Environmental Art Installation, Santa Ana River Cleanup and Art at RAM
There Is a River Here
Santa Ana River Cleanup and Art Installation
There Is a River Here, November 12, 11 a.m.
Santa Ana River Cleanup, November 12, 9 a.m.
Martha McLean-Anza Narrows Park: 5759 Jurupa Ave. Riverside, CA 92504
For more information, visit www.riversideartmuseum.org
Riverside CA – The Riverside Art Museum (RAM) invites the public to celebrate the unveiling of an environmental art installation, There Is a River Here, on Saturday, November 12, at 11 a.m. at the Santa Ana River near Martha McLean-Anza Narrows Park. RAM is also facilitating a Santa Ana River Cleanup the same day starting at 9 a.m.
Curated by Carolyn Schutten, facilitated by textile artist collaborative Threadwinners (Alyssa Arney + Liz Flynn), and co-created with the community, this environmental textile art project highlights the river as a cultural and natural resource and integrates the yarn bombing of several boulders.
[ecko_quote source=”say Arney and Flynn.”]We are yarn bombing an outcropping of eight boulders that sit along the Santa Ana River, an environmental landmark that is often ignored or unnoticed by visitors to the park.[/ecko_quote]
There is a River Here was conceived to foster awareness about the Santa Ana River as a vital and historic waterway in Riverside County and builds on the work of other environmental artists who are dedicated to ecological awareness and who are drawing visitors to natural parks and landscapes. The project is similar to Steve Duncier’s work for Los Padres National Forest.
[ecko_quote source=”Schutten”]Duncier’s project provides the art historical precedent for There Is a River Here and made the approval process a bit easier since some of the Riverside County Parks Commissioners had heard about it.[/ecko_quote]
Vice Chair for the Riverside County Parks Commission, Hugh Van Horn stated, “I am excited that RAM has chosen to partner with the County Parks District and believe promoting the river will have endless benefits for the region. I’m hopeful that this partnership will be one of many more to come, where art in the parks becomes the norm throughout the County system.”
To help create the textiles for the boulders, yarn and knitted or crocheted pieces in shades of blue were donated to the Riverside Art Museum by Ewe and You in Irvine, Ursula’s Yarn Boutique in Santa Ana, Purlsoho in Tustin, Newtown’s Yarn Country in Anaheim, Yarn Bombing Los Angeles, and generous individuals. In addition, crocheters created work at RAM at Community Crochet Circles on September 24 and October 22.
The There Is a River Here site installation will feature blue mandalas, circles, and granny squares. Flynn crocheted a blue ombre piece and Arney has been working on a glacier-themed one. Flynn and Arney stated in a recent interview featured on Craftivism:
We’re also trying to cover this massive 24-foot boulder with giant stripes and potentially have a landscape-inspired piece on an enormous flat-faced boulder! We’ve learned quite a bit in the process of creating this installation, but I think the most significant thing we’ve learned is how excited people are about public art of this nature. Through our calls for donations, as well as the Community Crochet Circles we’ve hosted at the Riverside Art Museum, we’ve seen an outpouring of generosity and creativity from people who are excited by our project and want to contribute. We’ve gotten donations of yarn and beautiful needlework from people of various ages and backgrounds, and it’s so uplifting to see that the culture of craftivism and needlework is not limited to a certain niche group of people. We know that most craftivists believe in the accessibility of the movement in theory, and it’s nice to see it in action! The second biggest surprise is how much yarn we have used and how, just when you think the piece you’ve made is big enough, it still needs to be bigger. These boulders ARE MASSIVE! The biggest lessons are to plan ahead, leave room to alter the design to fit your work schedule and to never give up! Keep working hard and it all really does pay off in the end!
The boulder installation will have a second life. The pieces will be deconstructed and remade into blankets to be donated to Path of Life for the homeless.
Prior to the installation of the art project, RAM is hosting a Santa Ana River Cleanup at 9 a.m. where Inland Empire Waterkeeper Megan Brousseau will talk about the history and ecology of the Santa Ana River and Patricia Locke Dawson of the Santa Ana River Trust will give a brief talk about the revitalization of the Santa Ana River.
After the debut of the installation at 11 a.m., there will be a performance of the river knows, choreographed by Crystal Sepulveda in collaboration with Gwen Benitez, Jonathan Godoy, Rebekah Johnson, and Kylie Kruger. This innovative work will be performed in the river and was co-created with members of the community in a workshop held on November 5.
Please join us at Martha McLean-Anza Narrows Park: 5759 Jurupa Ave. Riverside, CA 92504. We will meet at the path at the north parking lot at the end of the park next to the Santa Ana River Trail. Please wear comfortable shoes and clothes and don’t forget you’re sunscreen, hat, and eco-friendly water bottle!
Find out more at @thereisariverhere on Instagram. For more about Alyssa Arney, she can be found on Instagram at @smashitupart and at her website. For more about Liz Flynn, she can be found on Instagram at @thelizflynn and at her website.
The Riverside Art Museum integrates art into the lives of people in a way that engages, inspires, and builds community by providing high quality exhibits and art education programs that instill a lifelong love of the arts. RAM relies on the generosity of members and donors to support its exhibitions, education programs, and special events. A 60-plus-year-old, non-profit cultural arts institution housed in a National Historic 1929 building designed by Hearst Castle and AIA Gold Medal-winning architect Julia Morgan, the museum welcomes over 50,000 visitors a year. The museum is open Tuesday – Saturday, 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. and Sunday, 12:00 noon – 4:00 p.m. For information on exhibits, events, classes, memberships, or sponsorship opportunities, visit www.RiversideArtMuseum.org. Find us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/riversideartmuseum), Twitter (RAMRiverside).
Made possible by: James Irvine Foundation’s New California Art Fund and California Water Environment Association/Water Protection Professionals.