Patricia by Patricia

Patricia by Patricia
Patricia by Patricia

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Off with the new, on with the old

I wrote of my mother’s passing last month and now I find that I am breathing in the essence of my mother more and more. I thought it would be a letting go process, but it seems that it honors her more to let her be part of me. When we are young we separate from our parents, but as I become more secure in myself, I feel that I now am able to absorb them.

Each item that I kept of my mother's I made a concerted effort to let go something of mine that was no longer needed. Often this was an upgrade, sometimes it was just an edit. But there were also vast quantities of things that went out into the universe. Some to friends and relatives...I now have many girl friends who have a piece of her clothing that they felt was chic enough to give a second life. Jewelry and scarves will go into my annual SDVAN accessory exchange this holiday. A vintage flea market of the Encinitas Friends of the Arts has been given four large boxes of items to sell in July, with the proceed going to a public art project to which I am contributing.  Masses of things went to charity shops for animals or abused women.

For all the items left in the house after this clearing process, we held an estate sale. We made a few pennies but the house is now emptied which is a great lesson and reminder that things are very fleeting. No matter how much we as artist think we are creating for history, the truth is that most of our efforts should be appreciated for the joy they bring in our own life times. My house and my heart are now full. I intend to use what I now have to improve the art I have already made and use up frames and supplies while I am still able. Burn the good candles, lather up the good soap. Live in the moment as much as possible. Now for a nice whiskey with a pickle back. 

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Passing on a legacy

The passing of a loved one also means the passing of possessions. Yes, that means photos and china, glass and silver, but in my case it means the transfer of a collection of well chosen art works that were cherishes by those in my family who acquired them. 

As an artist myself, I have a visceral attraction to certain works. The feeling of their surfaces, their design and my imagined meanings of these objects are sacred to me. I feel the treasures are entrusted to me for my lifetime and hope they will always find a home as honored as the one I intend to give them. 

I think I feel  so intensely about this aspect of memorializing family because my whole life is about the visual arts. I hope to raise money to sponsor a public art mural of some kind in honor of my mother and father and eventually I would like to show the these pieces, which include pre-columbian ceramics, wooden African artifacts and contemporary works.  

My mother's ashes will be scattered on the ocean after she serves her final wish giving her body to science. But these things of beauty and her short stewardship of them continue to give me great pleasure and will be a pleasure for generations in the future. 

My mother Florence was a great supporter of SDVAN. She proofed many of my articles for years and encouraged me in this project. She even left a mention in her will that if all of her children and descendant were to pass before her, then her worldly good would go to the non-profit SDVAN.

Florence Meyerson Frischer, age 96, passed away on March 5, 2017 in Cardiff-by-the-Sea, California. Florence was born on June 28, 1920, in Council Bluffs, Iowa.  She was the daughter of Mary Falk and Herman Meyerson.  She was married to George K. Frischer for 34 years until his death in 1976.  She lived in Kansas City, Missouri, during her marriage, and later moved to Cathedral City, California. Florence attended Abraham Lincoln High School and the University of Nebraska, where she was a member of Sigma Delta Tau sorority.  She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband and her sisters Mildred, Gwendolyn, and Pearl. She is survived by her daughters Dion Frischer (husband Robert De Young) and Patricia Frischer (husband Darwin Slindee), and by her granddaughter Marissa Frischer Sisk (husband Joseph Sisk), as well as by many nieces and nephews and friends.  Florence had a passion for golf, the French language, cooking and entertaining, bridge, mah jongg, and watching NFL football. She dedicated many hours to volunteering at the Children’s Discovery Museum of the Desert in Rancho Mirage, California, and created there an innovative donation program. Florence was an intelligent, generous, and lively woman, who taught us to live and love well. The family wishes to thank the caring and compassionate staff and caregivers at Belmont Village, Cardiff, California.  Florence donated her body for medical purposes to the University of California at San Diego Medical School.  The family requests that any memorial contributions be made to the San Diego Visual Arts Network.

Monday, February 27, 2017

Empowering Advocacy

by Patricia Frischer

I was at a meeting recently and the chairman was absent. When asked for a progress report on an upcoming event from one of the staff, the response was that they were waiting for direction from the chairman. He was told that was not necessary and that he has the committee permission to design and implement the project himself. This galvanized him into action and within 24 hours the event was more or less organized and being promoted.

The staff member was fully capable before this empowerment. He had all the skills necessary to complete the task although the rest of the staff made positive and encouraging suggestions. So what held him back from moving forward?  I believe it was a lack of belief in self, coupled with the daily interruptions that draw our attention away from a task that might be more important than we realize. In other words, this event needed to have a priority in his mind and he needed to bring his considerable skills to this task,  decisions he had to make himself.

We can all find ourselves in this position at various times in our lives. But I think right now, it is particularly important to make decision on a personal level about how we can move our community forward. Yes, we need to all work together, but each of us has to make a decision about how we can individually lead an effort. I would love to see people taking initiative and coming forward with ideas that we can all support and promote. I believe there is a leader in each and everyone of us.

So now I make a call to empower everyone in the arts community to lead a project that support public art policies and helps to increase the awareness of the value of art. Small or large, a single effort or a partnership, I want you to feel that you can make a difference and, in fact, it is only with your own advocacy for the arts, that we will survive at a time when arts funding might be increasingly under attack. 

March 20–21, 2017 is Arts Advocacy Day and we are celebrating it with a banner on the home page of SDVAN. Each year arts advocates from across the country convene in Washington, DC for the annual Arts Advocacy Day,  This effort brings together a broad cross section of America's cultural and civic organizations, along with more than 500 grassroots advocates from across the country, to underscore the importance of developing strong public policies and appropriating increased public funding for the arts.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Walker Art Center, Weisman Art Museum in Minneapolis and The Broad in LA

I was very lucky this year to have my entire holiday season repeated in January when I went to Minnesota to visit my husband's family. We celebrated Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Eve on three consecutive days and packed in a months fun in four days. PLUS I was able to stop at the Walker Art Center (architect  Edward Larrabee Barnes),  Weisman Art Museum  (architect Frank Gehry) and The Broad (architect Diller Scofidio + Renfro in collaboration with Gensler) on my travels in and out of this tiny snowy cold city of Austin which is the Spam capitol of the world. 

Walker Art Center Minneapolis

Weisman Art Museum University of Minneapolis

The Broad, Los Angeles
I found this visit to three museums in a short period of time quite stimulating as I was impressed by how each one of them interacted with the art in different ways. The architecture at the Walker Art Center was stunning, but I ended up paying more attention to it than to the art on view. Everywhere you looked was a stunning view of snow covered hills, trees, buildings. The was a top floor room for events and a city scape bar, a crowded restaurant near the entrance. The Weisman Art Museum was completely different. Outside it was stunning, but you could see none of that inside. The art was the feature and you can no real sense of the shape of the building at all. The Broad was a good compromise between the two...small glimpse of the building's structure added just the right amount of texture and natural light to enhance the works.  

The private collection at the Broad was just that, not a survey of contemporary art but a personal choice with big names. The show at the Walker had some wonderful stars but quite a few misses and seemed very experimental. Weisman contained what appeared to be a study collection suitable for a university with many modern masters. The Broad gave a first impression of glitz and glamour with shiny works in bright colors. When you got to the modern works by Jasper John and irk, they almost seemed dull and dated. That was the same feeling you got at the Weisman. But the work at the Walker has that same slickness to it which lifted it from looking to immature. .

Walker Art Center

Walker Lobby with video screen

Frank Big Bear gave us a whole wall of collaged images and this is just one tiny section. It is displayed on one side of the restaurant in the lobby. 

Claes Oldenburg

more second floor lobby views

more lobby views
Questioning the Wall Itself

Question the Wall Itself is simply an exhibition about space. But it is human space and we relate to it. There were  23 artists who gave us rooms either full or partial or works that made us reflect on public and private interiors.  Featured in the exhibition, which includes several new commissions, are works by Jonathas de Andrade, Uri Aran, Nina Beier, Marcel Broodthaers, Tom Burr, Alejandro Cesarco, Marc Camille Chaimowicz, Theaster Gates, Ull Hohn, Janette Laverrière/Nairy Baghramian, Louise Lawler, Nick Mauss, Park McArthur, Lucy McKenzie, Shahryar Nashat, Walid Raad, Seth Siegelaub, Paul Sietsema, Florine Stettheimer, Rosemarie Trockel, Cerith Wyn Evans, Danh Vo, and Akram Zaatari. 

This first piece by Nina Bieir set the tone with a giant break (beautifully crafted) in the dog who looks like he would love to break the vase in front of him. The floors that these works were set on seemed very deliberate.
Nina Bieir

Nina Bieir

Nina Bieir

Nina Bieir

I was most impressed with this room of walls by Walid Raad. There seems suspended and lit from within. Closer inspection reveals that the darks were actually shadows. These are "restless" shadows as they change constantly as you move. This was one of the themes of the works at The Broad as well especially the Ellsworth Kelly (seen below) which completely changes shape as you move around it. 

Walid Raad

Walid Raad - the dark lines here are shadows that
change depending on where your look. 

Walid Raad

I have not noticed, until a guard pointed it out to me, that Walid Raad had real hand laid woodwork at the bottom of each panel...the sort of faux floor turned out to be real floor technique and execution. 

What you can't see in this picture of Rosemarie Trockel's room was the tiny toy birds that moved back and forth or turned side by side in the case on the left. 

Rosemarie Trockel

Janette Laverriere/Nairy Baghramian

Janette Laverriere/Nairy Baghramian

Jonathas de Andrade
Jonathas de Andrade

Unpacking the Box

Also at the Walker was Unpacking the Box  anchored by the Marcel Duchamp Boite en valise. But there were mulitlpe modern and fluxus takes on this theme as well.  Everything was small, portable and limited editions. These works were all meant to be touched but of course now they are safely displayed behind glass. However a little video with a museum handler in white gloves did demonstration how they could be played with as these works do rather looks like toys. Curators: Jordan Carter and Victoria Sung

Ben Vautier

Marcel Duchamp

Weisman Art Museum

Frank Gehry giant fish sculpture made from slabs of glass and steer structure. This work rises into the antrium of the space. 

The Talking Cure

 WAM’s Target Studio for Creative Collaboration is a special space in the museum and this show was one where the artist encouraged you to come up with your own stories to add meaning to her works.. Sometimes this seems like a sort of cop out, but the works were so visually strong that they encourage contemplation. If the artist has there own personal story about each peace, even if we don't hear it, there does seem to be an honesty about the work and these works felt that way. 

Melissa Stern

Melissa Stern

Melissa Stern

The Broad Los Angeles

The Broad is a new contemporary art museum founded by philanthropists Eli and Edythe Broad on Grand Avenue in downtown Los Angeles which opened in September of 2015. It is home to the 2,000 works of art in the Broad collection. The 120,000-square-foot, $140-million building features two floors of gallery space. I wonder what a person from the future would think of our civilization by viewing this art. 

Ellen Gallagher is one of my most favorite artists for this series of work.

Ellsworth Kelly play with your visual senses in this work that is totally flat but seems to change shape as you walk in front of it from side to side. 

Sharon Lockhart work also does the same thing if you concentrate on the diagonals. These are photos of the same scene from different angles but with some variations. The are full size and fill one whole room. 

Malcolm Morley was one of the first artists to win the Turner Prize which begun which I first arrives in the UK over 40 years ago. 

Jaspar Johns

This was my husband's favorite work: Jeff Koons