Jun
21
7:00 PM19:00

Poetry Bites: True to Yourself

Thursday, June 21, 2018
7:00 PM  - 9:00 PM

Poetry Bites

 New style!

So, Poetry Bites remains to be:

- A monthly gathering of community, spoken word, good food and art! -

New about Poetry Bites is that the format is Open Mic night for the community! The whole idea is to share this podium with everyone who wants to bring their work to this table!

Please feel welcome and join us for a drink and a bite and share your work.   

For the June Poetry Bites on Thursday 21 June, I have invited a special guest to share her story. Performing artist at Spark Arts this month, Sabrina Reid will share to inspire. We will collaborate to bring our voice to the table.

Will you bring your? 

Please feel welcome and share your work!

 

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May
17
7:00 PM19:00

Poetry Bites: "May Day May Day" - Open Mic with Rob Nilsson

Thursday May 17

7-9 PM

 

Poetry Bites

Poetry as an entry point to deeper connections with yourself and others sparking conversations that matter.

A monthly gathering of community, spoken word, good food and art!

Barbara Piper reads from her poetry collections and invites people into the conversation. Much of her poems are a conversation between herself and the different parts of her Jewish, German, English, and Dutch heritage. She also ventures into more recent work around being brave and moving away from those family ties to moving into a new way of being. By holding the conversation lightly, deeper connections and new insights are woven into the evening with ease.

‘May Day May Day’ – May 2018

Open Mic with Rob Nilsson

Throughout May, published poet and painter, and well-known filmmaker, Rob Nilsson is on display at Spark Arts.

For the May Poetry Bites, we will collaborate and present some of our poetry together and open the floor to poets alike. Please feel welcome and share your works!

Poetry Bites this month is all about ‘the Film of your life’.

Have you ever had that feeling that life is like a flash of light? A falling star? Swoosh! And suddenly you look up and a big chunk of life had already come to pass? During this event, I will be reading from some work around big life events that came and went. And we will venture into conversation about how looking over that proverbial shoulder can help you take that next step into a new venture.

Artist Bio

Barbara Piper is a poet and life coach. During her poetry salons, she combines the art of words with personal development, using art as an entry point to inner dialogue followed by conversations that matter. This unique approach has touched the hearts of her listeners. Barbara’s words give food for thought and are aimed at bringing contemplation, (self)-compassion, and silence in a light way. Words that touch the heart move conversations.

Barbara enjoyed an international childhood. Life ever since has revolved around travel and living abroad in both Europe, Asia, and the US. Home is The Netherlands, but for now home is with her family in San Francisco.

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Barbara earned a Master of Arts in Communication and has had a diverse career. She started out in the corporate sphere and, after ten years, she moved into health care and ran her own health care facilities. She has written prose and poetry for as long as she can remember, and it was only after moving to San Francisco that she decided to share her work.

Quotes:

“So grateful for this group. I appreciate the gentle curiosity your work brings to exploring both the unknowns and the knowns.”

“I have been to many poetry events but you have a way to bring positivity to the room. Talking about deep feelings and dark places. Like the seaweeds we go into and you bring it to the surface and light. It isn’t heavy but light. “

“I celebrate you Barbara- you open many windows to the fresh air of the world. We all walk away lighter than when we came. Thanks for lightning our load and giving us more air to breath.”

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"Stroke" a film by Rob Nilsson
May
10
7:45 PM19:45

"Stroke" a film by Rob Nilsson

 

BACK TO ALL EVENTS

SPARK ARTS SELECTS SERIES : "STROKE" A FILM BY ROB NILSSON

  • Thursday May 10th 7:45 pm

STROKE is the third of the nine 9 @ Night feature films created with the Tenderloin yGroup, Rob Nilsson’s acting workshop for Tenderloin actors, inner city residents and all comers from 1999 to 2009.  The 9 @ Night Films won the 2008 San Francisco Film Critics Marlon Riggs Award for courage and vision in the cinema.  It was featured at the Harvard Film Archives and the Christopher B. Smith Rafael Film Center.  Films from the series have played in  film festivals and cinemas around the world.

 

Phil Berkowitz, a 55 year old street poet, survivor of the days of wine and roses with San Francisco's Beats, has a stroke.  He lies for four days, virtually paralyzed, in his flea bag hotel room in San Francisco’s Tenderloin until he is found by Johnny, his neighbor across the hall.  Johnny, African-American, pushing 60, barely survives working part time janitorial in a seedy strip club and escort service run by St. Tre and Ben Malafide who is now operating under the name Modisco to conceal his felony conviction.    

 

After his stroke Phil is helpless and cannot work.  Breaking hotel rules, Johnny lets the recovering Phil stay in his room and tries to help him regain his speech.  He also tries to play Cupid, introducing Phil to Svetlana, Polish, 35, a Tenderloin waitress,  ex-model and recovering alcoholic.  Svetlana feels sorry for Phil, but Phil mistakes kindness for attraction, a recipe for disaster. 

 

Thrown out of their hotel for breaking house rules, Johnny and Phil become homeless in San Francisco’s chilly streets, aware that if anything were to happen to them, no one would even know they were gone.  People society has forgotten might as well have been picked up by space ships.  Unknown and unremembered, they would simply cease to exist.

 

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Apr
29
2:00 PM14:00

Flower Arranging Workshop: Inspired by Bouquets to Art

Inspired by the de Young Museum’s annual  "Bouquets to Art" exhibit,  Spark Arts invites you to choose from a varierty of vases and flowers and create your own floral masterpieces! The vivid works of art in the gallery created by emerging artist, Ronit Hendel ,will be sure to spark creativity and joy in all who attend!

All (or no) experience levels welcome! All materials included.

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Flower Arranging Workshop
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Apr
26
8:00 PM20:00

Spark Arts Selects: Summer Sacrament by Lionel Desai

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"Spark Arts Selects” with Director/Actor Lionel Desai

SUMMER SACRAMENT - 2017 - 63 minutes

During one fateful summer, Richie is forced to deal with his mom's deportation and prepare for his First Holy Communion as a Catholic while living with a caring adoptive family whose young son becomes Richie's closest friend and support. Set against the backdrop of a slowly evaporating Mission district, Summer Sacrament is a powerful piece of local, homegrown cinema that tackles the coming-of-age theme with both charm and gravitas. Director/actor Lionel Desai will be present for Q&A. Cast members may be present as well. General audience: appropriate for all ages.

Doors Open 7:45pm

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Apr
12
7:00 PM19:00

Poetry Bites: Finding Your Voice

Poetry Bites

Poetry as an entry point to deeper connections with yourself and others sparking conversations that matter.

A monthly gathering of community, spoken word, good food and art!

Barbara Piper reads from her poetry collections and invites people into the conversation. Much of her poems are a conversation between herself and the different parts of her Jewish, German, English, and Dutch heritage. She also ventures into more recent work around being brave and moving away from those family ties to moving into a new way of being. By holding the conversation lightly, deeper connections and new insights are woven into the evening with ease.

Finding Your Voice  - April 2018

An evening amidst Ronit Hendel's paintings and an evening where Aviva's food bites will nurture us while I read poetry and open up discussion to the group about Finding your voice. Ronit's paintings inspire us to keep looking for our own voice. And how losing your voice can turn into something positive and open yourself up to a new world and form of expression.

Rooster by Ronit Hendel

Artist Bio

Barbara Piper is a poet and life coach. During her poetry salons, she combines the art of words with personal development, using art as an entry point to inner dialogue followed by conversations that matter. This unique approach has touched the hearts of her listeners. Barbara’s words give food for thought and are aimed at bringing contemplation, (self)-compassion, and silence in a light way. Words that touch the heart move conversations.

Barbara enjoyed an international childhood. Life ever since has revolved around travel and living abroad in both Europe, Asia, and the US. Home is The Netherlands, but for now home is with her family in San Francisco.

Barbara earned a Master of Arts in Communication and has had a diverse career. She started out in the corporate sphere and, after ten years, she moved into health care and ran her own health care facilities. She has written prose and poetry for as long as she can remember, and it was only after moving to San Francisco that she decided to share her work.

Quotes:

“So grateful for this group. I appreciate the gentle curiosity your work brings to exploring both the unknowns and the knowns.”

“I have been to many poetry events but you have a way to bring positivity to the room. Talking about deep feelings and dark places. Like the seaweeds we go into and you bring it to the surface and light. It isn’t heavy but light. “

“I celebrate you Barbara- you open many windows to the fresh air of the world. We all walk away lighter than when we came. Thanks for lightning our load and giving us more air to breath.”

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Apr
3
7:00 PM19:00

Theatre Rhinoceros:  Edith Can Shoot Things and Hit Them

Theatre Rhinoceros has been presenting a staged reading series in the Castro since July 2016. We are pleased to currently present at Spark Arts on the first Tuesday of each month. Our vision for the play reading series is a monthly gathering with local actors presenting scripts of interest to the LGBT community. Our belief is that theater is a great community builder and that it doesn't always have to be a full production for which patrons pay admission. We engage local directors and actors to prepare the readings, with a couple of rehearsals, then present them--once--to an audience at the gallery. The actors have scripts in hand, and there is minimal (if any) costumes, scenery, or blocking.  We do not charge for the event. 

Our next presentation will be Edith Can Shoot Things and Hit Them by A. Rey Pamatmat on April 3. Other upcoming plays include: Rotterdam by Jon Brittain, Ambrose by Romulus Linney, Voices from the Edge by Rhodessa Jones, MMF by David Kempel, Fixed  by Boni Alvarez, The Moors  by Jen Silverman, and Cardboard Piano by Hansol Jung.

Totally FREE admission. 

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Apr
1
6:00 PM18:00

Untitled Event

 The Castro Art Walk is every first Thursday.

The Castro Art Walk is every first Thursday.

Spark Arts is hosting an evening reception for Rob Nilsson.

Music provided by Frank's Funk Band.

ROB NILSSON: POET, PAINTER, FILM DIRECTOR

Auden says of Yeats, “mad Ireland hurt him into poetry.”  Nilsson was born the year Yeats died and says that his affinity for this great poet’s work influenced  him in all the mediums he has mastered.  While gaining  recognition as a filmmaker (winner of the Camera d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival for NORTHERN LIGHTS and the Grand Prize at the Sundance Film Festival for HEAT AND SUNLIGHT) Nilsson has continued to pursue his first love.  “Hurt into poetry” as a graduate of Tamalpais High School, an undergraduate at Harvard, and later a resident of Fernando Po, an island off the coast of the Cameroon , his poetry continues to flow as a mediation between inner and outer worlds. 

FROM A REFUGEE OF TRISTAN DA CUNHA is a collection of poems taken from all phases of his life.  Nilsson says:  “The People of Tristan da Cunha, the most remote inhabited archipelago on earth, left their island in 1961 when a long dormant volcano exploded and buried their land in a paroxysm of molten lava.  Exiled in Britain, speaking an archaic version of English, they were unable to adjust, and eventually returned to their barren island in the South Atlantic.  Their exodus, out and back, serves as the starting point for this exploration of a life in song.  It if is useful to you, all it asks in return is a farewell embrace, a wave down at the end in the road, and headlights disappearing into the unknown.”

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Mar
29
to Jun 15

Summer Community Art Show: Call for Artists

Calling Bay Area artists!

SHOW DATE: JULY 9-31, 2017

 RECEPTION: TUESDAY, JULY 31ST 6-9PM

SUBMISSION DEADLINE IS June 15TH @ 5PM

 

THE SPARK ARTS BI-ANNUAL COMMUNITY ART SHOW: SUMMER EDITION

The Creative Soil for Arts and Culture in The Castro

 Have you dreamed of showing your art at a gallery in San Francisco?

About Spark Arts

As the creative soil for arts and culture in The Castro district, Spark Arts welcomes the opportunity to enrich the lives of the Castro community by providing a platform to showcase art, music, and other forms of cultural celebration. We aim to support local emerging artists and nurture local talent while designing and running creative community experiences. As a social enterprise, these two activities – representing artists and convening community – mutually inform each other.

The Spark Bi-annual Community Art Show

We hosted our first community art show in September 2016. Inundated by local emerging talent, we had such a great time hosting the show that we've decided to host a community art show bi-annually in July and December!

I’m excited to participate, how do I apply? We are accepting electronic submissions on a rolling basis. Please use the cart function at the bottom of this page to purchase your entry(s) to the show. Upon receipt of your payment, we will send further instructions for completing the submissions process. Deadline for submissions is 5PM, Tuesday, May 15, 2018. You must be a resident of the San Francisco Bay Area to participate.

I work in a number of different mediums; what art can I submit? Two-dimensional art only please! No sculpture or installation art. Artwork should be ready to hang - framed, mounted, wired, or on stretched canvas that is wired for install. There is plenty of space for large canvases!

Is there a fee? The non-refundable entry fee is $20 per submission. You may submit up to threepieces. Please scroll down to bottom of this page to select the number of pieces you would like to submit from the dropdown menu and click ‘Add to Cart’. Within 24 hours of your payment, we will send further instructions for completing the submissions process. Artists who have submitted work will be informed of inclusion by June 15th, 2018. Thank you in advance for your patience!

When do I drop-off/collect the artwork? Physical drop-off of the piece(s) must occur on Saturday, July 7th or Sunday, July 8th during gallery hours 12-5PM. The show will open July 9th and conclude on July 31st. Take-down will occur Wednesday, August 1st. Pieces must be collected after the closing reception on July 31st or on August 1st. No exceptions. We do not store items beyond 24 hours so please ensure that your work can be retrieved promptly. If you are unable to drop off or pick up your art on these dates, we suggest you wait for the December winter show. Storage of artwork beyond 24 hours will result in storage fees.

How do sales work? Does the gallery take a consignment fee? All pieces must be ready to sell with pricing information included. No artwork with a sale price over $1,000, please.  Spark Arts will handle all sales and collect a consignment fee of 50%. Checks for sold pieces will be made payable to the artist and mailed within 30 days of the conclusion of the show.

What if I’m not selected? We receive a very high volume of submissions for our shows and it is not possible to showcase every artist. However, we retain your images and information on file and will contact you if there is another opportunity to show your work in the future! We also encourage you to submit for our December winter show!

Thank you for your interest! We can't wait to see what you've created!

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Mar
11
2:00 PM14:00

Flower Arranging Workshop!

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Spring is in the air!! Let’s celebrate this glorious weather,  and the beautiful flowers that come with it, and do some floral arranging!

Come choose from an array of vases and flowers and learn the skills to create your own beautiful masterpieces!

Go home with a fragrant work of art of your own making!

All (or no) skill levels welcome! All materials included.

Wanna sip while you snip? Feel free to BYOB.

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Mar
8
7:00 PM19:00

If you always do what you always did: An Evening of Poetry with Barbara Piper

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Poetry Bites

Poetry as an entry point to conversations that matter.

On March 8, Barbara will be reading poetry from her first book in the making, The Sorrow Expellers. Much of these poems are a conversation between herself and the different parts of her Jewish, German, English, and Dutch heritage. She will also venture into some more recent work from the beginning of this year around being brave and moving away from those family ties to try new way of being.

Artist Bio

Barbara Piper is a poet and life coach. During her poetry salons, she combines the art of words with personal development, using art as an entry point to inner dialogue followed by conversations that matter. This unique approach has touched the hearts of her listeners. Barbara’s words give food for thought and are aimed at bringing contemplation, (self)-compassion, and silence in a light way. Words that touch the heart move conversations.

Barbara enjoyed an international childhood. Life ever since has revolved around travel and living abroad in both Europe, Asia, and the US. Home is The Netherlands, but for now home is with her family in San Francisco.

Barbara earned a Master of Arts in Communication and has had a diverse career. She started out in the corporate sphere and, after ten years, she moved into health care and ran her own health care facilities. She has written prose and poetry for as long as she can remember and it was only after moving to San Francisco that she decided to share her work.

Quotes:

“So grateful for this group. I appreciate the gentle curiosity your work brings to exploring both the unknowns and the knowns.”

“I have been to many poetry events but you have a way to bring positivity to the room. Talking about deep feelings and dark places. Like the seaweeds we go into and you bring it to the surface and light. It isn’t heavy but light. “

“I celebrate you Barbara- you open many windows to the fresh air of the world. We all walk away lighter than when we came. Thanks for lightning our load and giving us more air to breath.”

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Date:
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Mar
6
7:00 PM19:00

Dr. Cerberus - A Free Reading

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A staged reading of Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa's play, DR. CERBERUS, directed by Jim McCunn. In this coming-of-age comedy, 13-year-old Franklin Robertson is just trying to survive life in the suburbs of Washington, D.C. in the mid-1980s. He's overweight. He's sexually confused. He doesn't have friends. His overworked parents don't understand him. His jock older brother torments him nonstop. He'd rather write stories than go on dates (not that he could get a date). His great comfort comes from the Twinkies he eats and the horror movies he watches every Saturday night at midnight, on a black-and-white TV set in his basement, introduced by the horror host Dr. Cerberus. In fact, Franklin feels certain that Dr. Cerberus can save his misfit life…

Brought to you by Theater Rhinoceros.

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Feb
22
7:30 PM19:30

**Encore Movie Screening** Ezer Kenegdo

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Frictions develop when Yisroel "Izzy" Jonigkeyt, a Chassidic Jew from Crown Heights, travels to San Francisco on the eve of his own wedding to visit Polish-born Catholic friend Marek Wisniewski with the intent of discovering why a Bay Area art-world iconoclast named Harry Kierk seeks to destroy a lifetime's worth of his own work. As the visit progresses, Izzy and Marek discover for the first time that complex historical baggage impinges on their curious friendship and, soon, they begin to understand why Kierk is driven towards destruction. Continued encounters with Marek's vaguely anti-Semitic cousin Irek (who is their only gateway to contact Kierk) only compound these tensions.

Specifically, Ezer Kenegdo is about the complex, fraught history that people of Jewish and Polish heritage share, but in a broader sense, it is about the ways that culture, history, and heritage both bind and divide us. It plumbs the complexity of male friendships, and how elastic and indefinable such relationships can be.

**Strong language advisory**

100 minutes / 2017 / Starring Daniel Kremer, Deniz Demirer, Cannes and Sundance-winner Rob Nilsson (Northern Lights, Signal 7, Heat and Sunlight), Kris Caltagirone, international sensation Joshua Safdie (Good Time, Heaven Knows What, Daddy Longlegs), and Penny Werner

Shown at the prestigious Joseph Conrad Festival (Krakow, Poland - world premiere), Rivers Edge International Film Festival, Cork International Film Festival - currently in release

Thursday Feb 22
7:30pm doors open
8-9:30pm film
9:30-10pm Q&A
BYOB
donations gratefully accepted - suggested minimum donation $15

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Dec
9
to Dec 10

❄️🎁 Holiday Showcase and Sale 🎁❄️

Saturday, December 9th, 4-7pm and Sunday, December 10th, 10am-3pm

Whether you're looking for stocking stuffers or a unique gift for your sweetie, we've got you covered in our first annual Holiday Showcase and Sale featuring three local artisans.

We'll have ceramics and candles by SaraMia Ceramics, organic and hypoallergenic soaps and oils by LaSalle Ave Soaps, and metal art and jewelry by Aimee Golant.

Join Saturday 4-7pm for a bubbly toast to the start of the showcase or drop by on Sunday 10am-2pm for a brunchier vibe.

This will definitely be one of the most fun shopping trips you'll make this season. Don't miss it!




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Nov
11
to Nov 12

Open Studios with Claudia Berman and Liz Tioupine

Open Studios Weekend 5 at Spark Arts!

Join us Saturday and Sunday 11am-6pm as we host two artists for the neighborhood's open studios weekend! There are so many artists in the Castro and we are thrilled to be hosting this year. It's going to be a wet weekend, but what better way to spend it than grabbing a Karl the Fog at Hearth and wandering the 'hood looking at art created by your talented neighbors? See you this weekend!

Claudia Berman

Claudia Berman will be in the gallery all weekend selling her handmade jewelry. Cuffs, rings, bracelets, and necklaces in many shapes and sizes. 

Liz Tioupine

Liz's photography takes the ordinary into the extraordinary. Her eye transforms images into abstract artwork.

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Halloween Puppetry Workshop
Oct
21
to Oct 22

Halloween Puppetry Workshop

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Nick Knave, SF's Punk Rock Puppeteer and favorite werewolf, invites you to a weird weekend event for 6 - 14 year olds at Spark Arts! 2 Days and 2 Different Programs! 

Saturday, October 21; 11 am - 5pm:
We'll explore the history of American Hallowe'en, horror, what makes scary things fun, and, of course, PUPPETS. We'll review some of the best (and worst) puppet monsters from filmland, experiment with our own stage effects while trying various puppet techniques.

AND!

Build a terrifying Custom Creature - Skeleton, Ghost or Zombie - of your own to take home! 

Sunday, October 22; 11am - 7pm:
Learn and rehearse a part in a FRIGHTENINGLY original Hallowe'en themed puppet show, featuring multiple styles (and skill levels) that we'll perform at the end of the day during our MONSTER'S BALL from 6-7. 

PLUS!

Special guest performers, 100% NOT from an insane asylum! 
WE PROMISE!

SIGN UP FOR ONE OR BOTH DAYS - 
WORKSHOP SPACE IS LIMITED TO 20 KIDS

COST:
One Day: $150 p/kid
Both Days: $250 p/kid

Click here to register!

NOTES:
Only 2 kids per family allowed. 

Snacks, including HALLOWE'EN CANDY (and some healthy stuff too), water, and juice WILL BE provided during workshop.

Despite being spooky, we want to avoid the REAL horror of allergic reactions. So, we ask you pack your monster their own lunch and PLEASE list any important dietary restrictions on the registration form!

Cost of class covers materials, snacks, food for the monster's ball, space rental and paying the witch I hired to keep the kids in line.

Send all questions to
nick@nickknave.com

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Wolfram Alderson's Love Icon Show
Jul
28
to Jul 30

Wolfram Alderson's Love Icon Show

Full Schedule of Events:

Friday, July 28, 2017 - Opening Night
6pm - 9pm     General Public welcome; Priority given to Eventbrite RSVPs
5:30 - Call to love #1 - Heart sounds by Helen, Love convocation
6:30 - Call to love #2 - Heart sounds by Helen, Love convocation
7:30 - Call to love #3 - Heart sounds by Helen, Love convocation
8:30 - Call to love #4 - Heart sounds by Helen, Love convocation

Saturday, July 29, 2017 - All Day Love In
10 am - Readings from Puppazo Universo by Elizabeth Olliff
11 am - Love on an Intergalactic Scale - Conversation with Artist, Wolfram Alderson. 
Noon to 6pm - Viewing open to General Public
6 pm - Heart Sounds by Helen Gekakis
7 pm - Metta Meditation by John Martin
8pm -  Is Love Really the Answer? What is Love? 

Sunday, July 30, 2017
9am - 4pm - Viewing open to General Public

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Eccentric Weirdos of Comedy
Jul
26
7:00 PM19:00

Eccentric Weirdos of Comedy

  Anita Drieseberg  is an award winning artist, author, and self-described “Spinster”. Her comedy is rather ridiculous, but the real Anita is only "slightly" ridiculous.  She is a regular at the SF Punchline, and Cobbs Comedy Club and has performed at clubs across the U.S. and Canada.  Anita is the creator of the online animated series "Heckville", the Facebook comic "SanFranita is...",  and her humorous animated shorts have won international prizes! (well, two).  

Anita Drieseberg is an award winning artist, author, and self-described “Spinster”. Her comedy is rather ridiculous, but the real Anita is only "slightly" ridiculous.  She is a regular at the SF Punchline, and Cobbs Comedy Club and has performed at clubs across the U.S. and Canada.  Anita is the creator of the online animated series "Heckville", the Facebook comic "SanFranita is...",  and her humorous animated shorts have won international prizes! (well, two).  

  Ray Molina  has been a California comedy gem for over ten years, and has earned many awards from the Sacramento mineral society for his resinous and vitreous luster that accounts for the majority of his surface area but below the surface is a complex crystalline construction which is where his brilliance originates. In many cultures he is considered a symbol for love.

Ray Molina has been a California comedy gem for over ten years, and has earned many awards from the Sacramento mineral society for his resinous and vitreous luster that accounts for the majority of his surface area but below the surface is a complex crystalline construction which is where his brilliance originates. In many cultures he is considered a symbol for love.

  Mary Van Note  is a comedian of the weird variety. She is the creator and star of the award-winning Independent Film Channel web series The Mary Van Note Show: Gavin Really Wants Me. She is a SF Weekly Masterminds grant recipient, a seven-time SF Sketchfest performer, and an Andy Kaufman Award Semi-Finalist. The San Francisco Bay Guardian called her a “Zine-Queen Comedian” as she regularly makes zines, crafts and mini-comics. Her specialties are stick-figures and cross-stitch.

Mary Van Note is a comedian of the weird variety. She is the creator and star of the award-winning Independent Film Channel web series The Mary Van Note Show: Gavin Really Wants Me. She is a SF Weekly Masterminds grant recipient, a seven-time SF Sketchfest performer, and an Andy Kaufman Award Semi-Finalist. The San Francisco Bay Guardian called her a “Zine-Queen Comedian” as she regularly makes zines, crafts and mini-comics. Her specialties are stick-figures and cross-stitch.

  Loren Kraut ’s awkwardly hilarious, unorthodox style of comedy juxtaposes playfulness with deeply dark humor. She turns grim subject matter, like depression and suicide, on its ear, presenting the bleakness of mental illness with unexpected wit and levity. Ever the outsider, Loren gives us a glimpse into her weird, silly and often tragic world that, in the end, is surprisingly life affirming.

Loren Kraut’s awkwardly hilarious, unorthodox style of comedy juxtaposes playfulness with deeply dark humor. She turns grim subject matter, like depression and suicide, on its ear, presenting the bleakness of mental illness with unexpected wit and levity. Ever the outsider, Loren gives us a glimpse into her weird, silly and often tragic world that, in the end, is surprisingly life affirming.

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Jul
20
6:45 PM18:45

Workshop: Results-Based Leadership with Heather Coros

Presented by Heather Coros: speaker, writer, and life coach.

* Register now to be entered in our drawing for a 60-minute full-body massage from Move Happy Therapeutic Bodywork & Massage!*

Learn new ways of thinking about old problems and break through limitations. In our workplace success workshop, we will focus on results-based leadership. Leadership can take many forms: leading a team, leading a project, taking responsibility, making a difference or even self-leadership.

In 2 hours, learn how to:

  • Identify the essential components you’re missing
  • Overcome challenge in all areas of your life
  • Take action based on psychological tools for sustained results

Join us as we network, collaboratively reflect, and enjoy some snacks and a glass of wine.

Advanced purchase is recommended. To secure your spot, visit http://www.livelaughlovelifecoaching.com/workshops/

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Jun
22
7:00 PM19:00

The Masculine Masquerade: A Conversation with Mohsin Shafi

  Image Courtesy Artist Mohsin Shafi; from ‘Spit Roasted Romantica’ In collection of Khurram Kasim, Pakistan.

Image Courtesy Artist Mohsin Shafi; from ‘Spit Roasted Romantica’ In collection of Khurram Kasim, Pakistan.

THE MASCULINE MASQUERADE 

One of the most important and wide-ranging paradigm shifts to arise out of the social, political, and aesthetic upheavals of the 20th century is a sustained, visible challenge to the outdated notion of a hard and fast gender binary. As usual, artists have been at the forefront of these changes, creating works that question the normative assumptions of what our bodies should look like or do while drawing from a variety of perspectives on the subject. These divergent representations are far from a modern development, however in some cultures masculinity has been depicted in very black-and-white terms, particularly in East Asia. Such is the practice of Artist, Mohsin Shafi travelling from Pakistan who inquiries into the complexities of masculinity and gender transcends both time and place, making this a vital if sadly under-theorized facet of Pakistani art. Shafi reveals vulnerability, crisis, and anxiety as foundational to the embattled masculinity complex that has driven politics in Pakistan since the colonial era. In the process he deftly navigates the ethical quagmire of representing his country’s embroiled gender politics for a universal audience. 

The author of numerous collages that recast the Pakistani dream of plenty in pansexual terms, Shafi, like so many artists of his generation, indulges in the era’s carnal abundance, and his appetites and experiences are reflected in the work, which alternates between the revealing and the puerile. An intimate, biographical conversation, ‘The Masculine Masquerade’ attempts to acknowledge masculinity and its social diversity within expansion of traditional parameters to include such important factors as race, class, ethnicity, sexuality and censorship through photo-collages capturing the artist’s polymorphous perversity in the matters of flesh and art.

Mohsin Shafi is an interdisciplinary artist mostly living and working in Lahore, Pakistan. His work investigates the blurred edges between identity and the intentions of identity, attempting to capture what he sees and record their frail existence, only to return and relive. Picking from actual personal narratives, as well as records and references, Shafi adds on to the visuals in a way that actually exposes a deep-set discomfort. His works are intricate, layered and complex. They make use of public access images from newspapers and magazines, photographs culled from the Internet, sewn together to form elaborate compositions that speak directly of the political milieu of his time. 

Mohsin’s artistic practice strives to articulate the schematics of representation and the power dynamics associated with authoring such representations. His visual seeks to further the dialogue within the religious and socio-political context. These are the politics of representation pertaining to one’s nationalistic, ethnic, religious or gender identity and their intersectional relationships with media-representation, censorship, and religious freedoms. With his art practice he intends to articulate the notions of safety within physical and intellectual spaces of representation: the safety of being visible for having non-conforming ideas within a militant-state and of being proclaimed the -Other- by the spectators eye. This is the danger of being seen through the lens of sexual taboos, gender binaries, ethnic hierarchies, religious freedoms and the public availability of that information. These are the struggles of being looked at and judged, of being reduced to a cliché or a racial slur.

Shafi has showcased his work at some prominent galleries in Pakistan, as well as been part of some international shows in last few years. Among prominent practice/achievements Mohsin is an active member of the ‘Awami Art Collective’ which is A group of artists & activists intervening the public space for the cause of peaceful co-existence & celebration of diversity. Shafi was part of the Vasl Artists residency in 2010 in Karachi – Pakistan and was an artist in residence at the Rondo Studios, Graz; Austria in 2012. Besides being part of some major collector’s collection in Pakistan, His work is in permanent collection of The Museum of Sacred Art – MOSA, Belgium and been acquired by the Department of Book Art at the Mills College, San Francisco for their permanent collection. His work has been written about in local and international papers and publications. His images have also been used as covers for the books by Agnar artúvertin, Martin Walser, Gabriel Rosenstock and other writers/poets.

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Jun
1
6:00 PM18:00

Windows for Harvey Closing Reception

Spark Arts is hosting the closing reception for the 2nd annual Windows for Harvey! event put on by the Castro Merchants. This year's event features 14 artists who paired with local merchants to create art installations inspired by Harvey Milk and his legacy. Join us to toast the artists and purchase artwork from the event. This reception is open to the public and admission is free!

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Mapping Out Your Picture Book: Book Making Workshop, Part 2
May
13
1:30 PM13:30

Mapping Out Your Picture Book: Book Making Workshop, Part 2

A workshop for authors and illustrators who want to flesh out their picture book ideas.

May 13th, 1:30pm - 3:30pm

Price: $50/person

Only 20 seats!

This workshop is perfect for:

  • Authors and illustrators who want to flesh out their picture book ideas.
  • People who have taken our “Anatomy of a Picture Book” workshop and want to continue developing their picture book craft.
  • People who want to learn about storyboarding and crafting picture book dummies.

The teachers, Diana and Charlotte, are published illustrators and experienced educators. 

In this workshop, you will:

  • Share and improve your picture book idea with constructive feedback. 
  • Storyboard your picture book idea while learning about the storyboarding process.
  • Begin creating a dummy for your picture book (which you can take with you and finish at home).
  • Get tips on how to jump-start your picture book career. 

Please bring:

  • A picture book idea (or a manuscript if you have it).
  • A sketchbook/notebook.
  • A pencil/drawing tools.
  • Your creativity!
 Charlotte Cheng

Charlotte Cheng

 Diana Toledano

Diana Toledano

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Anatomy of a Picture Book: Book Making Workshop, Part 1
May
13
10:00 AM10:00

Anatomy of a Picture Book: Book Making Workshop, Part 1

A workshop for authors and illustrators interested in creating picture books and getting their careers started.

May 13th, 10am - 12pm

Price: $50/person

Only 20 seats! 

This workshop is perfect for:

  •  Beginning authors and illustrators.
  •  People who want to explore the world of picture books. 

The teachers, Diana and Charlotte, are published illustrators and experienced educators. 

In this workshop, you will:

  • Learn about the anatomy of picture books.
  • Explore the basics and process of picture book craft (from manuscript to submission).  
  • You'll start working on your own picture book idea and get feedback.
  • Get tips on how to jump-start your picture book career. 

Please bring:

  • A sketchbook/notebook.
  • A pencil/drawing tools.
  • Your creativity!  
 Diana Toledano

Diana Toledano

 Charlotte Cheng

Charlotte Cheng

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Apr
20
6:45 PM18:45

Getting Focused: Results that Last (Life Coaching Workshop)

PRESENTED BY LIVE LAUGH LOVE LIFE COACHING

Within a network of brilliant influencers, we will work together to identify goals based on your values. Creating each step with the intention to feel more of your preferred feelings (empowered, pleasure, valued, excited, contributing, energized, happy, in-flow etc...).

In April’s workshop, you will:

  • Define 3 goals

  • Unblock what’s holding you back by overcome fear and failure

  • Chart out the course with curiosity to achieve your goals

Start creating your future with intention and purpose. We will use scientifically validated techniques to support and enhance your progress.

Join us while we enjoy some soft networking, over a workbook, some snacks and a glass of wine.

Your future is based on the effort and intention you place on it. Start taking your health and happiness seriously.

PURCHASE ADVANCED TICKETS HERE.

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