Picking Up the Pieces
Artists include Magi Amma, Gregory Burns, Serene Flax, Leonard Gerstein, Ben Kashkooli, Keba Konte, Chere Lai Mah, Donna Keiko Ozawa, Remi Rubel.
Picking Up the Pieces was an exhibition that began with creating art from scrap materials and caring for the environment, but expanded to picking up the pieces of one's life and picking up the pieces of a society after some devastation. It included reference to rebuilding the body (because of age or trauma) and to our response to September 11 one year later. Donna Keiko Ozawa and Remi Rubel had been part of the artist in residence program at the NORCAL Sanitary Landfill Company in San Francisco. Rubel's stunning wedding dress with 8-foot train made of reused bottle caps reexamines cultural habits, biases, assumptions, and presumptions. Ozawa's art, often with a hand-cranking component, sometimes quirky, combines social relevance and imagination. Through the illusion of physical interaction with the sculpture, she poses questions about collective responsibility. Serene Flax and Magi Amma addressed responses to violence and were part of a Women's Caucus for Art project. Gregory Burns and Leonard Gerstein were drawn from a project of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons regarding orthopedics in art. With photographic images on old found wood, Keba Konte finds beauty in people's resilience in a world of much despair, whether in Cuba, Soweto, or New Orleans. Chere Lai Mah's sculptures from the broken pots, and art about Chinese women's clothing over generations, correlated with events in China and with Westernization. She picks up pieces of family, cultural, and economic history, putting them together to make personal and societal meaning for today. The exhibition was dedicated to Ben Kashkooli (1954-2002), one-time De Anza art student and former instructor at De Anza. It included an installation of his video regarding Agent Orange, and photography and sculpture about peace. Companion exhibition curated for Sunnyvale Creative Arts Center Gallery: Cycles, Recycles, 11/1-12/21/02, Leticia Garcia, Debra Koppman, Keiko Ozawa.
Artists include Mari Andrews, Irene Chan, Sharon Chinen, Cynthia Handel, Joyce Hsu, Daniel McCormick, and members of California Indian Basketweavers Association, including Ollie Foeside and Tamie Lopez.
ReThinking Nature presented art based on nature, made from natural materials, or related to changes in the natural world. Included were Daniel McCormick sculptures designed to restore damaged creek environments, a Mari Andrews sculptural installation of leaves, stones, and seeds, and Joyce Hsu's kinetic sculptures called Naboons (Dragonflies). The California Indian Basketweavers Association provided baskets for an installation along with background information and news of current issues, such as access to sites for collecting natural materials and responsible use of herbicides and pesticides. Sharon Chinen sculptures (Agave, Calla Lilies, Flagellum, Summer, Autumn) concern survival, cycles of growth and decay, freedom and constraint between the individual and society, and reverence for the mystery of life. During the last two weeks, the exhibition incorporated a collaborative public artwork about nature created by hundreds of local elementary-school students working through the Euphrat's Arts & Schools Program. It was inspired by the sculptures of Mari Andrews and referenced local flora and fauna. Artist presentation, Sharon Chinen, Women's History Month Committee, 3/12/03. During ReThinking Nature exhibition, purchased two videos from the California Indian Basketweavers Association for the multicultural art-history slide/video collection. In conjunction with Women's History Month Committee. Companion exhibition curated for Sunnyvale Creative Arts Center Gallery, Nature: A Mood, A Space, A Companion, 12/14-5/3/03. Shari Arai DeBoer, Wynne Hayakawa, Joyce Hsu.