Editor. Peninsula 360 Press [P360].
World Art Day, which is officially celebrated on April 15, Leonardo da Vinci's birthday, will be celebrated this year in Los Angeles by the International Art Association of the USA, in keeping with the COVID-19 pandemic measures, with a new mural at 415 Main Street in downtown Los Angeles; a six-panel 9′ by 9′ installation at the Pershing Square Art Squared outdoor gallery; a mural at the plaza at 5th and Olive; and a YouTube video posted on the evening of April 14 (see iaa-usa.org).
The City of Los Angeles will also issue a proclamation through the office of Councilmember Kevin de León, declaring World Art Day in Los Angeles. The day is also marked on the official UNESCO calendar.
World Art Day is an international celebration of art created by the International Association of Art, a partner of UNESCO, to promote recognition of the profound importance of art and artists in inspiring and enriching the lives of all human beings. The first World Art Day was celebrated in 2012. The date of April 15 was chosen in honor of Leonardo da Vinci, recognized as a champion of freedom of expression, tolerance and fraternity. Da Vinci is also celebrated for works that elegantly illustrate the influence of art on a wide range of human activities.
The International Art Association was born in Beirut in 1948, at the Third General Conference of UNESCO, when the director was commissioned to find out "what obstacles of a social, economic or political nature stand in the way of artists in the practice of their art". The IAA became an independent organization in 1954 and declared itself a partner of UNESCO. Its members are spread across five continents divided into four regions (Latin America, Europe-North America, Africa, Asia-Pacific and Arab States). The Los Angeles chapter is the first IAA chapter in the United States. Artists such as Miró, Braque, Delaunay, Moore and Calder, among many others, have contributed to the group's growth. At its core, the IAA is concerned with freedom of expression, artists' rights and the role of artists in society.
The mural at 415 Main Street, commissioned by IAA/USA on a 79-foot-long street-level wall given by owner Tom Gilmore, was created by celebrated British mural artist CBloxx. It is titled "Elemental" and includes an exquisite profile portrait of a person overlooking a fecund Southern California desert landscape into which a rusted, lifeless Cadillac has been slipped, slowly decaying in the sun. CBloxx mixes gritty realism with incandescent surrealism. CBloxx, who is one half of the celebrated mural team Nomad Clan, is one of the UK's most talented muralists. CBloxx has created murals in Marseille (Poland), Flint (Michigan) and across the UK.
The Pershing Square installation includes a 30" x 15" mural on the plaza at 5th and Olive by Carol Cirillo Stanley, a photographer whose work is both realistic and abstract, with subjects ranging from cityscapes to floral characters. The mural, titled "Still life," is a series of dramatic black and white photographic images of flowers. Carol says, "Finding the intrinsic design and unique personality of each portrait was compelling. In these pandemic times, holding on to what is normal in its existence, inherent in its beauty and imaginative in its complexity provided both a creative approach and an exciting result."
The artists whose works are featured in the six 9′ by 9′ panels at Pershing Art Square Art Squared gallery are:
- Ezra Bejar: scientist and artist from Mexico City. His art is guided by his experience of temporary vision loss and 30 years of scientific discovery. Ezra seeks an alternative reality by distilling color and form with traditional and modern methods. His paintings are provocative, energetic and innovative. Rich in color, geometries, textures and aesthetics. His work has been exhibited and collected in the United States, Europe, Asia and Mexico. Since 2010, he has participated in over thirty solo and group exhibitions in the United States and internationally. artpal.com/ezrabejar
- Edem Elesh, artist and musician: His work encompasses mixed media painting, sculpture, installation, drawing and musical composition. His music - considered an integral part of his artistic expression, giving sound to vision if you will - has appeared in television and film. His work has taken him, as an unofficial U.S. ambassador for the arts, to Southeast Asia and Europe. edem-art.com
- Jonathan Jerald studied at California College of the Arts and apprenticed at the studio of protest poster artist Klaus Staeck in Heidelberg. His work has appeared in The Artist Catalog and he has recently exhibited at the Center for Digital Arts in Los Angeles, the Gloria Delson Contemporary Art Gallery and the Choo-Choo Lounge. More information at jonathanjerald.com
- Rick Robinson works with steel and mixed media, creating images that are graphically elegant, but also raw and gestural, reminiscent of petroglyphic or totemic figures, yet referencing the allure of pop art and the quirks of modern life. His ability to simplify his visual language that is at once simple and direct, as well as emotional and mysterious, could rightly be said to have been honed over the years as a creative force in the outdoor graphics business. Primitivepop.net
- Stephen Seemayer is a Los Angeles-born performance artist, filmmaker and painter. Throughout his career of over 40 years, he has mounted performances and exhibitions in galleries and museums across the United States. Using fire and other controversial imagery, Seemayer has confronted his audiences with the question of what it means to be human in a dehumanized society. His film, "Young Turks"(2013), documents the first wave of artists who moved downtown in the 1970s. His latest documentary, "Tales of the American," delves into the history of the Arts District and the iconic building that houses it, the American Hotel. stephenseemayer.com
- Damon Martin studied oil painting at UCLA. He has exhibited at the ICALA Museum in Los Angeles, the Scope Art Fair in Miami, the Armory Show in New York and the Los Angeles Art Fair. She has been a resident at the Fountainhead Residency in Miami. He has also worked with French artists JR on their installation "Inside Out" in Times Square. He is working on a new series of oils on canvas that focuses on endangered species. @damonmartinart