If past years of the Urban Youth Arts Festival are any indication, over 2,000 square feet of portable wall space will be open for artists of all ages to express themselves on with free paint, brushes, even aerosol paint cans at Precita Park.
The 2012 Urban Youth Arts Festival is in its 16th year of bringing out the walls, recycled from year to year, to complement a lineup full of performance artists, musicians, spoken word lyricists, poetry slammers and break dancers. There’s also skateboard deck painting and a kids art area for the smallest among the urban youth.
For 2012 the event will also featured free grub, likely a BBQ from a local restaurant, with free water and sodas as well.
16th Annual Urban Youth Arts Festival
July 21, 2012 (1p-6p)
Precita Park (Precita Ave. & Alabama St.), SF
The University of California, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (BAM/PFA) presents D-L Alvarez at the Matrix.
D-L Alvarez’s first solo museum exhibition is a haunting meditation on the violent end of innocence. Drawing on iconic imagery from Hollywood horror films, Alvarez, an Oakland-based artist, focuses on the uncanny moments when social and domestic deviance collide.
For many, the utopian experiment of the 1960s ended with the Manson Family murders. The decade of countercultural idealism had found its nemesis, and Americans grew wary of social outliers. Horror films featuring grotesque Manson-like transgressions supplanted the more nuanced Hitchcockesque thrillers of the sixties. Likewise, television studios began to abandon tried-and-true sitcoms that offered harmonious caricatures of the American family in favor of more progressive depictions of a less stable family unit.
In Alvarez’s series The Closet (2006–07), we see an abstracted image of Jamie Lee Curtis as Laurie Strode in John Carpenter’s Halloween, attempting to fight off a masked psychopath. Expressions of terror like this one, and other scenes like it, begin to dissolve in Alvarez’s heavily abstracted graphite compositions. Alvarez’s use of pixilation suggests some kind of electronic interference or degraded technology. His technique masks the features of both victim and killer but, more importantly, extends to the surface of the screen itself. The screen, a fixture in the contemporary home, becomes the new closet of terror.
Together, Alvarez’s fabric works and drawings recall the transgressive experience of watching horror movies as a child and the social and domestic unease in the wake of the Manson Family murders. In both works, Alvarez points to the aesthetic guises that conceal us from greater horrors.