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Summer Solos 2008

Summer Solos 2008:
Ken Lo, Ala Ebtekar and CalliGRAFFitti

Exhibition: July 1, 2008 - August 15, 2008
Artists' Reception: Friday, July 11, 6 - 8pm
Artists' Talk: Saturday, July 19, 1pm

Oakland, CA: Pro Arts presents Summer Solos 2008, an exhibition of three projects exploring the topics of race, identity, and cultural hybridity. The exhibition features installations by artists Ken Lo, Ala Ebtekar, and CalliGRAFFitti, a collaboration between calligraphy artist Minette Lee Mangahas and three generations of graffiti writers.

Ken Lo's video and sculpture installation focuses on the intersections between the perception of Chinese culture and the self aggrandizement of American Basketball. He uses humor, fantasy, and parody to depict racism and stereotypes, resulting in original and unexpected works relevant to Oakland and the Bay Area today.

Berkeley born artist Ala Ebtekar fuses traditional Iranian imagery with American hip-hop iconography. His work weaves urban culture, history and mythology. Ebtekar has shown widely in the Bay Area and has exhibited internationally including The Third Line in Dubai and the Nordiska Akvarellmuseet in Skarhamn, Sweeden.

CalliGRAFFitti is a project focusing on the synergies between East Asian calligraphy and urban American graffiti word art forms. On display are the works resulting from the collaboration between calligraphic painter Minette Lee Mangahas and nine graffiti writers from seven cities around the country. By demonstrating the shared qualities of modern graffiti letterforms and ancient techniques of East Asian calligraphy, the project works to expand the community's understanding of these two genres-their historical and cultural roots, the role that they play in public space and personal expression, and their power as visual artforms used to mark cultural identities today. Collaborators include Amend One, Apex, Coby Kennedy, Denz, Desi, Lucha, Meow, Toons, and Zen One.

About Pro Arts
Pro Arts is a nonprofit artist-based organization that supports the diverse cultural communities in the East Bay by exhibiting artists' work and providing a venue for furthering communication in the arts. Last year Pro Arts exhibited 580 artists, presented 15 exhibitions and produced 53 events in Oakland. Pro Arts events draw an annual audience of 65,000. The gallery is located at 550 Second Street in Oakland's Jack London Square.

For more information please contact: David Huff, Exhibitions and Programs Coordinator: or 510.763.4361


Posted by Pro Arts on 7/1/08 | tags: summer solo-shows basketball hip-hop iranian asian american installation video-art scrolls calligraphy graffiti

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