Congratulations Tracey Penn for winning 1st place with Spur.
2nd place went to Rick Valasek for McWay Falls
Join us on Valentine’s evening for the South County Photo Club exhibit. We will be showing the work of 12 members from the club, including the winners of the Christmas Photo Contest.
This will be an exciting event including photos of all attendees walking the red carpet as they enter the gallery. Bring your friends and family as everyone will vote on their favorite photo, prizes for the winners of the evening’s vote will be given away by our sponsor Simple Studio Lighting.
SCPC Exhibit Participants
The Senase Project
905 S. Hill Street
October 11, 2012
My life-changing experiences in Ghana’s Senase village unfolds in this exhibit. One cannot help but be overcome by sadness at the scarcity of this barren place. And yet, despite its bareness and poverty, this is a place rich with people whose generous spirit and hospitality inspire us.
These photographs depict …
DISCOVERY: As I walked through the villages with my camera, the same phenomenon occurred, again and again. After having their photos taken, adults and children alike were shown the backscreen image on the digital screen. They focused on the screen at length, captivated by the faces staring back at them. They were not studying their facial expressions or the image composition. They were mesmerized because it was extremely rare for them to be seeing themselves. For some of them, it was the first time … ever. I eventually realized that there were no mirrors in the villages. The self-discovery was beautiful.
JOY: The children. Time and again, pictures recorded the children’s faces and reactions wherever our group visited the classrooms and farmlands. The emotions ranged from guardedness to trust and eventual excitement as they grew more comfortable with the 29 strangers visiting them from a land so far away. Captured were the moments when our group failed miserably to learn the Ghanian dance-and-drumming routine while the little ones stood on the sidelines giggling. Captured was the excitement when we presented the One World Futbal, an indestructible soccer ball that would assure them endless hours of play. Captured was the joy when we attempted to teach them the Hokey Pokey only to be outdone by their unsurpassed synchronized chanting and dancing.
PURITY OF MIND: Midway through the visit, as I was standing next to my blonde Caucasian friend, Amy, my host sister noticed our close-knit bond and asked in her distinct accent, “Is she your sista?” It was simple, yet beautiful inquiry; one sparked by a mind so pure that it knew of no racial or ethnic boundaries. I believe these images showcase the beauty of this pureness.
TRADITION: Even before we visited the village, drums and costumes were made for us by the local craftsman who had learned of our stay. The elders of the village welcomed us and requested that we learn – and perform – a Ghanian dance-and-drumming routine. We were invited into their homes and warmly welcomed during our visit.
KINDNESS: The overflowing hospitality and generosity from this community – which had virtually no excess for itself – often left us speechless. We were fed 3 meals a day, but the villagers ate only once daily. While we consumed the food we had graciously been served, they tended to daily chores.
How I arrived …
Like so many times in my life, I followed my heart and jumped in – feet first – not really knowing what I signed up for.
Through a random 2010 Facebook posting, a very small group of Semester at Sea students had found Fred, a self-made tour guide who brought these volunteers to his home in the Senase village. This group returned home with heavy – but hopeful –hearts and a solid mission to help the villagers by forging a path for another group of volunteers to return in 2011. As fate would have it, I found myself in 2011 group.
I was in Africa. Already so far from home. I had no expectations and was guided only by a hunger to immerse myself into another world.
I didn’t know what to expect. I had just said yes to a trip, far far away from where my Semester at Sea ship docked. But I had a good feeling, a sense that something powerful was about to happen. I guess I had a hunch.
And my hunch was right. It was powerful. This trip changed my life …
It was a 4:15 a.m. wake-up call to catch a 4:30 a.m. bus. As the crisp morning air swallowed us, I and the small group stumbled along the dirt road, eager to meet Fred. Fred, was a warm, extremely gentle and kind hearted 19 year old young man.
The bus ride to Senase was going to be seven hours long. The ride itself was an adventure. There were none of the comforts we Americans are accustomed to on our vacation road trips. No abundance of radio stations playing various genres of music, no DVD players, or even pothole-free roads to lull passengers to sleep.
We stopped for a heartbreaking tour of the Elmina Castle, which was used for slave trade in the 17th century. The excursion was the beginning of my emotional journey.
Elmina Castle -”The Door of No Return” -
the last doorway where slaves passed to board a ship to a foreign land
Back on the road, we soaked in what we had seen with all of our senses. We were unsure how the days ahead would be, other than a loose schedule of volunteering in the farmlands and schools. What we knew was that we had this incredible opportunity to immerse ourselves entirely, so any agenda would weigh down the experience. I have no recollection of what time we arrived that night in Senase. We were overcome with hope and excitement. What I do recall was the massive number of children and villagers who emerged from their huts, running to greet our bus. Bits of dirt flew through the night air as their little feet scurried along the road toward us. They were cheering, waving and squealing with electrifying energy.
This shot takes me back to that night.
Over the next few days, we visited different schools and ventured into the farmlands. We met with village elders who asked about our intentions. By the time our group left, we were steadfastly dedicated to continuing and strengthening the mission that the 2010 group had begun. We would bring a medical clinic and classrooms to the village.
After I returned from Senase, my commitment to this community was iron-clad. I want to raise funds and donate money for things that we just take for granted. Clean water for villagers. A classroom for the kids. A medical clinic for the families in need; families like our guide Fred, whose mother lost her baby while walking to a faraway clinic while in the throes of labor pains. The resulting medical conditions left her unable to bear more children. Therefore, she took on 17 children who were in need to raise as her own.
The head of my group, Casey, is a passionate student who organized this underground trip. I watched Casey speak with the elders about our goals to support the village. She exuded utter grace, excitement, and conviction. They, in turn, regarded her with such trust and confidence that she – and the rest of us – will deliver on our promises. They trust us, mere strangers from a foreign land so far away, to help them.
The faith that the villagers have bestowed on us touched my heart and has never left my soul. Their belief in us inspires me and my October photo exhibit.
To learn more about The Senase Project, a non-profit organization founded by the first band of (Semester at Sea) students watch this video. It spotlights the mission of the group, highlighting why and how this project was adopted.
Medasi (thank you) for stopping by. The rest of my journey will unfold through my photography. I hope to see you at the Exhibit and Fundraiser!
This month’s featured Art Walk artist is Audra Phillips, whose gorgeously disturbed digital artwork and mixed media sculptures have caught the attention of horror connoisseurs and fellow artists such as Clive Barker (Abarat) and Del Howison (Dark Delicacies: Haunted).
Audra presents a selection of large and small canvases and sculptures in her Art Walk show, Audra Phillips’ Diversions of the Arcane.
Come see Audra’s dark artwork, grab some spooky sweets at the black-candy bar, and enjoy a complimentary glass of wine.
Everyone is welcome to this FREE event, so come on out!
In this exclusive interview, Audra tells Hatakeyama Gallery what inspires her delightfully dark visions.
HG: Your style explores variations on light and dark, angels and demons, the innocence of childhood mixed with freak-show deformity. How did you find this artistic path?
AP: I am a self-taught artist. I experimented and dabbled until I refined my dark expression of my angelic/demonic horror art. These are images that have plagued my dreams for years. Now have found freedom on my PC canvas and other media to bring my visions to life so they haunt me no longer. I create out of necessity, and now I want to share just a shadow of my spirit with my audience.
HG: What inspires you?
AP: Music like The Dead Weather, versatile dark artists like Tim Burton and Clive Barker, and the light and dark sides of religion—or anti-religion.
HG: What do you hope others will see in your art?
AP: Art is so subjective, but my message is clear for those who sense that there just might be something beyond the veil of reality. I want to bring a little of the unknown into the known, to give a glimpse into the unseen spiritual and emotional world all around us.
HG: What advice would you offer to new artists?
AP: I learn by trial and fire. Just dive in and develop your own creative style and ways of doing things. It’s the best way to learn.
I invite you to BREAKDOWN. A photography gallery show that removes the mask of ‘looking good’. You will be left with pure authenticity.
We’ve all heard the suggestion, “Have a good cry, you’ll feel better.”
And it’s true, we do seem to get some emotional relief when we finally give ourselves permission to have a good cry. It is a moment when we completely surrender “looking good” and finally express whatever it is we’ve kept bottled up. Beyond the crying is a deeper transformational expression – the Breakdown.
The Breakdown is a formidable and fierce moment where perhaps years (even decades) of repressed expression converge into a single and profound moment. For me, words cannot aptly explain what a breakdown is. It is an emotional freefall where we surrender to the reality of our true feelings – which is why I have chosen photography and music to explore this journey
WHY EXPLORE THE JOURNEY OF A BREAKDOWN?
In my experience, a true Breakdown ultimately gives us access to transforming our lives. It is a moment where we have the opportunity to give up “the old way” we do things and adopt new and more powerful ways to live our lives. Where we say “enough is enough” and choose to stop being what we hate and start doing what we love.
Ultimately we resist having a Breakdown – we resist expressing our true feelings. We put on “the good face” and just try to get through it all. My project is ultimately an invitation and an invocation to say YES to whatever you have been resisting. I intentionally wanted to create the most provocative experience WITHOUT WORDS through images and music so the viewer can have the opportunity to see themselves in the work – and perhaps FEEL what they have been repressing.
It may sound funny that I would want to activate someone into their own Breakdown – but I know deep inside how precious this moment is. I believe that we suffer because we are committed to “an argument” about how our lives should be (our dreams) and we are experiencing it as something else. Over time we build up a huge wave of despair and sorrow. Our Breakdown is the moment we give up that argument and we simply face our reality (how ever it is) – it is the moment we give up “our dreams” of what should have been and surrender to what is. This surrender of the “old dream” can be fierce and mournful – in the end we are left clear and open – and then we create something NEW. This is my dream for people who come to view this show – to give them an opportunity to feel what they’ve been resisting. To get real, drop the baggage and create something new.
Instead of settling for the small reprieve of a good cry – a good breakdown could transform your life.
I felt a deep calling to create this show and I consider it a great honor to bring this show into form (while having a number of my own breakdowns and breakthroughs in the process). I called on many favors to initiate this project and a number of very generous and gifted people have already volunteered their talents and services to get the project this far. This is an experiential show and in order to complete the work I am need of additional financial resources to create and install the final media for the actual show.
WHAT IS IN THE SHOW?
The show will be a visual and audio journey through four archetypal characters to represent YOU on the journey through a Breakdown. Each of the four characters will have 6 large format photos printed that will chronicle the journey through three stages Breakdown: ‘the inauthentic self’, ‘the breakdown’ and ‘the nothing’. (24 images total)
Between each stage will be a large mirror for the viewer to literally “see themselves” in the show. There will be 12 mirrors total. A custom instrumental musical score has been commissioned specifically for this show. Over 45 minutes of evocative music will bathe and cradle the space as people view and experience the show. If finances permit, I am planning on creating video that will be projected onto one wall of the gallery. This video will include more images than what is printed on the walls – all gently moving in synchronicity with the musical score.
I AM IN SO MUCH GRATITUDE…
Four actors, Brittany Ishibashi, Neil Patil, Kelsey Crane and Michael Medico graciously donated their talent and time to this project. I am so lucky to know such amazing people who support my vision and creation.
Cheers, Ciao and Aloha,
Join us for July’s Downtown LA Art Walk, which will feature 24 local LA Street Photographers including Eric Kim. Eric chose the theme “Vehicles” since LA is such a big car town. During his travels around the world, Eric found that a high percentage of people don’t even own a car. But in the US and LA in particular, so many people are defined by the automobiles they drive.
The exhibit is sponsored by Vanguard who make amazing tripods and camera bags. Vanguard will donate a Heralder 28 Messenger Bag to the photographer with the best photo of the exhibit and will also give away some prizes in a raffle for all attendees.
Featured Street Photographers:
Daniel Sawyer Schaefer
Please come out Thursday, July 12, from 7:00 – 10:00pm and support our photographers!
Los Angeles Art Walk. “SUMMER KICK OFF PARTY!”
Thursday June 14th 2012
The Hatakeyama Art Gallery at 905 Hill Street in downtown LA will be hosting west coast art sensation “HOLZMAN.” He will be showing his latest mixed media abstract paintings, silk screen prints and Cibacrome photographs while his “Double Zero” punk rock videos play. A surprise “SUPERSTAR DJ” will be spinning as he paints “LIVE” nude models for his nude abstracts canvases.
UPDATE: Red Carpet photos from the event here.
Red Carpet photos from night 2 here.
The exhibit premiers during L.A.’s Downtown Art Walk on Thursday, June 14th. The gallery opens at 6:30 p.m. Admission is free, and refreshments (white and red wine) will be served. We are located at 905 S. Hill Street near the corner of Hill and 9th Streets in Los Angeles. For further information, call Jay at (714) 988-3647.
THE CUTTING EDGE BETWEEN STELLAR PHOTOGRAPHY AND FINE ART…LIES THE SINGULAR VISION OF KEN WEINGART.
In Case you’ve missed it, Hatakeyama Gallery will be holding a closing exhibit for Ken Weingart June 8th at 7:00PM – 9:00PM
Admission is free, wine and light refreshments will be served. We are located at 905 S. Hill Street near the corner of Hill and 9th Streets in Los Angeles. For further information, call Jay at (714) 988-3647.
UPDATE: Photos from the exhibit posted on our Facebook page
ON THE CUTTING EDGE BETWEEN STELLAR PHOTOGRAPHY AND FINE ART…LIES THE SINGULAR VISION OF KEN WEINGART.
The Hatakeyama Gallery is proud to present the first exhibition of fine art pieces by photographer Ken Weingart. His revolutionary MOTION series redefines the intersection between photographic and conceptual images. Captured in bold primary colors, his figures literally leap out of the picture plane and into your psyche.
For many years, Ken has been a widely respected photographer whose work has appeared in many publications world wide. He has taken portraits of many of Hollywood’s leading lights, including Academy Award winners Natalie Portman, Kate Winslet, and Sean Penn and superstar music producer Dr. Dre.
Ken now turns his prodigious talents to pure visual magic, and we invite you to partake of his dazzling imagination.
The exhibit premiers during L.A.’s Downtown Art Walk on Thursday, May 10th. The gallery opens at 6:30 p.m. Admission is free, and light refreshments will be served. We are located at 905 S. Hill Street near the corner of Hill and 9th Streets in Los Angeles. For further information, call Jay at (714) 988-3647.