Archive for the ‘Administrative’ Category

From Wong Kar-Wai to Jean-Luc Godard: Art Center’s streaming video collection is a cineaste’s paradise

Wednesday, March 5th, 2014

FEAT Brochure.inddBack in the old days the only way to see a film was to wait for it to play in your local theater. If you missed it: Tough luck. You lost your chance. Then home video – videotapes, laserdiscs, DVDs, Blu-ray discs — came along and changed all that.

This advent seemed to make film viewing much more convenient. Or did it? Sometimes the movie you want is checked out. To borrow a DVD from the library, you still have to leave the house and go someplace. And then there’s always the risk that the disc might be scratched. It’s enough to drive a person crazy.

Well, all of that is about to change. It’s time to say goodbye to those hassles now that the Art Center library has just acquired a massive streaming video subscription called Alexander Street Video! This collection currently contains 26,000 videos. All of the films have been shown at major festivals and thousands are award winners. The collection includes films by many of the world’s leading contemporary directors, including Michael Haneke, Wong Kar-Wai, Andrei Zvyagintsev, Koji Wakamatsu and Jean-Luc Godard.

Some of the most interesting films hail from Asia. The Art Community will have access to work by acclaimed Chinese director Xie Fei (Black Snow; Woman from the Lake of Scented Souls; A Mongolian Tale), Iranian new-wave director Dariush Mehrjui (The Cycle; The Lodgers; Mum’s Guest) and leading Indonesian director Garin Nugroho (And the Moon Dances; A Poet; Bird Man Tale).


View from the Bridge: A renovation designed for creation, innovation and collaboration

Wednesday, February 19th, 2014
The 870 building at sunrise. Photo: Darin Johnstone Architects

The 870 building at sunrise. Photo: ©Lawrence Anderson/Esto

As a teacher, I understand well the difference a space can make in the quality of the educational experience. Space affects learning. It makes a difference in how people teach. It makes a difference in how people create.

Which is why when you embark on creating a new space, you want to get it right. You need to talk to the right people and to ask the right questions if you wish to build that place where students can thrive and where faculty will love teaching. You want the space to elevate the whole.

A lot of careful thought went into making sure the new Fine Art and Illustration building at South Campus, 870 S. Raymond Ave. would engender the highest quality teaching and learning possible. I have no doubt that the building will do exactly that. Move through the new space, and you can feel it. It’s buoyant. It’s alive. You feel open to experience, to learning, to discovery—all thanks to the environment itself.


Major studios: Touring Fine Art and Illustration’s new digs at 870 South Raymond Avenue

Thursday, January 30th, 2014

This is the first in a two-part series tracking the impact of Art Center’s newest academic facility on the two departments it houses: Fine Art and Illustration.

A man bursts through the gleaming glass doors at 870 South Raymond Avenue in Pasadena looking confused, harried and hurried. Fine Art faculty member (and former interim department Chair) Tom Knechtel, pauses mid-sentence and offers an answer before the man can blurt out his question. “You must be looking for the post office,” says Knechtel, who spearheaded the department’s participation in the renovation of this former postal sorting facility before newly installed Chair Vanalyne Green took the helm. “This is Art Center.”


Spring 2014 orientation: Get the 411 on all things Art Center

Monday, January 6th, 2014


This week, Art Center welcomes new students to a week of orientation activities organized by the College’s Center for the Student Experience.

“New student orientation is the moment in which students’ first impressions and experiences are made,” says interim Dean of Students, Kendra Stanifer. “The orientation helps students to create connections to the College and to each other that will build the community they live in for the next 3 to 4 years.”

Here’s the lineup of activities designed to immerse new students in Art Center culture and maximize their experience here, both in and out of the classroom.


A letter to Jeffrey Hoffman on his last day as Dean of Students at Art Center

Friday, November 15th, 2013

Jeff HoffmanHey Jeff,

It’s Tyler. This letter is hard to write. On your last day as our Dean of Students, I’ve collected a few thoughts about the impact you’ve had on my life, the life of students and how much you’ll be missed by everyone.

When I first heard about you in the hallway most every person who mentioned you would remark, “Jeff? He’s great.” In the past few years I have seen how true this is, and how it doesn’t go far enough. Jeff, you’re wonderful. You’re compassionate and fair, steadfast and kind. The positive change you have made in the lives of students and everyone at Art Center has made a momentous difference and will not be forgotten.

Your energy inspires. Seeing the dedicated attention that you give every issue that comes across your desk and the grace and diligence with which you handle things big and small motivates me to be the kind of leader I have been so privileged to see you exemplify. The work you have done to ensure students’ health and happiness through the CSE has changed the school’s culture. The policy changes you have pushed for — being student-centered and seeing the learning opportunities at every step — modeled the generosity that we needed and continue to aspire towards as an institution. Your initiatives with the Council on Diversity and Inclusion and the environment you helped create have made for a truly safe space where everyone is heard, appreciated and empowered to act.


Fall 2013 Orientation: Student tips for surviving and thriving at Art Center

Wednesday, September 4th, 2013


Student orientation

Student orientation

Ah, the first day of school. It’s an initiation fraught with the anxiety of the unknown and flashbacks to the horrors of entering the grade school cafeteria for the first time. Fortunately, here at Art Center, strategies have been put in place to help ease the pain of crossing that threshold. Of course this process has been systematized. What else would you expect from a design mecca?

Orientation week has been tailored to meet the needs of incoming freshman and their families, with a full agenda ranging from social mixers to in-depth information sessions on everything from campus sustainability to the infamous Art Center critique. Most critically, students are also matched with peer mentors who act as guides, companions and all-purpose resources for inside information on navigating the academic and social twists and turns inherent to any Art Center journey.

In the spirit of optimizing the orientation week experience for the incoming class of 2013, we’ve gathered the following tips and advice from an authoritative source — current students — on how to make the most of this transformative educational opportunity.


Watch: ‘Trick or Drink,’ a riveting video memoir by new Fine Art chair, Vanalyne Green

Wednesday, August 14th, 2013


With today’s announcement of Vanalyne Green‘s appointment as chair of Art Center’s Undergraduate Fine Art program, the College unveiled a pivotal panel in a larger canvas depicting the program’s evolution. Green is an internationally-recognized pioneer in the feminist art movement, whose work has been shown at the Whitney Biennial, the Guggenheim Museum and the Museum of Modern Art, where the above video is currently housed as part of the museum’s video collection.

“Trick or Drink,” which debuted in 1984, a decade after Green graduated from CalArts’ Feminist Art Program (spearheaded by Judy Chicago and Miriam Schapiro), offers an intimate and provocative look at the different forms addiction takes on as it’s passed among generations of family members. Green adapted the video from a live performance she’d developed from autobiographical material incorporating her experiences growing up in an alcoholic household and her own battles with bulimia. “Truth or Drink” is the rare video work to be as heralded for its artistic achievement as it is for its therapeutic value to patients in hospitals and treatment centers.

This particular work illuminates more than a lifelong social justice bent to Green’s creative sensibility. It also offers a glimpse at how the Fine Art Department’s new Artmatters concentration — an interdisciplinary curriculum launching this fall emphasizing collectivism and collaborative projects in the public sphere — might manifest itself in the real world.

Green, a founding member of the pro-choice, pro-sex agitprop group, No More Nice Girls, expressed her kinship to Art Center’s trans-disciplinary approach to social impact creativity as follows: “This is an especially optimistic moment for education programs such as Art Center because of the unusual flexibility it offers to students to cross disciplines,” Green stated in her application for the position. “My goal is to support young artists to recognize their inherent interests and to strengthen their commitment to work through a program of experimentation and exposure to an international art world.”

Regarding the role she will play at Art Center, Green stated, “For some, making art and administrative leadership within an educational institution are inimical. To the contrary, I find pedagogy and program development to be intrinsic to the project of being an artist: they involve narrative, composition, architecture and art as a form of social energy. This idea of a porous boundary between practices originates in the unorthodox programs I was privileged to experience.”


Calling all video sleuths: Archivist issues APB for lost footage of Keith Haring

Wednesday, July 3rd, 2013
Keith Haring painted this mural at Art Center shortly before his death

Keith Haring painted this mural at Art Center shortly before his death


The Archives needs your help locating a lost video treasure.

In 1989 artist Keith Haring was invited to paint a mural at Art Center to serve as a “permanent memorial to members of the art community who have died of AIDS and as a symbol of hope and compassion.” Painted over the course of two days, the mural covers a large wall near the Hillside campus Library and offers a daily source of inspiration to the College’s growing community of students focused on social impact art and design. Haring’s painting also stands as tribute to Haring himself, who passed due to AIDS-related complications in February 1990, two months after the Art Center public work was completed.

It was a significant moment in the College’s history; and steps were taken to capture the process on video. However, after searching high and low, we’ve been unable to locate a single frame of the footage captured while Haring worked on the painting.  Can you help us locate it?  We worry that video from that event is deteriorating somewhere. And without Indiana Jones around to dig it up this Holy Grail of archival material, we’re turning to you for help.

The Archives collects, preserves, and makes accessible materials related to the history of Art Center.  We accept items on a regular basis, including photographs, documents, course materials, examples of student work, and film and video.

If you would like to donate materials to Art Center, contact College Archivist Robert Dirig at: or 626.396.2208. As Keith Haring might have encouraged anyone with an inkling about where this footage might be hidden: Silence = Death (and/or a serious void in Art Center’s archives).

Longtime library leader enters retirement with a loving send-off — and a stack of 19th century novels

Monday, July 1st, 2013

Betsy Galloway embraces a well-wisher during her retirement party in the Art Center Library. Photo by Chuck Spangler.

Friends and colleagues old and new gathered together for an Alice in Wonderland-inspired tea party to celebrate Betsy Galloway’s 35 years of devoted service and commitment to Art Center and its students. Betsy’s retirement from her position as Vice President, Library, was announced in mid-May, and her farewell party took place in the Library June 11.

“Through Betsy’s leadership and management of the Library and her collaboration with her remarkable staff, she has ensured that the Library is a professional and social community resource that enhances the rich and full educational content that the College offers,” said Provost Fred Fehlau. “She has made significant contributions throughout her tenure in her management of the Library and its other resources, including our institutional Archives, which have served thousands of students and researchers.”

Outreach activities spearheaded by Betsy have included information events and guest speakers that benefit the entire college community. She also played a key role in Art Center’s co-hosting the Art Libraries Society of North America’s international conference in Pasadena in April. During her long tenure, she oversaw the introduction of the Library’s mobile application, international student research tutorials, use of social media, video tutorials for remote learning, and library orientation programs. She credits her colleagues with innovations such as a unique and growing collection of zines, which are typically self-published and usually impossible to find in bookstores and libraries.


Art Center Trustee Charles Floyd Johnson Honored for Creative Vision by Liberty Hill Foundation

Friday, May 3rd, 2013

Producer, filmmaker and Art Center Trustee Charles Floyd Johnson, who has produced television shows such as NCIS; JAG and Magnum, P.I., was honored with Liberty Hill’s 2013 Creative Vision Award at the Upton Sinclair Dinner and Awards Celebration on April 23, 2013 at the Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills.

Charles F. Johnson with Liberty Hill Executive Director Shane Goldsmith and board member Professor Ange-Marie Hancock, a Liberty Hill Board member.

Trustee Charles Floyd Johnson with Liberty Hill Executive Director Shane Goldsmith (left) and Professor Ange-Marie Hancock, a Liberty Hill Board member.

Throughout his career, Johnson has strived to create equal and balanced opportunities for minorities in the entertainment industry. While studying law at Howard University in the late 1960s, he was active in marches and protests during the Civil Rights Movement. In 1971, he attended the Professional Theater Workshop in Hollywood, then found work in the mail room at Universal Studios before being promoted to the Business Affairs Department.

While growing up he was fascinated by stories his father told him about the Tuskegee Airmen. Johnson worked for more than 20 years to bring the story of African-American fighter pilots to the big screen. Alongside executive producer George Lucas, he produced the 2012 movie Red Tails, which won the NAACP Image Award for Best Picture.

“These young men were not encouraged to fly for their country,” said Johnson. “But they triumphed over adversity. These were men who fought racism…they did it successfully and they were heroes, not victims.”

Liberty Hill is dedicated to advancing social change through grants, campaigns and leadership training by investing in community organizers who help bring equality and opportunity to Los Angeles.