Glow: Artistic Director
Americans for the Arts and the Public Art Network salute Glow for "Visionary Leadership" in the 2011 Year in Review
6:43 PM by Mathieu Briand for Glow 2013
Photo: William Short
Glow is a dusk-to-dawn art event on the beach and adjacent areas in Santa Monica, California. The first Glow premiered on July 19, 2008 and attracted over 200,000 people. Over 100 artists participated in 27 projects that spanned genres, technology and content, all with some orientation toward engaged participation with the diverse audience, a varietal cross section of southern California, from the most seasoned art world members to the general public, from local residents to international tourists. The context of Santa Monica's fabled beach, the power and allure of the Pacific Ocean and compelling contemporary art, all savored during the hours when museums and galleries sleep, made for a clamorous poetic experience.
The Space Between Us by Janet Echelman for Glow 2013
Photo: William Short
Glow 2010 occurred on September 25 and attracted 150,000 people to the Santa Monica beach. Projects by internationally renown artists (Céleste Boursier-Mougenot, Rafael Lozano-Hemmer and Yoshua Okón) and a strong contingent of Los Angeles-based artists included everything from highly advanced technological installations providing for intense audience interactive, to the purely accoustical pleasures of an accordion orchestra playing while riding the historic Santa Monica Pier Carousel. The twenty projects included approximately 100 artists, with 50 musicians and dancers alone participating in a procession and music circle
on the beach.
Glow 2013 unfolded on September 28 and as in the first two events, brought a huge and diverse audience. From large-scale complex installations such as seen in the two images above by Mathieu Briand and Janet Echelman, to a revolving sculpture /puppet show by Steven Hull, to Rebeca Méndez projection onto a gigantic circular screen to re-purposing of the carousel (Jacaranda Music on the Edge) to Victoria Vesna's remaking of the Ferris wheel into a 60 foot mandala hosting chanting. Jedediah Caesar "installed" throughout the Glow zone four thousand newly minted coins for discovery by lucky visitors; Glenn Kaino's phosphorescent wishing well offered visitors both performance and optimism, Cal Arts Javanese Gamelan performed two riveting concerts to thousands of spirited people while adjacent to Karen Atkinson's hugely popular and inviting participatory media wall. Steve Boyer created a special app that took crowd sourcing and color field "painting" to a new scale. Marni Gittlement with reDiscover Center and Leslie Gray transformed a geodesic dome into a performance arena and projection lantern that mesmerized until 3 am. The collective Aphidoedea installed a "swarm" of jelly fish at the shoreline and invited the audience into the maze of ever-changing and responsive lighting. Shana Koenig worked among the trees in Palisades Park creating a series of audience-friendly suspended sculptures. A youth group from Santa Monica and an interactive performance group from Cal Arts brought great energy and talent to the opening ceremony.
Glow is produced by the City of Santa Monica and the Santa Monica Arts Foundation.