Monday Funday: Screaming Hand 30th Anniversary

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Acrylic on wood by (L-R) Jim Phillips, son Jimbo Phillips, and grandson Colby Phillips

I had the pleasure of volunteering for the Screaming Hand 30th Anniversary Show during the VIP preview event on Thursday night at Santa Cruz Museum of Art & History (MAH). Artists featured in the show, MAH members, and the who’s who of Santa Cruz skateboarding came together for an awesome night. Honoring one of the most iconic images in skateboard culture and its creator Jim Phillips, the MAH was screaming with so much energy and excitement, and so was I. It was my first night volunteering at the museum, and I couldn’t be more thrilled!

The Screaming Hand 30th Anniversary Show has been traveling around the world for the past year, showcasing Jim Phillips’ original logo interpreted by 50+ artists from all over the world. The final stop is where it all began (Santa Cruz circa 1985), and opened to the general public during First Friday Santa Cruz festivities. The celebration will continue as the show remains at the MAH for the next eight months.

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In addition to hearing words from MAH Executive Director Nina Simon and Jim Phillips himself, I mingled with some of the artists in the show who were so incredibly stoked to be included. A MAH member was equally excited that the event was bringing together a variety of different people for a common interest and spectacular show. What an exciting event for the Santa Cruz community, the MAH and their mission, “To ignite shared experiences and unexpected connections.”

Seeing how different artists portray the Screaming Hand in their own format and style really gives the show its exuberance. It’s an epic collection of inspired works. From a fun and bright mixed media on panel by Mark Gonzalez, a stencil spray paint on panel by Jason Adams, a hand lettering acrylic on wood by Thomas Campbell, an ink/pencil on paper by Eric Dressen, to photographs of screaming  Jason Adams by Jai Tanju, a modern Bauhaus-like spray paint on panel by Ben Raney, a neoclassic inspired oil on canvas by Jason C. Arnold, and so many more. These pieces are bound to transcend expectations of skate art for museum goers.

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So much fun both Thursday and Friday nights. I bumped into and caught up with friends, some people I haven’t seen in awhile like Jai Tanju and Jimbo Phillips. I met artists I’ve admired for awhile like Jeremy Fish and Caia Koopman, and then legends like Jason Jesse. He is genuinely one of the nicest dudes I’ve ever met. I’m so thankful to call Santa Cruz home and stoked that “my life is dope, and I do dope sh*t!” (- K. West)

Stay tuned for more art, culture, and design I think is rad! Thanks for stopping by! xo ❤

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Monday Funday: #santacruzlife

Fiddler on the Roof at Cabrillo Stage

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My neighbor plays violin in the orchestra and hooked me up with some preview tickets last Thursday. (Thanks, SD!) I have to admit that I had no clue what this award-winning musical was about whatsoever. So I was pleasantly surprised when not only was the story pretty solid but so were all the performances. I even knew some of the songs never realizing before that they were from this piece.

I have to say it was pretty crazy to see how some of the same themes like racism, sexism, and discrimination being depicted in 1905 Easter Europe are still so prominent in today’s modern society. Despite the somber and abrupt ending, I highly recommend checking it out before it closes on August 14. Mazel Tov! Cabrillo Stage Summer Music Festival’s Fiddler on the Roof.

Kimbap at Santa Cruz Museum of Art & History (MAH)

I was stoked to see this event on the MAH Instagram. It’s not everyday in Santa Cruz that an Asian themed event pops up right downtown. Let alone, a food related one. I knew I had to go even though I was still on the cleanse and couldn’t actually eat any of it.

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Current MAH Artist in Residence Abigail Han invited friend and Los Angeles-based Korean American artist Hannah Naomi Varamini to show us how to make Kimbap, a Korean seaweed rice roll.

As we collectively assembled the rolls, both artists shared their appreciation for food, especially as it relates to art, politics, and culture. We discussed the adage, “you are what you eat”, and examined how powerful food can really be. The strength to break barriers and borders, bring people together to build communities, and teach us about our pasts in order to create our futures. This concept was portrayed in the nori, or seaweed, we used to wrap the Kimbap that was laser cut with excerpts from a Korean poem about the end of the Korean War.

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I later chatted more with Artist in Residence Abigail Han, originally from Singapore and currently living in Los Angeles. She is at the MAH until the end of August and interested in creating community recipes in her museum installed kitchen. How do we take the food of the past and modernize it to create something new? By the end of her residency, Han hopes to have enough footage of the community making food together and create a motion picture. Feel free to visit her at the museum during their regular hours. She’d be psyched to “break bread” with you. I told her I’d come back when I could eat again so we could cook Filipino pancit (noodles) and lumpia (eggrolls) with a modern twist. Yummy!