Recent and upcoming art happenings in Stockton:
• The public gathered Feb. 23 with Lita Custodio at the Mexican Heritage Center to celebrate the life and art of her late husband Greg Custodio, a 20 twenty years in the making. The reception was filled with memories and love for Stockton’s muralist. Filipino dancers and singers honored Custodio’s heritage.
• There was another celebration the following day: Ten musical performances at the Unitarian Church by members and friends of the Valley Community Orchestra celebrated Rita Wilcox on her 88th birthday. They raised funds for the orchestra’s programs, including scholarships for young musicians to keep the music alive.
• Whirlow’s was the place to be Monday night at Joshua Washington’s Farewell Concert. Proceeds from the evening benefitted the Zion Academy of Music, which Washington’s father founded.
• On Wednesday, the documentary “Dolores” was screened at San Joaquin Delta College’s Atherton Auditorium. Dolores Huerta made stirring remarks before the film. Huerta expressed gratitude to Stockton, where she was raised, for preparing her for her life’s work. She painted a picture of living side by side with numerous cultures calling them her neighbors and friends. And she said that we need to “fight racism with the educational system by starting to teach the contributions of people of color so that children of color will have the dignity and respect they deserve.” Huerta urged the audience not to “get cynical and give up but to sow the seeds of justice by getting good people elected.” Following the film, artists were thanked for having added greatly to the farmworker’s movement by creating the posters, doorhangers, songs and films which have aided in getting the message across.
• An artist’s panel is upcoming: "A Conversation About Race And Identity" will be held at the Tillie Lewis Theatre at San Joaquin Delta College on March 6 from 11 a.m–12:30 pm. Visit the Horton Gallery’s current exhibit to see art relating to the theme. The exhibit questions common social and cultural identity assumptions. Artists’ works explore topics from their personal cultural heritage, and looks at how socially constructed “realities” have shaped and often misinformed our perspective of various ethnic groups.
• “Voices” is an exhibit of eight women artists from all backgrounds and ages sharing their creative voice expressed through their art at the Mexican Heritage Center, 111 S. Sutter St., Wednesday through April 1 with a reception on March 16 from 5:30–7:30 p.m. Gallery hours are Wednesday through Sunday from 8 a.m.– 4 p.m.
• Learn how to draw a self portrait in oil pastel Thursday at the Fair Oaks Library during Crafty Thursdays from 4–5:30 p.m. Draw yourself and the famed artist Frida Khalo.
• The UOP Art Car, painted by a select group of students, will be revealed at the Reynolds Gallery from 6–8 p.m Thursday. In addition, the exhibit features a series of painted car parts.
• The Eleanor Project in partnership with Haggin Museum presents HERstory, an archive and ancestry white glove event featuring Dr. Edie Sparks, author of Boss Lady. There will be interactive exhibits, vintage goods, artisans, historical archives highlighting women of Stockton, live music and more. Tickets are $25. Visit theeleanorproject.com to purchase tickets.
• Performances of the play “Baltimore” will taking place March 8–11 at Delta College’s Al Muller Studio Theatre. "Baltimore" explores the complexities of racism from the perspective of eight culturally diverse college students. Performance times are March 8–10 at 7 p.m. and March 10-11 at 2 p.m. Tickets are $9 for adults and $4 for students and seniors.
• Join the American Association of University Women (AAUW) at the Central United Methodist Church on March 10 to view an art exhibit entitled “Empowering Women and Girls.” At 10:30 a.m. there will be college student art contest awards followed by high school essay winners and a presentation by Delta College Instructor Lynn Hawley. Ronda Sanders, President of the AAUW Stockton Branch, is the featured artist at the Goodwin Gallery in March. See her award-winning pastels at her reception at the gallery on from 4 p.m.–7 p.m. March 10.
— Joy Neas is an arts advocate and coordinator for ArtSplash. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.