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The Magazine of California Institute of the Arts | Spring/Summer 2014

� The Magazine of California Institute of the Arts | Spring/Summer 2014 Board of Trustees Officers Austin M. Beutner, Chair Joseph M. Cohen, Vice Chair Tim Disney, Vice Chair Thomas L. Lee, Vice Chair James B. Lovelace, Vice Chair

Trustee Emeriti V. Shannon Clyne Robert J. Denison Robert B. Egelston Douglas K. Freeman Jeffrey Katzenberg William S. Lund Peter Norton C. Roderick O’Neil Michael Pressman Joseph Smith


joan abrahamson

Trustees Joan Abrahamson Aileen Adams Thom Andersen, Faculty Alan Bergman David A. Bossert Louise Bryson Don Cheadle Zachary Davidson, Student Melissa P. Draper Michael D. Eisner David I. Fisher Rodrigo García Harriett F. Gold Richard J. Grad Charmaine Jefferson Marta Kauffman Jill Kraus Nahum Lainer Steven D. Lavine, Ex Officio Thomas Lloyd Michelle Lund Jamie Alter Lynton Leslie McMorrow Alfredo Miranda, Staff Michael Nock Janet Dreisen Rappaport Tom Rothman Araceli Ruano David L. Schiff Malissa Feruzzi Shriver Joni Binder Shwarts Thomas E. Unterman Roger Wacker Elliot D. Webb Luanne C. Wells

As I look back to our terrific commencement ceremonies last weekend, I am struck afresh by the richness and variety of the artistic quality that emerges from our relatively small community each year. Yet there is a shared affinity, an ethos, that binds this remarkably diverse collection of artists, and their eclectic ways of making art, with their CalArts predecessors as part of a cumulative creative force—one that spans eras. Our coverage in this issue of the recent School of Art Benefit & Auction shows how alumni, across different age groups, are rallying to support their future counterparts, making their contributions in honor of the great John Baldessari. After all, it is CalArtians who know best about John’s role in developing the programs in which artistry has been freed up and allowed to flourish. Meanwhile, some of our most illustrious Animation alumni—once again crossing generations—reconvened on campus for an Annie Leibovitz group portrait that leads off Vanity Fair’s account of how early CalArtians revived the art of story animation, led the Disney Renaissance, and, eventually, through the core group at Pixar, ushered in the 3d revolution. All along they adhered to an artist-driven, collegial model of making work, as it was practiced here at the Institute. It combined strong, time-tested story skills with the inventiveness, wit and personality of each individual artist. In reporting on some of our Graphic Design alumni, too, we find a similar mixture: rigorously honed formal and conceptual skills, allied with the creative license to experiment, to innovate out of the box. In Graphic Design as with all our programs, the pedagogical aim has always been to integrate comprehensive knowledge, professional focus and personal conviction with the artistic and imaginative powers we help unleash. As put into play by today’s CalArts designers, this approach is meeting with huge successes—from L.A. to Silicon Valley to New York, from London and Berlin to Seoul and Tokyo.

It is only fitting that this year’s recipient of the redcat Award is Herb Alpert, the first honoree to be recognized both as practicing artist and arts philanthropist. In a way that speaks to our identity as an institution, Herb is ideally positioned to know what makes great art happen. It was Walt Disney who drew on his own considerable experience as a visionary leader of artists to first conceive of the Institute, and it eventually fell to a group of groundbreaking artmakers—John Baldessari among them—to put that idea into practice. The result was a school for artists whose program was always going to be designed by artists—people who understood, through hard-won experience, the complex demands and vagaries of contemporary creative practice. The founding faculty of CalArts set out, as John himself has put it, to establish conditions “where art can happen.” And so, as we thank John and Herb for their respective contributions, as well as our very many friends and supporters who help sustain the Institute, it is my pleasure to report that, yes, great art is happening here, year in and year out, with each new class that we proudly send out to the world. Wishing you a delightful summer,

steven d. lavine President, CalArts


HEADLINERS the herb alpert school of music

� jazz at capitol turns 25

An all-star jazz concert held at The Wild Beast on April 19 marked the 25-year anniversary of one of the Institute’s most cherished music traditions: the recording each spring of an original CalArts jazz album at world-famous Capitol Studios in Hollywood. The historic outdoor show brought together several of the Jazz Program’s most prominent alumni—saxophonists Ravi Coltrane (bfa 90) and Peter Epstein (bfa 92), trumpeter Ralph Alessi (mfa 90, bfa 87), pianist James Carney (bfa 90) and bassist Darek Oles (bfa 92)— all of whom had performed on the inaugural Capitol “CalArts Jazz CD” a quarter-century ago. The alumni reunion was preceded by a set by the latest generation of CalArts jazz artists, who played selections from this year’s edition of the album recorded at Capitol. Generously funded by Capitol Records since 1990, the annual Jazz Program recording represents an unprecedented long-term collaboration between a major recording label and a music school. Accordingly, the Wild Beast concert included a special tribute to Capitol Studios staff, Capitol Records, and CalArts trustee emeritus Joe Smith, who, during his tenure as president and ceo of Capitol–emi Music, first set the collaboration in motion. The Capitol sessions have stood as one of the signature features of the Jazz Program, helping to draw standout talents to CalArts and serving as a professional springboard for graduating students as they begin their careers. The opportunity to work with top industry professionals in the iconic Hollywood studios—the site of recordings by artists from Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole and the


Beach Boys to OutKast, Mary J. Blige and Daft Punk—is an invaluable learning experience for CalArts students that is unmatched by any other music program in the country, noted David Roitstein, chair of the Jazz Program and producer of the Jazz CD. “Once our students record their music in a world-class professional setting, with world-class engineers, they just can’t wait to return,” he said. “The quality of the experience inspires them to keep elevating their own work.” The headliners of the anniversary concert bear out Roitstein’s observation, with each artist having continuously raised the level of his music since playing on the 1990 Capitol album. Coltrane, Alessi, Carney and Epstein moved to New York, where they established themselves as part of the 1990s “downtown jazz” scene. Though not the first Jazz Program graduates to rise to prominence in New York, this group of alums brought to the ongoing jazz conversation there a distinctive CalArts sensibility that endures to this day—a musical sensibility informed by deep exposure to both world music traditions and experimental practices. Top: Celebrating the collaboration between CalArts and Capitol are (from left) faculty member Paul Novros, Jazz Program chair David Roitstein, Ravi Coltrane, Ralph Alessi, Capitol Studios VP Paula Salvatore, faculty member Larry Koonse, former Capitol CEO and longtime CalArts trustee Joe Smith, James Carney and Peter Epstein. Left: Jazz Program alums (from left) Peter Epstein, Ravi Coltrane and Ralph Alessi perform on campus.

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Clockwise from left: Pulitzer Prize winner John Luther Adams.

Leighton Pierce, new dean of the School of Film/ Video. Frozen co-directors Chris Buck and Jennifer Lee accept their statuettes at the Oscars. Kate Weare and Adrian Clark in Bridge of Sighs, a quartet staged by Kate Weare Company.

Composer John Luther Adams (Music bfa 73) has received the 2014 Pulitzer Prize in Music for his large orchestral work Become Ocean, a breathtaking opus that was premiered last June by the Seattle Symphony. By building slowly shifting patterns toward three staggering orchestral crescendos, evenly spaced over a 42-minute span, Become Ocean “suggests a relentless tide surge, evoking thoughts of melting polar ice caps and rising sea levels,” noted the Pulitzer committee in its citation. Adams derived the title of the piece from John Cage’s tribute to composer Lou Harrison, who, in turn, was a major influence on the CalArts alumnus. “Listening to [Harrison’s music], we become ocean,” Cage had written. For his part, Adams, a lifelong conservationist whose compositions have been inspired by the landscapes of Alaska and the American West, added a stark note to the score: “Life on this earth first emerged from the sea. As the polar ice melts and the sea levels rise, we humans find ourselves facing the prospect that once again we may quite literally become ocean.” Writing in The New Yorker, critic Alex Ross compared the sheer artistic impact of Become Ocean to that of Igor Stravinsky’s boundary-shattering Rite of Spring, whose 100-year anniversary last year coincided with the premiere of the Adams composition. “There are shocks of beauty, shocks of feeling, shocks of insight. Such are the virtues of… Become Ocean,” Ross offers. “It may be the loveliest apocalypse in musical history.” Adams is the second CalArtian to collect the Pulitzer Prize in Music. Mel Powell, the founding dean of the CalArts School of Music, had won the Pulitzer in 1990 for the monumental Duplicates: A Concerto for Two Pianos.

courtesy of leighton pierce

Adams Wins Pulitzer

 school of film/vidEo

Pierce Named Film/VidEo dean The Institute has named acclaimed experimental filmmaker and installation artist Leighton Pierce as the new dean of the School of Film/Video. Pierce comes to CalArts from Pratt Institute in New York, where he served as acting dean of the Brooklyn college’s School of Art and Design. He begins his tenure this July, taking over from outgoing dean Steve Anker, who is continuing as a full-time member of the Film/Video faculty and co-curator, with faculty member Bérénice Reynaud, of film programming at the Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater (redcat). “Leighton combines creative vision with practical acumen,” said President Steven D. Lavine. “At Pratt and, previously, the University of Iowa, he developed innovative film and video curricula that reflected the ever-evolving technical and cultural terrain. At the same time, the exceptional interdisciplinary creative process reflected in Leighton’s own work fits perfectly with the experimental ethos of CalArts.” “I have long admired CalArts,” declared Pierce. “As I learn more about its unique chemistry, I look forward to working with the students, faculty and staff in the School of Film/Video, and in all CalArts


schools, to cultivate vibrant, dynamic, integrated educational experiences for the next generation of artists exploring moving images and sound.” In his award-winning multi-channel, site-specific installations and single-channel works, Pierce enlists stunningly recorded everyday visual impressions and sounds to build up what he calls “experiences in transformative time”—heightened sensory experiences in which viewers can discover the extraordinary in the ordinary. Delicately suspended between definition and abstraction, gestural implication and narrative meaning, his oeuvre “pulses with a beauty which calls forth agape [unconditional love], its formal structure pointing to the realm of icons,” according to fellow experimentalist Jon Jost. Pierce’s work has been shown at major venues throughout the world, including the Whitney Museum, Lincoln Center, the Pompidou Center in Paris, and the Sundance, New York, Tribeca, Ann Arbor and Rotterdam film festivals.

2014 © academy of motion picture arts and sciences

Frozen leads Film, TV Awards Ever since 2002, when the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences began giving out Oscars for Best Animated Feature of the Year, more than half of the winning entries have been written and directed by CalArts alumni. The trend continued at the 86th edition of the annual gala when Disney’s 3d musical fantasy Frozen— the international runaway hit co-directed by Chris Buck (Film/Video 78) and Jennifer Lee— collected the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature. Buck, Lee and producer Peter Del Vecho were on hand at Hollywood’s Dolby Theatre to accept the famous golden statuettes.

The Academy Award was Chris Buck’s first; he had been previously nominated in 2007 for co-directing Surf’s Up (Sony). Nominated in the same category as Buck this year was CalArtian Chris Sanders (Film/Video bfa 92), co-director of The Croods (DreamWorks) with Kirk DeMicco. For her part, Frozen’s Jennifer Lee became the second woman to collect an Oscar in the animated feature category, following Brenda Chapman (Film/Video bfa 87), who had won in 2013 for Brave (Disney/Pixar), sharing that honor with co-director Mark Andrews (Film/ Video bfa 93).

Production. Also winning a Character Design Annie, in the television category, was three-time Emmy Award winner Paul Rudish (Film/Video bfa 91), for Disney Channel’s popular Mickey Mouse series of shorts. Finally, revered costume designer Alice Davis (Chouinard 50), a “Disney Legend” and longtime member of the CalArts Alumni Association’s board, received the June Foray Award for a lifetime of “significant charitable impact” on the animation industry. Chris Buck emerged as the sole CalArts award winner at the 71st Golden Globes, after Don Cheadle (Theater bfa 86), nominated for his role as Marty Kaan on Showtime’s House of Lies, was denied a repeat of his 2013 honor for Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series—Musical or Comedy. Cheadle is still batting a blistering .500 at the Globes, with two career wins (House of Lies and The Rat Pack [1998]) out of four nominations.

At the 41st Annual Annie Awards—the animation industry’s showcase event presented by the Hollywood chapter of the International Animated Film Society—Frozen, in addition to its Best Animated Feature award, earned Buck and Lee the accolade for Directing in an Animated Feature Production. Frozen art director Mike Giaimo (Film/Video 78), meanwhile, was part of the team that won the Annie for Production Design in an Animated Feature Production. In other categories, Cartoon Network’s Adventure Time, created by Pendleton Ward (Film/Video bfa 05), was named Best Animated tv/Broadcast Production for Children, while Shane Prigmore (Film/Video 99) was one of three artists whose work on The Croods secured the Annie for Character Design in an Animated Feature keira heu-jwyn chang


Summer dance Residencies begin In partnership with the Evelyn Sharp Foundation, The Sharon Disney Lund School of Dance at CalArts commissioned three nationally recognized artists and companies to participate in the inaugural Evelyn Sharp/CalArts Summer Choreographic Residency. This year’s recipients, New York-based Kate Weare Company, helmed by artistic director Kate Weare (Dance bfa 94), and acclaimed faculty artists Laurence Blake and Rosanna Gamson, artistic director of Rosanna Gamson/World Wide, convened on campus in May. “This residency is an extension of the high volume of creative work that happens at CalArts throughout the academic year,” said Dance dean Stephan Koplowitz. “The Evelyn Sharp Foundation has provided us with the opportunity to recognize exceptional choreographers from across the country and bring them to CalArts so that they can work here alongside our remarkable faculty artists.” To facilitate the creation of new works, the residency included studio space for rehearsals and opportunities for creative research, as well as access to theater facilities and support staff. At the conclusion of the two-week residencies, Blake, Gamson and Weare showcased their newly developed works at The Sharon Disney Lund Dance Theater.


Frozen’s win at the Oscars concluded a sweep of the major awards this season, following earlier triumphs at the Golden Globes, the Annie Awards, and the bafta Awards. Overall, the critical plaudits showered on Frozen added even more gloss to the movie’s immense popularity: To date, the soaring adventure inspired by The Snow Queen—Hans Christian Andersen’s classic 1845 fairy tale—has grossed well over $1 billion worldwide.

 the sharon disney lund  school of dance

Spring/Summer Foundation and the Los Angeles Fund for Public Education, and is a trustee of seven American Funds, Pomona College, 2nd Stage Theatre in New York, and weta, the pbs station in Washington, dc. Bryson holds mba and mat degrees from Stanford University and a ba from the University of Washington. She was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2010 and is a member of the academy’s Trust. Leslie McMorrow is senior buyer for Seaside Luxe, an international luxury retail company that designs, develops and operates one-of-a-kind retail environments in hotels and resorts around the world. For more than 10 years, McMorrow was the creative force behind advertising and marketing campaigns for the real estate investment and services firm Kennedy Wilson. McMorrow has also collaborated with Barney’s New York to stage high profile fashion benefits with such legendary design houses as Lanvin, Nina Ricci, and Emanuel Ungaro. “Leslie brings a singular style and approach to her endeavors,” says fellow trustee Malissa Feruzzi Shriver. “She is strategic, generous and insightful. She has a discerning eye and takes risks. Her strong point of view and curatorial expertise make her a uniquely valuable member of the CalArts Board of Trustees.”


Bryson, mcmorrow join board “Education and the arts are among my deepest interests,” says Louise Henry Bryson, “so I’m honored and privileged to join the Institute’s board. CalArts is one of the most outstanding educational institutions in the country and has contributed greatly to public arts education in Los Angeles.” Bryson served on the Board of Trustees for the J. Paul Getty Trust for 12 years, including four as board chair before being named Chair Emerita in 2010. She has had a 34-year career in media and retired in 2008. She was president of Distribution for Lifetime Television and general manager of Lifetime Movie Network. Previously, she was senior vice president at fx Networks. Bryson represented Fox-owned and -affiliated stations with all U.S. cable and satellite companies, and launched fx in June of 1994 with the largest distribution in cable history at that time. She was a member of the nbc team that initiated the first pay-per-view Olympics and was the general manager of Z Channel, a critically acclaimed L.A.-based movie channel. Bryson started her career as a producer and writer for public television and remained interested in public media. She chaired the board of kcet in Los Angeles, and was a former member of the pbs national board, which honored her with the 1998 Award for Excellence in Public Television Leadership. She is on the Board of Directors of Huntington Memorial Hospital, California Community

McMorrow will serve on the board’s Building, Grounds and Design Committee and the Development Committee. “I have appreciated Leslie’s immediate engagement in the redesign of the campus cafeteria, now underway,” says President Steven Lavine. “She even enlisted her friend Bridgid Coulter to participate in the effort. McMorrow serves on the advisory board of The Rape Foundation and is a supporter of The Rema Hort Mann Foundation, P.S. Arts, Windward School, usc, ucsb Alumni Association, Los Angeles Ballet and The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.


The Herb Alpert Foundation hosted its annual luncheon for the 2014 recipients of the Herb Alpert Award in the Arts on May 9 in Santa Monica. The program, which celebrates its 20th anniversary this year, is administered by CalArts. This year’s winners are tap dancer and choreographer Michelle Dorrance in the Dance category; experimental documentarian Deborah Stratman in Film/Video; composer, saxophonist and sound artist Matana Roberts in Music; director and writer Annie Dorsen in Theater; and post-conceptualist Daniel Joseph Martinez in Visual Arts. Of the five, two are CalArts alumni: Martinez (Art bfa 79) and Stratman (Film/Video mfa 95). Each of these risk-taking, mid-career artists receives an unrestricted prize of $75,000 and takes part in a CalArts residency program. Working in conjunction with a member of the CalArts faculty, the Herb Alpert Award winners develop and participate in a weeklong residency at CalArts that may include workshops, productions, concerts, seminars, lectures or critiques of individual student work. 4



a night of “firsts” at the 2014 redcat gala

Lavine said that he was also inspired by Alpert’s philanthropy, demonstrated by the many gifts he has made through The Herb Alpert Foundation. He noted that there are many synergies between CalArts and the foundation. “Because Herb, as an artist, understands so deeply that the life of the arts begins in childhood—he began trumpet lessons at age eight—The Herb Alpert Foundation has also become one of the two

largest supporters of the CalArts Community Arts Partnership (cap), which brings imaginative and sustained education in the arts to thousands of young people each year in the underserved neighborhoods of Los Angeles.” Along with the foundation’s support of Harlem School of Arts, L.A. City College Music Department, and other music and arts educational institutions, Alpert created the Herb Alpert Scholarships for Emerging Young Artists, which help students from the California State Summer School for the Arts (csssa)—hosted by CalArts each summer—to pursue higher education in the arts. Alpert has also partnered with the Institute for 20 years on the Herb Alpert Award in the Arts, initiated and funded by the foundation and administered by CalArts. In another first, Alpert announced at the gala the names of the five winners of the 2014 Alpert Awards (see previous page). The $75,000 unrestricted prize is given annually to risk-taking, mid-career artists in the five creative disciplines taught at CalArts—dance, film/video, music, theater and the visual arts. Each winner will spend a week at CalArts, giving back to the next generation of artists. More than 100 cutting-edge artists have received this prestigious award. As Lavine said, “Herb, in the true spirit of the arts, is willing to bet on artists who are still experimenting and proposing new directions for the arts. Herb and CalArts really are a match made in heaven.”


At CalArts’ redcat Gala on March 15, Herb Alpert became the first recipient of the redcat Award to be honored for his cultural contributions as both artist and philanthropist. The chic fête was especially memorable this year because Alpert, along with his musical partner and wife, the Grammy Award-winning singer Lani Hall Alpert, became the first honoree to perform at the Gala, which this year raised more than $600,000 for redcat’s extraordinary cultural programming. More than 200 guests attended the festive ceremony at redcat, whose interior was decorated with a buoyant cloud-like sculpture created by the renowned international firm EscherGuneWardena Architecture. Academy Award-nominated actor and frequent redcat patron James Cromwell served as the master of ceremonies, and President Steven Lavine noted that CalArts was not only grateful for Alpert’s generous support over nearly 25 years—providing the endowment that established The Herb Alpert School of Music at the Institute, among other gifts—but that he was also personally inspired by Alpert’s music. “I grew up playing trumpet and trying to imitate Herb’s inimitable style,” Lavine said. “He makes it all sound so easy, so casual, so cool, so within reach. But in the end, no one sounds like Herb.”

Opposite, from top: New trustees Louise Henry Bryson (left) and Leslie McMorrow.

Flanking Herb Alpert and Lani Hall Alpert are the 2014 Herb Alpert Award winners: from left, Michelle Dorrance, Matana Roberts, Deborah Stratman, Annie Dorsen and Daniel Joseph Martinez. This page, from top: As the first-ever redcat Award recipient to perform at CalArts’ annual redcat Gala, Herb Alpert takes a moment on stage to revel in the vocal stylings of Lani Hall Alpert, his wife of 40 years.

The quintessential Herb Alpert, in his element as iconic trumpeter and bandleader.



—John Baldessari in Christie’s Auction Catalog

When the gavel dropped for the last time at a special auction at Christie’s in New York on May 14, the sale of 32 works by CalArts alumni, in addition to works sold in benefit gallery exhibitions, raised more than $2 million for underwriting CalArts’ new John Baldessari Studios and scholarships in the School of Art. Almost from its very earliest days, the School of Art has been instrumental in establishing Los Angeles as an international hub for serious professional artists. Its faculty and students played important roles in redefining the very nature and potential of contemporary art–none more so than John Baldessari–a creator and exemplar of new mindsets and practices of artmaking. Rather than teaching technique as an instructor of how to make art, Baldessari’s lasting influence was in his moving students to consider, conceive and execute works outside of traditional drawing, painting and sculpture. During his tenure as faculty, from 1970 to 1986, he helped CalArts become a launching pad for some of the brightest stars on the international art scene.

� benefit & auction

Alumni and Friends Give Back In Kind

When the Institute decided to honor Baldessari by naming the new studio complex after him, the wider CalArts community mobilized in an unprecedented fundraising effort spearheaded by former CalArts parent and current trustee Jill G. Kraus. “We were so proud to offer these exceptional works of art,” says Kraus, “donated by an extraordinary group of world-renowned artists, comprising CalArts alumni, former faculty, and colleagues and friends of John Baldessari. No institution other than CalArts has cultivated so many groundbreaking art forms or launched so many pioneering artists in a multitude of creative fields–especially in the visual arts.” In the planning stages for more than a year, the Christie’s auction followed other events in Miami Beach, West Hollywood, San Francisco and New York (see page 8). Clara Kim, most recently senior curator of visual arts at the Walker Art Center, and former director and curator of the Gallery at the Roy and Edna Disney/ CalArts Theater (redcat), curated the exhibitions, which span four decades of work by CalArtians.

 by Stuart I. Frolick

“As CalArts expands to meet the growing needs of its students,” says President Steven Lavine, “many of our most influential alumni joined together in the CalArts Benefit & Auction, helping to ensure that the unique opportunities afforded to them as young artists studying at CalArts–in particular, studio space and financial assistance–will continue for future generations.”


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“I think these may be the first art school studios built with funds supplied by artists. It’s a nice way of giving back.”


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Christie’s staff field telephone bids on artworks donated by CalArts alumni. Trustee Melissa P. Draper joins the bidding during Christie’s Spring Auction. Legendary gallerist Marian Goodman (right) was a co-chair of the CalArts Benefit. On the left is Lissa McClure, a co-director of Marian Goodman Gallery, one of the blue-chip venues that partnered with CalArts. Benefit co-chairs also included (from left) President Steven Lavine, trustee Jill Kraus, alumnus Tony Oursler, and School of Art dean Thomas Lawson. John Baldessari, Double Vision: Warhol Red, 2011. Varnished archival print on canvas with oil paint. 74½ x 54½ in. The canvas was auctioned at Christie’s. aria isadora/


CalArts Auction & Benefit

This page, clockwise from top left: Part of a series of showcases that comprised the CalArts Benefit & Auction, the preview at Regen Projects in West Hollywood was sponsored by Louis Vuitton.

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Opposite: John Baldessari, founding member of the CalArts faculty and namesake of the School of Art’s newest studio complex.


december 5, 2013 Art/Basel, Miami Beach Party sponsored by Artsy (the online presence for the CalArts Benefit & Auction)

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calarts benefit & auction events

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february 25–march 8, 2014 Preview/Exhibition at Regen Projects, West Hollywood Sponsored by Louis Vuitton

april 5-19, 2014 Exhibitions at Paula Cooper and Metro Pictures, New York

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april 9, 2014 Preview at Hedge Gallery, San Francisco Hosted by Trustees Melissa P. Draper and Joni Binder Shwarts

may 14, 2014 Christie’s Spring Auction, New York partners: The CalArts Benefit & Auction was made possible through the generous support of Artsy, Christie’s, Louis Vuitton, Marian Goodman Gallery, Metro Pictures, Paula Cooper Gallery, and Regen Projects. From top: Alumnus Malik Gaines (left) with tenor Anthony P. McGlaun.

sponsors: Art Services Melrose, Bark Frameworks, Kernz Group faes, L.A. Packing, Crating and Transport, and Transcon International Inc.

Neda and Tim Disney, both members of the Honorary Committee. Tim is a CalArts trustee while Neda is a member of the redcat Council. Honorary Committee member Janelle Reirig of Metro Pictures, which partnered with CalArts in hosting benefit exhibitions. madison mcgaw/

Honorary Committee member Eva Chow and her husband, entrepreneur Michael Chow. Art dean Thomas Lawson (left) is joined by Christine Kuan, chief curator and director of Strategic Partnerships at Artsy, and CalArts faculty member Charles Gaines and his wife, Roxanna Landaverde. Opposite: Installation view of the CalArts show at Paula Cooper Gallery, New York.



“It seems all the more appropriate, even with its ironic implications, that a studio for the twenty-first century should be named after the artist who has done more to reinvent and question the nature of studio and post-studio practices.” —Paul Schimmel, former MOCA chief curator, in his essay in Christie’s Auction Catalog

participating artists Eduardo Abaroa mfa 2001

Judy Chicago Faculty 1971-73

Mike Kelley mfa 1978

Dave Muller mfa 1993

Pieter Schoolwerth mfa 1993

Edgar Arceneaux mfa 2001

Anne Collier bfa 1993

William Kentridge

Matt Mullican bfa 1974

Allan Sekula Faculty 1985-2012

Michael Asher Faculty 1973-2009

Fiona Connor mfa 2011

Jim Shaw mfa 1978

John Baldessari Chouinard 1959

Harry Dodge Faculty 2010/ 2013-current

Malik Gaines of My Barbarian mfa 1999

Julie Becker mfa 1995, bfa 1993 Lynda Benglis Faculty 1973/1974/1976

Ashley Bickerton bfa 1982 Ross Bleckner mfa 1973 Monica Bonvicini 1992 Jonathan Borofsky Faculty 1977-83 Martin Boyce 1996 Troy Brauntuch bfa 1975 Ingrid Calame mfa 1996 James Casebere mfa 1979 Vija Celmins da 1994, faculty 1976-77

Charles Gaines Faculty 1989-current Mario Garcia Torres mfa 2005 Liz Glynn mfa 2008 Jack Goldstein mfa 1972 Hans Haacke Faculty 1973 Lyle Ashton Harris mfa 1990 Darcy Huebler bfa 1979, faculty 1984-current

Jason Kraus mfa 2008 Barbara Kruger Faculty 1979/1981

Alex Olson mfa 2008 Catherine Opie mfa 1988

Liz Larner bfa 1985 Jonathan Lasker 1977 Elad Lassry bfa 2003 Thomas Lawson Faculty 1990-current Jed Lind mfa 2004 Robert Longo Dashiell Manley bfa 2007 Rita McBride mfa 1987 Adam McEwen bfa 1990

Douglas Huebler Faculty 1976-88

Rodney McMillian mfa 2002

Jim Isermann mfa 1980

Josephine Meckseper mfa 1992 John Miller bfa 1973


Gabriel Orozco Rubén Ortiz-Torres mfa 1992 Tony Oursler bfa 1979 Laura Owens mfa 1994 Ellen Phelan Faculty 1978-79/ 1983/1985-86 Lari Pittman mfa 1976, bfa 1974

Gary Simmons mfa 1990 Alexis Smith Faculty 1988 Jennifer Steinkamp bfa 1984 Pat Steir Thomas Struth Henry Taylor bfa 1996 Kaari Upson mfa 2007, bfa 2004 Jeff Wall Carrie Mae Weems bfa 1981 Lawrence Weiner

Stephen Prina mfa 1980

James Welling mfa 1974, bfa 1972

Blake Rayne bfa 1992

Christopher Williams mfa 1981, bfa 1979

Allen Ruppersberg Chouinard 1967

Sue Williams mfa 1976

Ed Ruscha Chouinard 1960

B. Wurtz mfa 1980

CalArts Auction & Benefit

Walead Beshty Faculty 2004-07

Sam Durant mfa 1991, faculty 1995-current

Martin Kersels Faculty 1997-2012


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This page, clockwise from top left: Alumna Rita McBride, director of Kunstakademie Düsseldorf.

Chouinard alumnus Allen Ruppersberg. Gallerygoers mingle at the Regen Projects preview of artworks donated by CalArts alumni and faculty. Alumna Liz Glynn.

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Curator Clara Kim with Beijing-based artist Zhu Jia. Laura Owens, Untitled, 2014. Oil, resin, charcoal and gesso on canvas, 108 x 84 in. The painting was sold at Christie’s Spring Auction. Mark Bradford is one of five MacArthur Fellows among the ranks of CalArts alumni. Alums Dashiell Manley (left) and Jason Kraus. stefanie keenan/getty images for calarts

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Opposite, top row, from left: John Baldessari at Regen Projects.

Walead Beshty, Black Curl, 2013. Color photographic paper, 103 x 50 in. Auctioned at Christie’s.

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Second row, from left: Louis Vuitton North America is represented by president and ceo Valérie Chapoulaud-Floquet (left) and Western Region senior vp Tommaso De Vecchi as John Baldessari is flanked by philanthropists Lilly Tartikoff Karatz and Bruce Karatz.

Gallerist Shaun Caley Regen of Regen Projects. Third row, from left: Alumnus Matt Mullican.

CalArts’ Steven Lavine and Janet Sternburg were among the Benefit co-chairs. John Baldessari with Kim Gordon, co-founder of Sonic Youth. Bottom row, from left: Tony Oursler, Passage, 1997. Sound, suitcase, cloth doll and project, 22 ½ x 21 1/8 x 22 in. Performer: Tracey Liepold. Sold at auction.

Alumnus Edgar Arceneaux. Alum Pieter Schoolwerth with artist Sasha Lerman.

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“The definition of a studio is a space that has no interior walls, that an artist can afford. Artists need these spaces and that’s what CalArts is providing.” —John Baldessari in remarks at Regen Projects

CalArts Auction & Benefit

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“We are all on tricycles. John is on a rocket ship.” —Ed Ruscha in Christie’s Auction Catalog

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This page, clockwise from top left: Jennifer Steinkamp, Judy Crook, 2012–13. Video installation, dimensions variable. Sold at Christie’s auction.

Alums Jennifer Steinkamp (left) and Catherine Opie. Catherine Opie, Untitled #19, 2011. Inkjet print on Plexi, 50 x 47 ½ in. Sold at auction. Installation view of the exhibition at Paula Cooper. Steven Lavine with CalArts trustees Leslie McMorrow (left) and Malissa Feruzzi Shriver. Bay Area-based CalArts trustees Melissa P. Draper (left) and Joni Binder Shwarts. Alumnus B. Wurtz (right) with writer and curator Nichole Caruso. Next page, from top: Another CalArts partner in the Benefit & Auction was online art resource Artsy—represented at Art/Basel in Miami Beach by chief curator and director of Strategic Partnerships Christine Kuan (second from left), founder and ceo Carter Cleveland (third from left), and co-founder and coo Sebastian Cwilich (center). They were joined by alumnus Tony Oursler (far right) and faculty Sam Durant (left), Thomas Lawson (third from right) and Charles Gaines.

stefanie keenan/getty images for calarts

Carrie Mae Weems, Jim, If You Choose to Accept, the Mission Is to Land on Your Own Two Feet, 1990. Silver gelatin print, 20 x 16 in. Sold during Christie’s Spring Auction. A viewer studies a photograph entitled Developing Tray #1 (Grey) by Anne Collier. Gallerygoers at the April 5 opening of the CalArts Benefit Exhibition at Paula Cooper Gallery.

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Benefit Co-Chairs

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Sofia Coppola (Art 94) Jill G. Kraus, CalArts Trustee; Chair, Public Art Fund, New York Marian Goodman, Marian Goodman Gallery Steven D. Lavine, President, CalArts

Thomas Lawson, Dean, School of Art; Jill G. and Peter Kraus Distinguished Chair Tony Oursler (Art bfa 79) Ed Ruscha (Chouinard 60) Janet Sternburg

Honorary Committee

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Daniel Neidich and Brooke Garber Neidich, Co-Chair, Board of Trustees, Whitney Museum of American Art Thao Nguyen, Creative Artist Agency Susan Nimoy and Leonard Nimoy Peter Norton, CalArts Trustee Emeritus Catherine S. Opie (Art mfa 88) Michael S. Ovitz Laura Owens (Art mfa 94) Jeff Poe, Blum & Poe Gallery Joan Agajanian Quinn and John J. Quinn Erica Redling, Redling Fine Art Shaun C. Regen, Regen Projects Janelle Reiring, Metro Pictures Gallery Thomas Unterman, CalArts Trustee Dallas Price-Van Breda and Bob Van Breda Susanne Vielmetter, Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects Joel Wachs, President, The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts Adam Weinberg, Alice Pratt Brown Director, Whitney Museum of American Art Joni Weyl and Sidney B. Felsen, Founders, Gemini g.e.l. Gallery, Los Angeles Helene Winer, Metro Pictures Gallery Lynn Zelevansky, The Henry J. Heinz II Director, Carnegie Museum of Art Dasha Zhukova, Founder, Garage Center for Contemporary Culture, Moscow

CalArts Auction & Benefit

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Miguel Abreu, Miguel Abreu Gallery Timothy Blum, Blum & Poe Gallery Eva Chow Paula Cooper, Paula Cooper Gallery James Cuno, President and ceo, The J. Paul Getty Trust Neda Disney and Timothy J. Disney, CalArts Trustee Veronica Pastel and Robert B. Egelston, CalArts Trustee Emeritus Mandy and Cliff Einstein Larry Gagosian, Gagosian Gallery Frank O. Gehry Richard Gold and Harriett Gold, CalArts Trustee Susan Steinhauser and Dan Greenberg Amy Madigan and Ed A. Harris (Theater bfa 75) Charmaine Jefferson, CalArts Trustee; Executive Director, California African American Museum Michael Kohn, Michael Kohn Gallery David Kordansky (Art mfa 02) David Kordansky Gallery Christine Kuan, Chief Curator & Director of Strategic Partnerships, Artsy Margo Leavin, Margo Leavin Gallery Rachel Lehmann, Lehmann Maupin Gallery Philip B. Lind, oc, cm, Vice Chairman, Rogers Communications Inc. Eugenio Lopez David Maupin, Lehmann Maupin Gallery


The group portrait of “The Kids from CalArts” in the March 2014 issue of Vanity Fair. Top, from left: Brad Bird, Jerry Rees, John Musker, Kirk Wise and Rob Minkoff. Middle row: Stephen Hillenburg, Mark Andrews, Joe Buck, Mike Giaimo, Brenda Chapman, Glen Keane, Pete Docter and Rich Moore. Front row: Tim Burton, Genndy Tartakovsky, Leslie Gorin, Andrew Stanton, John Lasseter and Henry Selick.

ANIMATORS REUNITE, REMEMBER AND REJOICE The buzz of excitement was palpable on the morning of December 9, 2013, as word spread throughout the hallways, classrooms and computer lab of the Institute’s animation programs. Many giants in the field, members of CalArts’ first generation of animation graduates, were coming to campus to be photographed by Annie Leibovitz for Vanity Fair magazine!

by Stuart I. Frolick



Portrait photographer Annie Leibovitz (right) shoots CalArts’ animation all-stars inside famed classroom a113.

Inclement weather delayed Leibovitz’s flight departure from New York by three hours, giving the alumni even more time to mingle with students in the hallway of the Character Animation area.

Student Amanda Candler met one of her heroes, John Musker, and reports:

Developed and written over the course of a year, writer Sam Kashner’s Vanity Fair story chronicles the lives and times at CalArts in the 1970s that produced the renaissance and revolution in animation feature filmmaking. Focusing on directors such as John Lasseter (bfa 79), John Musker (77), Tim Burton (79) and Henry Selick (77), Kashner also interviewed many other acclaimed alumni, and described his finished piece as a “Valentine to CalArts.” Archival photographs of Walt Disney, the CalArts campus, the featured directors as students, and stills from Disney and Pixar films illustrated the article. In addition, films by student animators appeared on Vanity Fair’s website.

“John brought a huge, fantastic head—a 3d collaged likeness of himself that he’d made as a student. It was hilarious… I wanted to get a book for him to sign and dashed back to the dorm to get it. I don’t know how, but John remembered meeting me at a Creative Talent Network event in Burbank. While he was signing my book, Annie Leibovitz came over to tell him what she had in mind for the group photograph. At that point he had written ‘John’ in my book, but not ‘Musker.’ I stood there thinking that I shouldn’t be listening to their conversation, but also wanting him to finish signing my book. Thankfully, John introduced me to Annie. “I’m a huge fan of Annie Leibovitz’s work and it was very cool to see all of the equipment unloaded and set up for the shot. She was really nice, and I texted my mom, telling her that ‘Annie Leibovitz just complimented me on the snowflake necklace you gave me!’… A lot of students, especially some of the younger ones got that little ‘shine’ on, and couldn’t really speak—they were so star-struck— but I tried to tell myself that these guys had started at the bottom, and through their talent and hard work had risen up through the ranks to become directors—but that, like the rest of us, they still put their pants on one leg at a time. It was pretty amazing when John Lasseter, Mark Andrews and Andrew Stanton just popped in unannounced on Bruce Block’s Film Grammar class. I remember thinking, ‘CalArts is so cool—this just doesn’t happen at other schools.’”

Leibovitz’s historic photo shoot occasioned a campus reunion of sorts for those invited and able to attend. In addition to the animators cited above, returning alumni included Mark Andrews (bfa 93), Brenda Chapman (bfa 87), Pete Docter (bfa 90), Mike Giamo (bfa 78), Leslie Gorin (77), Steve Hillenburg (mfa 92), Glen Keane (74), Rob Minkoff (83), Rich Moore (bfa 87), Jerry Rees (77), Andrew Stanton (bfa 87), Genndy Tartakovsky (cer 92) and Kirk Wise (cer 85). Burton and Brad Bird (76), though not present, magically appear in Leibovitz’s published photograph. A113—the classroom in which the first generation of animators studied—was chosen for the picture. The room number has become something of a talisman for these directors, appearing subtly in many of their films.


Animators Reunite

The acclaimed photographer was asked to create one of her signature group tableaux—this one featuring 17 of CalArts’ best known alumni animators to illustrate the opening of an 11-page story, “The Class that Roared.” Timed to hit mailboxes and newsstands in mid-February, in the weeks preceding the Academy Awards, the article ran in the March 2014 “Hollywood” issue of Vanity Fair. At the Oscar ceremony on March 2, Chris Buck (bfa 78), one of the alumni in the photograph, won the award for Animated Feature Film for co-directing Frozen, Disney’s worldwide blockbuster.


CalArts animation students were delighted to welcome the "Dream Team" of animation alums back to campus for the Vanity Fair photo shoot. Not surprisingly, they could not resist snapping selfies with their heroes.


















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The Disney/Pixar triumvirate of Andrew Stanton, John Lasseter and Pete Docter reenact (13) an iconic archival photo from the 1980s (12) outside hallowed animation classroom a113—whose legend has been referenced in every single Pixar movie to date. Elsewhere, Lasseter and Stanton dropped in during a class led by Leo Hobaica Jr. (11). The selfies continued unabated, with Geun Jackie Lee now posing with John Musker (15) and Henry Selick (18), and a group shot with Lasseter, Stanton and Andrews (16). It fell to Lasseter to confirm that today’s animation students do in fact measure up—to Pete Docter at least (17). And finally, a group portrait (14): Stanton, Docter, Lasseter and Andrews surrounded by the latest generation of animators they have inspired—and so the CalArts cycle continues.



Animators Reunite


Ryan Jous and McKenna Harris posed with Mark Andrews (left) and Andrew Stanton (1 and 2, with the latter image caught by Vanity Fair’s Annie Leibovitz), while Guen Jackie Lee appeared with John Lasseter (4) and Brenda Chapman (9). Zuzana Bahulova, meanwhile, posed with the duo of Andrews and Pete Docter (8) and, later, with Glen Keane (10). Lasseter (3), Stanton (6) and others found time to check out student work after signing the official “Welcome Board” (7) and, in the company of the very tall Pete Docter, comparing heights (5) with the current crop of animation artists.

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As game-changing technologies and proliferating media dramatically transform how we live, work, play and make sense of the Venice Terminal world, it is often designers who are best-placed, by dint of their specialized creative skillsets, to chart pathways through the hypersaturated, multilayered, constantly morphing datascape. Designers help us navigate the teeming realm of “content”—of images and words, ideas and products, spaces and things. Much more than adding surface appeal and aesthetic refinement, they mediate in the exchanges between digital and sensorial, global and local, the historical and the contemporary. Plying the shared language of design, they have the know-how and

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Fanning out to points in the U.S., Europe and Asia, graduates of the CalArts Graphic Design Program are excelling across an everwidening expanse—from print and editorial design to motion graphics, from typography to digital media and interface design, from branding, experience and environmental design to higher education, research and curatorship. The following pages offer a sampling of this extraordinary spectrum of work by some of today’s brightest talents. For all its rich variety and international reach, the design showcased here derives from common roots: the comprehensive set of methodologies and practices cultivated at CalArts.


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As producers, interpreters and facilitators, CalArts graphic design alums are shaping the art of communication.

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Created by Amsterdam studio Experimental Jetset, the identity system incorporates a flexible zigzag—dubbed the “responsive W”—that can be customized for different applications. But the word mark only set the point of departure. Since last year, Greenbaum’s Whitney team has built out a cohesive framework, across hundreds of projects, in which the “responsiveness” of the W is shown in action. Case in point: the graphic language for the 2014 Whitney Biennial— ranging from wall texts inside the exhibition to the marketing campaign throughout the city—combines the Whitney mark with the show title in a single dynamic construction.

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For the second time in his career, Brian Roettinger (bfa 04) was nominated for the Grammy Award for Best Recording Package—on this occasion for designing the cover of Jay Z’s latest studio album, Magna Carta… Holy Grail. The cover art, a black-and-white photograph of Renaissance statuary overlaid with a strike-through of Jay Z’s name, was created by Roettinger in collaboration with photographer Ari Marcopolous and stage designerto-the-stars Willo Perron. Roettinger’s design concepts further carried over to the massive international marketing blitz that accompanied the launch of Magna Carta. The alum’s previous Grammy nom had come in 2009 for No Age’s first album, Nouns.

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Design as Lingua Franca

As design director of New York’s Whitney Museum of American Art, Hilary Greenbaum (mfa 06) has led the museum’s design staff in developing and implementing a dynamic graphic identity system around a new variable word mark. “The identity speaks to our values as an institution, namely, our responsiveness to art and artists,” she explains.

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GRAPHIC IDENTITY: Whitney Museum branding built around the “responsive W.”


 Zak Kyes  Among the European and Asian arts and culture organizations that have engaged designer Zak Kyes (bfa 05) and his London studio, Zak Group, the Fridericianum museum in Kassel, Germany, has by far the richest history. Built in 1779, the Fridericianum is the oldest public museum on the continent and, since 1955, home of the quinquennial contemporary art festival documenta. Since last summer, Zak Group has guided a rebranding campaign based on the Fridericianum “as a stage for history.” The new visual identity centers on the gorgeous custom typeface “Friderick,” derived by Radim Peško from the brass lettering on the museum’s iconic neo-classical façade. Rendered in brilliant purple, the type is “is a twist on preconceived divides between old and new, serious and unconventional, thick and thin, sharp and rounded,” says Kyes. Other elements of the identity include an “F.” symbol as a monogrammatic stand-in for the museum; enlisting the six columns under the famous Fridericianum pediment as vertical billboards; and a de-cluttered website that privileges imagery and readability. GRAPHIC IDENTITY: Fridericianum façade as billboard.

 Andrea   Tinnes 

Burg Grotesk

CalArts publications in recent years have relied on the sans-serif typeface you are viewing right now: “Spektro Gothic,” crafted by Berlin-based type and graphic designer Andrea Tinnes (mfa 98). The alum’s original fonts, published through her own label, typecuts, integrate clear geometric construction with playful decorative forms, while also spinning off related families of symbols and ornaments that can be used to build graphic patterns and structures. Her designs, Tinnes says, strive to “keep the inconsistencies consistent,” as per her CalArts faculty mentor, Jeffery Keedy.
















Her latest typefaces are a custom sans-serif font called “Burg Grotesk” and a Burg-derived font of symbols, developed as part of an identity campaign for the Burg Giebichenstein Kunsthochschule in Halle, southwest of Berlin, where Tinnes teaches. Robust, even sturdy, yet also surprisingly nuanced, Burg anchors a dynamic visual style that Tinnes says “keeps moving between tradition and modernism, between functional and experimental applications.”














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TYPE DESIGN: Burg Grotesk specimens and symbols, plus elements of Burg Giebichenstein materials designed in collaboration with Anja Kaiser.











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2014 INTERFACE DESIGN/ INFORMATION GRAPHICS: Interface for OS “Samantha” (left) and L.A.'s near-future transit map in Her.

BRANDING/USER EXPERIENCE DESIGN: Evernote's vision is extended to specially commissioned physical products.

 Geoff   McFetridge 

 Jeff   Zwerner 

As “graphical futurist designer” on Spike Jonze’s Academy Awardwinning feature film Her, Geoff McFetridge (mfa 95) created the iPhone-like interface of the operating system the audience would come to know as “Samantha,” sultrily voiced by Scarlett Johansson. The only specification given in the script was that the OS is housed in a handheld physical object. “Everything below that was a question mark,” recalls the founder of L.A.’s Champion Graphics. In addition to the OS, McFetridge developed a whole repertory of other interfaces, artifacts and visual elements to inhabit and bring to life the “near-future” world postulated by the movie. In fact, the thrust of the story—the deepening intimacy between human and computer—demanded that McFetridge go beyond futurist set decoration and instead dramatize, via design, a relationship to technology.

“I think of design in a very open way, as just sound decision-making to benefit the organization,” says Zwerner, who also oversees the interior design of Evernote’s Redwood City headquarters. “As a designer who speaks the language of business, my job is to build out the right teams and effective processes, and to promote a culture inside the company, so that good design can come to life.”

(The local design community, in particular, was tickled by McFetridge's L.A. light-rail transit map of the future, glimpsed only in passing in the film. If the city today cannot match the comprehensive public transport networks of other global capitals, here is at least a speculative design expression to answer the iconic subway maps of New York and London.)

“As a profession, design today is at a pinnacle,” declares Zwerner, a veteran of Apple who has also successfully launched products for the likes of Nike and Steelcase. “Designers have the power now, because, instead of just proposing concepts, we can make things people can see, touch and respond to—immediately. In the business world, this ability lets you push the ball down the field, push it much farther, much faster.”


Design as Lingua Franca

Silicon Valley exec Jeff Zwerner (mfa 92), vp of Branded Products and Experiences at app maker Evernote, isn’t actually involved with the company’s popular note-taking software. Instead, his brief is to develop and market a selection of physical products for the evergrowing community of Evernote users, now numbering more than 90 million. These products include integrated hardware for use with Evernote apps and specially commissioned accessories. Sold via the Evernote Market, a retail portal Zwerner introduced last year, they take Evernote’s vision beyond the app, extending it to the physical world. The desired outcome: Tangible amenity meets digital utility.


MOTION DESIGN/ ART DIRECTION: The construction of "Jaegers" in a still from the Pacific Rim prologue.

 DARYN   WAKASA  Some of the most compelling work to date by Mirada Studios art director Daryn Wakasa (mfa 10) can be seen in the bravura prologue of the sci-fi epic Pacific Rim, directed by fantasy auteur (and Mirada co-founder) Guillermo del Toro. Not only does the two-minute intro provide back-story and set up the movie’s premise in spectacular sweeps of action, it immediately places the audience in a visually, conceptually, even culturally coherent nearfuture in which giant humanpiloted mechas (“Jaegers”) battle alien monsters (“Kaiju”).

“My role as art director is to help a director develop his or her vision—to lay the groundwork for bringing an idea to life,” explains Wakasa. Starting with an edit of stock documentary footage to cover the prologue’s main beats, he led a team of concept artists and designers to build the narrative architecture and look-and-feel of a segment that would eventually incorporate some 80 effects shots. “We had to bridge the world of today with the world of Pacific Rim, and make that transition organic and believable,” says the CalArts alum. “The work is always about communicating the strongest story possible.”

 GOLDEN   KRISHNA  “The best interface is no interface,” Golden Krishna (bfa 10) famously declared at last year’s South by Southwest (sxsw) festival in Austin, causing an industrywide stir that has grown into a sustained critique of screen-based interfaces. Krishna—a user experience (ux) designer who is joining the new r&d lab of retailer Zappos after previous stints with the San Francisco design and strategy firm Cooper and electronics giant Samsung—makes his point by comparing a bmw app that takes 13 steps to unlock a car door to sensors in a MercedesBenz vehicle that detect the car keys in the driver’s pocket and automatically unlock the door. As part of a wider argument to improve ux, the designer calls on companies to create systems

USER EXPERIENCE DESIGN: Krishna giving a talk on “No ui.”


that adapt to individuals’ needs rather than create technologies that require people to adapt to them. Having inspired a whole movement called “No ui,” Krishna has been lecturing about this subject at national and international design conferences for the past two years. “My ideas,” he says, “are reflective of the kind of critical thinking I learned in the Graphic Design Program.” These ideas are now collected in a forthcoming book entitled— what else?—The Best Interface is No Interface. Designed by Krishna and CalArts colleague Megan Lynch (mfa 10), the treatise will appear later this year on the Peachpit imprint of Pearson Education.


 JESSE   LEE STOUT  Holder of two degrees from CalArts (Film/Video bfa 02, Graphic Design mfa 11), Jesse Lee Stout has been designing concerts for a formidable who’s-who of pop and hip-hop: artists such as Rihanna, Drake, Jay Z, Beck, the xx, and Florence + the Machine. Dealing directly with the artists, Stout first generates a performance concept or theme on the basis of “exhaustive” exploratory research—a creative methodology that is heartily encouraged in the CalArts Graphic Design Program. “I then divide the concert into a progression of acts, usually five, and develop looks and transitions between those acts, and finally break it down further into individual songs, while making sure there’s a cohesion and balance throughout the show,” explains Stout, who also produces original video content for each tour and televised performance.

Design as Lingua Franca

Stout, a veteran of the creative direction outfit wp&a, is now heading up the new Los Angeles studio of Moment Factory, the multimedia and entertainment company headquartered in Montreal.

CONCERT DESIGN: Rihanna on tour (above) and in a televised performance.



INTERFACE DESIGN/ INFORMATION GRAPHICS: Mobile app interfaces for mem:o (left) and Totem (below).


 CAROLINE OH  As what Digital Trends called “the perfect bridge between functionality and visual charm,” the iPad app “mem:o” is a near-addictive data visualization tool introduced last year by New York designer Caroline Oh (mfa 08) and Seoul-based counterpart Young Sang Cho. The app converts personal data—from daily expenses to, say, hiking distances—into bouncy calendars or maps that narrativize the information, making “life-logging” into a fun, positively creative activity. “See your life story told in pop-hued charts,” enthused Fast Company. Now comes “Totem,” an iPad app that enables users to integrate photos and recorded narration

into polished oral histories, which can be then shared as videos. Oh and partners Tom Gerhardt and Kacie Kinzer developed Totem with the help of an investment by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. MOTION DESIGN: Still from spots for Gmail Mobile (right) and Wikipedia (below).

The app provides story structures but also leaves room for creative decision-making on part of the user. Oh points to how marketers of early cake mixes used the addition of freshly cracked eggs to transform an otherwise industrial mixture of powder and water into a “homemade” preparation. “The idea in designing an interactive tool,” she says, “is to give users the experience of creative ownership.”

Known for witty illustrated storytelling that riffs on a variety of visual styles and idioms, motionographer and director Mark Kulakoff (mfa 04) has recently turned to retro techniques such as stop-motion animation. His 30-second spot for Gmail Mobile uses laborintensive papercraft to trumpet ease-of-use (a variation on his earlier play on no-frills web page design, in an animated video for Wikipedia). Another standout is an in-house tutorial for espn; the six-minute short


combines stop-motion and live puppetry in a throwback to the interstitials of the 1970s. “My work now looks very different from what I was doing in school, but the foundations are the same,” says Kulakoff. “CalArts is where I started to think conceptually about how to communicate ideas. And even if you are intuitive and imagedriven, as I am, you learn to use your intuition in a conceptual way.”


interior design: Google offices in Tokyo.

 Ian Lynam  In addition to the work he produces out of his Tokyo studio, Ian Lynam (mfa 04) is a prolific writer on the subject of design. One of his regular outlets is Idea, Japan’s adventurous, beautifully crafted graphic arts quarterly and publisher of books on design. As educative as it is notional, the alum’s scholarship also turns out to fulfill an important creative r&d role, underpinning the formal, aesthetic and cultural dimensions of his practice.

 jon sueda  Held earlier this year at somarts in San Francisco, All Possible Futures was the latest in a line of eye-opening exhibitions conceived, curated and designed by Jon Sueda (mfa 02). The ambitious show and its accompanying catalogue surveyed a range of “speculative” work by graphic designers pondering the question, “What if?” “It covers everything from self-generated experimental work to clientbased projects that were tackled with a high level of critical investigation,” explains Sueda. “Some work exists in a ‘real-world’ context, while others might otherwise have gone unnoticed: failed proposals, sketches, incomplete thoughts.” An extension of his design practice (at Stripe sf) and teaching (at California College of the Arts), Sueda’s curatorial work has functioned as a valuable r&d forum, pointing to heady new directions and enlivening discourse among a wider community of creative professionals and educators, in the Bay Area and beyond. “I do commission new design and writing by designers,” says Sueda, “because I want to facilitate exploration that might not have a chance to exist otherwise.”

RESEARCH/ CURATORSHIP/ EXHIBITION DESIGN: Installation view of All Possible Futures.


Design as Lingua Franca

Consider, for example, Lynam’s iterative study of Japan’s vernacular visual languages. On the one hand, this research led to a major historical survey of the editorial design and packaging of manga, anime and other popular character-driven narratives (Design of Manga, Anime and Light Novels, Idea Books, 2011, in Japanese and English). On the other, Lynam was able to readily tap into local pop iconographies to articulate complex cultural themes and moods, via custom wallpapers, for the Tokyo offices of Google—where a rootless, transnational digital brand is now given a sense of place.


News from Faculty, Alumni, Students and Other Members of the CalArts Community

DISPATCHES courtesy of ray morales

courtesy of the artists and luis de jesus los angeles. photo: bill orcutt

Studies mfa 99) of the performance group My Barbarian, Doug Ischar (mfa 87), Dashiell Manley (bfa 07), John Mason (Chouinard 54), Laura Owens (mfa 94), Charlemagne Palestine (Music 71), and Catherine Sullivan (Theater bfa 92) with Valerie Snobeck. Also in the lineup were three late artists: faculty Allan Sekula (1951–2013) and alums Channa Horwitz (1932–2013, bfa 72) and Tony Greene (1955–1990, mfa 87). The latter’s work was surveyed in a sub-exhibition curated by Greene’s classmates Richard Hawkins (mfa 88) and Catherine Opie (mfa 88). Newly anointed MacArthur Fellow Carrie Mae Weems (bfa 81) had her first-ever career retrospective at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York. The exhibition, Carrie Mae Weems: Three Decades of Photography and Video, traces how the artist has extended her trenchant contemplations of race, gender and class to more globally scaled struggles for equality and justice. Weems strives to “better [understand] the present by closely examining history and identity,” write the curators. “Her work also contains a desire for universality: while African Americans are typically her primary subjects, Weems wants ‘people of color to stand for the human multitudes.’”


From top: Tony Greene, Untitled (yellow pour), 1990. Mixed media, 15 ½ x 16 ¼ in.

Zackary Drucker and Rhys Ernst, Relationship (Zackary Drucker and Rhys Ernst, 2008), from the Relationship series, 2008–13. Chromogenic print.

Designers Sean Adams (bfa 86) and Noreen Morioka (bfa 88) have received the aiga Medal—the highest honor in the field of graphic design. The pair founded the L.A. studio AdamsMorioka in 1994, at a time when design was, according to aiga, “oblique, illegible and too cool for comprehension.” Going against the grain, Adams and Morioka adopted a “clean, modernist approach” to make work resonate with broader audiences. Today they count The Walt Disney Company, Nickelodeon, Sundance Institute, Old Navy and usc among their clients.

Christopher Williams (mfa 81, bfa 79) returned to the Art Institute of Chicago—where he had his first museum show—for a retrospective of his career-long engagement with the history and practice of photography. Christopher Williams: The Production Line of Happiness next travels to moma in New York and, later, to the Whitechapel Gallery in London.

More than a dozen CalArtians were featured in the 2014 Whitney Biennial in New York. The roster included the duo of Zackary Drucker (mfa 07) and Rhys Ernst (Film/Video mfa 11), Victoria Fu (mfa 05), Malik Gaines (Critical


SCHOOL OF CRITICAL STUDIES Having debuted in 2013 in England and Norway, Dean Amanda Beech’s three-channel video and architectural installation, Final Machine, was presented in Limerick, Ireland, as part of the eva International— “Ireland’s Biennial.” Combining footage of high desert, dense jungle and nocturnal city with architectural form and recordings of found rhetoric, Beech’s work “takes up the dynamic of image-force, through entangling narratives of power from philosophical theory, literature and real political events.” In the new hybrid memoir, American Canyon (Kaya Press), Amarnath Ravva (mfa 04) infuses first-person narrative with both documentary and mythic dimensions as he “recounts the fragmented and everevolving story of one person’s apprehension of the ghosts of history.” The Los Angeles-based author’s “lament” is developed from 10 years of video notes, tracing not only the transition from Rameswaram (on the southern tip of the Indian subcontinent) to California, but also a journey of abiding love and compassion. “A phenomenal debut,” pronounced writer Colin Dickey, while poet Kevin Killian hailed the “calm, cool stylings of one of America’s finest young writers.”


Levi Gonzalez (bfa 97) premiered The Craft of the Father, a fullevening trio, at the Chocolate Factory Theater in Long Island City, ny. Based on the “primacy and urgency of the body,” Craft explores “physical states and interior experience rather than [movement] originating from form, steps or design.” Gonzalez, Kayvon Pourazar and Eleanor Smith performed the earthy piece to a sound score by Tatyana Tenenbaum. The CalArts alum “is an unruly dancemaker, contemptuous of neat forms, and his Craft of the Father is a desperate spilling of guts,” disclosed The New Yorker.

Lindsey Lollie’s (bfa 12) troupe, LollieWorks, was among the eight companies showcased in Celebrate Dance at Alex Theatre in Glendale, ca. She staged Interval, a trippy new small-ensemble piece suggestive of altered perception and dislocated time. The eerie score was supplied by Paul Matthis (Music mfa 13).

The charity organization formed by the “Brony” community—i.e., adult male fans of the My Little Pony cartoon franchise—has donated $50,000 to CalArts to establish the “Derpy Hooves Animation Scholarship.” The reference is to the show’s clumsy, muffin-gobbling pony Derpy Hooves—so nicknamed by Bronies— but the scholarship is actually an indirect tribute to Lauren Faust (95), the executive producer of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic on The Hub. Faust, the Emmy Awardwinning veteran of Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends and The Powerpuff Girls, is revered among the show’s fan base, not least for having helped produce the quirky documentary Bronies: The Extremely Unexpected Adult Fans of My Little Pony.

Frank Terry, 1939–2014 CalArts is remembering animation director and educator Frank Terry, the beloved former head of Character Animation who guided one of the Institute’s signature programs into the 21st Century. He succumbed to pulmonary fibrosis on February 11. After getting his start on The Beatles animated television series, Terry (Chouinard 64) spent much of his commercial animation career in advertising, working out of studios from Spungbuggy Works in the 1960s to FilmFair and Duck Soup Producktions in the ’80s. His work earned multiple accolades from New York Festival’s International Television & Film Awards and the Art Directors Club (adc). Eventually Terry and his wife, Nelleke, opened their own studio, terryx2.

The Institute was once again well represented at the Ann Arbor Film Festival (aaff)—the longestrunning independent and experimental film showcase in North America. Three filmmakers from CalArts picked up awards: Andrew Kim’s (mfa 02) thesis project, Will o’ the Wisp, a 24-minute meditation on the intangible (“ghosts, perfection, magic, etc…”), earned the Tom Berman Award for Most Promising Filmmaker. Faculty member Charlotte Pryce received the Stan Brakhage Film at Wit’s End Award for her hand-processed silent short A Study in Natural Magic. Lastly, Deborah Stratman (mfa 95) won the Leon Speakers Award for Best Sound Design for the documentary short Hacked Circuit. CalArts’ Steve Anker was a member of the jury. aaff also presented a full retrospective of the work of faculty member Thom Andersen, America’s foremost practitioner of the essay film.

Terry joined CalArts in 1995 and became director of the Character Animation Program the following year. His 11-year tenure coincided with the meteoric emergence of cg animation as the industry standard. Terry helped manage this transition by reinforcing the program’s core commitment to the art of story animation while at the same time staying abreast of new digital tools and technologies. Yet Terry will be best remembered by his students for his personal mentorship, which combined astute artistic advice with extraordinary generosity of spirit.


Below: Still from Will o’ the Wisp, the award-winning experimental short by Andrew Kim.

Lollieworks dancers performing Interval, a collage of visceral and improvisational movement.


Maria Hassabi (mfa 94) debuted a bold new dance, entitled Premiere, at the Kitchen in New York as part of the Performa biennial of visual art and performance. Featuring Hassabi and four other dancers in five simultaneous solos, Premiere delved into—and stretched out, as if in slow-motion—the moment of first encounter between artwork and audience. “Luminous, strenuous, severe—as riveting to watch as it is taxing,” declared The New York Times. “It joins Ms. Hassabi’s recent body of pared-down studies about performance… Almost every incremental change—of posture, of focus, of lighting—feels momentous.”


scott groller


courtesy of the filmmaker

courtesy of lollieworks

courtesy of amc

courtesy of the artist


THE HERB SCHOOL OF INSTITUTE ALPERT THEATER SCHOOL OF MUSIC Lighting designer Kevin Adams (mfa 86) and scene designer Christopher Barreca were among the winners at the 2014 Tony Awards. Adams collected the Tony— the fourth of his career—for Best Lighting Design of a Musical for his work on the glam-rock saga Hedwig and the Angry Inch. The designer’s previous Tonys were for American Idiot, The 39 Steps and Spring Awakening. Chris Barreca, the head of the School of Theater’s Scene Design Program, won the Tony Award for Best Scenic Design of a Musical for Rocky, the musical stage version of the rags-to-riches boxing movie. Elsewhere, renowned playwright, librettist and director James Lapine (Design mfa 73) missed out in his bid for a fourth Tony with Act One, his adaptation of Moss Hart’s classic show-biz memoir, which was up for Best Play. Lapine, who studied graphic design and photography at CalArts before breaking into theater, holds three Tonys for Best Book: two for collaborations with Stephen Sondheim (Into the Woods, Passion) and one with William Finn (Falsettos). In addition, Lapine has won, with Sondheim, the Pulitzer Prize for Drama for Sunday in the Park with George.

Trumpeter Spencer Ludwig (12) has been shining on the road with Capital Cities, the L.A. indie pop outfit fronted by Ryan Merchant and Sebu Simonian. The band released the ep Kangaroo Court (Capitol Records) before bringing its infectious alt-dance grooves to the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in April. Andrew McIntosh (mfa 08) joined in with his colleagues in the ensemble wild Up as they played his microtonal composition Silver and White at Disney Hall in April. The performance was part of the L.A. Phil’s “Minimalist Jukebox” series. Conducted by wild Up artistic director Christopher Rountree, the lineup included McIntosh, on viola, with trombonist Matt Barbier (mfa 10), percussionist Matt Cook (mfa 10), trumpeter Jonah Levy (mfa 11) and cellist Derek Stein (mfa 10). Appearing in the same concert, entitled “Maximum Minimalism,” was Andrew Tholl (dma 11), who played violin with the L.A. Phil New Music Group.

This page, from top: Guggenheim Fellow Dorit Cypis.

Sola Bamis (left) as Shirley on amc’s Mad Men. Spencer Ludwig played trumpet on the ep Kangaroo Court by Capital Cities.

Trumpeter, composer, bandleader and producer Daniel Rosenboom (mfa 07) has a new album out called Fire Keeper (Orenda Records)—the debut recording from the Daniel Rosenboom Quintet. “Complex and exciting” is how All About Jazz described the collection’s sly blend of jazz, prog rock and metal. “Fire Keeper burns, lurches, and leaps with intelligent virtuosity and a breathtaking sense of ensemble cohesion.” The quintet comprises Rosenboom on trumpet and flugelhorn, Kai Kurosawa (mfa 05) on “Beartrax” (his own custom-built tapped-string instrument), Alexander Noice (bfa 08) on electric guitar, Gavin Templeton (mfa 08) on saxophone, flute and clarinet, and Dan Schnelle on drums.

A trio of Acting Program alums had guest roles on high-profile cable premieres in April. Sola Bamis (bfa 11) began a recurring part on amc’s revered drama Mad Men, while hbo’s critically acclaimed new sitcom Silicon Valley—created by Office Space writer-director Mike Judge—welcomed guest players Aly Mawji (bfa 08) and Brian Tichnell (mfa 11). Lighting designer Michael Gend (mfa 09) made his New York OffBroadway debut with Sharr White’s play Annapurna at the Acorn Theatre. Megan Mullally and Nick Offerman reprised their roles from last year’s L.A. run at the Odyssey Theatre, with former faculty member Bart DeLorenzo also returning as director.


Artist Dorit Cypis (Art mfa 77) and choreographer Kate Weare (Dance bfa 94, see page 3) earned Guggenheim Fellowships this year. Also receiving the coveted grant— among the most prestigious in the arts, humanities and sciences—were two winners of The Herb Alpert Award in the Arts: creative musicmaker Steve Coleman and multimedia artist Sharon Hayes. Gabriel García Márquez, 1927–2014 CalArts joined with lovers of great literature worldwide to remember Gabriel García Márquez, the Colombian Nobel laureate and revered icon of Latin American arts and letters who passed away on April 17 at his home in Mexico City. Read throughout the world, the virtuoso of “magical realism” penned the landmark novels One Hundred Years of Solitude (1967), The Autumn of the Patriarch (1975) and Love in the Time of Cholera (1985). The literary titan is survived by his wife, Mercedes, and sons Gonzalo García and Rodrigo García—the latter of whom has been a CalArts trustee since 2012. Upon joining the board, the award-winning writer, director and producer established a scholarship for Latino and Latin American students in the name of his parents. During the 2013–14 academic year, the recipients of the Mercedes and Gabriel García Márquez Scholarship were: Jeanette Vasquez Aldana (bfa Photography and Media), Cassandra Cisneros (mfa Graphic Design) and Ernesto Cruz (mfa Clarinet).


A framed studio glamour portrait of singer and actress Dale Melbourne graces the living room coffee table of John Herklotz’s Lake Forest, ca, home. Melbourne, Herklotz’s late wife, was an Australian-born singer, dancer and pianist who performed in musical theater in London in the 1940s and acted in the United States, notably in a national touring production of Ibsen’s A Doll’s House. Herklotz’s own career was in finance, but through his wife he gained a deep appreciation for the arts, and in her honor, he established a charitable remainder trust in 1990, choosing CalArts as a beneficiary. By then, Melbourne was suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, and Herklotz, who had been introduced to CalArts by a friend, wanted to recognize her gift of music and dance by making a gift to the Institute. With his pledge, he joined the CalArts Legacy Circle, a community of artists and supporters who have provided for CalArts in their estate plans or through a life-income gift. The support of Legacy Circle members like Herklotz keeps the Institute’s educational programs strong and assists CalArts students in the development of their work. Herklotz’s years of hard work have enabled him to generously provide for CalArts and many other institutions. “I decided at age 11 that I would be a cpa,” he says. “I always liked and excelled at math.” After a successful career in accounting in his hometown of Chicago, working his way up to chief financial officer for the Chicago Tribune’s subsidiary companies, Herklotz moved to Los Angeles in 1968. He then launched a new career as a financial consultant for the media industry and as a radio and tv broker, helping companies buy stations around the country. In the late 1980s, when the cell phone industry was taking off, Herklotz won a government lottery for the right to provide cellular service for the Santa Fe–Los Alamos area of New Mexico. In 1990, Centel Corporation purchased Herklotz’s cellular company. He used some of the proceeds from that sale to produce a family-oriented film, The Giant of Thunder Mountain (1990). Since then, he has devoted most of his time to philanthropy, and contributed to numerous educational institutions throughout the United States, including usc, uc Irvine, DePaul University, John Brown University, Concordia University, and CalArts. When Herklotz established the charitable remainder trust, he designated CalArts to receive 5% of its value at the time of his death. But after learning about the extensive damage to the school caused by the Northridge earthquake in January 1994, he increased the allotment to 10%. At that time, his pledge to CalArts was worth more than $1 million.

courtesy of john herklotz

John Herklotz

One advantage of a charitable remainder trust is that the funds are invested and typically grow during the donor’s lifetime, enabling the beneficiary to receive more funds than it might otherwise collect if the donor simply designated a specific amount in his or her estate plan. Establishing the trust also provides the donor with tax benefits. If established with appreciated securities, for example, the donor pays no immediate capital gains tax on the transfer of appreciated assets and also receives income tax charitable deductions. In 2000, in anticipation of the funds that will eventually become available through the trust, CalArts established the Dale Melbourne Herklotz Memorial Endowed Scholarship, designated specifically for students enrolled in The Herb Alpert School of Music. The scholarships have been awarded to several music students each year since then. “One of the reasons that I’m providing scholarships to college students is because I benefitted from similar help,” says Herklotz, who attended college with assistance from the G.I. Bill, as well as a scholarship from the Tribune Company. “Supporting CalArts is also recognition for what my wife had accomplished as a performing artist.” Over the past 10 years, Herklotz has bought a table at the redcat Gala and attended the celebration numerous times. “It’s a way of continuing the relationship,” Herklotz says. “redcat is important to me because of its affiliation with CalArts. I like CalArts. I like the campus. Every year I get letters from students who receive the scholarships telling me how much they appreciate my help. That means a lot to me. I believe it’s better to give than to receive.” —Michael Rogers

For more information on becoming a member of the CalArts Legacy Circle, please contact: Randy Lakeman, Executive Director of Development (661) 222-2742 or

CALIFORNIA INSTITUTE OF THE ARTS Office of Communications 24700 McBean Parkway Valencia, California 91355-2340

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Cover image: Liz Glynn, Celestial Globe 34N118W (after Archimedes), 2014. Plaster, ink, acrylic, wood and brass hardware, 18 ½ x 16 x 16 in. Photo: Jeff McLane. The sculpture by Glynn (Art mfa 08) was one of numerous artworks donated by alumni and faculty for sale during the recent CalArts Benefit & Auction, whose proceeds are helping to underwrite the John Baldessari Studios and fund scholarships in the School of Art. Glynn was inspired by Renaissance maps of the constellations as she conceived of this work in a railway car studio during last summer’s “Station to Station” arts extravaganza—a traveling festival initiated by artist Doug Aitken that crossed America by train.

CalArts is published twice each year by the CalArts Office of Communications. California Institute of the Arts Steven D. Lavine, President Jay Carducci, Vice President and Chief Communications Officer, Office of Communications Editorial: Stuart I. Frolick, Freddie Sharmini and Michael Rogers Design: Cassandra Chae (Art mfa 07) and Jin Son (Art mfa 06) Typefaces in this issue include: McBean by Benjamin Woodlock (Art mfa 13) and Spektro Gothic by Andrea Tinnes (Art mfa 98)

01 Headliners 05 redcat gala 07 school of Art Benefit & Auction 14 � ANIMATION IN VANITY FAIR 18 Design as Lingua Franca  26 Dispatches

Photography: Scott Groller and Steven A. Gunther Telephone: 661 255-1050 E-mail:

CalArts Magazine #16  
CalArts Magazine #16