Starting on May 1, Grand Park in Los Angeles, California will be taken over by art installations, musical soundscapes from local DJs, guided mediations and much more. The Music Center is introducing Grand Park’s Celebration Spectrum and joining forces with the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health as a participating member of Art Rise 2021, a part of the WE RISE initiative that encourages wellbeing and healing through art.
To create Grand Park’s Celebration Spectrum, Grand Park has partnered with dublab, in collaboration with artist Tanya Aguiñiga and curator Mark “Frosty” McNeill, for a month-long audio-visual exhibition that showcases the work of more than 34 local artists, fusing art, music and cultural identity experiences. With the art installations taking place on the grounds of the 12-acre urban oasis, as well as digital programming accessible, the collaboration reflects the multi-faceted ways in which Los Angeles County’s diverse populations celebrate, connect, and find and express their joy. Grand Park’s Celebration Spectrum, a TMC Arts program, will transform the outdoor expanse of Grand Park into a deconstructed party, unfolding in a progression of public art and soundscape installations that represent the arc of an epic party. Responding to the hurt and heightened anxieties associated with the pandemic, Grand Park’s Celebration Spectrum offers the communities in Los Angeles the opportunity to heal and re-emerge thanks to the transformative power of the arts.
Art Rise, part of the WE RISE initiative of the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health, is a series of 21 arts experiences in and around Downtown Los Angeles created in collaboration with museums, cultural institutions and artists to use the power of art toward collective wellbeing, health and connectedness.
“Grand Park first partnered with WE RISE last spring to curate programming for the initiative, but COVID had other plans. This year’s program is truly a cause to celebrate as we continue our important partnership with meaningful programs and bring vibrant art to the park,” said Rachel S. Moore, president and CEO, The Music Center. “The arts give us hope by uplifting the soul and helping to create connections; that is more important now than ever since we have had so few ways to connect with one another during the past year.”
“While we have missed out on marking numerous special occasions, this pandemic has taught us to appreciate more of what we have and not to take the little things for granted. By highlighting the rich multicultural traditions representative of Angelenos across the county, from quinceañeras to spring festivals, Grand Park’s Celebration Spectrum reminds us of the happy times we all can look forward to, which will raise our spirits as we come back together,” added Julia Diamond, director, Grand Park. “At the same time, we need to focus on our personal mental health and the community’s wellbeing, and Grand Park’s Celebration Spectrum is the reminder to take care of ourselves and each other through embracing joy and festive moments.”
“Living through the pandemic, thoughts of family members lost, friends and family kept apart, and countless changes flood my mind with grief and pause. I think of all the celebrations, our reasons to gather and revel in joy together, missed and postponed—graduations, weddings, birthdays, births, anniversaries, even funerals. Thinking of the importance of marking time and the mental health benefits communal celebrations bring us, I was pleased to work with Grand Park to create a joyful ode to all celebrations missed in Los Angeles,” commented Tanya Aguiñiga.
“Celebrations bind communities together in joyful spirit. In a place as multifaceted as Los Angeles, these traditions are brilliantly diverse. Even in the midst of great obstacles, memories of our collective celebrations can serve as a glimmer of hope in the darkness,” added Mark “Frosty” McNeill.
If you’re in the Los Angeles area, make a quick stop at Grand Park for the on-site installation or enjoy from home with their digital programming. Visit their site to learn more.