The 2019 edition of UC San Diego Geisel Library’s “Dinner in the Library” series celebrates new acquisitions from the estate of Theodor “Dr. Seuss” Geisel, most of which have never before been exhibited publicly. The Library’s Special Collections already houses over 20,000 items related to Geisel, including sketches, paintings, cartoons, letters, and manuscripts, and these new arrivals will further enhance its status as the world’s premiere repository of Seuss miscellany.
University Librarian Erik Mitchell welcomes a distinguished panel to discuss their reactions to the unveiling of Geisel’s “private art.” Seth Lerer, moderator and Distinguished Professor of Literature at UC San Diego, traces the development of Geisel’s stylistic vocabulary though doodles and rough sketches not intended for publication, and invites fellow panelists and the audience to consider the proper placement of these works within Geisel’s larger oeuvre. Rob Sidner, Executive Director of the Mingei International Museum, notes that many of the new acquisitions were exhibited in Geisel’s home and speculates on their personal significance to the artist. Mary Beebe, Director of the Stuart Collection at UC San Diego, discusses Geisel’s acrylic paintings on display, noting they are uncharacteristic of Geisel and yet valuable for that reason. Beebe also cites Geisel’s delight in wordplay as a consistent feature of his work.
Other topics featured in this wide-ranging discussion include the challenges of exposure to a hitherto-unknown facet of an artist’s work, influences on Geisel’s development such as theatre and Surrealism (most notably Salvador Dali), the underlying social commentary in many of Geisel’s cartoons and books, his frequent portrayals of “sympathetic monsters,” and the importance of acknowledging that, in Seth Lerer’s words, “not everything in this collection is happy or funny; some of it is in fact quite dark.”
Theodor Geisel famously maintained that he wrote his books for adults, and that their adoption as beloved icons of children’s literature was a fortunate happenstance. The new additions to the Geisel Library’s Special Collections contribute to a fuller portrait of this complex and prolific artist, one possessed of considerable skills whose range of styles and thematic concerns is greater than previously appreciated.
For the last few weeks, UCTV Prime’s “Museum Meets Orchestra” series has followed the progress and process of wild Up, a 24-member, experimental classical/contemporary orchestra, during their unique six-month residency that transformed UCLA’s Hammer Museum into a space as unexpected and moving as the music itself.
The third installment, now available online, takes you deep into the creative process to see how the group’s members work together to develop, publicly rehearse and ultimately perform their final concert, “Art. Music.”
Sometimes playful, occassionally intense, you’ve most certainly never seen an orchestra like this.
Today’s premiere of “Naked Art: Museums without Walls” concludes the inaugural documentary mini-series for our new YouTube original channel, UCTV Prime. After traveling to three different UC campuses and talking with artists, curators, faculty, students and others who helped make each of the campus’ public art collections a reality, we like to think we’ve shown our growing YouTube audience the range of personalities, sensibilities and landscapes contained within this distinctive research university that spans ten campuses across the state.
The final installment refelects upon the diverse definitions, purposes and modes of public art from UC campuses and elsewhere, and includes comments by artists, curators, students and other participants in the “Naked Art” series. Taken together, the four-part series just might open your eyes to the works of art that cross your path nearly every day.
More importantly, “Naked Art” offers just a taste of what we’ve got in store for you this year on UCTV Prime, starting with “Prime: Vote,” a series about issues in the public debate during this important election year. The series launched last week with three thoughtful commentaries by UC faculty.
Then stay tuned in April for the seven-part miniseries “The Skinny on Obesity.” If you’re a fan of UCTV, then you’ve probably seen or at least heard of UCTV’s popular video lecture “Sugar: The Bitter Truth,” featuring UCSF’s Dr. Robert Lustig on the damage caused by sugary foods. With over 2 million YouTube views to date, the video has become a viral sensation, sparking TV news stories, newspaper articles, even spin-off books by YouTube fans. UCTV Prime decided it’s time to dig deeper into not only the dangers of sugar and its substitutes, but what the latest research is telling us and why it’s changing everything we thought we knew. You won’t want to miss it when it premieres April 13.
And there’s plenty more to come, so if you haven’t subscribed to the UCTV Prime YouTube channel yet, do it today! In the meantime, enjoy these final thoughts on what it means to leave pieces of art out in the wild.
The opportunity to build an urban university campus from the ground up is rare, but that’s exactly what UC San Francisco had the chance to do with its Mission Bay campus. The plot of land just south of AT&T Park was barren, but under the leadership of Chancellor J. Michael Bishop (now Emeritus), a spectacular setting for cutting-edge science research has blossomed. The first building, Genentech Hall, opened in 2003, and today the campus is a vibrant and vital research and biotechnology hub.
Chancellor Bishop may be a Nobel Laureate (Physiology or Medicine, 1989), but his interests extend into the arts. That’s why he insisted that 1% of the campus’ construction budget be allocated to public art. The result? A world class collection that, in Chancellor Bishop’s words, “creates an environment that will be a credit and benefit to the entire community, a stimulating and pleasant place to work and visit, and a permanent legacy to the city.”
Even if you can’t make it to campus, you can experience the J. Michael Bishop Art Collection and learn more about its history by watching “Naked Art: Bishop Art Collection, UCSF,” the third installment in our four-part series about public art at the University of California. The program highlights many of the works and includes interviews with Chancellor Bishop, artist Paul Kos and UCSF faculty and staff who helped assemble this diverse collection of sculpture, mosaics, installations, photographs and more.
Make sure to visit the “Naked Art” website to watch previous episodes about UC San Diego’s Stuart Collection and UCLA’s Murphy Sculpture Garden. The fourth program, “Museums without Walls,” premieres March 23 on UCTV Prime. And don’t forget to enter our “Show Us Your Naked Art and Win!” contest, which ends April 3.
It’s time for another stop on UCTV Prime’s tour of UC’s most prestigious public art collections –“Naked Art,” as we like to call it.
This week it’s all about UCLA’s Murphy Sculpture Garden, which spans more than five acres on the Westwood campus and boasts more than 70 sculptures by artists such as Jean Arp, Deborah Butterfield, Alexander Calder, Barbara Hepworth, Jacques Lipchitz, Henry Moore, Isamu Noguchi, Auguste Rodin, and David Smith.
We visited the tranquil setting on a sunny January morning and spoke to the collection’s curator from UCLA’s Hammer Museum, Cindy Burlingham, professor and artist James Welling, and some UCLA students who pick this special location to study, relax – even practice their fire-spinning technique!
If you haven’t already, stop by our “Naked Art” YouTube playlist to watch the first stop on our public art tour at UC San Diego’s Stuart Collection and a catch a trailer for next week’s episode that shows what happens when public art meets science and research on UCSF’s new Mission Bay Campus.
And, of course, subscribe to UCTV Prime’s YouTube channel to keep up with our latest programs, such as “Prime: Vote,” a new series premiering March 13. The first installment features insightful and reasoned commentaries by three UC faculty on important issues the country and candidates are facing during the 2012 election season.