Tuesday, August 03, 2010


Katherine Sweetman from San Diego completed her film entitled LIVING IN TIJUANA. She interviewed seven "unusual" people who shared their experience. Check out the 15 minute condensed version of the 52 minute film at:
http://vimeo.com/13748633. Katherine plans to show the film in San Diego at numerous venues. I will keep you posted regardng when and where.



Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Gerda Govine: Oh, Life is Full of Surprises, on modeling for the exhibition "Bodies Mapping Time: New Portraits of Women"

exhibition by J. Michael Walker
Avenue 50 Studio, Los Angeles, CA
May 9 – June 7, 2009

I walked into a studio flooded with natural light, draped and shaped by rich-looking fabric, festooned with a beautiful carved bench, welcoming chairs, delicate white flowers, rows and rows of books, striking art work and artifacts, a computer and small heater, and a camera and tripod operated by the artist. This setting created a “sense of place” where I began my body-mapping journey accompanied by the unknown and, at the same time, experienced suspended curiosity and disbelief. The notion and reality of being a model for anyone, especially for a figurative artist, was mind boggling. There was no script for me to follow here, no “how to” manual for proceeding.

Conversation with the artist ensued, a bit awkward initially, but this was softened by a hot cup of tea and then by more relaxed conversation punctuated by a lot of photographs and, at times, hearty good-natured laughter. As I slipped into my many poses, an amazing shift took place for me. I entered a space of organic self-confidence which allowed me to be totally present. I was in a timeless space, unaware of how many pictures were taken or how long the session was. I realized that I did not leave any part of me outside of the studio: I was fully present and accounted for. The following week I went back to see all of my photographs. I kept saying, “Who is that person?” It felt like an “out of body” experience enmeshed in the “twilight zone.” I experienced an avalanche of feelings: surprise, amazement, and wonder. I thought, “This is how other people see me.” What most stunned me was how I felt looking at my own body. It was daunting, yes, but it was also an opportunity to see myself free of dissection or criticism.

This experience has shifted my perception about how I look so that I now fully accept and appreciate myself. I understand that being “as is” is perfect. I also feel free and unencumbered by my physicality. Getting an “up close and personal look” at myself is a gift that continues to empower me. I am glad that I made the decision to pose and that I gave myself permission to enter J. Michael’s studio and experience – such a rare opportunity, which is now part and parcel of my life as I recently celebrated my 67th birthday. Letting myself out and letting myself go, that’s the ticket!
Now comes the “rubber hits the road” part, as I anticipate mingling with friends, family and acquaintances at the opening. Am I ready? Yes. Am I curious to get their feedback? Indeed. Do I have any regrets? Not a one.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Aida Mancillas: 1953-2009

Aida Mancillas: Creative community force believed in merging art, life

7:38 a.m. February 16, 2009

A creative force and vocal advocate for public art, Aida Mancillas left an imprint throughout the community.

From the cobalt-blue Vermont Street pedestrian bridge in Hillcrest to her work on an affordable-housing complex in Poway and her dedication to local arts organizations, Ms. Mancillas' endeavors reflected her belief in merging art and life.

A past commissioner of the San Diego Commission for Arts and Culture and past president of Centro Cultural de la Raza, Ms. Mancillas also helped start Public Address, a public-art advocacy group, and Las Comadres, a multinational women's collective of artists, educators and critics.

Ms. Mancillas died of brain cancer Feb. 3 at her North Park home. She was 55.

Friends and colleagues said she was passionate about the concept of “the citizen artist.” She believed arts could and should be a vital part of community planning and development.

Local artist and teacher Ruth Wallen said Ms. Mancillas fervently believed that “artists have the ability to imagine different futures and the ability to symbolically express those possibilities.”

In her weblog, Ms. Mancillas wrote: “The artist is an important contributor to society because we help people find the feast. It's our role, and it's an important one.

“We're not entertainers, although some of what we do will entertain. We're not gadflies, although some of our work will prod and poke. We're not decorators, although some of our work will dazzle with its skill. We are meaning shapers in a world that desperately needs us.”

While painting was her main medium for several years, Ms. Mancillas was equally creative in writing, sculpture and public-art design.

She was awarded a $20,000 artist fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts in 1991. After working as a solitary artist, she began to work collaboratively and with community groups and agencies on large scale public-art projects.

In the mid-1990s, Ms. Mancillas was part of a trio of artists, which included Gwen Gomez and Lynn Susholtz, commissioned to meld art into the refurbished Vermont Street pedestrian bridge.

The elevated walkway that unites University Heights and Hillcrest features quotations about walking from such famous people as “Dr. Seuss” and architect Irving Gill. The team also designed pillars at each end to complement the architectural styles of the two neighborhoods the project bridged.

The project was honored with an Orchid Award from the American Institute of Architects and an award from the American Planners Association.

Other projects include one known as The Playground of 100 Frogs, the first phase of a major redesign of an urban park in the North Park area, and the design of a playground and plaza for an affordable-housing development in Poway.

Ms. Mancillas was proud to work on projects that connected people to the spaces where they lived, said Andrea Villa, her partner of three years.

“She was a visionary. She was always creating, designing and coming up with new ideas,” Villa said.

In addition to her work with various city and arts groups, she was a state representative to Marriage Equality USA and a member of the Latino Services Advisory Committee of the San Diego LGBT Center.

Aida Mancillas was born Feb. 28, 1953, in Los Angeles to Manuel and Consuelo Mancillas. The family moved to Oceanside when her father was stationed at Camp Pendleton. She graduated from Oceanside High School in 1971. She received a bachelor's degree in visual arts from Humboldt State University in 1985 and a master's degree from the University of California San Diego in 1988.

In addition to her partner and her parents, Ms. Mancillas is survived by her son, Eamonn Doyle of San Diego; a grandson; a sister, Gina Wilson of San Diego; and two brothers, Rene and Manuel Mancillas III, both of Oceanside.

A memorial service will be at 3 p.m. tomorrow at St. Paul's Episcopal Cathedral, Nutmeg and Fifth Avenue in Hillcrest, with a reception following in the Great Hall.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations be made in Ms. Mancillas'name to Dorcas House, a foster-care program for children of people incarcerated in Tijuana, at dorcashousefriends.org.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Petar Perasic: Obitiuary from the San Diego Union-Tribune

link: http://www.signonsandiego.com/uniontrib/20081015/news_1m15perisic.html

Petar Perisic; award-winning architect confronted global issues


October 15, 2008

Whether he was building a community center from recycled materials, designing a unique five-unit condominium project in Hillcrest or nurturing the talents of others, Petar Perisic always found creative ways to combine his passions for art, community and the environment.

Mr. Perisic, an artist and award-winning architect, last year founded Peri_scope, a downtown community center designed to raise awareness of global issues, especially global warming. He formed four large storage containers where visitors could find multimedia presentations on important issues.

He won design awards for several projects, including the Hammond Lofts on India Street and the Park to Bay Link Trolley Station at Park Boulevard and Market Street, which earned first prize at an International Design Competition for Mr. Perisic and his collaborator, sculptor Ante Marinovic.

Mr. Perisic died suddenly Sept. 30 while working at his design studio in downtown San Diego. The cause of death is pending. He was 42.

Friends and colleagues said Mr. Perisic had a way of making everyone feel as if he was their best friend.

“If he was talking to you at a party, asking what was going on in your life, everyone else in the room disappeared,” said friend Debby Kline. “He had the ability to make people feel connected.”

With his long, dark hair and a height of well over 6 feet, Mr. Perisic created a striking presence when he walked into a room, Kline said, but his presence was felt most deeply in the arts community through his support and encouragement.

He might help someone write a grant for an art project or showcase an emerging artist's work at Flux, the gallery he co-founded with Ken Miracle.

Mr. Perisic also taught at the NewSchool of Architecture & Design and at the University of San Diego.

“Petar loved to nurture the talent of others both through showcasing emerging artists from San Diego and Mexico in cross-border shows at Flux and in his teaching,” Miracle said.

Mr. Perisic was born June 8, 1966, in Serbia to Milojko and Emilija Perisic. The family, including an older brother, moved to the United States in 1969 and settled in a Cleveland suburb. He earned bachelor's and master's degrees in architecture from Ohio State University.

Although their father was an architect, Milan “Mick” Perisic said his brother did not express an interest in architecture as a career until after their father's death.

Mr. Perisic moved to San Diego in 1993 after visiting a friend in Pacific Beach. He worked for Stu Segall Productions as an assistant to the art director until he established his own architectural firm, Perisic Design Studio.

He married Suzanne Stephens in 1998. The couple wed in Cleveland in one of the three Serbian Orthodox churches designed by his father.

His local works include a unique housing project in the heart of Hillcrest in which each unit is a hybrid of a loft and townhouse.

“It's a condominium project where the (five) units intertwine like branches on a tree. No single unit can stand on its own,” Miracle said of the project, which is under construction and known as the 5x5 lofts.

Mr. Perisic is survived by his wife, Suzanne of San Diego; his brother, Milan; and mother, Emilija Perisic of Cleveland.

He was buried Oct. 8 in Cleveland. A memorial will be held locally at a later date.

Blanca Gonzalez: (760) 737-7576; blanca.gonzalez@uniontrib.com

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Ruth: Petar's Passionate Vision

My most vivid memory of Petar was the first time that I went to his studio to discuss the possibility of participating in his Peri_scope project. His energy and enthusiasm for the project was indescribably infectious.

He had very elaborate montages of graphics he had assembled for possible displays, a huge data base of web sites and a mailing list a mile long. He kept pulling out one thing after another as he
described his vision in the most passionate terms. Not only would he create a community space to address climate change and other environmental issues, but he would network globally. He would take the containers, the product of global trade, and transform them into a home for global discourse.

Though I was introduced to Petar at his Flux gallery, I only had the pleasure to get to know him in the last couple of years through Public Address and particularly working on Peri_scope. Just last weekend I was looking at the postcards that I'd printed for the Peri_scope project and thinking I hadn't heard from him in a while and needed to get in touch.... Life is precious. In some way Petar understood that deeply as he lived so fully. tried so generously to to raise awareness of the dangers of environmental degradation and create spaces for community to flourish. He will be deeply missed but leaves all of us with the challenge to continue to bring forth the visions which he shared.


Monday, October 06, 2008

In Memoriam: Petar Perisic

With profound sadness, we are sorry to report that our dear friend and colleague Petar died September 30th, 2008 of a heart attack. Our hearts go out to Petar's family, his wife Suzanne, and to all who loved him. For more information please visit Petar's Public Address page.

Monday, October 09, 2006

The Klines Travel the Airwaves

On Friday, 10/13/06 at 1PM Pacific Time, Debby and Larry Kline will be appearing on ARTSCAPE (www.artscapemedia.com).   The brainchild of Executive Producer David Lemberg, ARTSCAPE is a highly-rated internet radio program that presents leading-edge conversations on film, fine arts, performing arts, and arts education worldwide.  The Klines will be discussing their latest projects as well as thoughts on art of social conscience, collaboration and the nature of creative thinking.  

The Klines have extensive museum backgrounds working at illustrious institutions such as The Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, and The Chicago Art Institute. The Klines are also lecturers, published writers, and arts advocates.  Their untraditional approach to art has led to a grant from The Potrero Nuevo Fund, San Francisco, and three grants from The Gunk Foundation, New York.  Their latest project, FORTY ACRES, was created at The Bonneville Salts Flats near Wendover, Utah through The Center for Land Use and Interpretation’s artist’s residency program and was recently presented at The Art and Science Forum at The Salk Institute.

Also appearing on Friday’s show is Professor Jerrilynn Dodds, Distinguished Professor of Art History and Theory, School of Architecture, City College of the City University of New York, and Lecturer and Consultant for The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

ARTSCAPE programs are archived and available as podcasts at www.artscapemedia.com/podcasts.

For more information about Debby and Larry Kline go to www.jugglingklines.com.