Art exhibit paints colors of Southern California!

Earthlab, 2017, by artist Eva Struble. Acrylic and oil on canvas. Optimistic and energetic colors depict small San Diego farms.
Earthlab, 2017, by artist Eva Struble. Acrylic and oil on canvas. Optimistic and energetic colors depict small San Diego farms.

Today I enjoyed some stimulating artwork at the San Diego Art Institute in Balboa Park. Their current exhibition is called High-Key: Color in Southern California, and for a very good reason.

Palm greens, desert tans and ocean blues are primary colors in our region’s sunny landscapes.

Additional vibrant colors live in our diverse urban centers. Like neon and surfboards, lowriders and pinatas, our local culture is saturated with bold, bright color.

High-Key: Color in Southern California can be enjoyed at the San Diego Art Institute through August 12, 2018.

If you visit Balboa Park this summer, you might want to check it out!

Visitor to the San Diego Art Institute in Balboa Park absorbs the exhibition of High-Key: Color in Southern California.
Visitor to the San Diego Art Institute in Balboa Park at the exhibition of High-Key: Color in Southern California.
Chaparral (II), 2018, by artist Audrey Hope. Canvas and hand wound rope. Swaths of colorful fabric are suggestive of San Diego's natural landscape.
Chaparral (II), 2018, by artist Audrey Hope. Canvas and hand wound rope. Swaths of colorful fabric are suggestive of San Diego’s hilly, arid natural landscape.
Green, Red-Orange, 2018, by artist Michael James Armstrong. Acrylic sheet, fluorescent light, spray paint.
Green, Red-Orange, 2018, by artist Michael James Armstrong. Acrylic sheet, fluorescent light, spray paint.
Untitled, 2018, by artist Joshua Moreno. Watercolor, watercolor pencil, gouache, marbling, spray paint.
Untitled, 2018, by artist Joshua Moreno. Watercolor, watercolor pencil, gouache, marbling, spray paint.
Cleaning Portrait; Whisk #1, 2017, by artist Claudia Cano. Acrylic on paper. A cleaning tool used by a hardworking Mexican immigrant laborer.
Cleaning Portrait; Whisk #1, 2017, by artist Claudia Cano. Acrylic on paper. A cleaning tool used by a hardworking Mexican immigrant laborer.
More artwork splashed with the vibrant colors of Southern California.
More artwork splashed with the vibrant colors of Southern California.
Rhubarb Moon, 2018, by artist John Oliver Lewis. Porcelain, acrylic.
Rhubarb Moon, 2018, by artist John Oliver Lewis. Porcelain, acrylic.
Paradise Prototype, 2018, by artist Allison Wiese. Cast sugar. Patterned concrete blocks were popular in Southern California architecture in the 1950s and 60s.
Paradise Prototype, 2018, by artist Allison Wiese. Cast sugar. Patterned concrete blocks were popular in Southern California in the 1950’s and 60’s.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of photos for you to enjoy!

Faces of civil rights leaders on Imperial Avenue.

A street mural in San Diego that features many famous faces. Martin Luther King, Jr. is joined by others who have worked to advance civil rights.
A street mural in San Diego that features many famous faces. Martin Luther King, Jr. is joined by others who have worked to advance civil rights.

A long mural at the corner of 32nd Street and Imperial Avenue celebrates many of history’s most recognized civil rights leaders. Among them are those who have fought to empower the poor, advocates for democracy, human equality and social justice, and peacemakers.

Originally painted in 1986 to honor Martin Luther King, Jr., the mural was restored and augmented in 2002 by internationally renowned muralist and activist Mario Torero with the help of the local community. The mural now includes faces from around the world, as you can see in these photographs.

The colorful mural spans two walls near the border of two neighborhoods east of downtown San Diego: Logan Heights and Stockton. The images have again faded with time, but the idealism represented remains timeless and powerful.

The face of Cesar Chavez.
The face of Cesar Chavez.
The face of the Dalai Lama.
The face of the Dalai Lama.
The face of Óscar Romero.
The face of Óscar Romero.
The face of Corazon Aquino.
The face of Corazon Aquino.
The face of Desmond Tutu.
The face of Desmond Tutu.
The face of Nelson Mandela.
The face of Nelson Mandela.
The face of Mother Teresa.
The face of Mother Teresa.
The face of Chief Joseph.
The face of Chief Joseph.
The face of Mahatma Gandhi.
The face of Mahatma Gandhi.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of photos for you to enjoy!

Photos of Cinco de Mayo in Balboa Park!

Talented floreador Miguel Bautista performs rope tricks in Balboa Park during Cinco de Mayo!
Talented floreador Miguel Bautista performs rope tricks in Balboa Park during Cinco de Mayo!

Today was the first time I’ve gone to a big, festive Cinco de Mayo celebration in Balboa Park. What fun!

In the early afternoon I wandered down El Prado to absorb the general flavor of the event, but I spent most of my time watching cultural performances in the Plaza de Panama. The day’s highlight in my opinion was the noontime equestrian parade and rope handling entertainment.

I’ve included some fascinating info in my photo captions!

The festive 2018 Cinco de Mayo celebration in Balboa Park was the scene of great pageantry and life today!
The festive 2018 Cinco de Mayo celebration in Balboa Park was the scene of great pageantry and life today!
Many traditional Mexican costumes, crafts and entertaining activities filled the Plaza de Panama.
Many traditional Mexican costumes, crafts and entertaining activities filled the Plaza de Panama.
Ballet folklorico dancers with the community group La Fiesta Danzantes de San Diego entertain a crowd in Balboa Park during Cinco de Mayo.
Ballet folklorico dancers with the community group La Fiesta Danzantes de San Diego entertain a crowd in Balboa Park during Cinco de Mayo.
Buoyant traditional Mexican music is provided by City Heights Mariachi, an ensemble that welcomes all ages. They are actively seeking trumpet players!
Buoyant traditional Mexican music is provided by City Heights Mariachi, an ensemble that welcomes all ages. They are actively seeking trumpet players!
Many people in diverse and colorful garb were in the audience.
Many people in diverse and colorful garb were in the audience.
The noon Equestrian Procession is entering the Plaza de Panama! The group is called Escaramuza Charra las Golondrinas.
The noon Equestrian Procession is entering the Plaza de Panama! The group is called Escaramuza Charra las Golondrinas.
Riders on horseback wear various traditional costumes. The caballero with the American flag is in the gala dress of a charro.
Riders on horseback wear various traditional costumes. The caballero carrying the American flag is in the gala dress of a charro.
Circling in the Plaza de Panama so that all can enjoy.
Circling in the Plaza de Panama so that all can enjoy.
The equestrian group's floreador performs elaborate rope tricks for the crowd.
The equestrian group’s floreador performs elaborate rope tricks for the crowd.
Great agility and showmanship on display.
Great agility and showmanship on display.
Performing more amazing rope tricks up on the back of his horse!
Performing more amazing rope tricks up on the back of his horse!
This cool lowrider was on display. It's a 1958 Chevy Del Ray Sedan Delivery painted with cool flames!
This cool lowrider was out in the plaza. It’s a 1958 Chevy Del Ray Sedan Delivery painted with flames!
Several Balboa Park museums and organizations had tables in the plaza where kids could create Cinco de Mayo-themed artwork.
Several Balboa Park museums and organizations had tables in the plaza where kids could create Cinco de Mayo-themed artwork.
Many food trucks were lining El Prado!
Many food trucks were lining El Prado!
When not on the main stage, City Heights Mariachi did some more entertaining along El Prado.
When not on the main stage, City Heights Mariachi did some more entertaining along El Prado.
At one o'clock there was a Traditional Dress Showcase with models wearing regional attire from different Mexican states.
At one o’clock there was a Traditional Dress Showcase with models wearing regional attire from different Mexican states.
The various traditional Mexican dresses were from the Olga de la Vega private collection.
The various traditional Mexican dresses were from the Olga de la Vega private collection.
I believe this was said to be a dress from the Michoacán region. The shawl is an important aspect of the attire--it is used to send social signals.
I believe this was said to be a dress from the Michoacán region. The shawl is an important aspect of the attire–it is used to send social signals.
Dress from the Mexican state of Guerrero, if my notes are correct. Images in the fabric include flowers and jaguars.
Dress from the Mexican state of Guerrero, if my notes are correct. Images in the fabric include flowers and jaguars.
Color and pageantry filled the Plaza de Panama during the 2018 Cinco de Mayo celebration in Balboa Park!
Abundant color and pageantry filled the Plaza de Panama during the 2018 Cinco de Mayo celebration in Balboa Park!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of photos for you to enjoy!

Fun photos of Chula Vista’s Pacific Rim Festival!

A performance by Japanese drummers at the 2018 Pacific Rim Festival in Chula Vista.
A performance by Japanese drummers at the 2018 Pacific Rim Festival in Chula Vista.

Yesterday I headed down to the South Bay to check out the 2nd Annual Pacific Rim Festival in Chula Vista. The fun event, sponsored by the Port of San Diego, featured food and entertainment representing many nations that share the Pacific Ocean.

I lingered for over an hour and watched a rousing performance by the Naruwan Taiko Drummers, lion dancing by the Southern Sea Kung Seng Keng Lion and Dragon Dance Association, and Philippine martial art demonstrations by the Cardenas School of Modern Arnis.

Please enjoy a few photos from my walk through Bayside Park, and many more after I arrived at the colorful event!

A family enjoys the small beach near the fishing pier at the south end of Bayside Park.
A family enjoys the small beach near the fishing pier at the south end of Bayside Park.
A father plays super hopscotch in the park!
A father plays super hopscotch in the park!
Walking slowly through sunshine, on the way to a cool festival in San Diego's South Bay.
Walking slowly through sunshine, on the way to a cool festival in San Diego’s South Bay.
Downtown San Diego and the Coronado Bay Bridge are in the hazy distance.
Downtown San Diego and the Coronado Bay Bridge are in the hazy distance.
I've arrived at the 2nd Annual Pacific Rim Festival.
I’ve arrived at the 2nd Annual Pacific Rim Festival.
The first thing I saw was lots of yummy food from many countries around the Pacific Rim.
The first thing I saw was lots of yummy food from many countries around the Pacific Rim.
Beautiful crafts were also on display and available for purchase. A nice lady made this amazing glasswork by hand.
Beautiful crafts were also on display and available for purchase. A nice lady made this amazing glass artwork by hand.
Continuing through the festival. One vendor had unique clothing for sale. Another perfect San Diego day.
Continuing through the festival. One vendor had unique clothing for sale. Kids had a bounce house. Another perfect San Diego day.
An audience has gathered at the stage to watch energetic drumming by Naruwan Taiko.
An audience has gathered at the stage to watch energetic drumming by Naruwan Taiko.
Meanwhile, some lion dancers are waiting to one side for their turn to perform.
Meanwhile, some lion dancers are waiting to one side for their turn to perform.
People have gathered to celebrate many cultures around the Pacific Ocean.
People have gathered to celebrate many cultures around the Pacific Ocean.
The lion dancing has begun. This local group is the Southern Sea Kung Seng Keng Lion and Dragon Dance Association.
The lion dancing has begun. This local group is the Southern Sea Kung Seng Keng Lion and Dragon Dance Association.
Music accompanies the fun lion dance.
Music accompanies the traditional lion dance.
Banners unfurl, wishing everyone a happy and prosperous year.
Banners unfurl, wishing everyone a happy and prosperous year.
The two lions come down onto the grass to the delight of everybody.
The two lions come down onto the grass to the delight of everybody.
A young girl offers the red lion a dollar bill for good luck.
A young girl offers the red lion a dollar bill for good luck.
After this performance, I stretched my legs with a short walk along the nearby water of San Diego Bay. Others were enjoying the day, too.
After this performance, I stretched my legs with a short walk along the nearby water of San Diego Bay. Others were enjoying the day, too.
I stumbled upon some wild California poppies. They are the official flower of the state of California.
I stumbled upon some wild California poppies. They are the official flower of the state of California.
As I returned to the stage, students from the Cardenas School of Modern Arnis had assembled.
As I returned to the stage area, students from the Cardenas School of Modern Arnis had assembled.
People get ready to view a Philippine martial arts demonstration.
People get ready to view a Philippine martial arts demonstration.
The exciting demonstration begins.
The exciting demonstration begins.
Celebrating the cultures of many Pacific Rim nations at a very fun event!
Celebrating the cultures of many Pacific Rim nations at a very fun event!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of photos for you to enjoy!

Naruwan Taiko’s thundering, unabashed joy!

This afternoon I headed to the Pacific Rim Festival in Chula Vista’s Bayside Park. I’ll blog more about this fun event shortly!

The highlight of my day was an incredible performance by Naruwan Taiko!

Imagine resonant, heart-pounding, pulsing beats, and drummers swinging unstoppable arms in a synchronized dance. Imagine smiles and shouts, muscles and sweat, powered by a pure love of life. For a few moments Bayside Park was stirred by magic. Hearts were lifted by thundering, unabashed joy!

I was ready to leap over the sun!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Dance on Sunday afternoons in Balboa Park!

On Sunday afternoons I seem to be spending more and more time in the grand Ballroom of the Balboa Park Club. Cushioned chairs line the walls, and I can sit peacefully as I read or write, listening to gentle, sprightly folk music, occasionally looking up at happy people dancing.

I don’t do much in the way of dancing–not with my feet. But I’m sure some of you do! And I bet some of you’d like to learn all sorts of different folk dances!

I spoke to a nice lady who is a member of one of Balboa Park’s dance clubs, and she told me they are looking to grow their membership. There’s an opportunity for ordinary people with varying levels of experience to learn folk dances from many different cultures. And each lesson costs only a couple bucks!

As you can see from one of my photos, kids and parents can also learn how to dance the third Sunday of every month, from 3:30 – 4:30 pm. Sounds like fun!

Interested? Visit the International Dance Association of San Diego County website by clicking here!

If you can walk, you can dance!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Six amazing murals in front of the Museum of Art!

Close up of a colorful mural now on display in front of the San Diego Museum of Art.
Close up of a colorful mural now on display in front of the San Diego Museum of Art.

Many extraordinary artists make San Diego their home. They help our city sparkle with culture and energy.

Amazing works by distinguished local muralists are now on display in Balboa Park, directly in front of the San Diego Museum of Art.

The six colorful murals, painted live a couple weeks ago, are inspired by a world-class exhibition now running inside the museum. Modern Masters from Latin America: The Pérez Simón Collection is an exhibition of modern Latin masterpieces that no art lover should miss. I blogged about it here.  Go soon. It will be closing in two weeks.

I don’t know how long these murals will be on display outdoors in front of the museum, so swing by Balboa Park soon to enjoy them in person!

To see the murals of Chicano Park, you can click here.

Visitors to Balboa Park check out a couple of the murals temporarily on display in the Plaza de Panama.
Visitors to Balboa Park check out a couple of the murals temporarily on display in the Plaza de Panama.
Sign in front of the San Diego Museum of Art explains the outdoor Local Latin American Masters exhibition. Six murals were painted live in front of the museum.
Sign in front of the San Diego Museum of Art explains the outdoor Local Latin American Masters exhibition. Six murals were painted live in front of the museum.
Art by Victor Ochoa. His work has been widely published. He was one of the original muralists to work in Chicano Park.
Art by Victor Ochoa. His work has been widely published. He was one of the original muralists to work in Chicano Park.
Art by Carmen Kalo. She is a San Diego native who actively leads Chicano Park tours, builds social awareness, and works with at-risk youth and the homeless.
Art by Carmen Kalo. She is a San Diego native who actively leads Chicano Park tours, builds social awareness, and works with at-risk youth and the homeless.
Art by Hector Villegas. He is a teacher who has painted three murals at Chicano Park.
Art by Hector Villegas. He is a teacher who has painted three murals at Chicano Park.
Art by Cesar Castañeda. He owns the Chicano Art Gallery in Barrio Logan.
Art by Cesar Castañeda. He owns the Chicano Art Gallery in Barrio Logan.
Art by Stephanie Cecilia Cervantes. A painter first inspired by Vincent van Gogh's Starry Night, she was a muralist during Chicano Park's 2011 restoration project.
Art by Stephanie Cecilia Cervantes. A painter first inspired by Vincent van Gogh’s Starry Night, she was a muralist during Chicano Park’s 2011 restoration project.
Protecting Our Water and Earth by Mario Torero. He is an artivist and founding member of the Centro Cultural de la Raza in Balboa Park.
Protecting Our Water and Earth by Mario Torero. He is an artivist and founding member of the Centro Cultural de la Raza in Balboa Park.
Amazing artwork that the public can see close up and in natural sunlight, not unlike the fantastic murals of Chicano Park!
Amazing artwork that the public can see close up and in natural sunlight, just like the many fantastic murals of Chicano Park!

Today I published a new short story. It’s titled One Magic Bubble. I suppose the short piece is about life.

Curious? You can read it here!