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Artistic mix brings buzz to Pomona

Monica Dien
Staff Writer

The nightlife was abuzz in downtown Pomona as art enthusiasts and artists alike came together for the bi-monthly Pomona Arts Colony art walk.

The art walk, featuring a repertoire from painting, photography, to post modern furniture, showcased local artists’ work in the eclectic community.

The dA Center for the Arts gallery held a show, “Where East Meets West.”

“I wanted to bring hearts and spirituality in common understanding,” Walter Christensen, guest curator said.

“Economically the world is coming together as one world even though we are different in cultures.”

Among the featured work was one piece of a Geisha and her daughter that was on its way to Japan until the tsunami hit in Spring of 2011.

One piece, called “Pollen,” was described as a harmonious representation of mixing cultures together in a progressing world. The painter, Jaime Torres, was keen on making sure the speckles on his piece were reminiscent of pollen.

“I like the idea of mixing cultures,” Torres said. “My piece is supposed to be a conception of your natural state of mind.”

“Earth is a segregated place but in the future we are all going to be mixed up of different cultures,” Torres said. “Two different flowers can’t mix but pollen can spread all over the earth.”

Another artist showcased at the art walk, Levi Hunt, utilized trashed goods to be reused in his pieces. One piece showcased an old vending machine glass that he refurbished.

“I remember thinking, ‘why should such a great piece of glass go to waste?’” Hunt said.

Hunt, who is color blind, used a warm color scheme for his work that took nearly six hours to create.

“I can’t see color and if you were to put me in front of a sunset all I would see are greys,” Hunt said.

“The Eastern influence in my piece is the colors which is supposed to be like Japanese neon lights signs.”

Hunt wanted to give better light to addiction, which he says is a mental and self-induced problem, as he plans to kick off his addiction series.

“As a society we need to take more responsibility and be aware,” Hunt said.

Another artist who took a more technological approach to his art, Franz Keller, used Adobe illustrator to create his piece that showcased an influential Japanese style.

“My work has the look of brush painting but still maintains the smoothness of a vector design,” Keller said.

“Instead of the brush tool I used Bezier curves.”

Keller, who has been using the software for more than 15 years has preferred creating his work behind the screen.

“I prefer illustrator because it’s more of building a picture rather than painting it,” Keller said.

Near to the event is the Space Gallery, which featured the Museum of Latin American Art -celebrated female photographer, Natalie Franco.

Franco’s art mirrored haunting images of dreams, nightmares and childhood memories from her past.

“(Natalie’s work) is a preservation of memories from dreams,” Christina Long, gallery owner said.

“Her photography takes a vulgar look on certain scenes and she believes that the mind is subconscious to how the camera operates.”

Among many of the art admirers was Stella Monshaw. This was Monshaw’s first time at the Pomona art walk however she frequently visits the art walk that takes place in downtown Huntington Beach.

“I went to the one in Huntington Beach and that one has more paintings with lots and lots of waves and this (art walk) has more photographs,” Monshaw said.

Monshaw, an artist herself, plays in a band that performed at the art walk.

“I just played a gig down the street with my band so (my band mates and I) are just checking out the artwork.”

The art walk also showcased live music in the heart of the Arts Colony where families were able to enjoy food and handmade goods by other local artists.

The Pomona Colony art walk is free and open to all every second Saturday from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. and last Saturday from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Monica Dien can be reached at monica.dien@laverne.edu.

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