‘Joan Quinn Captured’, an astonishing cabinet of wonders


The show, curated by Laura Whitcomb, J. Cheryl Bookout and Amanda Quinn Olivar presents a dialogue between the renowned collection of portraits of Joan Quinn, by such luminaries as Jean-Michel Basquait, Ed Moses, Ed Ruscha, Frank Gehry, Helmut Newton and Robert Mapplethorpe, and Joan Quinn’s half-century documentation of the same artists.

‘Joan Quinn Captured’ (exhibit and curated events, panels and film screenings) is the first officially curated exhibition at the reopened, newly restored elegant Brand Library and Art Center. The exhibit is on view June 28th through August 1th, 2014, with event every Thursday afternoon and evening throughout July.

Collectors like the Quinns, Stanley and Elyse Grinstein (Gemeni G.E.L.), and Edwin and Ann Janss understood the virtues of West Coast artists before they were recognized by the Art Establishment and helped build their cachet on the International scene.

But the Quinns added a playful collaboration to the scene. Their collection of approximately 300 portraits, inspired by Joan’s effusive knowledgeable presence, represent the largest collection of portraits of a private subject ever assembled.

Like the great Wunderkammer or Cabinets of Wonder (assembled by royalty before there were public museums) it’s a memory theater or portrait of the cultural periods the Quinns lived in, influenced and continue to inspire.

To wander through the three rooms-plus of portraits is to canter through the major art movements of the last half of the 20th century and beyond.

I’ve seen the show several times and each visit, different pieces leap out.

For three decades, Joan Quinn, sometimes referred to as the “Gertrude Stein of her day”, hosted national and international artists as well as seminal salons, where artists from diverse worlds and practices met to exchange ideas. Attorney Jack often advised and promoted artists, while Joan catalyzed the emerging scene.

Surrounded by the Quinns’ impressive growing collection, and most specifically the portraits, artists began offering to do portraits. Inspired by a sort of sibling-rivalry, local and international artists enjoyed seeing what they could add to an ongoing collective project. Accepting the challenge, they produced a two-way mirror revealing themselves and their sometimes muse.

And what a delightful conceit. Most amusing are the pieces by artists not known for portraiture. How fun to watch them rise to the occasion: Chuck Arnoldi is represented by two handcrafted sculptures of twigs. In one, natural twigs form her face, surrounded by an acrylic coated blue crown of thorns or hair.

Frank Geary’s surprising, exquisite Pisces is as architectural as his buildings. The light sculpture (ColorCore over steel frame and wooden base) features two entwined, scaled fish. Geary and Quinn are both Pisces.

Laddie John Dill’s ‘Portrait as Interview Magazine Rack’, made of ground glass and tempered marine wood, posits Joan as a display rack-it’s a sculpture of triangular shapes bright with corals and marine blues. His newest portrait ‘Joan’, is a glass tube filled with purple Argon gas. Light Trap (1971) is on loan from the Laddie John Dill Studio.

Larry Bell is represented by his reflective ‘Cube’, and the framed mixed-media ‘Quinn Portrait’ Peter Alexander’s exquisite ‘Pink Block’ reflects mysterious chartreuse and ruby pink tones in its glassy center.

In set-designer/painter Ian Falconer’s painted foam core portrait, a full busted Joan, as heirophantic as the sphinx, appears as a chess piece. Falconer, Hockney’s long-time protégé, references Picasso’s Marie Therese period. The forceful, humorous piece figures in a photo portrait by Maria Von Matthiessen.

Billy Al Bengston’s whimsical tropical collage, with quasi- Japanese leaves and nature motifs shows Jack peering lovingly at his daily muse, Joan. There are two pieces by Ed Moses, a large painting ‘Rankin No.1’ (Oil on shellac, 1992) and ‘Happy Birthday to Joan’ #2′(set of six) with its painted elements over silkscreened photo-portraits (silkscreen, acrylic on foamcore.)

Some of the earliest pieces include Robert Graham’s brace of masks, black and white like Pierrot (bronze, oil paint and gold leaf and pencil (1976). and Dora De Larios’ marvelous neo-pre-Columbian deity ‘Queen’, one of a pair of portraits (Jack’s is the ‘King’). A later Graham sculpture, not a portrait) features a cast bronze stately leg on a pedestal tripod. Claire Falkenstein’s infolding sculpture recalls the protean core of matter. ‘Sun’, a sinuous whirl of welded copper, is riveting.  A smaller sculpture by Jon Krawcyzk, which looks like a biomorphic bird from afar, is made of separate balanced forms.

On closer inspection, in Eric Pederson’s small portrait (which has a classical portrait feel from across the gallery) Joan’s face is deconstructed into a grid of vertical and horizontal tiles.

The courtyard is dominated by Woods Davy’s sculpture ‘El Pico’ (on loan from the Craig Krull Gallery) a cairn of balanced rocks with a Shinto feel.

A long gallery displays fashion photo portraits by neo-surrealists Steven Arnold and Zareh, Helmut Newton, Robert Mapplethorpe, June Newton, George Hurrell, Paul Jasmin, Eugene Pinkowski’s, and Mathew Ralston as well as renowned fashion illustrators Antonio Lopez.

In a Mapplethorpe portrait she’s swathed in a black satin cloak bedecked with brooches from her vast jewelry collection. She could be a Burgher’s wife from the middle ages, sporting her livery chain.  The portrait teeters on surrealism. One hand trails beads, her other hand, in a masculine leather glove, grips her knees. Her head’s thrown back in a glamor smile, a look of mischief in her eyes.

Hurrell’s portrait happened on the spur of the moment, Quinn was at his studio and his subject was late. Who needs a stylist or make-up person when considering Joan Quinn, who styles herself as expressively as Anais Nin did in her day. Hurrell captured his Joan Quinn in one take.  Joan asked him for a second shot. Hurrell assured her the first take was magic. He obliged her, but when she saw the contacts, indeed, the first take was perfection. He sent her the portrait as a gift, with a note stating. “I told you I got it. Love George.”

Matthew Rolston poses Joan in front of a collection of other portraits. Joan stares firmly at the camera, head on jeweled hand. It’s a graceful realist capture of the woman behind the myth; Intelligent, feminine and full of life.

Patrick De Marchelier’s proof sheet reveals many shots of Joan, wearing a white blindfold and Basquait’s gift of a Issey Miyake shirt.

In Eugene Pinkowski’s 1980’s photo, Joan wears Zandra Rhodes; hair pulled back and carrying a prop Queen’s sceptre made by artist Eugene Jardin, she reassembles a girl at her first communion.

Three black and white surrealist portraits by Steven Arnold: ‘Crown Piece’ (1989) poses Joan within a Byzantinesque painted paper set, Joan wears an interstellar crown surrounded by painted rays. Another superimposes three images of Joan.  A third, features Arnold’s lifelong muse painter-performer Pandora, whose painted proud profile, like that of Edith Sitwell, dominates any image she is in.
In ‘Princess’, a vivid portrait by Brit Minimalism/Maximalism artist Duggie Fields, known for the precision of his outlines, Joan appears with a golden crown, in the background we spy a small tribute to Mondrian and perhaps an ersatz Dali clock.

The figurative apricot-toned Richard Bernstein, which dominates one wall, captures the colorful living palette that is Joan Quinn. Don Bachardy’s line drawing displays a thoughtful Joan.

In Antonio Lopez’s 1984 lyrical Ink and graphite portrait, Joan strikes one of her favorite poses, head on hand. Her green-toned locks stream behind her. Zareh’s 2005 piece is a surreal stack of eyes and hair.

Jean-Michel Basquiat’s pencil on paper portrait interposes Joan’s hands, in their signature armor of jewelry, and his primitivist monkeys.

Helmut Newton’s portrait shows Joan’s left hand bedecked like a warrior queen in antique watches, clutching a tree. It’s a moment of dramatic tension frozen in the camera’s eye. Another Helmet Newton (1984), poses Joan on her famous central staircase (home to many other fashion shots) Joan stands, back to us, behind her are displayed a large Ed Moses painting, Tony Berlant’s metal house, Antony Donaldson’s nude, and sections of pieces by George Herms and James Hayward.)

In a corner of the gallery, near the De Larios piece, and Tadanori Yokoo’s 1990 mixed media construction, is Tony Berlant’s impressive 1980’s ‘Portrait of Joan and Jack Quinn’, a functional double door (with found metal and lithographed tin) portraying Jack as a rooted tree and Joan as a whirlwind. (The unseen front of the door show the Quinn’s house), “This piece feels like a very familiar page out of our mutual history, the front depicts their house and the pathway I’ve walked up many times for fun and/or advise…and the other side is Joan swirling in her usual exuberant manner and Jack, to the left, standing as solid, complex and deeply rooted as a tree,” explained Tony Berlant. “While for most of us, our portraits are our only portrait effort, this foray into foreign territory… felt completely comfortable, more about sharing the “artists life” together than making a typical artwork.”

In set-designer/painter Ian Falconer’s painted foam core portrait, a full-busted Joan, as heirophantic as the Sphinx, appears as a chess piece. Falconer, Hockney’s long-time protégé, references Picasso’s Marie Therese period. The forceful, humorous piece figures in a photo portrait by Maria Von Matthiessen. The portrait was a birthday gift. “The bust was just a piece of silliness that I made for Joan’s birthday. Done from memory, and not bad for that.”

Designer Zandra Rhodes lively watercolor summons the colorful presence of Joan and Zandra, both walking works of art and members of a small cult of two. (In an earlier period Rosa Covarrubias and Frida Kahlo formed a wearable-art cult of two, expressing their pride in Mexico’s indigenous past and inspiring other artists.)

Silvina Der-Meguerditchian’s moving silkscreen on felt replicates Joan Quinn’s passport.

Interspersed throughout the gallery are additional loaned pieces by the artists featured in the portrait collection. For example: Ed Ruscha’s “Standard Station” (which is featured in a fascinating section of Gary Conklin’s ravishing ‘L.A. Suggested by the Art of Ed Ruscha’ shown on June 28 in the Emerging Landscape: Los Angeles film program. There are additional pieces by Laddie John Dill, Chuck Arnoldi, Billy Al Bengston, Joe Goode, Larry Bell, Peter Alexander, Tony Berlant, George Herms, Claire Falkenstein, Robert Graham, Shepherd Fairey, Ned Evans, Robert Mapplethorpe, Steven Arnold, Don Bachardy and David Hockney.’

David Hockney, a frequent Quinn houseguest, is represented with ‘Fax Series’(1989), a quintet of small ink on paper drawings, faxed to Joan and Jack. Like his stage sets, these little pieces, as fascinating as reliqueries, burst with life.

In one, besides a table set for tea, two dachshunds pose on a ottoman. Another is a deconstructed mail center. Three of them feature drawings of waves. In one, a small chair in the room repeats in the painting “Dream Of Waves”. Two show paintings within paintings: a large painting of waves on a easel contains a smaller painting of waves on a smaller easel.

A sculptured media center displays a loop of Quinn’s endless archive of art event photos, and some of her decades of TV interviews.

On display are works by Ferus Gallery artists: Ed Moses, Ed Ruscha, Billy Al Bengston, and Larry Bell, Pop Art artists Joe Goode (and the Warhol polaroid of Joan Quinn copied as a painting by Warhol’s assistant Rupert Smith after Andy died); Conceptual artist Allen Ruppersberg; Light and Space Movement artists Larry Bell, Peter Alexander and Laddie John Dill: Neo Expressionism’s Jean-Michel Basquait.

Dada and neo-Dada is represented by George Herms, artist-potter extraordinaire Beatrice Wood (co-founder of the early Dada journal Blind Man) and the deconstructions of Roberto Lizano, Mattia Biaggi and Susi Cantarino.

Figurative painting and drawing masters include Don Bachardy, Kevin Whitney, Mel Ramos, and Chaz Guest (recently commissioned by the White House) and the legendary creator of Interview’s 1980’s covers, Richard Bernstein. Street artists Shepard Fairey and Krebs are represented, as well as pieces by Abstraction and Craft artist Claire Falkenstein, Dora Delarios and sculptures and drawings by Robert Graham.

Joan is the daughter of legendary race promoter J.C. Agajanian. An inductee in both the
AMA and Sports Car Hall Of Fame, gentleman showman Agajanian ran Ascot Park (famous for its Friday night Motorcycle races) and sponsored INDY car racing of every kind.

Ironically it was J.C’s Ascot Park (AKA Ascot Speedway) that figured in the Quinns’ involvement in the nascent LA Art scene in the 1950’s.

Billy Al Bengston, the charismatic leader of the evolving scene, was deeply enmeshed in motorcycle culture. He regularly raced at the Ascot track. Bengston’s ‘Finish Fetish’ work, using custom car automotive spray lacquer, was breakout at the time.

Joan, Bengston and Dora DeLorios all worked at Desmond’s department store in the late fifties.

“My parents would take Billy Al, Ed Moses and Kenny Price to my grandfather’s track, Ascot Raceway, where Billy raced his motorcycle and hung out with my grandparents in the press box.” said Amanda Quinn Olivar

Billy Al introduced Jack and Joan to the Ferus gallery crowd: Walter Hopps, Ed Keinholz, Bob Alexander, Ed Moses, George Herms. Their relationships in the small world of Southern California artists lead to friendships with Frank Gehry, Robert Irwin, Peter Alexander and later Laddie John Dill, Ed Ruscha, Joe Goode, Mel Ramos and collage artist Tony Berlant.

“Joan and Jack Quinn have been among the few collectors whom the artists I know regard as family, when I first met them in the early 60’s, they were central to our very, very small support base. Jack provided life and legal guidance with great humor, keeping us out of trouble, and Joan provided fun and loving attention. In fact, we shared our lives together, which included their wonderful children Amanda and Jennifer” Berlant explained.

These relationships formed the fabric of the emerging scene, and are documented in the Quinns’ collection, and in the many decades of Joan’s photos. As the Society Editor of Los Angeles Herald Examine and the West Coast Editor of Warhol’s Interview Magazine, Joan was everywhere, taking pictures of simply everyone. The portable Salon that was Joan and Jack’s home and life, provided Joan with an intimate studio for candid photos. (There’s an fun snap of Divine doing Jennifer and Amanda Quinn’s makeup in 1977.)

When Warhol attended his first sold out show at Ferus, he ordained Joan as the West Coast Interview editor for his Interview magazine  (Joan credits Warhol with advising her to collect portraits and to create a TV show.)

Joan and Jack also hung out in New York, London, Berlin and Tokyo, evolving creative friendships with London’s Zandra Rhodes and proto-Punks Luciana Martinez de la Rosa and Andrew Logan. In Berlin, they befriended artist Salome and Wilhelm Moser (who created the 80’s cult magazine “The Manipulator”).  Friends with radical designers Yohji Yamamoto and Issey Miyake, Joan co-curated Miyake’s retrospective at the De Young Museum in 1982, at his request.

People on the scene were used to Joan’s active shutterbugging, but as George Herms explained in the opening night panel, “Joan was photographing everyone”. It never occurred to him that she was also the subject/muse of decades of two-way portraiture.
Although the Quinns regularly lend pieces to Museums here and abroad for shows of contemporary artists, this is the third, and, for Los Angelenos, most accessible show of portions of Joan Agajanian Quinn and John J. Quinn’s extraordinary collection, in the last few years.

“Joan-Joan-Joan: One Subject, Many Artists”, a collection of over 190 portraits of Joan Quinn was on exhibit at John Wayne Airport through January 2014, ironically on view for ticket passengers, but inaccessible for local art-lovers.  “Mysterious Objects: Portraits of Joan Quinn,” was presented at the Santa Ana College Main Gallery September 12 – November 1, 2011.

Quinn, the longest sitting member appointed to the California Arts Council, served two terms each on the Beverly Hills Arts Commission, the Beverly Hills Architectural Commission and the California Film Commission.  Quinn’s journalism CV includes: Arts & Architecture Magazine: Advisory Board (1981-1983)/Stuff Magazine: Senior Editor (1979-1987)/Vogue-Paris: West Coast Writer, Stylist (1983-1987)/ Manipulator Magazine-Germany: Los Angeles Editor (1985-1991)/ In Style Magazine: West Coast Trend Column (1987-1988)/ Conde Naste Traveller: Founding West Coast Correspondent (1987-1990)/Detour Magazine: Founding West Coast Editor (1988-1989)- Senior Editor (1990-1994).

Her ongoing cable TV show “Joan Quinn Profiles” is a growing archive of interviews with art and entertainment creatives. Besides art figures guests have included Javier Bardem, Frank Gehry, Vera Wang, Georgio Moroder, Manola Blahnik, Paul Morrissey, Paloma Picasso, Zandra Rhodes, Oscar De La Renta, Dennis Hopper, John Waters, Holly Woodlawn, Bob Mackie, Joan Chen, John Epperson, Guy Pearce, Johnson Hartig and countless others.

Gallery director Annette Vartanian described Quinn as “a muse for many artists in various artistic movements.” Their portraits are a dedication to her impact and influence…She was a critical pacemaker of her time. Not just in L.A., but in New York, Tokyo and London,” Vartanian said. “For someone to be that involved in that many movements and cities, it’s hard to come by.”

Non-portrait exhibit pieces were lent by the artists, foundations, galleries and the Quinn family.

Laura Whitcomb served as Curator and director of film series/artist panel programming, with curatorial advisors and co-producers Amanda Quinn Olivar and J. Cheryl Bookout.

I spoke with Amanda Quinn Olivar who added, “In 1978, Jack helped get up and coming Frank Gehry his first major LA commission, the Loyola Law School new campus. Gehry transformed the Law School from one building to a full campus. The project helped to launched Gehry onto the public stage.”

“Everything my parents have done has been as a team. Both were heavily involved and the artists became our extended family. We were surrounded by creatives since the get go. Billy Al held us in his hands when we were born. Bob Graham was our godfather. Ed Moses was Uncle Ed. Joan was a protective Armenian mother, my father learned from her. There was never a time when they weren’t there. As kids, they took us everywhere , we were at all the parties, but we were home and asleep by 7 PM.”

‘Joan Quinn Captured’ will celebrate the artists and friendships of Joan and Jack Quinn in an extended film and public discussion series taking place at The Brand Art Center Recital Hall from June 28-July 31 2014.

These films include “Beatrice Wood Mama of Dada”, “Basquait Radiant Child”, “Chris and Don A Love Story” together with “Memories of Berlin: The Twilight of Weimer Culture” and Steven Arnold film’s “Messages Messages” and “Liberation of Mannique Mechanique”.

Wilhelm Moser will be featured with his work for the renowned 1980′s magazine “The Manipulator”, Kevin Whitney will showcase the premiere of his film “The Great Wen”, starring Syd Barrett, which has been under his bed for forty years. The film recently debuted at London’s International Center of Photography to its largest crowd on record. Alice Springs aka June Newton will show her film “Helmut by June”, Zandra Rhodes will present her costumes for the opera while David Hockney’s works for the opera will be discussed. Duggie Fields will present his artist films while Steven Arnold’s estate will present the documentary “Heavenly Bodies” and the films “Messages Messages” and “Diary of a Tibetan Seamstress”.

On opening night, critic/author/pundit Peter Frank and co-curator J. Cheryl Bookout, President of the Southern California Women’s Caucus for Art, co-chaired a panel of artists Laddie John Dill, Tony Berlant and George Herms. Laddie praised Jack Quinn, telling a story about Quinn’s intercession with Alcoa to recover funds for Dill when his outdoor sculpture was damaged at Century City. As a closing highlight, Herms performed a musical panegyric to the Quinns on an upright piano. Herms’ growled performance added just the right touch of cabaret to the art-world love fest.
June 28  Emerging Landscape: Los Angeles
3:00pm: Modern Art in Los Angeles: ‘Cool School’ Oral History Ed Moses
Presented by the Getty’s Pacific Standard Time: A compelling interview with Ferus Gallery artist Ed Moses. Preview

4:00pm: Ed Ruscha-“L.A. Suggested by the Art of Ed Ruscha “
(Produced, directed, photographed and edited by Gary Conklin),
a filmic medication on Ed Ruscha who infuses his work with the momentum of the literary word and the landscape of consumption.

5:00pm Public Discussion: Los Angeles  (1962-1984) Los Angeles and the Contemporary Art Dawn (Moderators Peter Frand and Cheryl Bookout)
George Herms, a godfather of Assemblage, the Light and Space artist Laddie John Dill and Tony Berlant, whose mastery of collage, which float between abstraction and folklore will speak of the seminal journey of the Los Angeles contemporary art world.

 July 3 Eternal Return
 5:00pm: “Beatrice Wood: Mama of Dada”
The Brand Art Center was one of the first venues to showcase the art of ceramics in the 1950′s. This documentary features Beatrice Wood, the long- time partner of Marcel Duchamp and co-founder of the early Dada journal Blind Man who found the art of ceramic to be her most virtuosic speaking of her compelling life.

July 3rd Brand Recital Hall Schedule
5:00 Beatrice Wood Mama of Dada
Director Tom Neff

6:00 Duggie Fields Videos and Skyped Interview

6:30 pm: Duggie Fields’ Jangled

Artist Video Duggie Fields.
 7:00: Guest Artist Duggie Fields Public Conversation
Duggie Fields, once the longtime roommate of Pink Floyd’s Syd Barrett, will speak of his early years as an artist in London expressing himself through a post pop vernacular where classical themes merged with the hyper realized.

8:00pm The Great Wen
The US premiere of the “Great Wen” starring Pink Floyd’s Syd Barrett, a silent biopic of the luminous visionaries of the 1968 era subsumed in the induced experiment of what fueled this psychedelic age. Special guest Jeffrey Davies will perform.

Special Musical Guests Jeffrey Davies formerly of the Brian Jonestown Massacre and
‘Fantasies in Crystal’, father and daughter John and Erin Schneider play on retuned 19th century pump organ and a Harry Partch Adapted Viola. The music accompanies a slide show of her grandfather Robert R. Forrester’s microscopic images of polarized chemicals, made in Laurel Canyon from the 1960s-1990s.

July 10 Utopia, Dystopia and Desire Unbound
5:00pm: Public Discussion on Luciana Martinez de la Rosa
This fascinating artist and central London figure from the early 1970’s to the 1980’s will be discussed along with rare photographs of her years in Los Angeles and New York. Her film cameos in director Derek Jarman’s “Sebastiane” (1976) and “Jubilee” (1978), which tells a story of Queen Elizabeth I traveling to a dystopian London of the future, will also be presented. De la Rosa proclaimed her portraits “get to the soul of a person” and “usually I succeed.”

6:00pm Documentary Steven Arnold Private Screening “Heavenly Bodies”
Directed by Stephanie Farago (2014)
7:00pm Panel Discussion: Steven Arnold and Late Surrealism
Salvador Dali Protégé Steven Arnold revolutionized the Haight Asbury counterculture with his late night screenings, with intensely stylized films that starred the infamous Cockettes. Performers friends and colleagues will discuss Arnold’s philosophy and artistic oeuvre, which revived the photographic tableaux vivant in the later part of the 20th Century. Guests in the panel discussion include the evocative star of many Arnold films Pandora along with members of the Cockettes, the Steven Arnold Estate and close friends.

8:00pm Short Films of Steven Arnold
“The Liberation of Mannique Mechanique”
“Messages Messages”
“Various Incarnations of a Tibetan Seamstress”

July 17 Warhol/Basquiat/Quinn 
5:00 pm: Jean-Michel Basquiat: The Radiant Child
Directed by Tamra Davis (2010) Jean-Michel Basquiat first became known for his philosophic slogans made in the insurrection of graffiti. Later he revolutionized the art world with his paintings and drawings, which merged the influences of his contemporary art heroes with the traditions of animism and the ethnographic mythology of his Haitian and Puerto Rican roots as a new paradigm of collective unconsciousness.
6:30pm: Panel Discussion: ‘Warhol and Basquiat The Magazines of the 80’s’ will discuss Joan Quinn’s work for Interview, The Manipulator and Stuff Magazine
7:00pm: Presented by Factory star Holly Woodlawn
Andy Warhol: A Documentary
Directed by Ric Burns about pop artist Andy Warhol. Burns’ asserts in this documentary Warhol was the greatest artist of the second half of the 20th Century.  The film explores Warhol’s life from the 1940′s through the 1980′s.  Stephen Holden of the New York Times wrote “the movie is an entirely absorbing, occasionally revelatory portrait of a brilliant talent driven to greatness by an inner chorus of demons and angels.”
July 24
5:30 Celebrating the 80th birthday of the artist Don Bachardy. The exhibition will present Mr. Bachardy discussing his life, work and presenting slides of his renowned portraits of Joan Quinn and the artists in the exhibition including Peter Alexander, Tony Berlant, Ed Moses, Ed Ruscha, Billy Al Bengston, Larry Bell, David Hockney and Robert Graham
6:00 pm Chris and Don A Love Story
“Chris and Don” is the love story between British writer, Christopher Isherwood (whose book ‘The Berlin Stories’ inspired the musical and film Cabaret) and Don Bachardy (American portrait artist.) Directed by Tina Mascara and Guido Santi. Running Time 90 minutes
7:30pm: Memories of Berlin: The Twilight of Weimar Culture
Directed by Gary Conklin (1976) The Golden Age of Berlin in the 1920′s and early ’30′s, with Christopher Isherwood, Louise Brooks, Lotte Eisner, Elisabeth Bergner, Francis Lederer, Carl Zuckmayer, Gregor Piatagorsky, Claudio Arrau, Rudolph Kolisch, Mischa Spoliansky, Herbert Bayer, Mrs. Walter Gropius, and Arthur Koestler. This film will be presented in its first segment.
8:00pm: Helmut by June
June Newton’s 2007 documentary “Helmut by June” Before leaving Berlin, Jewish born Helmut Newton apprenticed under (Elsie Neulander Simon) from 1936 until the family was forced to leave Nazi Germany where he would go on to become one of the most prolific photographers of his era. The film intimately presents Helmut Newton on the sets of his renowned photo shoots where his aesthetic ideals and excavation of cultural taboos was achieved.

July 31 Artists and the Stage Special guest Zandra Rhodes
6pm: Panel Discussion Artists Designing For The Theater
Curator Laura Whitcomb’s slideshow presentation, on the history of renowned artists Edward Munch, Henri Matisse, Giorgio de Chirico, Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dali, Joan Miro, Isamu Naguchi, Alexander Calder, Robert Rauschenberg, Jasper Johns, Andy Warhol, Robert Morris and David Hockney collaborating with theater, ballet and opera the unpublished book Movements on the Stage. Excerpts form productions David Hockney’ “A Rakes Progress” and Daniel Arsham’s sets for Merce Cunningham will be presented.

7:00pm: Aida
The opera in four acts by Giusseppe Verdi and commissioned by an Ottoman ruler tells the story of the enslaved Ethiopian princess by the Egyptians and a military commander who falls in love with her in a complicated triangle. One act of ‘Aida’ with costumes of Zandra Rhodes will be presented to present the Zandra Rhodes panel discussion.

7:30pm: Panel Discussion: Zandra Rhodes
Zandra Rhodes will discuss her work for the opera creating sets props and costumes and her work as a pivotal designer in the 1970′s and 1980′s and her work today. .

8:30pm: Zandra Rhodes and Charles James
Archival Anton Perich Presents 1970’s television interview to celebrate the Metropolitan Museum’s current show ‘Charles James: Great American Fashion Designer.’  R. Couri Hay interviews Charles James and Zandra Rhodes who serves as a model and commentator at New York’s renowned Chelsea Hotel.


About Author

Robin Menken

Robin Menken Robin Menken lives in Los Angeles. She was the Artistic Director of the Second City Workshops, taught at UC Berkeley, USC, Barcelona\'s Ateneu and the Esalin Institute. She was Roberto Rossellini\'s assistant, and worked with Yevgeny Vevteshenku, Glauber Rocha and Eugene Ionesco. She sold numerous screenplays and wrote the OBIE winning The FTA SHow (touring with Jane Fonda, Donald Sutherland and Ben Vereen.) She was a programming consultant and Special Events co-ordinator for numerous film festivals, including the SF, Rio, Havana and N.Y Film Festivals. Her first news outlet was the historic East Village Other.

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