Friends Will Remember Carlos Almaraz via Songs and Stories

Noted Chicano artist Carlos Almaraz, who died of AIDS in 1989, will be remembered during a special tribute on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. at the L.A. County Museum of Art.

The free program, held in conjunction with the museum’s exhibition, “A Tribute to Carlos Almaraz: Selections From the Permanent Collection,” will feature remembrances of the artist by Cheech Marin, Luis Valdez, Cesar Chavez and Rosana De Soto, a performance of a special corrido (folk song) written for Almaraz by noted folk singer Eduardo (Lalo) Guerrero, music performances by Mariachi Los Nobles and Americana Indigena, and a discussion of the artist’s contributions to the art world with Howard N. Fox, the museum’s curator of contemporary art, and critics Max Benavidez, Peter Clothier and Joan Hugo.

In addition, Almaraz’s widow, Elsa Flores, will present the first scholarship from the Carlos Almaraz Memorial Foundation, dedicated to promoting the talents of Latino art students. Seating is limited and reservations are required: (213) 857-6548.

BRODY GRANTS: Fourteen local individual artists and 11 arts organizations will receive $105,000 in 1992 grants and fellowships from the Brody Arts Fund, a multicultural grants program that funds small- to mid-size arts organizations of all disciplines and rotates individual artist fellowships among several disciplines, with this year’s awards going to visual artists.


Individual recipients, who each receive $5,000, are painters Lisa Adams and Manuel Ocampo; installation artist Nobuho Nagasawa; sculptor Liz Young; photographers Laura Aguilar, Christina Fernandez and Betty Lee; film and video artists Lynel Gardner and William E. Jones; mixed-media artist Lyle Ashton Harris; new genre artists Rudy Mercado and Joseph Santarromana; interdisciplinary artist Deborah Oliver, and performance artist Skip Arnold.

Organization grantees include South Central L.A. Performing Arts School and L.A. Choreographers & Dancers/Kids Tap--L.A. ($5,000 each); Museum of Neon Art ($4,500); World Kulintang Institute ($3,500); Mural Conservancy of Los Angeles, Carson Community Symphony Assn. and United Cambodian Community Cultural Arts Center ($3,000 each), and the Peruvian ensemble INCA, Foundation for the Support of Modern City Ballet, Jazz Heritage Foundation and the Hittite Empire ($2,000 each).

AFTERMATH: Louis Stern Galleries in Beverly Hills will devote its August and September exhibition to photographic images of the aftermath of the Rodney King beating trial verdicts. The gallery is seeking entries for “Civil Disturbance: Los Angeles 1992,” billed as the gallery’s first annual photography exhibition, from photojournalists, fine art photographers, fashion and advertising photographers, and amateurs. The submission deadline is June 30. Information: (310) 276-0147.

EVENTS: Los Angeles Art Galleries will celebrate its first annual “Summerfest,” a two-day series of openings, wine tastings, jazz and performance art programs and other special events held in the organization’s 27 members galleries, on July 1 and 2 from 6 to 9 p.m. Participants include Wilshire Center galleries such as Jan Baum, Space, Couturier, Paul Kopeikin, Tobey C. Moss, Steve Turner and Sue Spaid; La Cienega-area galleries including Kiyo Higashi, Earl McGrath, Manny Silverman and Jack Glenn; and Westside galleries including Louis Stern and Latin American Masters. Information: (213) 933-5557.

Artists Kim Abeles, Vija Celmins, Judy Fiskin and Mike Kelley are hosting a gala fund-raiser for the publisher A.R.T. Press at the Ruth Bloom Gallery in Santa Monica on Saturday from 7 to 11 p.m. The event includes a silent art auction and drawing, book signing, music and refreshments. Tickets are $50; $75 for couples. Information: (213) 936-3039.

Kelley will also be showcased in “Beat of the Traps,” a new work of “choreography, composition and oration” by Kelley, Anita Pace and Stephen Prina, at 8 p.m. June 29 and 30 at the University of Judaism’s Gindi Auditorium. Tickets are $15.95. Information: (213) 936-3039.

An open studios tour, outdoor jazz concert and other free events will be part of the Angels Gate Cultural Center’s Summer Festival 1992, next Sunday from 11 a.m.-5 p.m. The event is free, but will be followed by a $10-per-person garden reception and wine tasting to benefit the center. Information: (310) 519-0936.

MEMORIAL: A memorial service for Los Angeles artist Matsumi Kanemitsu, who died in May at the age of 69, will be held at 1 p.m. next Sunday at the Japan America Theatre, 244 S. San Pedro St. Kanemitsu, who had a large retrospective at Barnsdall Art Park in 1978, is represented in permanent collections including the L.A. County Museum of Art, New York’s Museum of Modern Art, Washington’s National Gallery of Art and Moscow’s Pushkin Museum. Information: (310) 278-6311 or (213) 626-6143.

GALLERIES NEWS: Ninety-five works by 27 prominent Latino artists including Frank Romero, Guillermo Bert, David Botello, Margaret Garcia and Eloy Torrez are on view at the downtown Palmetto Gallery through Sept. 3 in “Barcelona Bound,” an exhibition to benefit the Los Angeles Latino Mural Collaborative. Proceeds from the show will be split 50-50 between the artists and the collaborative, which is sending muralists Roberto Delgado and Wayne Healy to Spain next month to create their Quincentennial project “The Dissemination of U.S. Culture in Spain through Chicano Muralists.”

MURALS: SPARC’s 1992 “Great Walls Unlimited” mural program is well underway, with artist George Yepes having completed his downtown mural, “Book of Dreams,” at the L.A. County Department of Children’s Services at 564 S. Mateo St. The colorful, 25x140-foot mural depicts fairy tales and storybook fantasies, and is one of the largest works ever produced through the SPARC program.

In addition, Jill Ansell has begun her mural depicting women of different ethnic backgrounds and the words “The Right to Choose” at the headquarters of Planned Parenthood, at 1920 Marengo St.; and the graffiti art team Earth Crew has started “Undiscovered America,” SPARC’s first spray can mural, on the downtown Tokiwa Foods building at 843 East 4th Street. The latter mural focuses on the achievements of American Indians from Alaska to Argentina.

DEADLINE: July 2 is the postmark deadline for the annual ArtBulletin program sponsored by LACE and Patrick Media. Three artists will be chosen to have their original images re-created on 14-by-48-foot billboards displayed in the Los Angeles area for four months. Information: (213) 624-5650.

AWARDS: Los Angeles’ Poli Marichal, San Francisco’s Valerie Soe and La Jolla’s James A. Luna are among 20 artists chosen to receive $35,000 each from the Rockefeller Foundation’s Intercultural Film/Video program. This year’s recipients include six Latin American artists from Mexico, Brazil and Uruguay, the program’s first batch of international recipients.

Eight California art museums are among the 443 nationwide institutions receiving a total of $21.9 million in general operating support from the Federal Institute of Museum Services. Receiving $75,000 each are the Museum of Contemporary Art, Laguna Art Museum, Asian Art Museum in San Francisco, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Museum of Photographic Arts in San Diego, Monterey Peninsula Museum of Art, Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento and the Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego. Other Southern California recipients include the Natural History Museum of L.A. County, San Diego Museum of Man, Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History and the Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden.