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Collaborator: Avenue 50 Studio: 131 N. Avenue 50, Highland Park, CA 90028
Contact: Kathy Gallegos, Stuart Rapeport
Happening: Trading Dirt
Location: 131 N. Avenue 50 neighborhoods
Date: April 5 & 6, 2008

Description: Avenue 50 Studio will trade dirt with its neighbors, many of who are recent immigrants from Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Puerto Rico. The trading of dirt may also lead to the trading of stories and memories.

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Collaborator: William Grant Still Arts Center: 2520 S. West View St., Los Angeles
Contact: Joyce Maddox, Ami Motevalli
Happening: Pose (at least two occurrences, 2nd occurrence aka Chairs)
Location: William Grant Still Arts Center
Date: Chairs and Opening Reception April 5, 3p-7p
April 5 – May 4, 2008, 12 p.m. – 5 p.m. daily. (Exhibition of documentation)

Description:Community members have been photographed in their favorite public spaces within the community of West Adams and near by neighborhoods and a photograph has been left at the site. Documentation from this Happening will be exhibited at the William Grant Still Arts Center. On the occasion of the opening reception, a reinterpretation of the Happening titled Chairs-in which participants will be invited to bring chairs and arrange them to make art out of their placement and direction-will take place.

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Collaborator: Canoga Park Youth Arts Center: 7222 Remmet Ave., Canoga Park, CA 91303
Contact: Stuart Vaughn, John Paul Thornton
Happening: Graft
Location: California State University , Northridge (CSUN) Near the art complex.
Happening leader: Christine Terry, artist and educator.
Date: May 5th, 2008

Description:Happening theme: What Are You Blind To? Youth and adults will participate in the act of fixing bright hothouse greenery onto branches at California State University Northridge. This is coordinated with the CSUN Department of Art Education.

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Collaborator: McGroarty Arts Center: 7570 McGroarty Terrace, Tujunga, CA 91042
Contact: Claire Knowlton, John Free
Happening: Pose
Location: Foothill Blvd, Tujunga
Date: May 18th, 2008, 11 am – 1 pm
Description: Children and adults from McGroarty Arts Center use Polaroid's to show
cultural diversity in Sunland-Tujunga and explore how language
differences impact a community.

Collaborator: Los Angeles Poverty Department
Contact: John Malpede
Happening: Round Trip
Location: Start at Gladys Park (6th and Gladys).
(Route)Follow 6th Street west to San Julian Street.
North on San Julian Street to 5th Street.
5th Street, west to Los Angeles Street.
Los Angeles Street north to Winston Street.
Winston Street west to Main Street
Main Street north to 4th Street.
4th Street west to Broadway
Broadway south to 6th Street
6th Street west to Hill
Northwest diagonal through Pershing Square,
Exiting on 5th and Olive Streets
5th Street west to 5th and Flower
From Central Library turn south to 7th Street
West 1 block to Figueroa
Reverse Direction: ending at Gladys Park, (6th and Gladys)
Date: Monday May 19th, 1 - 4 pm.

Description: For Roundtrip, we will construct a small ball of string, paper and cardboard and roll it down street for a few blocks. As per Kaprow's instructions, we will continue to add more materials and roll more, until it gets too large to roll. We'll then reverse the process.

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Collaborator: Sun Valley Youth Arts Center: 8642 Sunland Blvd., Sun Valley, CA 91352
Contact: Chuy Rangel, Steve Sobalvarro
Happening: Pose
Location: Sun Valley Youth Arts Center
Date: May 24, 2008, 1:30 pm
Description:Two digital art students along with their Art Instructor will recreate Pose along the Streets of Sun Valley. Dee Vasquez will carry a metal folding chair along the streets and “pose”while a second student will photograph Dee with a Polaroid camera. Steve Sobalvarro will facilitate Pose and document the event.


Above: Image courtesy of Culturela.

Featured Images:

Left Image: © Allan Kaprow Estate. Hauser & Wirth Zürich London

Right Image: © Martin Rindlisbacher
Courtesy Allan Kaprow Estate and Hauser & Wirth Zürich London

Related Link:

Professor Emeritus Allan Kaprow

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