San Diego Weekend Arts Events: Sculptural Exhibitions, Filipino Film, ArtWalk And Latin Chamber Music
Earlier this week, when thinking about what sort of weekend arts and culture events I might spotlight here several days after one of the wildest elections of our young lives, everything seemed too up in the air. Just a day ago I could barely imagine we'd ever make it to the weekend. But now that the election has come and (as of this writing) ... is still not yet gone, it might be time to make a little space for a treat. After a long few days of staring at the red and blue patchwork election results map, I am ready to feast my senses on literally anything else.
Fortunately, we don't have to settle. There is so much great visual art out there this month, but I've forced myself to narrow it down to just two galleries showcasing some of San Diego's best working artists — nary a red and blue map in sight. Plus, a new film that celebrates Filipino folk serenades, the return of the art walks, and some livestreamed chamber music from Latin composers.
Tom Driscoll at ICE Gallery
ICE Gallery, part of the Bread and Salt complex, recently opened an exhibition of work by Tom Driscoll. Much of the work is 15 years old but has never been exhibited until now. Driscoll's sculptures are evocative and colorful, and they seemingly defy physics (or at the very least challenge whatever you previously thought a wall should be used for). Driscoll — who studied with John Baldessari and Bob Matheny at Southwestern College in the late 1960s — has built an impressive reputation and body of work, and I'm looking forward to spying some new-to-us older pieces.
The space is open for appointment-style viewings, which has been the gallery's model since the pre-pandemic days. Plus, ICE is notable for its two large arched windows from the street, and you can see much of the exhibition by peeking through. But if you're feeling shy about appointment-only viewings, don't. They are everywhere now, and in many cases it's the only way that artists can get their work seen. And to quote the gallery's home page: "...not to worry, it's no bother."
Details: On view now by appointment. 1955 Julian Ave, Logan Heights. Free.
Camarada's 'Recuerdos de los Dias' Livestream
This one is on my radar because Bread and Salt artist-in-residence Avia Rose posted a video of herself painting a triptych in her studio with "folks practicing in the next room." The music — local chamber org Camarada — was haunting and inventive, and almost turned Rose's work into a sort of minute-long performance art piece. Built-in visual artist isn't included with this weekend's livestream of Camarada's "Recuerdos de los Dias" program, but it's still worth tuning in. Featuring four Latin composers (including one world premiere), prepared to be enchanted by the small and unusual chamber ensemble: just flute, violin, viola, cello, piano, trumpet, bassoon and percussion. I'm looking forward to contemporary composer James M. Stephenson’s Mexican folktale piece "Mermaid of the Volcano," for trumpet, cello and percussion as well as the bewitching classical string trio, "Petite Suite dans le Style Ancien," by early 20th century Mexican composer Manuel Ponce — known to many as the "creator of the modern Mexican song." Four composers in total, with works by Andres Martin and Miguel del Aguila to round out the night.
Details: Friday at 6 p.m. Online. $20.
'Sine Kwento: Filipino Stories in Film': 'Harana' Screening
Film, visual art
Sine Kwento is a month-long exhibition of Filipino stories, hosted by the Bonita Museum and Cultural Center and curated by Benito Bautista and Emma Francisco. They've put together a multidisciplinary in-person exhibition at the Bonita Museum, but will also host several online events (and even an in-person, outdoor program later this month). They'll kick things off with an online opening ceremony, a virtual screening of Bautista's film "Harana: the Search for the Lost Art of Serenade." The film is a way to try to preserve the disappearing art and songs of the harana or serenade form in the Philippines. Writer/director Bautista will participate in a Q&A afterwards with Celia Solis. At the Bonita Museum, which is open Wednesday through Saturday or by appointment, you can check out the local crowd-sourced "Tela-Nobela" fabric installation, and find three different installations of film stills and posters from Filipino filmmaking.
Details: "Harana: The Search for the Lost Art of Serenade" screens online Saturday at 5:30 p.m. $5+. For visual art viewings, the Bonita Museum is free and open Wednesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. or by appointment. 4355 Bonita Rd., Bonita.
ArtWalk Liberty Station
Art walks are back. The first of its kind to try a socially distanced, COVID-ready incarnation of the popular outdoor festival, ArtWalk @ Liberty Station takes place this weekend. The juried festival will showcase approximately 150 artists from the region, with painting, sculpture, photography, mixed media, jewelry and more. They're also auctioning off some custom-painted guitars to benefit ArtReach San Diego and their arts education programs. Don't forget your mask, and probably also an umbrella too.
Details: Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. 2848 Dewey Road, Liberty Station. $5, under 18 free.
'Four Visions: A Celebration of the Year of the Woman'
The City of Carlsbad's civic art space, Cannon Gallery, recently opened a new exhibition of four notable women artists from the region. They're open for limited capacity in-person viewings with COVID safety protocols in place. The pieces in this show bring together a lot of different styles and are all really sculptural and textural, even the two-dimensional pieces. There's a gallery tour video online, but trust that it will just make you want to see it in person. The artists are touted as "multigenerational," and some of my favorite pieces in here are by the recent MFA grad Kline Swonger. She has a large installation constructed from massive sheets of metal, as well as a chance to spy her "A Place Called Home" installation which features 117 door knobs installed directly into the wall in a sweeping wave pattern. This work will reportedly end up as part of the San Diego Airport's 2021 art program. And don't miss Anne Mudge's shadow-happy suspended wire sculptures, Marisol Rendón's large-scale eerily deceptive drawings, like a pillowy charcoal-on-paper couch-like backdrop, and Bianca Juarez's contemporary ceramic vessels.
Details: Tuesday and Thursday, 10-5 p.m. 1775 Dove Lane, Carlsbad. Free