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Santa Monica College Launches New Art Lecture Series


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By Lookout Staff

September 25, 2017 -- Santa Monica College (SMC) will launch a new Art Lecture Series next week that offers "eye-opening and thought-provoking" discussions of everything from a portrait of 17th century Mexican mystic poet Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz to creating animations for Disney's " Pocahontas."

Sponsored by the SMC Associates, the free series features presentations by distinguished artists and art experts and will be held in Humanities & Social Sciences Lecture Hall 165 on the main SMC campus, 1900 Pico Boulevard.

The series kicks off next Tuesday at 11:15 a.m. with a presentation by UCLA Art History Professor Dr. Charlene Villaseñor Black titled “Sor Juana and the Dangers of Intellectual Desire.”

Portrait of Sor Juana Ine
Miguel Cabrera's 1750 posthumous portrait of Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz

Villasenor, who is associate director of the Chicano Studies Research Center and the award-winning author and editor of “Aztlán: A Journal of Chicano Studies,” will examine Mexican painter Miguel Cabrera's 1750 posthumous portrait of the mystical poet as "a painted vindication of Mexico's 'Tenth Muse.'

The presentation will "position the colonial image in conversation with contemporary Chicana portrayals and ask, 'Can the tools of Chicanx studies decolonize art history?”

The presentation is co-sponsored by the SMC Art Department, SMC History Department and SMC Adelante Program.

The series continues Tuesday, October 17 at at 11:15 a.m. with a conversation with legendary animator Will Finn about his 36-year career as an animator, director, character designer, and storyboard artist for a range of studios, including Disney, Dreamworks and Warner Brothers.

Finn has worked on "The Secret of NIMH," "Over the Hedge" and "Pocahontas," among numerous other animated features. He also co-directed and co-wrote Disney’s "Home on the Range" and recently worked on "The Angry Birds Movie."

The October events conclude Friday, October 20, at 12:45 p.m. with a presentation by artists Nick Bontrager Adam Fung titled “Autonomous Art Systems: Opportunities, Pitfalls, & Implications of Drones in Art.”

Bontrager is an interdisciplinary artist whose work and research "explores the nature of the moving image, game-based interactions and exchanges, and the idea of replicas or facsimiles as tools of preservation," event organizers said.

A painter and teacher, Fung "has a dynamic range of research interests that touch upon issues such as climate change, landscape, energy, and the make-up of the universe," organizers said.

The presentation will focus on "autonomous art systems, which offer new visual perspectives, production values, and aesthetics previously unattainable, or associated only with military or other government powers."

The artists will also work with audience members on using drones, and showcase some of the systems that they have developed. The event is co-sponsored by the SMC Art Department and History Department.

For more information call the SMC Office of Public Programs at (310) 434-4100.


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