BERKELEY — L@TE nights at Berkeley Art Museum/Pacific Film Archive aim to bring in fresh energy with outside-the-box programs organized by guest curators. The new Friday evening series begins tonight, Nov. 6.
BAM/PFA will stay open until 9 p.m. (or later) on Fridays, with a DJ, beer and wine in the lobby from 5 to 7 p.m. Music, readings, art-making, conversations, film and video, and fashion shows will transform Gallery B, the atrium, into a performance space.
Visitors were invited to bring pillows to lounge on for the opening night show, put together by guest music programmer Sarah Cahill, a composer and pianist on the faculty of the San Francisco Conservatory. She invited Terry Riley to perform his piece “Pipe Dreams” on solo piano, starting at 9 p.m. Riley, who last performed at BAM/PFA 35 years ago, is best known as the founder of the 1960s minimalist music movement.
Friday-night visitors to BAM/PFA should expect to be surprised, says Lawrence Rinder, the museum’s director: “This may not be the contemplative environment for art you’re used to.” One impetus behind L@TE is “to bring in a different dimension of creativity particularly suited to this idiosyncratic and marvelous building,” he adds.
“The space lends itself to a vast variety of musical possibilities,” adds Cahill. “I have invited composers and musicians who are inspired by the particular acoustics and resonance of the gallery.”
Among the “pioneers, experimenters, progressive thinkers” and other musicians Cahill has scheduled to perform in 2010 are William Winant; Carl Stone; Ken Ueno, assistant professor of music; and Joan Jeanrenaud.
Ellen Fullman, a composer and performer, will play the instrument she invented, the Long String Instrument, stretching wire strings from one end of the building to the other and walking their length to play them with rosin-covered hands in her Dec. 4 performance.
Also on tap this fall is Zine Mart, a two-week exhibit (Nov. 13-22) that spotlights the East Bay’s rich D.I.Y. culture, with a display of ‘zines and other self-produced multiple publications. A creative partnership between L@TE guest programmer Franklin Melendez and the Oakland-based artist collective Rock Paper Scissors, Zine Mart will feature an instructional video, as well as specially commissioned ‘zines and multiples from Ari Marcopoulos, Taravat Talepasand, Joseph Aekle, Isaac Valdez, Kamao Patton, and Bozidar Brazda.
On Friday Nov. 20, art historian Jacquelynn Baas, designer and professor of landscape architecture Walter Hood, and BAM/PFA Director Lawrence Rinder will read excerpts from their contributions to “Learning Mind: Experience into Art.” The book examines how art is conceived, created, and experienced.
Better L@TE than never
More L@TE programs in 2010:
Freelance writer and Cal alumnus Franklin Melendez has lined up noise bands that showcase the East Bay’s independent music scene, ‘zine workshops and tutorials that feature the art collectives that comprise the area’s subculture of self-produced publications.
Anne Colvin, a Scottish artist and curator based in San Francisco, will create experiences that draw on literature, music, and film. Her first L@TE program, on Feb. 19, will include a reenactment of Jack Goldstein’s painting, “Two Fencers,” by the Cal Fencing Club; a screening of “Ostia” — an apocryphal depiction of Pier Paolo Pasolini’s death starring Derek Jarman — by U.K. filmmaker Julian Cole; the iconoclastic performer Eugene Robinson reading from his new book; and a Scritti Politti cover band.
PFA curators will program the last Friday of each month (beginning Jan. 29) with multi-screen projection accompanied by live music and spoken word.