Autumn greetings from the Los Angeles Urban Rangers! This year, we’ve been busy at work in the field while also expanding our geographical range, with Rangers now posted in Silicon Valley and Zürich, Switzerland. We are excited to announce a series of new works in-the-making, with several events planned to take place in our favorite megalopolis in the coming year.
On a cold and windy May day, we wrapped up our long-running Malibu Public Beaches project with an all-day safari bonanza which brought out a swarm of intrepid Angelenos. Since then, we’ve re-focused our sights on downtown LA for the next phase of our Public Access 101 series. We are thrilled be forging ahead with a series of hikes and other downtown adventures by way of temporary posts at two local strongholds: the 2010 California Biennial at Orange County Museum of Art (opening Oct. 24) and Engagement Party at MOCA (Summer 2011). Stay tuned for these Ranger-led programs in the near future!
This Fall, we were able to resume our field research and cultural exchange in Almere, the Netherlands, where we had built SITE2F7 Ontdekkingstocht (Explorer's Hike), including a trail system surrounding the Museum de Paviljoens, in 2008. We are now developing a field guide to this lively vacant lot, enriched by our interactions with a host of local species. Join us on Nov. 13 at the Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions (LACE) along with the Otis MFA Public Practice Program, when we’ll share this work as part of PUBLIC INTEREST: Projects & Prototypes, a day-long event that takes an LA-centric look at the burgeoning field of arts-based public practices.
We’re also expanding our explorations into the less urban wilds of California. In collaboration with the University of California Institute for Research in the Arts, we are currently investigating the university’s little-known UC Natural Reserve System, an archipelago of field research sites spanning the state. In the coming year, we plan to craft a series of tools and programs to widen the use of these spaces, especially by non-scientists.
Last but not least, if you haven’t already, please check out our new website (AKA virtual ranger station), designed by the digitally ambidextrous Roman Jaster.
We’re enormously grateful to the California Coastal Conservancy, California Community Foundation, the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, and UCIRA for making our investigations over the last year possible.
We promise to be in touch again soon with details about upcoming activities. In the meantime, know that we appreciate and rely upon support from active and engaged citizens like you!
In your service,
The Los Angeles Urban Rangers
Bill Gilbert – Physiocartographies and Erika Osborne – Wood Work
Oct 14 – Nov 19 2010
The Mesaros Galleries
Located in the Creative Arts Center at West Virginia University in Morgantown, West Virginia
Gallery Hours: Monday – Saturday, noon – 9:30pm.
Bill Gilbert will give an artist lecture on Oct 28th at 5pm in Bloch Hall at the Creative Arts Center. A reception for the exhibition will follow.
Erika Osborne will give an artist lecture on Nov 4th at 5pm in Bloch Hall at the Creative Arts Center. A reception will also follow this event.
Bill Gilbert and Erika Osborne share a field-based approach to art-making that stems from their time working together with the Land Arts of the American West Program at the University of New Mexico – a program that Gilbert founded. Since, they have continued this approach to art-making and education – Gilbert as the Lannan Endowed Chair of the Land Arts of the American West program, and as co-founder of the new Art and Ecology emphasis in studio art at the University of New Mexico, and Osborne as assistant professor of art at West Virginia University, teaching field courses such as Art and Environment and Place:Appalachia. Coming from backgrounds in sculpture and painting, their work changed dramatically as they began to exploit their time in the field. As a result, their pieces often incorporate digital technologies, alternative drawing tools and surfaces, the physical body, and materials from site visits to translate experiences in the field back to the gallery context.
For more information, including location of galleries and gallery hours, please visit http://artanddesign.wvu.edu/mesaros_galleries/current_exhibitions
A short video documenting the 2009 LHI Art-Sci Symposium, "The Nature of Place: Land Art/Land Use" with speakers including artist Joan Jonas, Erik Knutzen (Center for Land Use Interpretation), writer/curator Lucy Lippard, visual artist Celia Alvarez Muñoz, art historian Ann Reynolds, Allucquere Rosanne Stone (ACTLab, UT-Austin), Chris Taylor (Land Arts of the American West), archeologist Alston Thoms, and Ramon Vasquez (American Indians in Texas) has just been completed by Walley Films and can be viewed at http://vimeo.com/15426230 or on the Facebook page of Land Heritage Institute.