In a City with only one public library, the community is always searching for new ways to spread literacy and reading across our city.
In the name of this great quest: Little Free Libraries have popped up across the City, Chapman purchased and tried to preserve the Liberia Rubén Martinez bookstore (now the Centro Comunitario de Educación), and most recently a non-profit called Community Engagement and CSUF GCAC resident artist, Sarah Rafael Garcia opened a brick-and-mortar for her exciting Libromobile project.
To add another page to this story: the Santa Ana College Mural Team, 4th Street Market and Downtown Inc. recently partnered to create a mural that you can check library content out of.
The idea was shared with Santa Ana College Arts Department and Downtown Inc. by a shared contractor who encountered a mural library in a South American subway station. He sent the picture back home and Downtown Inc. and SAC connected the dots between 4th St. Market owner Ryan Chase and SAC Mural Team professor, Darren Hostetter.
Hostetter ran a contest for his students to design the best mural library concept and then painted the final product, including a stenciled QR code, or "digital" part of the mural.
This project was overseen by myself (Ryan Smolar), inspired by our downtown social media star (who likes to remain behind-the-scenes), executed by Darren Hostetter and the SAC Mural Team and made possible by Ryan Chase and the 4th St. Market. The inner-workings of the mural were advised by Santa Ana Public Librarian, David Lopez, who also told us you can apply for a library card to rent digital materials without even visiting the library. This means that the wall is not only a distributor of library content, but a library card dispensary as well.
The 4th St Market library mural connects you directly to books and content about food and cooking, and we hope murals like this will pop-up around town and connect you with other types of material whether that be art, music, science or sports. If you want a digital library mural on your public-facing wall, please contact us.
Story by Ryan Smolar
How the Consulate of Mexico in Orange County is Connecting Students to 24 OC Cultural Places and a $5,000 Scholarship
What is the PASE Program?
(Spanish acronym for -pasea, aprende, sorpréndete y experimenta- walk around, learn, surprise yourself and experiment… the cultural and natural richness in Orange County)
It's a cultural and educative initiative by the Consulate of Mexico in Orange County to support students from elementary to high school by encouraging them to visit 24 cultural places within the County and to have new learning experiences.
This project aims to awake the interest of Mexican students and from other nationalities to visit these places to experience the endless cultural and natural possibilities in Orange County.
Where can you obtain the PASE card?
Who is the target population of the PASE Program?
Students registered in any School District in Orange County from grades 1 to 12.
The PASE card is free of charge and you can download it at the web site.
Does the PASE card allow you to get free admission to the participating venues?
No, each participating institution has special offers and incentives for the students.
There are places where admission is free, like the Santa Ana Library, the Newport Beach Library, the Fullerton Arboretum, the Historic Orange County Courthouse in Santa Ana and others have free admission one day in the month. Please check on the participating agencies websites to find out about their free admittance days. For example, at the Laguna Art Museum and the Irvine Zoo if a student presents his/her P.A.S.E., his/her brothers and sisters as well as his/her Mom and Dad will get free admission. In other places, the entry will be according to the fees they have.
What Are The Benefits?
Not only the students and their parents will have experiences and gain more knowledge, but also all the students who visit the 24 institutions and write a paper about how these visits impacted their lifes, will have the opportunity to enter a raffle for a $5,000 USD scholarship.
You must present your PASE and your paper at the Consulate of Mexico in Santa Ana before April 13th, 2018. The raffle will take place on April 29, 2018.
Why the PASE Program was created?
It was created for the children to encourage them to visit these places to enrich their lives and be inspired to see artworks, natural places like the Fullerton Arboretum where they can see different species of vegetation, or visit the home of President Richard Nixon in Yorba Linda and get on the presidential helicopter used by the presidents Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon and Ford. Visit the Ocean Institute in Dana Point and see the abundant marine life, touch a starfish and maybe this will inspire them to be marine biologists or scientists. The possibilities are endless.
Learn more at: www.programapase2017.com
¿Qué es el programa PASE?
(Acrónimo que significa Pasea, Aprende, Sorpréndete y Experimenta…las riquezas culturales y naturales del Condado de Orange)
Es una iniciativa del Consulado de México en el Condado de Orange que exhorta a estudiantes de primaria a preparatoria a visitar 24 lugares de interés cultural y educativo dentro del Condado y a que tengan nuevas experiencias. Es un programa educativo y cultural que pretende despertar el interés de los estudiantes mexicanos y de otras nacionalidades que deseen utilizar este PASE para visitar estos lugares y experimentar las infinitas posibilidades culturales y naturales que tienen en el Condado de Orange.
¿Dónde se puede obtener el ejemplar del PASE?
¿Quiénes pueden participar en el Programa PASE?
Los estudiantes de los grados 1 al 12 (Elementary to High School), registrados en escuelas del Condado de Orange. El ejemplar del PASE es gratuito
¿El ejemplar del PASE permite obtener acceso gratuito a los lugares de los socios participantes?
No, cada institución participante tiene incentivos y ofertas especiales para los estudiantes.
Hay lugares en los que la entrada es gratuita, como la biblioteca de Santa Ana, la biblioteca de Newport Beach, el Arboretum de Fullerton, la Antigua Corte del Condado de Orange en Santa Ana y muchos otros que tienen entrada gratuita un día en el mes. Por favor visita la página web de los socios participantes para obtener información sobre sus días de libre acceso. Por ejemplo, en el Museo de Arte de Laguna Beach y en el Zoo de Irvine si un estudiante presenta su PASE, sus hermanos y hermanas, así como su mamá y papá tendrán entrada gratuita. En otros lugares, la entrada será de acuerdo a las tarifas que tienen.
¿Para qué se creó el Programa PASE?
Para que los niños y jóvenes estudiantes al ir a cualquiera de estos lugares enriquezcan sus vidas y se inspiren al ver obras de arte, jardines de distintas especies de vegetación de diferentes partes del mundo como el Arboretum de Fullerton, o visitar la casa del Presidente Richard Nixon en Yorbalinda y subirse al helicóptero presidencial que utilizaron los presidentes Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon y Ford. Visitar el Ocean Institute en Dana Point y ver la riqueza marina, tocar una estrella de mar y tal vez esto les inspire a ser biólogos marinos o científicos. Las posibilidades son interminables.
¿Cuáles son los beneficios?
Además de que pueden visitar estos interesantes lugares, divertirse, tener nuevas experiencia y adquirir más conocimientos, los estudiantes que visiten los 24 lugares podrán participar en una gran rifa. El estudiante tendrá la oportunidad de participar en un sorteo para una beca de $5.000 dólares. Visita los 24 lugares incluidos en el PASE y presente un ensayo que describa lo que aprendió y disfrutó. Entregue su PASE y el ensayo en el Consulado de México en Santa Ana antes del 13 de abril de 2018. El sorteo se realizará el 29 de abril 2018.
Página web: www.programapase2017.com
As you bank down Santa Ana Blvd towards downtown, you flash by a tiny, peach hacienda whose garage door shouts colorful political statements. At least, it did until today.
Santa Ana artist Carlos Balam announced on Facebook to devastated artists, neighbors and fans: "today the city of Santa ana stop by my space to say that they received a complaint about my writing in the garage door "stop the war " n that I must erased it [sic]"
Over the last year, Balam's garage has established itself as a neighborhood focal point of revolving political slogans and art during this time of intense turmoil and tension. The most recent, and arguably most innocuous slogan, "Stop the War," received a complaint which prompted the City of Santa Ana to request Balam to "take it down" according to several Facebook posts made by him on May 18th.
Ironically, a black and white photograph of Balam's previous garage-adorning slogan, "Tell your Children They Can't Drink Oil," hung in the Bowers Museum just a few weeks ago in Federico Medina 's "Life and Culture in The Golden City", a public art show that was funded by the same city who now is asking Balam to censor his neighborhood garage murals.
This situation prompts some interesting questions like -- Who is Carlos Balam? Can he muralize his garage? and What are the roles of the City and public in this whole mess anyway?
Who is Carlos Balam?
The first time I met Carlos Balam, he was hanging out in front of his garage with an iguana perched on his shoulder, painting a memorial portrait like you'd see on Calle Cuatro during Noche de Altares.
Even though I was just walking by, and Balam was just standing in his driveway, the inviting space between a sunken ship and his front-yard banana tree prompted a conversation. "I'm painting this portrait in honor of a friend's Tio," Balam offered. "I painted the Lavanderia here on the corner too," Balam added, pointing to the seascape-covered coin laundry overshadowing his casita and art studio.
I adore the Lavanderia and was moved as Balam pointed-out kernels of neighborhood history captured in the Lavanderia mural: everything in it is a symbol. "See this fish?" he said, pointing to an oddly-colored carp, "a kid in the neighborhood was from Germany, so he painted this fish Germany's flag colors."
The garage door erasure comes on the heels of another incursion of Balam's self-directed neighborhood beautification efforts: the Lavanderia was sold recently and parts of Balam's mural suddenly disappeared. You can see a missing panel on Santa Ana Blvd. and a green parrot, a familiar symbol of Santa Ana, now floats frozen halfway between startled surprise and stuccoed oblivion.
However, Balam is most famous for his magnum opus several blocks away in the Logan neighborhood on the side of a liquor store near La Chiquita restaurant. This mural honors Latino veteran heroes from the neighborhood, among them Sam Romero who famously requested to be painted "...high up so the dogs don't urinate on my head." Balam gives speeches and tours here on veteran days of remembrance as a sort of volunteer community storyteller. As the keeper of this community's death toll and contributions to war, you start to understand the plea on Balam's garage is more thoughtful and sincere than a passerby might first surmise.
Can Balam muralize his garage?
Since the City of Santa Ana doesn't have a specific ordinance tackling murals, one might look to the City's On-Premise Signs Codes or Sign Regulations to dictate what types of writing and graphics are permissible on structures like garages. This stringent document creates orderly commercial districts and neighborhoods, but there are two problems when applying it here:
(1) Balam's hacienda art studio demarcates the wild mixed-use outskirts of downtown where a little nonconformity is a comforting sentry of neighborhood authenticity, connectivity and flavor.
(2) The City's sign regulations and codes are being flagrantly violated every which way across Santa Ana by like everyone and their mother (from taco trucks to brick-and-mortar businesses to city-supported non-profit institutions). So, the enforcement here is definitely grey-area enough to request a deeper review by fans and friends of art, self-expression and neighborhood character.
What is the City, Balam's and the Public's role?
The City's role here is pretty simple: their approach to private property murals is to enforce based on complaints. At least one person complained about the "Stop the War" mural and so the City showed up and applied the bureaucratic indifference of the law on the books. Further review could be prompted by the appeals of supporters of Balam's mural and possibly, changes to how Balam approaches his mural-making (see below).
Balam has complied with the City's request and painted over his garage (for now, at least). From my own surmising, he has a few choices moving forward:
(1) he could quietly review the city's sign rules and create a work that complies, which may require a work that evades controversy, and hence doesn't draw complaints
(3) he could counter the complaint(s) the City received with letters of support and request a further review of his situation by the Arts Commission, high-level planning department staff and/or his City Council representative
(3) he could help champion a mural ordinance or adjustment to the sign ordinance that clarifies and enhances his and others' abilities to create private property murals
"Who is saying they are going to erase it? Were u cited? Please don't erase it." urged City of Santa Ana Arts Commission Vice Chair Sandra Pocha Pena on Balam's Facebook post.
It's clear that while Balam's garage had its critic(s), it also has its champions:
"That SUCKS," remarked another Santa Ana muralist, "Damn, Really!!!" exclaimed another on the post.
Hopefully, these supporters will write letters to counter the complaint filed with the city and provoke a review from higher-ups at the planning department or by the Arts Commission or City Council.
Carlos Balam has been talking for some time about his next mural: it's about a Latino astronaut meant to show the kids of Santa Ana they can do anything.
As for Santa Ana murals in general, a bigger discussion on murals has been lingering for a long time and might be taken up by artists as several great evolutions have occurred:
With all of this great energy, we're sure to see more murals, more public discussion and more support and clearer guidelines articulated. The writing is on the wall.
Story by Ryan Smolar
Tonight at 6:30pm starting at CSUF GRAND CENTRAL ART CENTER:
Join Downtown neighbors for a walk around Downtown Santa Ana in honor of Jane Jacobs, author of "The Death and Life of Great American Cities” and pioneer of the idea that cities are for people.
Every year since 2007, neighbors in cities across America unite the first week of May to walk in honor of Jane Jacobs' contributions to walkable, people-centric cities.
Attendees to this event are invited to share their neighborhood insight and expertise as we stroll along the Wellness Corridor Path created by Latino Health Access and City of Santa Ana starting in front of CSUF Grand Central Art Center (125 N Broadway) at the Chiarini fountain.
Please wear bright clothes and comfortable shoes. At the end of the walk, we will head to Taquerias Guadalajara for Taco Tuesday!
Learn more about Jane's big ideas for cities:http://janeswalk.org/information/about/jane-jacobs-ten-big-ideas/
EVENT PAGE: https://www.facebook.com/events/1896605170615733/
Then, starting this Friday at The Frida Cinema:
From IFC Films and Sundance Selects comes Citizen Jane: Battle for the City, director Matt Tyrnauer’a timely tale of what can happen when engaged citizens fight the power for the sake of a better world. Screens daily May 12 - 18; showtimes below.
Arguably no one did more to shape our understanding of the modern American city than Jane Jacobs, the visionary activist and writer who fought to preserve urban communities in the face of destructive development projects. Tyranuer’s (Valentino: The Last Emperor) stirring documentary vividly brings to life Jacobs’ 1960s showdown with ruthless construction kingpin Robert Moses over his plan to raze lower Manhattan to make way for a highway, a dramatic struggle over the very soul of the neighborhood.
Friday, May 12 – 5:30pm, 8pm
Saturday, May 13 – 11am, 1:30pm, 5:30pm, 9:30
Sunday, May 14 – 11am, 5:30pm, 8pm
Monday, May 15 – 5:30pm,8pm
Tuesday, May 16 – 5:30pm, 8pm
Wednesday, May 17 – 5:30pm ONLY
Thursday, May 18 – 5:30pm, 8pm
“A fascinating documentary captures the showdown, half a century ago, between the activist Jane Jacobs and the Trumpian urban planner Robert Moses: a fight for the future of New York.” – Owen Gleiberman, Variety
“It’s a story that needs periodic retelling, and Mr. Tyrnauer has heightened the human drama by focusing on Jacobs, an improbable David to Moses’s Goliath.” – Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal
Santa Ana Arts News
News, opportunities and updates for the creative community.