photo credit: ding ya lan
BY ANNA BROOME
A star in his own universe this California born kinetic, pornographic, cultivated painter explores, sets down in reds, yellows, black and white every aspect of savage warriors, mind-soiled thinkers, war-torn, machine-gun-carrying prostitutes, cloned parishioners and excess-driven dictators. Yes, the work has an apocalyptic style but one from the perception of an enthusiast there as much for the ride he creates for himself as the viewer.
The work is controlled as Elvin seems free working from within his mind as he expels characters and scenes.
Elvin begins painting as a young child with few memories only evidences of sleep-created art work. “I would wake up with drawings all around me. I wouldn’t remember any of it.”
Elvin’s artistic talent is a birthright of sorts as both his mother and father are accomplished artists. “My Mother didn’t start painting until she was 40, but my Father was always an artist, renegade of sorts.” Read more
By ANNA BROOME
Tawny Ellis, Los Angeles based musician, singer, songwriter “unlocks and elevates the many mysteries of life” through her new Muscle Shoals inspired and recorded EP Ghosts of the Low Country. For Ellis this EP is a way she takes a glimpse of, senses a connection with people from the close to her heart South.
Mining influences as varied as Patsy Cline, David Bowie, Joni Mitchell, and Willie Nelson, the Los Angeles-based songstress channels that dynamic into an intricately textured blend of folk, rock, and alt-country that’s intense and masterful but irresistibly intimate.
Ghosts Of The Low Country is due for release in summer of 2015 and brings to life the real sounds of its indigenous title. The four tracks making the EP include collaborations with her long time partner, Gio Loria as well as members from Athens band Five Eight and bassist Peter Hamilton.
Art Share LA, a community art center located in Arts District Little Tokyo has been the home and gallery of emerging artists since 1997. Cheyanne Sauter, The Center’s Director of Operations, sees Art Share LA as a place for emerging artists to find their voices, styles, concepts without judgement or discrimination. Sauter’s tagline for the community center is “Creation not curation”, which describes perfectly Art Share’s devotion to the early stages of development for artists ranging from musicians to painters, sculptors to writers, dramatists to dancers.
As in the case of any quality non-profit centers, Art Share LA depends largely on donations and contributions to keep it thriving and evolving.
After almost two years of bringing Art Share LA above par financially, Cheyanne Sauter now looks to the future for Art Share LA.as a creative art center with global reach. The center houses artists and community residents with more than 90% of renters being artists. It is the lone wolf resident destination for an every growing and rent increasing district. This shows the importance of a place like Art Share LA that not only offers a gallery, theatre, work spaces, classrooms and classes accessible financially for almost anyone wanting to extend or learn art forms but also a residence in the very location where artists create and thrive off one another. Read more
Conde, rehearsing with mezzo Soprano Kindra Scharich
By LIONEL ROLFE
When I was not yet quite a teenager, I spent a few years studying the classical guitar under Dorothy De Goede. She was a strikingly beautiful woman who had been a student of Andre Segovia. I was, of course, in love with her even though I was barely a decade old. I then wanted to study flamenco, so my parents sent me to Carlos Montoya. I loved flamenco but Montoya’s best and most patient coaxing did not teach me how to unfurl my right hand with that particular flamenco sweep. I should have had some genetic disposition. My dad was half German-Jewish and the other half Portuguese-Jewish. His mother grew up speaking Ladino in Seattle. The few remaining Ladino speakers lived in Seattle at that time–La dino is a combination of Hebrew and Spanish.
Yiddish is Hebrew and German. Appropriately my father, a scholarly judge by profession, loved the classical guitar, an instrument whose popularity really began with Segovia. The guitar, like a piano, can be a whole orchestra. My father also loved lutes, and we regularly went to the lute club. My dad loved to play the guitar in his heavily wooded paneled study where he also smoked his fine cigars. Maybe that was the Iberian in him, and I got a bit of it too, by osmosis if not genetics. In retirement, my dad spent a lot of time in Spain and Portugal, acquiring more guitars. Read more
By LIONEL ROLFE
The Goddess Pose: The Audacious Life of Indra Devi, the Woman Who Helped Bring Yoga to the West By Michelle Goldberg 352 pages hardcover Knopf $26.96 June 2015
I grew up around some of the biggest name in Yoga, yet never was much attracted to it. My uncle, violinist Yehudi Menuhin, one of the very greatest if not the greatest violinist of the last century, has been credited with bringing Yoga to the West. In 1953 the image of him in various esoteric positions occupied a number of pages in Life Magazine. In those days, millions of people read Life.
This led to my mother, Yaltah Menuhin (also a child prodigy musician, a pianist), getting a call from Marlon Brando. My mom reared me so I saw few movies or television in my earliest years. She thought both were pernicious. She always said that the day a television entered the house, she would walk.
But she made an exception for Marlon Brando. She had just taken me to see Brando’s “Teahouse of the August Moon.” She took me to a couple of other movies as well—“The Red Balloon,” and a series of the classic Greek dramas produced by the Canadian Broadcasting Company. My mother had known queens and kings and great musicians and writers of all kinds. She used to join the Queen at dinner in Buckingham Palace regularly. She never was overly impressed. But Marlon Brando was different. Read more
Soon enough that night, the East Village block where I was standing became a blur of noise and furious confusion: first a cascade of lights from darkened windows as several retirees shouted into the street below, hurling obscenities at Daniela to stop honking the horn as she sat inside the car of her biker boyfriend, Veto Bandito. “We can’t sleep, you little bitch!” one of them yelled.
When Veto appeared on the street, waving his shot gun wildly, Daniela screamed at him, “Get me out of here, Veto! Now!’’
He glared at me for a second as I hunched against a brick wall, then climbed into the driver’s seat, gunning the engine.
As he drove forward, I could see two Hell’s Angels advancing on Veto’s Ford sedan. It sped past them, careening down the street. Someone fired several shots as the car turned a corner. Then there was silence and the lights of the retirees went out.
The Angels stopped to chat. “You alright, lady?” one of them asked. He was a big guy with shoulder length brown hair, an unlikely prince charming. On another night, I wouldn’t have minded having a drink with him. Read more
City Administrative Officer Miguel A. Santana released a 21-page report on L.A. homelessness April 16 to a chorus of criticism. The annual costs were much higher than people expected, conservatively at least $100 million, and precious little of that went to housing or other expenses that got anyone off the streets.
The amount looked like a lot, but in a city budget of $8.57 billion it came to just .017%, mainly showing that the city doesn’t take homelessness seriously and hasn’t made a significant investment in trying to end it.
Santana’s report concluded that the main achievement of the recent period has been the creation of the Coordinated Entry System (CES), which is working to replace the multiple first-come, first-served places where homeless people register for the extremely limited amount of housing, now with a citywide coordinated database that ranks applicants on the basis of need.
Beyond that, while 15 city agencies interact with the homeless, the study found “no consistent process across departments in interactions with homeless individuals, homeless encampments, or other issues related to homelessness, and no systematic efforts to connect the homeless with assessment and case management.” Read more
NOTES FROM ABOVE GROUND
By Honey van Blossom
(Honey is a Belgian Marxist former strip-tease artiste)
“The miners came in forty-nine,
the whores in fifty-one;
And when they got together
They produced the native son.”
– 19th century San Francisco song
Between the antipodean poles of promiscuity and celibacy is the rest of the world of desire. Each of California’s periods of occupation — the time when many native tribes lived in the state, the Spanish-Mexican exploratory, mission and pastoral eras, and then the flood of Americans and people from all over the world after the Gold Rush of 1848 had different and often conflicting attitudes toward sexuality. The American episode has grown from legal and cultural repression to greater acceptance of interracial marriage, same sex love and greater equality between men and women.
One significant exception to that evolution in sexuality is prostitution: non-existent among pre-contact native people, initiated during the mission period, exploding as a trade during the Gold Rush, it remained legal until about 1910. Prostitution is still a crime.
Antonia L. Castaneda, “Engendering the History of Alta California, 1769-1848: Gender, Sexuality and the Family,” wrote: “As part of the natural world, sexuality, for many indigenous people, was related to the sacred and, as such, was central to their religious and cosmic order. Sexuality was celebrated by women and men in song, dance, and other ritual observances to awaken the earth’s fertility and ensure that they were blessed with fecundity. Accepted practices extended to premarital sexual activity, polygamy, polyandry, homosexuality, transvestitism, same-sex marriage, and ritual sexual practices. Divorce was easily attainable, and, under particular conditions, abortion and infanticide were practiced.” Read more