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Thursday, October 28, 2021

A synchronization of nature and art at GATEways Arts Festival

As you begin trading in your shorts for jeans, your cute sundresses for heavy coats, and your free-spirited days of lying on the MU lawn for hours of studying in Shields, you may begin to lose the urge to be outside at all.

Don’t hibernate yet.

Aggies can enjoy the Arboretum and the arts at UC Davis by going to the Arboretum GATEways Arts Festival this Saturday, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The festival will contain a plethora of different activities and demonstrations to enjoy as part of the GATEways initiative.

“Through GATEways (Gardens, Arts and the Environment), the Arboretum works with faculty and students who are part of HArCS (Humanities, Arts and Cultural Studies) to bring their work out of the buildings and into the Arboretum, where it is accessible to the public,” said Carmia Feldman, assistant director of the festival.

According to Phillip Daley, publicity director of the festival, the event will be a unique experience.

“It will present the audience with some opportunities that they wouldn’t ordinarily get inside,” he said.

Along with showcasing faculty members’ and students’ creative work, the festival will be featuring Minoosh Zomorodinia, a visiting artist from Iran who will be creating an art installation on-site at the Arboretum starting at 11 a.m. on the North Shore of Lake Spafford.

According to Hearne Pardee, a studio arts professor at UC Davis, Zomorodinia will be making tapestry out of natural materials that she finds in the Arboretum.

“It will be placed somewhere in the landscape near the lake,” Pardee said.

Daley said he is most excited about Zomorodinia’s exhibition.

“Her exhibitions are unique each time to each location,” he said.

Students interested in seeing other installations that are directly influenced by the nature of the Arboretum can check out Pardee’s “en plein air” painting demonstration, in which artists paint what they see in the landscape in front of them. Pardee’s demonstration will take place at 3 p.m. on the North Shore of Lake Spafford.

The students of Lucy Gough, who is the department of theatre and dance’s current Granada Artist-in-Residence, will also be performing original monologues that were inspired by the nature of the Arboretum. These start at 3 p.m. on the Wyatt Deck.

According to Feldman, there will also be live performances at the Wyatt Deck with a different performance every half hour starting at noon.

At noon, there will be a performance by the Gamelan Ensemble of Indonesia, led by new faculty member Ed Garcia. The music will be accompanied by a performance from dancer Ben Arcangel.

Following this performance, at 12:30 p.m., will be a lively showcase of the Brazilian “Samba School,” which will be led by faculty member Chris Froh. Instruments will all be played by UC Davis students.

Theatre and film will also be represented at Saturday’s festivities.

At 11 a.m., at the dance studio of the University Club, attendees will be able to catch excerpts from the spring 2010 student film festival. The screening will include the films “Apartment 9” and “Needed,” which won for best director and best animation, respectively.

For those who missed seeing them in theatre, excerpts of both Tilly-No-Body: Catastrophes of Love and the recent Slaughterhouse Project will be performed on Wyatt Deck, at 1 p.m. and 2 p.m., respectively.

The art exhibit “Wonderers,” by guest curator Matthias Geiger, will also be on display in the Nelson Gallery.

Attendees are encouraged to bring their own food and drinks and picnic by Lake Spafford.

Feldman said she was excited to work with the Nelson Gallery and HArCS to put on the festival.

“I’m looking forward to making this event an annual occurrence,” she said.

ANNETA KONSTANTINIDES can be reached at arts@theaggie.org

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