Just a few blocks from the site where the Oscars will take place lies Manifest Equality. An art exhibit with over 100 artists, among them Barry McGee, Robbie Conal, Roman Coppola, Swoon, Chris Johansen, Shepard Fairey, Clare Rojas, Harvey Pekar, Bask, and Ron English. Numerous media are represented all with the theme “Manifest Equality”.
Our own David Markland introduced me to Yosi Sergant who is the energy behind the Equality Task Force that produced this exhibit. Great guy, passionate about “now being the time to start the conversations regarding equality for everyone”. “Artists as activists bring forth their ideas and views in a non-threatening manner is how to introduce the idea to everyone and get a dialogue started”. He stated that he never expected Prop 8 would have had a chance and devoted his energy to the Obama campaign, not realizing until two weeks before the election that it had an actual chance at passing. He switched gears and after that result he was energized to use art to start the conversations outside the LGBT community on the importance of providing equality for all.
The space is huge and has within the exhibit two huge freestanding sections representing “A House Divided”. It is a metaphorical exhibit within the exhibit. On it is a huge mural by artist Trey Speegle that is amazing. It catches your eye with the giant “Say Yes” graphic and as you get closer it becomes more engaging. Stimulating you with additional verbage that delivers a punch or two with theme in the process.
To be truthful I am glad I got there early enough this morning so I could step back and soak in the entire scene as well as allow myself to be drawn into the images. It is an impressive body of work culled from nearly 1,000 entries. It left me speechless after witnessing for myself the breadth and depth of interpretations within “Manifest Equality”.
This exhibit isn’t about viewing only. It is also one for interaction and learning. In the Workshop there are walls dedicated for children to use chalk and draw their own versions off what this exhibit meant to them. This weekend there will be workshops for at risk teens not just the LGBT community but the city as a whole. It will be about dialogue and creating their own art on the topic.
Through out the exhibit Cafe Bustelo is providing Manifest Equality visitors with a free coffee bar throughout the week – come by and get caffeinated with an espresso, hot chocolate, or other treat!
Details: Manifest Equality 1341 Vine, Hollywood CA. March 3-7 2010. Wed & Thurs – 11:00 am – 6:00 pm, Friday – 11:00 am – 10:00 pm, Sat & Sun – 10:00 am – 6:00 pm
All images by me. The first 3 are done with the help of HDR post processing. All get bigger with a click. More of the exhibit at my flickr Manifest Equality folder.