Zeal Harris announced as next Studio Artist-in-Residence at the Camera Obscura Art Lab

July 27, 2016 10:19 AM

SANTA MONICA, Calif. - From August 10 to November 12, 2016, Studio Artist-in-Residence Zeal Harris will lead workshops and create a series of narrative paintings exploring the impact of police violence on interpersonal relationships. Though her work often illustrates difficult realities, her style is colorful and filled with panache. Harris states:

"My work is about revealing characters on journeys. Whether the journey is brief or epic, tells a linear or non-linear story, or is recognizable or obscure, my paintings serve to complexify grand narratives of Black lives and prompt fresh dialogue about sociocultural issues. Making visual art can be an isolated activity, so being here in downtown Santa Monica next to the Pier and seeing diverse people making good memories is inspiring. Another social break is dancing, and that’s something I want to share while I’m here. For me, dancing grounds and enables me to be in a place where I am able to make art about love and danger and other tough subjects."

Her public events range from the deeply contemplative to the purely enjoyable, including both drawing and painting workshops and salsa lessons. While in residence Harris intends to research the history of the “Inkwell” section of Santa Monica Beach for future beach-inspired paintings, but her focus will be to complete several planned works that are intended for shows up and down the coast this year. Register visiting smgov.net/reserve and searching for keyword "Zeal".

Zeal Harris is known for creating critical, caricaturesque, narrative artworks with a whimsical, bold, urban-vernacular flavor. Select exhibition venues include, The 2015 Ghetto Biennale in Port Au Prince Haiti, Mesa Contemporary Arts Museum, The California African-American Museum, 18th Street Arts Center, and Wallspace LA Gallery. She received a BFA from Howard University and an MFA from Otis College of Art & Design. zealsart.com

The Camera Obscura Studio Artist Residency connects the public with artists and artisans working within and between the worlds of fine art and craft. Resident Artists share their work with the public informally and through public workshops and events. Future calls for applications for this and other residencies are available at arts.smgov.net under Artist Opportunities.

------ Residency Events with Zeal Harris ------

Blind Contour Drawing with Zeal Harris

Saturdays 8/13, 8/27, 11/5 & 11/12, 11:00am-2:00pm - $5

Register: search smgov.net/reserve for keyword “Zeal”

Blind Contour drawing is a fun and fundamental exercise to train your artistic eye and hand, while releasing any stressful striving for accuracy or realism. Using pencils, pens and watercolors, create timed sketches drawn from any source (landscape, portrait, object, still life, or enlarged photographs) — while NOT looking at your paper. Come to this class to draw, have fun, and laugh while developing skills. Instructor will supply some objects to draw; participants are also encouraged to bring their own. Open to any level and repeat students are welcome.

DIY Watercolor Paintbox with Zeal Harris
Saturday 9/3, 11:00am-1:00pm - $5

Register: search smgov.net/reserve for keyword “Zeal”

Using inexpensive ingredients from the kitchen cabinet, learn to make your own watercolor paints from scratch. This workshop will include working with the just-made paint, brush demos, and fun and simple painting exercises.

Painting on Yupo with Sumi brushes with Zeal Harris
Saturdays 9/10 & 9/17, 11:00am-2:00pm - $5

Register: search smgov.net/reserve for keyword “Zeal”

Learn or develop techniques of working with Yupo paper by tracing and copying artwork or creating your own original composition. Yupo is a synthetic paper with a unique, non-absorbent surface that allows for unique play with paint. Unlike traditional paper, Yupo can be completely wiped clean and painted over again. Water based media dry by evaporation, leaving behind beautifully loose, rich, spontaneous results. Open to any level and repeat students are welcome.

Cuban Salsa Dance Lesson & Social with Ludis Benitez

Saturday 9/24, 12:00-3:00pm – $5

Register: search smgov.net/reserve for keyword “Zeal”

Curious about salsa? Learn this style of salsa in a fun setting. Introductory lesson and demos by Ludis Benitez followed by an open dance party hosted by Artist-in-Residence Zeal Harris. Bring a partner or find partners here; all levels welcome!

Acrylic Painting Basics with Zeal Harris

Saturday 10/1, 11:00am-2:00pm - $5

Register: search smgov.net/reserve for keyword “Zeal”

Learn or develop acrylic painting techniques using canvas and paper.  Come to this course to learn about brushes, mediums, and acrylic paints and paint on unintimidating surfaces conducive to stress-free learning.

Acrylic Painting on Nontraditional Surfaces with Zeal Harris
Saturday 10/8, 11:00am-2:00pm - $5

Register: search smgov.net/reserve for keyword “Zeal”

Paint on household objects instead of canvas for fun. Acrylic paint can adhere to almost any surface prepped for painting. In this class, sanding and priming with gesso will be covered and participants can try out their 3D painting.

Developing Story through drawing and painting with Zeal Harris
Saturdays 10/15 & 10/22, 11:00am-2:00pm - $5

Register: search smgov.net/reserve for keyword “Zeal”

Taking inspiration from the 400 year tradition of Mexican retablo painting, participants in this class will explore self-examination and commemoration by painting an extraordinary event from their personal lives. Mexican retablos are also known as ex-votos (from ex voto suscepto, "from the vow made.") These folk paintings are created in the Mexican Catholic tradition as personal testimonials of travails survived and blessings received. Traditionally done by people with no painting experience, their contemplation of grace and thankfulness can be translated to a secular setting. This workshop encourages the painter to think about their life as a story filled with everyday miracles.

Cuban Salsa Dance Lesson & Social with Kati Hernandez

Saturday 10/29, 12:00-3:00pm - $5

Register: search smgov.net/reserve for keyword “Zeal”

Curious about salsa and rueda (the Cuban group salsa dance with similarities to square dance). Learn this style of salsa in a fun setting. Introductory lesson and demos by Kati Hernandez followed by an open dance party hosted by Artist-in-Residence Zeal Harris. Bring a partner or find partners here; all levels welcome!

Studio Artist-in-Residence Zeal Harris Final Presentation

Saturday 11/19, 2:00-5:00pm – Free and open to all

Register: RSVP to http://COALZealHarris.eventbrite.com

Join Studio Artist-in-Residence Zeal Harris for a final presentation of work created throughout her fourteen-week tenure at the Camera Obscura Art Lab, with selections from previous works on fabric and paper. Light refreshments provided.



Join us at the Camera Obscura Art Lab at 1450 Ocean Ave in Santa Monica and add a skill or polish up your creativity. We offer weekly drop-in project sessions, workshops conducted by resident artists, and our free and congenial Second Saturday Craft Lounge series for crafters of all types.

Contact us: (310) 458-2239, communityclasses@smgov.net. Visit the website at http://smgov.net/camera or see an updated chronological list of classes, photos from events and more at http://facebook.com/1450ocean. Join our email list at http://smgov.net/artsignup.

Location/Hours: 1450 Ocean Ave, Santa Monica CA 90401 in Palisades Park between Broadway & Santa Monica Blvd. Camera Obscura open Mon - Fri 9am – 3pm & Sat 11am – 4pm.

Transportation: Take Metro to Downtown Santa Monica stop, walk 2 blocks west and 1 block north in the park. Parking is $1.85 for the first 2.5 hours in Parking Structure 6 (on 2nd between Broadway and Santa Monica.) check smgov.net/parking for details. Meters on Ocean Avenue $2/hr, maximum 3 hours – check north of Wilshire for best availability. Sat-Sun at the Civic Auditorium lot, $5 flat excepting special events. Buses, visit bigbluebus.com for more information.

Registration – Online: smgov.net/reserve, advanced search: location “Camera Obscura” or search by keyword. Bring cash to cover material fees on the first day of class. In Person: For cash or check, advance registration accepted between 9am-5pm M-F & 11am-4pm Saturday. Day-of: Call 310-458-2239 to confirm availability and plan to arrive at least 15 minutes before the start of class to register.

Refunds/Transfers: For all multisession classes, refunds/transfers will be issued only if requested within one business day after the first class meeting. A $15.00 processing fee applies for each activity session refunded. Any material fees are nonrefundable. All single-session classes are nonrefundable. Requests must be made in person, by mail or email to communityclasses@smgov.net.


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