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Glee Club in Rome


The Pomona College Glee Club, under the direction of Professor Donna Di Grazia, performs in St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome during the group’s spring tour of Italy.

Buonasera Glee Club

This May, St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome and St. Mark’s Basilica in Venice will ring with the voices of the Pomona College Glee Club, as the group brings its annual concert tour for the first time to Italy. Each year after the end of the spring semester, the Glee Club takes a little piece of Pomona on the road, performing in venues across the country and around the world. Last year’s East Coast tour included a performance at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C. (below). The last time the troop went transatlantic was in 2012, when they performed at venues across Poland, England and Germany, including the famous Thomaskirche in Leipzig (Bach’s home church for nearly 30 years), St. James’s Piccadilly in London, and the Berliner Dom in Berlin.

For Sagehens abroad or those who plan to be abroad in May, here’s the complete schedule (all are concert performances unless otherwise noted):

  • Basilica San Nicolo, Lecco (Lake Como region), Italy—May 19, 9 p.m.
  • Chiesa San Salvador, Venice, Italy—May 21, 7 p.m.
  • St. Mark’s Basilica, Venice, Italy—May 22, noon (featured choir at mass)
  • Chiesa di Santa Caterina, Pisa, Italy—May 24, 9 p.m. (concert sponsored by UNESCO.)
  • Basilica Santa Trinita, Florence, Italy—May 25, 9 p.m.
  • Chiesa San Marcello, Rome, Italy—May 27, 9 p.m.
  • St. Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City, Rome, Italy —May 28, 5 p.m. (featured choir at mass)


Artwork by James Hueter ’46 Acquired by The Huntington Library

1946-HueterThe sculpture-painting, “The Figure Rising,” by artist James Hueter has been acquired by The Huntington Library, Art Collection and Botanical Gardens in San Marino, CA, for their permanent collection of American Art. James studied art at Pomona and received his M.F.A. at CGS. He has been an active artist since then and continues to show and work. A 60-year retrospective of his work, curated by Steve Comba, associate director of Pomona College Museum of Art, was shown at the Claremont Museum of Art in 2009, and he will have a show at Bunny Gunner Gallery in Claremont in May 2016. See photo of James with his work at the Huntington. He and his family had a private tour of the gallery space in Jan. with Hal Nelson, curator of Decorative Art, and Jessica Todd Smith, chief curator of American Art.

New Work by Linda Kawasaki Yoshizawa ’78

Artwork by Linda Kawasaki YoshizawaA new work by Linda Kawasaki Yoshizawa ’78  was included in the visual arts portion of the 10th annual “East Meets West” art and poetry exhibit, integrating visual and literary arts, held in the Civic Center at the main Livermore, California, library. Yoshizawa is a printmaker from the San Francisco Bay Area whose artwork reflects the mixing of two cultural sensibilities—American and Japanese. Her nature-inspired drawings are used as symbols of our own struggles and yearnings. She uses colors, values, and textures to elicit mood, questions, and a sense of serenity. Her monotype printing technique balances serendipity and design with a personal aesthetic that reflects her Japanese-American identity. An art major at Pomona, she is a member of the California Society of Printmakers and the Los Angeles Printmaking Society. Her work is included in many personal and corporate collections across the country, including Kaiser Permanente in San Ramon and Pleasanton, California.

Vertigo@Midnight Art Exhibit Explores Afrofuturism

THE ART EXHIBIT “Vertigo@Midnight: New Visual AfroFuturisms & Speculative Migrations,” on view Feb. 23 – VatM-Posterside4cMarch 6, at Pomona College and Scripps College, invites viewers to contemplate the visceral, spiritual, emotional and political dimensions of diaspora.

The artists from around the world include Chakaia Booker, Michele Bringier, Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons, Krista Franklin, Renee Stout, Lee Blalock, Chris Christion, Oluwatobi Clement, Sydney Dyson, Sharon Grier, Karen Hampton, Zeal Harris, David Huffman, Lek Jeyifous, Ademola Olugebefola, Glynnis Reed, Cauleen Smith, Jaye Thomas, Sheila Walker, Jessica Wimbley and Saya Woolfalk.

The artists are linked through their interest in and reimaginings of race, gender, the body, space and time. The artwork collected here considers the tensions and joys of identity through multiplicity, remixed histories, storytelling, memories, fragmentations and reinventions, disorientation and vertiginous boundary crossings.

The Vertigo@Midnight exhibition is hosted by two campus galleries – the Pomona College Studio Art Hall Chan Gallery, (370 N. Columbia Ave., Claremont) and the Scripps College Clark Humanities Museum (981 N. Amherst Ave., Claremont). The opening reception, with readings by Kima Jones, Peter Harris, and 5Cs students, will be held on Wednesday, Feb. 25, at 4:15 p.m., at the Clark Museum. Both museums are open Monday-Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday-Sunday, 12 – 5 pm.

Curated by Pomona College Prof. Valorie Thomas, “Vertigo@Midnight” opens dialogue about disorientation and equilibrium through her theorizing of African Diasporic Vertigo as a cultural idiom that crosses borders, cultures and languages.

Related Events:

  • Feb 21, Film/Performance, 8 p.m., King Britt presents “Brother From Another Planet (Recontextualized),” Smith Campus Center (Edmunds Ballroom, 170 E. Sixth St., Claremont)
  • February 27-28 & March 6-7, Film Screenings, AfroFuturisms and the Speculative Arts, 12-6 p.m., Crookshank Hall (140 W. Sixth St., Claremont)
  • March 4, Artist Talk, Jessica Wimbley, 1:15 p.m. with reception at 4 p.m., featuring a dance performance by Sesa Bakenra (Claremont McKenna College ’15), Pomona College Studio Art Hall, Room 122.
  • March 5, Artist Talk, Claude Fiddler, 4:15 p.m., Pomona College Studio Art Hall, Room 122.
  • March 6-7, Film Screenings, AfroFuturisms and the Speculative Arts, 12-6 p.m., Pomona College Studio Art Hall, Room 122.

For more information on AfroFuturisms and the Speculative Arts, contact valorie.thomas@pomona.edu.

—Cynthia Peters

Story Quilt Exhibit Reveals Reactions to Trayvon Martin Shooting

“AMERICAN SPRING, A CAUSE FOR JUSTICE,” 23 story quilts that narrate the Trayvon Martin shooting in 11-quilt-bracy300Florida, will be on display at Pomona College, beginning Feb. 23. The quilts come from the Fiber Artists of Hope Network and reveal reactions to Martin’s death in 2012 and hopes for a better America.

The exhibition will be open Feb. 23 to March 8, 2015, at the Pomona College Bridges Auditorium (450 N. College Way, Claremont) and is free to the public. An opening reception will be held on Thursday, Feb. 26, with lectures at 6 p.m. and the reception at 7 p.m.

The exhibition is open on Monday–Wednesday and Friday-Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. On Thursdays, the exhibition will be open 1-7 p.m. in connection with the Pomona College Museum of Art’s Art After Hours program. On Sundays, the exhibit will be open 12-3 p.m.

Story quilting expands on traditional textile-arts techniques to record, in fabric, events of personal or historical significance. Through the accessibility of their colors, patterns and symbols, the quilts of ”American Spring: A Cause for Justice” relate narratives that enable conversations about sensitive topics from our national history, furthering the discussion of racial reconciliation in America. This exhibition is curated by Theresa Shellcroft and is organized by the Fiber Artists of Hope in Victorville, Calif.

The quilts have been exhibited to the Congressional Black Caucus, in Atlanta, Baltimore, Little Rock, Los Angeles, Marion (IN), Philadelphia, Victorville and Washington, DC, among other locations.11-quilt-shie

Associate Dean Jan Collins-Eaglin saw the quilts at the African American Quilting Guild meeting in Los Angeles last year. “Each quilt tells a story,” she says. “They’re very evocative and interpretations of what happened. I really wanted our students to be able to see them. Then there were the shootings of Michael Brown in Ferguson and Eric Garner in New York.

“Through art, we can heal, and this has that power. We can begin to talk about what these artists hope for, and what we hope for. There are so many little details in the quilts, and as you look at them more closely, you begin to talk about them.”

—Cynthia Peters

Big Laughs for Joel McHale at Little Bridges

mchaleblog2Comedian Joel McHale entertained a packed house of Claremont Colleges students at Little Bridges on Saturday night.

McHale, who is the host of “Talk Soup” and stars on the sitcom “Community,” did his research, commenting that Claremont is like Tolkein’s Shire and ribbing the audience on the differences between the colleges. From his time hosting E!’s “The Soup,” McHale shared stories of angering reality TV stars like Tyra Banks and the Kardashians, as well as shared a tribute joke for Joan Rivers, before segueing into stories about raising young sons.

He even took a crack at Pomona’s beloved mascot: “Cecil the Sagehen is not very intimidating. It’s like, ‘We’re gonna beat you… if you were to eat us and we were undercooked. We’re gonna salmonella you all over the field!’”

The event was co-sponsored by the CUC Holmes Fund; Bridges Auditorium, which produced the event; and Bridges Hall of Music, which hosted the event. Each of The Claremont Colleges received a set amount of free tickets, distributed through the respective college’s student affairs staff.

Pomona College often hosts top-bill comedians, including Wanda Sykes, Eddie Izzard and Aziz Ansari in recent years.


New CD from Professor Tom Flaherty

looking1Music Professor Tom Flaherty has a new CD out, Looking for Answers, from Albany Records featuring chamber music recorded in Pomona’s Little Bridges.

“I have been long been fascinated with how the meanings of simple things can be transformed when they are juxtaposed in interesting ways,” writes Flaherty.” Colliding meters, tempos, modes, levels of dissonance, and the like permeate my recent music, and are often the focus of its progress.”

The CD features six pieces, written over seven years, and “all inspired by and written for friends, family and admired colleagues.”

A Look Inside Pomona’s New Studio Art Hall

drawingstudioEarlier this week, we took a hard-hat tour of the Pomona’s under-construction Studio Art Hall, set to open in fall. Pomona’s web will be reporting more about the innovative design, environmental features and creative spaces in coming months, but here are some quick takeaways from our tour:

The building’s layout – described as four structures under one roof canopy to create an “art village” – has no interior hallways, leaving plenty of open spaces for students to gather or work on their art.

Those include a large terrace on the northeast corner of the second floor and a covered open-space area beckoning from the southeast corner, with the rustic oaks of the Wash only a stone’s throw away.

Expect plenty of natural light: More than half of the exterior of the building will be glass. Upstairs, Professor Mercedes Texeido’s drawing studio will be lit with help from gill-like skylights (see photo.) The painting studio on the north side of the second floor looks out at a sweeping view of the San Gabriel Mountains.

Along with spaces for painting, sculpture, drawing, metal work, a digital studio, a wood shop, photography, a computer lab and more, the building also includes a lounge with a kitchen, adjacent to the artist-in-residence space.

The grounds of the large courtyard – another distinctive feature of the building — are starting to take shape. A cork oak has been planted, and faculty from both the art and geology departments have selected boulders that will be placed in the courtyard and used for both casual seating and for instruction by geology classes.

The art-geology connection is just one example of the interdisciplinary aims behind the new building. One purpose for of the open-air gathering spaces is to allow students in different artistic disciplines to work side by side, and junior/senior studios also will be shared between disciplines.

There could even be some unplanned interdisciplinary interaction between art and athletics: the balcony and terrace on the northern end of the upper floor offer a view into the outfield of Pomona’s baseball field.

Photo by Laura Tiffany

Pomona Pair Mix Alt-Pop, Entrepreneurship and Environmental Activism

Skylar Funk Boorman ’10 and Merritt Graves ’10 have spent their years since Pomona successfully combining their love of music with the fight against climate change. Their outlet is Trapdoor Social, a band self-described as “Los Angeles Alternative Energy Rock and Sustainability Activism.” They recently released their second album and have been touring, doing shows throughout the Midwest and West Coast. The music videos for their alt-pop songs from their first album “Death of a Friend,” which featured Death Cab for Cutie’s well-known drummer Jason McGerr, have drawn large viewership online and play on the radio.

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