Stories for August 24, 2011
Thursday, August 25th the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego in La Jolla will be transformed into a venue for "physical channel surfing" for alt.pictureshows 2011. Attendees can dip in and out of rooms screening more than a dozen films. I speak with 2 Tijuana filmmakers showing works at the event. Listen to my radio feature or read teh extended interview.
Two bills that would tweak California’s budget process are headed for the Assembly floor after passing the Budget Committee Wednesday.
There’s positive news about the passage rate for California’s high school exit exam.
Shedding light on the current debate over immigration reform and the use of "guest workers" in American agriculture, this historical documentary examines what was known as the Bracero Program-a system put in place from 1942 to 1964 to recruit Mexican farm laborers for temporary work in the United States. The film presents ample testimony from surviving braceros as well as family members and descendants of these displaced workers.
"Cruz Reynoso: Sowing The Seeds Of Justice" paints a portrait of a man touched by injustice as a child who dedicated his life to fighting discrimination and inequality as a lawyer, judge and teacher. The compelling biography, told through a combination of archival footage and interviews, charts Cruz Reynoso's humble origins, his appointment to the California Supreme Court (the first Latino justice to serve in the state's highest court) and more recently, his leadership on the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.
Surprising finds abound at the Las Vegas Convention Center including a charming circa 1865 pottery pig canteen, exhibiting a variety of southwest American Indian characteristics; a fitting tribute to Las Vegas, two pieces of Elvis Presley memorabilia — an autographed record album cover and a macramé belt worn by the King at a performance in the 1970s; and a scrapbook inherited from the owner’s great-great-grandfather who collected the signatures of many of the Civil War era’s greatest public figures, including Ulysses S. Grant, William Tecumseh Sherman, Frederick Douglass, Booker T. Washington, Robert E. Lee and Jefferson Davis, valued at $75,000 to $100,000.
San Diego County students passed the math and English high school exit exams on their first try at a higher rate than California students as a whole.
In Hartford, Connecticut, "Antiques Roadshow" finds a sign of the times — actually a whole collection of antique inn and tavern signs — at the Connecticut Historical Society. Appraisal highlights include an heirloom early-19th-century Duncan Phyfe dressing table; a rare set of vintage jewelry by influential 20th-century designer Suzanne Belperron; and a watercolor signed by Katharine Hepburn — who gifted the owner with the piece when the actress was performing at the American Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford, Connecticut — valued at $15,000 to $20,000.