Day 18 – Sol Hill

Jim Sirianni interview with Sol Hill

Sol grew up in the arts. His parents were artists and opened the first contemporary art gallery in Santa Fe, NM. His early memories were of his parents in their studios and of Hill’s Gallery. The mysterious objects that pervaded the gallery intrigued him. Looking at those artworks felt like observing some secret alchemical language that he wanted to learn because it seemed this language could translate both the physical and immaterial.
Sol wanted to major in Art in college, but switched to International Affairs and German Studies at Lewis & Clark trying to “do something practical” as his parents wished. Afterward he built earthen and straw bale homes before co-founding Zen Stone Lighting, a lighting design company, with his wife, a former paper artist from Brazil.
After an intense medical crisis, Sol dedicated himself to pursuing art full time. He earned an MFA in Photographic Arts at Brooks Institute and has been working full time as an artist since 2010, still seeking to decipher that alchemical language.
Sol divides his artistic practice between working with contemporary digital imaging technology to create what he call Metagraphs, a mixed media hybrid that exploits a digital sensor’s sensitivity to energies other than light in order to record visible artifacts hinting at the energetic nature of the universe we inhabit, and by using art as a form of activism through creating hard hitting social justice art installations with strong presence.

Metagraphs

Sol Hill’s camera-based artwork is a form of technological mysticism, capturing images from the world, but showing us an alternate vision, full of errant visual incidents and covert meanings. The artist allows both reality and his intuitive intentions to reveal themselves with an unexpected poignancy. His process is both technological and poetic, showing the limits of the visible and the possibilities of seeing beyond it.

Hill refers to his digitally captured photographs as “Metagraphs” because he employs digital sensors to record energies both visible and invisible to the human eye. He permits a variety of digital noise – extraneous energy in the form of electromagnetic energies, heat, and cosmic rays – to affect the image. Purist traditionalists might consider this technique a “false exposure”. However,
the process he employs alters recognizable forms, producing a kind of meta-vision and revealing aspects of reality that we do not normally see. In this way he expands his vision and gives the viewer a look into a vast mysterious zone beyond our limited perception. These complex but meditative images, connected by components of science and spirituality are immersed in a palpable sense of time, absorbing viewers in a rewarding experience. Hill’s “Metagraphic” works are a fusion of science, technology, spirituality and art, tangibly presenting an a visual thumbprint of the energetic nature of the universe in extraordinarily beautiful images.

Cinematic and painterly, Hill’s dream-like digital images, have a presence that holds the viewer in a mesmerizing, momentary gaze. This unusual visual sensation is partly the result of his meta-visual digital capture process, then enhanced by an exceptionally skillful application of traditional presentation and archival methods. The counter-point of tradition and ambiguity results in a stunning image. Particularly, his figurative images imply a kind of passage across states of human existence. Anonymity in a variety of dramatic settings, is transfigured by both light and unknown energies. Individual identities subsumed in a field of scintillating particles. In all of Hill’s works, the viewer gets a glimpse of an existential, ephemeral world. There’s a life brilliantly present but mysteriously immersed in time beyond ordinary reality.

Social Distancing Collaboration Special Offer

I would like to offer you, my collectors and fans a special very low price collaboration to reinforce our sense of connection.

If you email me a photograph of yourself or someone you love, I will create an artwork blending your photo with a Metagraph I create based on your image. The result will be a blended energetic portrait of you and/or your loved one(s). Send any favorite portrait, selfie or a photo of what you are doing during this period of social distancing. I will mail a hand varnished print on Japanese paper. 

After the crisis I would like to exhibit works created by this collaboration as a celebration and testament of the positive qualities of the human spirit and how we can choose connection over division when we really need to.

Day 17 – Karyn Laver and The Dance Network

Jim Sirianni interview with Karyn Laver

Karyn Laver

Owner and Artistic Director of the Dance Network

Karyn Laver started dancing at the age of 10, inspired by Gene Kelly and Donald O’Connor in Singin’ in the Rain. She began by taking tap and also trained in jazz, lyrical, and ballet at Central Coast Dance in Los Osos, California, where she danced for 10 years. By age 15, she was teaching and choreographing for the studio’s junior tap company. Since then, Karyn has performed, taught, choreographed, and competed in many styles, including tap, jazz, contemporary, and hip hop.

Over the years, Karyn has been recognized at Dupree Dance Expo, Showstoppers, and I Love Dance national conventions and competitions for her performance aesthetic and choreography. Her pieces have won numerous awards; she has also been awarded scholarships with the Dupree Dance Expo and danced internationally with Stars at Sea.

Karyn’s specialty—and passion—is tap. She has taken lessons from such luminaries as Al Gilbert (the “Pied Piper of Dance”), Thommie Retter (performer in Billy Elliot: The Musical on Broadway), and Darryl Retter. She has also studied at the Debbie Reynolds’ Studio in Los Angeles.

Previously, Karyn was a member of Fusion Dance Campany, JustBaila!, and ArtBark International. She has choreographed and performed pieces featured in Santa Barbara’s Old Spanish Days Fiesta, BASSH!, Synergy, Kinesis, and at the Bacara and the Diavolo Theater in LA. With The Dance Network’s Senior Company, she has performed at multiple venues in Santa Barbara County. Always looking to expand her dance repertoire, Karyn recently became certified as a Rhythm Works Integrative Dance Instructor and is currently training in Latin ballroom and social dancing.

“Dancing and teaching are my two favorite things in life. Nothing makes me happier than being in the studio or on stage, showing how passionate dance makes me. I hope this passion inspires others, as well. As director of The Dance Network, my mission is to nurture the dancer in all of us. At the same time, I want my students – and especially my company members – to understand dance as a mastered work of art that requires discipline and practice.”

The Dance Network

Whether you are looking to take some fun dance classes for the first time or are interested in training on a professional track, The Dance Network can help you achieve your dance and fitness goals!

Our mission is to provide a comprehensive, enriching, customized, and fun dance experience for all who come to our studio. We work towards uniting the dance community and creating a family and home where all can feel welcome.

Our studio offers a wide array of classes for students of all ages and skill levels at affordable prices. ​Our students range from ages 2 to over 80 years old, but there is no age limit at our studio! The dance classes we teach include tap, jazz, ballet, hip hop, break dancing, contemporary, and more. We also offer fitness classes, personal training, and nutritional consultations.

All of our dancers have multiple opportunities throughout the year to perform, and our pre-professional and professional performance companies compete each year at different locations across California. Students are also given amazing opportunities to experience and practice in real life audition settings, as well as take from some of the industry’s best at various dance conventions, master classes, and workshops.

We hope you join our dance family soon!

Want to learn more?

Check out The Dance Network website to see class schedules,
tuition information, and more!

Website | Facebook | Instagram

Video Links
check out some of The Dance Network performances:

Hover Taps (Pro Tap Co)
Boogie Wonderland (Converge Tap Co)
Copasetics Chair Dance (Group Tap)
El Tango de Roxanne
Rubber Duckie (Mini Ballet)
Bend and Snap (Dames & Dudes)

Day 16 – Joan Rosenberg-Dent

Jim Sirianni interview with Joan Rosenberg-Dent

Splat!  Clay on the Wall.

Imagine hanging naked porcelain on the wall…that’s what I do.  I’m an abstract ceramic sculptor working mostly in unglazed, translucent, white porcelain. My work is conceived as a concept and presented as sculpture which hangs on the wall. The creation of shadow, line, and form are integral to my work. I am inspired by music (jazz), dance, nature, and movement.   

I work directly with materials, without a preconceived plan.  I enjoy the discovery of clay falling off my fingers when a new shape is formed.  This “discovery” leads me to new pieces/directions which feed my passion. My work ranges in size from 24” x 24” to 6’ x 3’ panels, depth 4”-7”. Working very large is most challenging and very fulfilling. I have just completed a commission for the new Regent Splendor cruise ship.  This is a two- panel piece called “Land and “Sea.

To see more, check out my website. I am also on Linkedin and Instagram.

My pieces are conceived as concepts and presented as porcelain  abstract sculpture. They mostly allude to dance, music, poetry, and philosophy.  Currently, my work incorporates mixed media with hand built ceramic forms.

Joan Rosenberg-Dent

My work can be seen locally at 10 West Gallery and Grayspace Gallery.  (Dates uncertain due to Pandemic.)

Juried Shows include I00 Grand at Sullivan Goss Gallery  and Westmont Annual Juried Show, where I’ve received” Best of Show”.

Joan is a sculptor working mainly in porcelain and mixed media. She received her Master of Fine Arts degree at Cranbrook Academy of Art.  Joan taught at many universities including Pennsylvania State University, University of Michigan, and was Chairman of Ceramics and Glass at Ohio University.  She currently serves on the Dean’s Advisory Council, School of Art and Design, at the University of Michigan. Her work is in several permanent museum collections including Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian Institute, Detroit Institute of Art, University of Michigan Museum of Art, Canton Art Institute, University of California Santa Barbara, Special Collections, Ridley-Tree Cancer Center, Butler Institute of American Art, Arnold Glimcher Collection, and in many private collections.

A tour of Joan Rosenberg-Dent’s ceramic studio.

Day 15 – rebecca lillich//krüger

Jim Sirianni interview with Rebecca

rebecca lillich//krüger is a performance artist based in Amsterdam, NL. She is currently working alongside Comport Records and DJ/Producer Dansor to create a series of immersive nightlife performances, having started at Multiversum’s Binary Special at Ruigoord Kerk in February of 2020. Alongside her partner Jort Faber, she has collaborated on work for Amsterdam’s Media College and with 31/20 Dance Initiative, a collective supporting freelancers in Amsterdam. Jort Faber’s original piece Pursue, which began their collaboration, won Best Emerging Dance Group at the AmsterDans Competition in 2019, and the work performed in the Netherlands and Belgium as well as being taught in Genova, Italy and later this year in Mainz, Germany. Born in Bad Soden, Germany and raised in Syracuse, New York, she received her BFA from Alonzo King LINES Ballet and her MFA from Hollins University in Roanoke, Virginia and studied in Frankfurt, Germany in exchange with the MA CoDE program at the Hochshule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst. Through many doubts she seeks to engage with work that dismantle singular paradigms in performance and invest in practices and communities that keep the heart beating.

Check out Rebecca’s work alongside Comport Records HERE.

Digital Arts Festival Day 14 – Katelyn Carano

Katelyn Carano interview with Jim Sirianni

Katelyn Carano is a local aerialist, dancer, and circus artist. Katelyn’s performance credits include aerial, dance, fire dancing, and character work locally and internationally. From corporate events to large-scale productions, her resume ranges from Coachella to the Ghetty Museum, to performing for Google Receptions and Lionsgate Films. But Katelyn finds connecting with other movement artists and continuing her growth in her discipline essential. Although she never stops being a student of dance herself, Katelyn teaches aerial dance for beginners through advanced students at Elevated Dreams in downtown Santa Barbara, and is a director for the aerial program at UCSB’s Adventure Programs. Katelyn has also been teaching hula-hoop dance classes weekly through UCSB’s Recreation Department since 2013, and now teaches hula-hoop at Seventh Dimension Dance as well. In addition to her performance career and love for teaching, Katelyn is also the head of Santa Barbara’s local burning man fire performance troupe, Pyrokitten, which organizes a group of 50 fire performers each year. 

a note from Katelyn for tonight’s performance…

I am a local performance artist, and I have been trying to utilize this time in quarantine to edit video pieces that capture my work in aerial and the circus arts. I would like to share 3 short, 3 minute videos I have recently created, along with sharing two “live” performances of acts I am finishing.

I have been working mainly with two other artists I live with to create these multimedia pieces. One is my aerial and adagio partner. And the other is a local videographer and film editor! I love collaborating with artists of other disciplines!

Tonight’s Program:
Partner adagio/acro
LED Multihoop – “Live”
Aerial Lyra
Aerial Silk Duet – “Live”
Aerial Silk

Find out more about Katelyn:
Instagram | Facebook | Website | Class Offerings | Promo Video

Additionally, Katelyn is offering virtual hula hoop lessons over Zoom throughout the quarantine. For more information, click HERE.

Digital Arts Festival Day 13 – Laura Little

Jim Sirianni interview with Laura Little

My name is Laura Little and I was born and raised in Goleta, California. I am a preschool teacher who dabbles in creativity: including singing karaoke, writing poetry and short stories. I also like to attend a paint class at my Church and worship services virtually on zoom now. I have two pet birds and a huge love for dogs and cats! I have offered my own dog walking service for over ten years. I also care give from time to time. As a hobby, I enjoy photographing nature and bowling in a league or swimming for sport. I have attended SBCC and Antioch University Santa Barbara. I currently reside in Carpinteria.

I dedicate this to all children or teenagers who may be feeling isolated especially at this time and who may be fighting through depression and anxiety! You can get through this! You are not alone. 

“Take Flight, Oh my Soul”

A Personal Story of Courage and Overcoming Through Tumultuous Times 

I have to take a leap of faith, like an owl learning to jump in order to fly, I must make the first step. I must be more committed than my first marching band years in high school which I quit marching somewhere in my second year, even as I was in the middle of my favorite show: Phantom of the Opera. My determination gave way and I did not get a varsity letter as I was not marching for four years, which was to count as physical education.  How did all these “firsts” come about? 

 Was it the first time I did water polo camp in the summer between seventh and eighth grade year when I won the contest that I took the biggest leap of faith? I won the follow me by doing a challenge that is “bigger and better” than yours, in order to win, contest. Not sure what I won, except for my pride?

 The final trick was diving or flipping backwards off the high dive. I had a coach who told me to stand straight and flat and trust the fall! Seems like a “fun” initiation in which I will not repeat to this day! Let’s just say I never became a diver; I performed the trick with such faith that no one else wanted to copy me, so I won. Prior to that act or challenge, I remember following a peer on a forward flip for the first time off the low dive. True, I had a trampoline in the backyard and was in the best physical shape of my young life! Hence, maybe the coach must have had enough faith in me and my abilities. Somehow, I just let go and let God. (Easier, said than done!)

What helped me accomplish my prize was either being young and naïve, or plain reckless or stupid combined with a total lack of experience. 

Later that same summer, come August, I boarded a two week-long adventure on “The Swift of Ipswich” with its own crew! We joined the crew learning the sails, including the Girl Scouts which I partook in and Boys and Girls Club teens too. On the second week of venturing out on the high Seas, we were anchored off the shore of Sanat Cruz Island. We learnt of a new fun activity we could do; swinging off the rope swing that was attached to the ladder on one of the tall masts! We flew far into the air, letting go to land in the cool blue and choppy ccean; twas our afternoon treat! Luckily, I had rope swing back home that I daily swung on from the giant ash tree that had given me some prior swinging experience. Just with a little timing -as not to bump back into the ship- and with a lot of fun we took turns swinging the afternoon away!

On a somber note, the first time I heard my Dad had cancer, was the first time the world had whirled fast around me and I felt stuck. Trapped in my room, tiny and scared like a mouse- caught like a deer in its tracks. I cried tears of fear and sadness. A year later I was in 9th grade Spanish class when I incurred my first Failing grade. Yes, I enjoyed learning the vocabulary, yet I did not like the pace of the class, studying all too much, or test taking. My focus was awry and my clarity was off too in many more areas of life then. To make matters worse, I had to walk clear across campus, change out of PE into regular school clothes in about 5-7 minutes. I trotted in late, time after time, huffing and puffing. Soon enough, my Mom and Ms. “Spare-her -name,” were having a parent-teacher conference about this then too. 

I was going down, like a ship in many ways, sinking!  “Student overboard!” I could hear Ms. Spare- her -name shouting to my Mom! My Mom was in turn calling an SOS to my counselor. Meanwhile my Dad, after surviving cancer, was calling “Mayday” to find me a good psychiatrist who would put me on the “right” meds which would eventually help.

Swirling again, I was caught in this spiraling whirlpool and I was captain of my command, no more! You could tell this from my decline in grades academically, to my lack of interest in things I used to be interested in. I went into a protective ball, tucked in social isolation from my once known friends whom I no longer waved back to or acknowledged socially. As I overheard my math teacher telling me, amidst the fog of confusion I was in, I was on “a slippery slope.”

I cried at therapy appointments, which I barely wanted to attend. I felt pain in my throat or voice box.  A heavy feeling sunk at the corners of my mouth, forming into a frown. To this day, if I go deep enough, I can feel this pain again in these same parts of my body.

Many years later, I must interject that now I remain positive with hope, Even if I cannot bring myself back to being the person I used to be, who I was before is gone. However, I can be the person I have become from these hard times and who I am now. A changed and stronger woman, with a voice; who is empowered and courageous. I take encouragement knowing that I am still learning to “fly,” and that though scarred, I have wings still. Though the winds of time may blow with a howling cry, I will fly, I will soar, I will land in peace!

“People can never predict when hard times might come. Like fish in a net or birds in a trap, people are caught by sudden tragedy.” Ecclesiastes 9:12

As was I caught in turmoil, as are we now in challenging time of COVID 19 pandemic, though there be hard times indeed, there will be good times again! Let us not forget that,

“Flowers appear on the earth, the season of singing has come, the cooing of doves is heard in our land.” Song of Songs 2:12

We will regain our strength and our spirit again. It is with hope I give to you these final words from a poem I wrote a while back: 

Abandon your fears 
Take a moment to fly
Soar higher and higher 
Flee from the circus 
Free from the hamster wheel we tread 
See the view for a change 
Be a spectator 
Build your dreams 
Be your imagination contractor 
Always be your own captain 
Sail the uncharted seas of your abilities
Take flight, oh my soul! 

Thank you for partaking and God Bless you all!

More from Laura Little:

24

There’s just twenty four little hours 
In a day 
Make the most of the moments 
That come our way 
Eight hours one may be asleep
The rest we get to choose how to keep
Our spirits up or down 
Our moods solid or lumpy 
Our hearts loving and kind 
Or dismissive and grumpy 
How to lift a frown upside down 
From sad to happy and glad 
Make lemonade from lemons as they say
There’s just 24 little hours in a day 

10-05-19

Digital Arts Festival Day 12 – Felicia Hall

Jim Sirianni interview with Felicia Hall

Felicia Hall has been performing and directing professionally for over ten years in theaters throughout California, Utah, and England. She has been the recipient of several awards and honors, including a Robins Award naming her Talent of the Year, recognition as a top Outstanding Actor Under Thirty, Best Actress recipient of the Professional Artists Award for two separate performances, Best Director of a Small Cast Play (Mercy Seat) and most recently an Indy award for her work in Communicating Doors (SB Theatre Group). Favorite local acting credits include: Girls Like That, Annie, A Christmas Story, Oliver, Our Town, Road to Mecca (SLO Rep), Amelie (Out of the Box), Company (CCAT), Beau Jest (Actor Circle), I and the Village (Roaming Theatre) and most recently The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (SB Theatre Group). Felicia is also a singer/songwriter and loves to play piano, guitar, and ukulele. In addition to her passion for being onstage, Felicia is the founder of Hall Studio, where she teaches acting, singing, and audition prep. Felicia is also the Managing Artistic Director and Founding member of Actor Circle, a new theatre company that debuted its first production last Spring.

Digital Arts Festival Day 11 – Juliet Rohde Brown

Jim Sirianni interview with Juliet Rohde Brown

Juliet Rohde-Brown is a licensed psychologist and the current Chair of the Depth Psychology: Integrative Therapy and Healing Practices specialization program at Pacifica Graduate Institute. She lives in Carpinteria. Meditation and the arts have made a difference in her life and she hopes to share some of her inspirations with you.

These are songs that I wrote and have sung for meditative purposes at the community gatherings for Mindful Heart’s Solidarity and Compassion project.

They emerged out of my own meditations and dreams. I added my photographs and created little videos to go along with the songs. I thought they might be soothing during these times, so I submitted them to this forum.

Be safe and well!

Great Ocean
We Are Home
Remembrance
May All Beings

Digital Arts Festival Day 10 – DramaDogs

Jim Sirianni interview with DramaDogs

DramaDogs, a Theater Company, is a multidisciplinary and project-driven theater production company that celebrates the creative process. It is the intention of DramaDogs to develop theatrical and performance pieces, training programs and educational outreach that touch the human spirit.

In the art that we create, we enter into a body-centered process with the collaborating artists. The individual artists’ experiences, in life and in rehearsal, are the most viable creative tool toward performance. DramaDogs works in partnership at production meetings, rehearsals and into the final performances; the director, designers, actors and technicians voices are heard and integrated into to the overall vision of a theater piece or project. The artists working together reveal and bring forward an artistic statement of the company that becomes the crafted art of any given piece.

DramaDogs crafts challenging theatrical productions and workshops that provide opportunities for actors and performers to explore and discover their own creativity through their personal experiences, discoveries and awareness. What we want to express, how we want to express it and the characters we are creating unfold in layers, revealing to us, that which leads to our theatrical productions.

E. Bonnie Lewis and Ken Gilbert, the Co-Artistic Directors of DramaDogs, have been active in the local arts community for the past 25 years. Our mission continues to bring diverse material and provide cutting edge theatrical experiences to the Santa Barbara arts community.

Check out more from DramaDogs HERE and HERE.

Digital Arts Festival Day 9 – MommyTonk

Jim Sirianni interview with MommyTonk

MOMMY TONK*  is a musical comedy duo based in Los Angeles. These two saucy moms blend their ability to harmonize and curse perfectly in a honky-tonk style.  Shannon Noel & Stacie Burrows weave their irreverent stand up comedy and heartfelt storytelling into the prettiest, filthiest music you ever did hear.

Often backed by THE ASSLESS CHAPS,  a fiddle-based American roots trio,  MOMMY TONK has performed in LA, Austin, Chicago, Louisville, and Nashville including: The Comedy Store, Flapper’s Comedy Club, Throckmorton Theatre, Stagecoach Country Music Festival, The House of Blues, ZaniesThe Boston Comedy Festival and they are frequent performers in the national show Expressing Motherhood.  MOMMY TONK is not safe for work, children, or basically anyone who has any standards.

Want to hear more of MommyTonk? Check these out:

MommyTonk’s comedy album NAILED IT is available
wherever you stream music!

For all you quarantine couples –
check our their latest video on YouTube: Never Been This Close.

YouTube | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Website