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Press Release: This Land Is Me

This Land Is Me

Online Exhibition: July 28 – September 7, 2021

Artists: Saif Senussi Azzuz, Kim Champion, Emily Van Engel

View the exhibition: https://richmondartcenter.org/exhibitions/this-land-is-me/

Richmond, CA: Richmond Art Center presents a new online exhibition This Land Is Me, presented in conjunction with EXTRACTION: Art on the Edge of the Abyss, a multimedia, multi-venue, cross-border art intervention. The exhibition will run July 28 through September 7 and feature work by three Bay Area artists Saif Senussi Azzuz, Kim Champion, and Emily Van Engel.

This Land Is Me highlights artwork that uses abstraction to express ideas related to land care. Saif Senussi Azzuz is a Libyan-Yurok artist whose paintings explore the interconnected and dynamic practices of Indigenous land management. Kim Champion’s detailed drawings are a visual tribute to the connection she shares with her father and the importance of her family’s land in Mississippi. In her new series of paintings, Emily Van Engel searches for a future without crisis through assigning positive meanings to colors.

Employing approaches that range from personal to cultural to imagined, the artists in This Land Is Me show how abstraction is a powerful tool for exploring how we can situate ourselves within the land; a vital first step towards restoring and protecting it.

Top image (l-r): Details for work by Saif Senussi Azzuz, Emily Van Engel, and Kim Champion

About EXTRACTION: Art on the Edge of the Abyss: The Extraction Project is a global coalition of artists and creators committed to exposing and interrogating the negative social and environmental consequences of industrialized natural resource extraction. The project consists of nearly fifty overlapping exhibitions, performances, installations, site-specific work, land art, street art, publications, poetry readings, and cross-media events throughout 2021. www.extractionart.org

About Richmond Art Center: Richmond Art Center has been sharing art and creating with the community since 1936. Our programs encompass classes, exhibitions and events at our facility in downtown Richmond, as well as off-site activities that bring free, high-quality art making experiences to WCCUSD schools and community partners. richmondartcenter.org

For more information contact: Amy Spencer, Exhibitions Director, amy@nullrichmondartcenter.org

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#RichmondSpeaks | With Love… Issue 25

ISSUE 25
Mural Art as Resistance | Online Classes and Reopening Survey | Announcing… The Student Show!
Classes Starting Soon | Support Funding for the Arts in CC County


Mural Art As Resistance

#RichmondSpeaks

Online Artist Talk: Thursday, August 5, 7-8pm PST

Special Event Announcement Join us Thursday, August 5 at 7pm as photographer Robin D. López (Shots from Richmond) will speak with three artists about their recent mural projects in Richmond: Deonta Allen, Rebeca Garcia-González, and David Solnit.

RSVP here…


Online Classes and Reopening Survey

Online Classes and Reopening Survey (win a free class!)

With the reopening of Richmond Art Center in sight, we want to take a moment to reflect on and celebrate the achievements of our students online over the past year.

Students who complete the survey are eligible to win a free class!

Start the survey…


Announcing… The Student Show!

Richmond Art Center Student Exhibition is coming!

Let’s see our collective creativity over the pandemic!

Deadline to Enter: Sunday, August 8, 11:59PM
Online Exhibition Dates: August 23 – November 19, 2021
In-Person Exhibition Dates: September 8 – November 19, 2021

All students who have taken an class or workshop at Richmond Art Center in the past year are invited to enter!

Image: Drawings by student Melody Rose Serra made in Dawline-Jane Oni-Eseleh’s ‘Visual Journaling’ class

Register to participate…


Classes Starting Soon

Slime Camp

In this online camp students will be making stretchy, gooey, colorful, irresistible SLIME! Enjoy making fluffy cloud slime, milk and cereal slime and more.

Kids Camp (Ages 8-11)
Tues, Wed, Thu, 10:30-11:30am
Jul 27 – Jul 29

More info…


Vase Making with Profiles and Templates

In this two-part workshop, students will learn how to create simple paper templates and profiles with which to construct larger symmetrical forms like vase.

Adult Workshop (Ages 16+)
Saturdays, 10am-12pm
Aug 21 – Aug 28

More info…


Support Funding for the Arts in Contra Costa County!

Support secure arts funding at the Measure X meeting!

Measure X is Contra Costa’s new countywide half-cent sales tax. The Measure X Community Advisory Board was formed to identify unmet community needs and recommend spending priorities to the county Board of Supervisors. On Wednesday, July 28 at 5pm the Arts Commission will be presenting to the Advisory Board to request $625,000 ($.54 per resident!) to support art programs and a community art fund.

More info…


Have something to share? Please email us at admin@nullrichmondartcenter.org

Calling All RAC Students!

What have you learned? What will you share?

With the reopening of Richmond Art Center in sight, we want to take a moment to reflect on and celebrate the achievements of our students online over the past year.

Online Classes and Reopening Survey (win a free class!)

If you’ve taken an class or workshop over the past year we want to hear from you! We also want to know how students feel about RAC’s facility reopening to the public. Please be as candid in your feedback as you like. This survey may be completed anonymously. (But you’ll need to leave your email address if you would like to go into the draw to win a free class.)

Student Exhibition

We’re honoring the achievements of our students over this past year with an exhibition showcase! This online and in-person exhibition will feature work made in our online classes by students of all ages and all experience levels.

Note, you can complete the Online Student Survey without entering Student Exhibition and visa versa. One is not contingent with the other.

Top image: Tiffany Conway, Zany Zoom, 2021. Courtesy of the Artist

ART. IN. RICHMOND. | With Love… Issue 24

ISSUE 24 **EVERYTHING RICHMOND SPECIAL EDITION**
A Showcase of Richmond Art | Richmond Artists Speak | Summer Mural Class for Richmond Youth
Summer Photography Class for Richmond Youth | Seeking Past Students of Robert Benin


A Showcase of Richmond Art

Spoken Word. Dance. Music. Art. Movement.

Online Event: Friday, June 25, 3:30pm-5pm PST

In collaboration Richmond organizations NIAD, East Bay Center for the Performing Arts, Richmond Art Center, and RYSE bring you Out of the Mouths of Beings, hosted by Richmond’s own Youth Poet Laureate, Sheila McKinney!

Kick off summer right and enjoy the abundance of creativity Richmond has to offer!

RSVP here…



Richmond Artists Speak

End in Sight
Three Artists’ Bittersweet Journey Through a Pandemic

Online Artists’ Talk: Thursday, June 24, 7-8pm PST

Three artists – Elishes Cavness, Tiffany Conway and Marva – will discuss their journey through the Covid-19 pandemic in a special online artists talk on Thursday, June 24, 7pm to 8pm. These three Richmond artists have studios very close to each other, and over the past eighteen months have developed a special bond. As Cavness says, “We are a unique three. We’ve supported each other. We’ve been in contact. We created a community of three.”

RSVP here…


Summer Mural Class for Richmond Youth

Muralism, Actions, and Community Activations

In-Person Mural Class for Richmond Youth
Class starts Tuesday, July 6

Learn how public art is a powerful tool for community building while creating a mural at Richmond Art Center this summer with artist Fred Alvarado. Students will learn basic color theory, composition, and painting methods.

This class welcomes Spanish speakers and is an inclusive bilingual space. El Artista Maestro habla Español.

Image: Community mural by Fred Alvarado

Learn more…


Summer Photography Class for Richmond Youth

Calling All Aspiring Photographers!

Online Photography Class for High School Youth in Richmond
Class starts Wednesday, July 21

Would you like to be paid to develop your photography skills this summer? Richmond Art Center is working with esteemed artist Simone Bailey to offer an online summer photography intensive for high school students in Richmond. Students in the class will receive a DSLR Camera (Canon EOS Rebel T7), stipend for their time, prints of work developed in class, and opportunity to exhibit photos in an exhibition at Richmond Art Center. Apply today, space is limited!

Image: Photograph by a student in a RAC photography class from the 1970s. See the bottom of this newsletter for more information.

Learn more…


Seeking Past Students of Robert Benin

Did you take an afterschool photography class at RAC in the 1970s?

We would love to hear from you! Contact Amy Spencer amy@nulltherac.org, 510.620.6772

We recently discovered a trove of black and white photographs taken by youth at Richmond Art Center and Shields-Reid Community Center in the early 1970s. These works were created in an after school class taught by Richmond photographer Robert Benin. We’ll be sharing these more of these photos online and around the community this summer as we try to identify the photographers and their models.


Top and bottom banners show a detail of Tom Marioni’s work Birds in Flight from 1969. Curator Shaelyn Hanes recently interviewed Marioni to discuss the 50th anniversary of his work at Richmond Art Center.

Have something to share? Please email us at admin@nullrichmondartcenter.org

Inner Vision – Summer 2021 Youth Photography Class

Inner Vision – Summer 2021 Youth Photography Class

Calling All Aspiring Photographers! Online Photography Class for High School Youth in Richmond!

About the Class: Richmond Art Center is working with esteemed artist Simone Bailey to offer an online summer photography intensive for high school students in Richmond. This online class offers students the opportunity to develop skills using a SLR camera and while learning to create impactful photography. Students will also learn to curate photographs when they select images for a public exhibition. 

Eight students selected to participate in the class will receive:

  • DSLR Camera (Canon EOS Rebel T7)
  • Stipend of $350
  • Prints of work developed in class
  • Opportunity to exhibit photos in an exhibition at Richmond Art Center and/or in the community

Schedule: The online class will meet twice a week via zoom on Mondays and Wednesdays, 11am to 12:30pm. The class runs for five weeks from July 21 to August 25, 2021. The first day of class is Wednesday, July 21.

Eligibility / Selection process: All high school students in Richmond with an interest in photography (including 2021/22 rising high schoolers) are eligible to apply. Eight students will be selected for the class based on need and readiness to take the next step in developing their photography skills as demonstrated by their application.

How to apply: Complete the short application by the deadline Friday, July 1, 2021. Applications will be reviewed as they are received, so please apply as early as possible.

CLICK HERE TO APPLY

Selected students will be notified by Friday, July 9, 2021. Once students have confirmed their participation in the class Richmond Art Center will begin coordinating camera pick ups from RAC asap.

About the Instructor: Simone Bailey is an artist who utilizes photography, video, performance, sculpture, and site-specific installations in her artistic practice. Her work focuses on perception, process, ephemerality, desire, surrogate bodies, violence, and the impossible, all while maintaining an intimate proximity to blackness. Simone’s work has been exhibited at The Museum of the African Diaspora (San Francisco, CA), The Lab (San Francisco, CA), Southern Exposure (San Francisco, CA), Armory Center for the Arts (Pasadena, CA), and the Studio Museum in Harlem (New York, NY), among other venues. She received both an MFA in Fine Arts and an MA in Visual & Critical Studies from California College of the Arts. She also earned a BFA in Filmmaking from San Francisco Art Institute. Simone lives and works in San Francisco.

Questions? Contact Amy Spencer at amy@nullrichmondartcenter.org / 646-301-1307

This program is funded by a grant from the California Arts Council

Top image: Richmond Art Center recently re-discovered a series of analog photographs taken by youth at RAC in the early 1970s. These photographs were created in an afterschool class taught by Richmond photographer Robert Benin. Participants in the class learned how to use cameras and process film, they then took the cameras home with them to photograph their friends and families. Nearly fifty years later, these photographs made by youth, for youth and with youth, provide an intimate glimpse into daily life for youth in Richmond in the 1970s.

Summer Mural Program for Youth

S.P.O.T.S: Supporting Peoples Outlooks, Talents, and Speech

Tuesdays and Thursdays, 2pm to 4 pm

The painting spot, the gathering spot, the spot light or epicenter of action.

Public art is a powerful tool for community building. This program will introduce young artists to the means to create vibrant community art works. A cohort of twelve young artists (ages 12-24) will learn about different models of community art projects, help to define how the program will local youth, and create a collaborative mural project. Students will learn basic color theory, composition, and painting methods.

Eligibility: This six week class is for youth ages 12-24 who live, work or study in Richmond.

Stipend: Each student will receive a $200 stipend for their work at the completion of the program.

Schedule: Tuesdays and Thursdays, 2-4pm, July 6 – August 12

Instructor: Fred Alvarado

This class welcomes Spanish speakers and is an inclusive bilingual space. El Artista Maestro habla Español.

Out of the Mouths of Beings: A Showcase of Richmond Art


Join us Friday, June 25, 3:30-5pm for an afternoon showcase of Richmond arts! 

In collaboration between Richmond organizations NIAD, East Bay Center for the Performing Arts, Richmond Art Center, and RYSE, we bring you “Out of the Mouths of Beings”, hosted by Richmond’s own Youth Poet Laureate, Sheila McKinney! 

This special online event will feature spoken word, dance, music, visual arts, and movement; building community, love, and togetherness in the virtual space. 

Kick off the summer right and enjoy the abundance of creativity Richmond has to offer!

RSVP: https://zoom.us/meeting/register/tJwtcemuqT4vHNwMsNWKQRdlmNF7VRFgisUY

Richmond Art Center to Receive $30,000 Grant from the National Endowment for the Arts

Richmond, CA: Richmond Art Center has been approved for a $30,000 Grants for Arts Projects award to support the inaugural Richmond Artist Residency (RAR) for emerging artists. The 2021-2022 RAR artists will be local collective Liberación Gráfica, a group of young printmakers whose work explores community, culture and social justice through the lens of growing up in Richmond. 

Richmond Art Center’s project is among the more than 1,100 projects across America totaling nearly $27 million that were selected during this second round of Grants for Arts Projects fiscal year 2021 funding. This is Richmond Art Center’s first NEA grant since 2003.

“This grant comes at an important time for Richmond Art Center,” says José R. Rivera, Richmond Art Center’s Executive Director. “As we plan to reopen our facility later this summer, after over a year of being closed due to the pandemic, this NEA grant will help us develop new and responsive ways to partner with artists in Richmond.”

“As the country and the arts sector begin to imagine returning to a post-pandemic world, the National Endowment for the Arts is proud to announce funding that will help arts organizations such as Richmond Art Center reengage fully with partners and audiences,” said NEA Acting Chairman Ann Eilers. “Although the arts have sustained many during the pandemic, the chance to gather with one another and share arts experiences is its own necessity and pleasure.”

About Liberación Gráfica: Liberación Gráfica is a collective of young printmakers from Richmond whose members create work to uplift social justice, the Richmond community, and young voices. As educators the collective has developed a curriculum that helps young people engage in printmaking through exploring historical political posters and creating their own posters on topics they feel connected to. The collective has held multiple live screen printing workshops around the community at events, high schools, and local organizations like RYSE, Urban Tilth, APEN and Richmond Art Center.

About Richmond Art Center: For over 80 years, Richmond Art Center has served the residents of Richmond and surrounding communities through studio arts education programs, exhibitions and events at our facility, as well as off-site activities that bring free, high-quality art making experiences to WCCUSD schools, community centers, and Richmond Public Library. Richmond Art Center’s mission is to be a catalyst in Richmond for learning and living through art. Our organizational values – relevance, equity and creativity – guide our programming. richmondartcenter.org

Read the National Endowment for the Arts grant announcement here: https://www.arts.gov/about/news/2021/national-endowment-arts-announces-second-round-grants-fy-2021

For more information contact

Amy Spencer, Richmond Art Center, amy@nullrichmondartcenter.org

Top image: Liberación Gráfica, Welcome to Richmond, 2020

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Rewriting the Rules | With Love… Issue 23

ISSUE 23
Rewriting the Rules | ED Update | Live Online Soon! | Summer Fun for Young Artists
Don’t Forget the Catalog


Rewriting the Rules

California Girls 2

The 1971 exhibition California Girls was the last show organized by groundbreaking curator Tom Marioni for Richmond Art Center. Marioni was dismissed from his job at RAC shortly after the opening reception. California Girls 2 marks the 50th anniversary of Marioni’s time at RAC.

Accompanying the exhibition is a new interview with Tom Marioni, Rewriting the Rules, by curator Shaelyn Hanes.

View the exhibition…



ED Update

Pride: A message from RAC’s Executive Director

“At Richmond Art Center we celebrated Pride last weekend with Drag Queen Story Hour. In this special storytelling event with Drag Queen PerSia, families came together to rejoice in the gender fluidity of childhood and experience positive, queer role models.

“But Pride month is also a time for action.”

Read José’s update…


Live Online Soon!

End in Sight
Three Artists’ Bittersweet Journey Through a Pandemic

Online Artists’ Talk: Thursday, June 24, 7-8pm PST

Three artists – Elishes Cavness, Tiffany Conway and Marva – will discuss their journey through the Covid-19 pandemic in a special online artists talk on Thursday, June 24, 7pm to 8pm. These three Richmond artists have studios very close to each other, and over the past eighteen months have developed a special bond. As Cavness says, “We are a unique three. We’ve supported each other. We’ve been in contact. We created a community of three.”

Learn more…


Summer Fun for Young Artists

Online Summer Art Experiences for Kids!

We’ve lined up some exciting online activities for young artists this summer! Drop in to single classes or sign up for weekly sessions. Printmaking Camp, Tie Dye Camp, Mermaid Camp, plus more! For Ages 5+

And don’t forget we have scholarships available for folks who need an Art Boost.

Online art camps for kids…


Summer Class Catalog

Summer Class Catalog

Summer 2021 Class Catalog PDF (download to print or share with your friends!)

Cover image: Artwork by Dawline-Jane Oni-Eseleh @disfordilettante. Dawline is teaching Visual Journaling starting TODAY!

Browse the catalog…


Have something to share? Please email us at admin@nullrichmondartcenter.org

Pride: A message from RAC’s Executive Director

Dear RAC community,

It’s June and Pride Month! Starting with the Stonewall Uprising in June 1969, this month celebrates and commemorates LGBTQ+ activism and culture through the years.

At Richmond Art Center we celebrated Pride last weekend with Drag Queen Story Hour. In this special storytelling event with Drag Queen PerSia, families came together to rejoice in the gender fluidity of childhood and experience positive, queer role models.

But Pride month is also a time for action. As I look at the fun and excitement occurring here in the Bay Area, I have to pause and reflect on the fact that many LGBTQ+ people around the world still struggle against discrimination and persecution. I recently saw the HBO documentary Welcome to Chechnya. This documentary exposes the underreported atrocities LGBTQ+ people are suffering while highlighting a group of people working undercover to help them. I personally recommend this documentary and at the end of it you will see ways to help those who are in harm’s way. This is another way to celebrate Pride.

On to lighter subjects, we are finally upon the end of our fiscal year – and what a year it has been! RAC staff have done an amazing job in keeping the artistic flame alive through a challenging period. And now we are busy planning big things for FY22. The pause in our on-site activities has provided an opportunity to perform significant upgrades to our facilities. We are also looking at how to more fully utilize the courtyard with the help of an architectural firm here in the East Bay. The results of these initiatives will be a greater and safer experience for our students, teachers and guests.

It will take a significant amount of money to ramp up again and kick-start on-site operations after working with a skeleton crew for the last nine months. If you have recently donated to our efforts, a heartfelt thank you; if you have not yet, we appreciate a donation in any amount, so we can finish our fiscal year strong and ready to (hopefully) restart full operations in the fall.

I hope you have an enjoyable summer. I look forward to welcoming you at RAC in the very near future.

Warmly,

José R. Rivera
Executive Director

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510.620.6772

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