Written by Leila Rodriguez / Upgraded Living Magazine - August 2017
Chico is saturated with incredibly talented visual artists, so it makes sense they would create the next generation of artistic beings. Local artists have invited these youngins into their studio to collaborate on a new show to be displayed at Chico Art Center. "Shared Visions" is a collaboration group art show where artistic qualities between adults and children, ranging in ages from infant to teenager, are shared. A reception for the show will be 5pm Aug. 11 at the gallery, 434 Orange St.
Visual arts with a refreshing, whimsical flare are expressed through fiber art, shadow puppet display, animation, and painted works made by a six-month old having open canvas and fistfuls of berries and baby food as paint.
The playful exhibit is curated by Chico artisan Erin Lizardo. Erin revisits collaborating with her boys Moses Sarcona, 5, and Solomon Sarcona, 8. The show's theme plays off a previous exhibition Erin participated with her eldest son, Solomon. Last summer the artistic duo created collaged pieces with Solomon's sketches that were manipulated in Photoshop, digitally rendered, and then embellished with watercolor.
This time around Erin and her children will embark on a slightly varied version of working with their drawings. Her boys' latest fascination has been the spooky world of zombies and all things scary. Erin will convert their monster drawings into wearable, textile masks. Approaching her children's project, the artist said she struggled with trying to extract the essence of her children's original drawings to transform them into three-dimensional, representational artwork.
"The premise of the show is to hopefully inspire the community to create more opportunities to be creative with children and to validate the innate creativity children have,"Erin said. "We want to celebrate that and explore that."
Not only is the collaboration with her boys a positive outlet for her artistically inclined boys, Erin is a firm believer in her kids experiencing the process of formally showing artwork in a gallery setting. "I think there's a lack of representation of art from the youth in a formal gallery setting, "Erin said. "Usually it's just an adult thing so I think its cool when kids come to the show they can relate to it and connect with it."
Local animator Josh Funk will team with his 2-year old Jonah to create a short 1-minute looping film titled "Toy Box," starring the 2-year old. Jonah's toys and art he created in preschool will make cameos as Josh films his son playing. "When brainstorming this film I thought about the ways in which Jonah is already creative," Josh said. "He spends a lot of time mixing and matching the parts of my old action figures so I decided to film him assembling his favorite pieces, then animate them using stop motion."
Along with the visual display, Erin said families attending will be able to take home a list of fun and creative activities adults can partake with their kiddos. It trails their emphasis to alternative "screen-time" distractions to continue the collaborative spark between parent and child. It's sentiment Erin said she grapples with often with modern parenting. "Having kids slow down and find that balance again is sometimes challenging," Erin said. "I think coming up with creative ways to interact in everyday life with your children and creating novel experiences for them is hard for some."
Following the reception, CAC will also host a Free Family Art Day 10am to 2pm Saturday, August 12th. Mini workshops, craft tables, snacks, and a cardboard village to roam will be set for parents and their kiddos. Bring your kids, get creative, and leave inspired to artistically collaborate more often at home!