WCCW Spring Programming 2016
Spring is here we are thinking about Magic! What are the essences of the invisible or intangible? We seek to occupy the murky voids, honor erased histories, engage with the languages of the unseen, and celebrate information spread by word of mouth. Our investigation will take many parts, from investigating our dreams through movement to learning the magical workings of our own cars, and many things in between!
All programs take place at WCCW: 2425 Glover Pl, Los Angeles 90031, unless otherwise noted.
D R E A M I N G: from internal images to experiential embodied practice
Tuesday, Apr 5th, 7-10pm
This workshop aims to give participants the ability to deepen a specific dream or dream image. There are several parts to this workshop which include: a grounding meditation, short demonstration, working in pairs, drawing/writing the dream/dream image, embodied movement inspired by the dream (Authentic Movement), and a group conversation to end. This process is distilled in order to allow participants to pick and chose those elements that resonate the most and take home to add to their personal dream practice.
Lead by Rikki Rothenberg.
Unit Origami Geometric Shapes
Sunday, Apr 10, 10am-1pm
“Unit” means you learn to make one folded piece. Origami is paper folding and we will use square sheets of origami paper. Each geometric shape can be made from the indicated numbers of origami papers folded into a particular unit. We will make a gyroscope (12) and a magic star (8). You may also choose to make: cube (6), stellated dodecahedron (12), or stellated icosahedron (30) as time allows.
Lead by Connie Vandergriff.
Making a Ring – Wax Carving to Metal Casting
Monday, Apr 11, 7-10pm
Carving, piercing, sanding and finishing a ring out of wax that we will then send out to be cast in sterling silver, brass, gold or pink silver. The surprise and playfulness that occurs when rapidly executing ideas is empowering and exciting for individuals involved in the creation of the work, and also for me as an artist and host. This workshop will encourage the honing of fine mechanical skills by use of purposeful tools that can then be applied to use of other tools on larger scales.
Lead by Deanne deVries.
Devised Theater/Performance Workshop: American Witches
Tuesdays, April 12, 19, 26, May 3, 7-10pm
Mireya Lucio and Sallie Merkel will lead a workshop in the creation of devised theater/performance pieces through the practical creation of a devised piece around the depiction of witches in popular children’s/teen culture. This workshop follows their most recent devised performance “Our So-Called Sleepover or Freud and Jung crash 1995 through a Ouija Board,” which was performed at Automata Arts Space as part of the Live Arts Exchange festival in October of 2015 and explored themes of “female hysteria” and the conditions of girlhood as circumscribed by psychoanalysis and reclaimed, challenged and explored in both foundational feminist texts and mid-90s popular culture. This workshop will open up the research/rehearsal process to a participating audience and will examine the ways in which depictions of witches comment on “the feminine” and vilify/other/mystify women’s (invisible) labor as well as codify the different phases of a woman’s lifetime. Also under consideration will be the general histories of female labor and its value or devaluation in society and American regionalism as reflected in various witch archetypes (New England’s Puritanism, Delta Voodoo/Hoodoo culture, California mid-century occultism, Latin American Santeria and the contemporary West Coast posi-witch movement).
Lead by Mireya Lucio and Sallie Merkel.
Making Magical Books
Sunday, April 17, 11am-2pm
Learn to make books that fold and flex in unexpected ways to reveal hidden panels and secret images! Fold books that pop up and explode when opened! Make unique artist books, zines, promotional material or gifts! Impress your friends and loved ones! In this one day workshop, book artist Rachel Curry will introduce students to several non – adhesive folded book structures with magical, mathematical, and mystifying mechanics. This workshop is perfect for artists, writers, and anyone with a curious and creative spirit!
Lead by Rachel Curry.
Basic Auto Care: Understanding the Magic of the Combustion Engine
Sunday, April 17, 2-5pm
Are you interested in understanding how your car works? Would you like to learn how to change a flat tire on the side of the road in case of an emergency? In this workshop we will discuss the basics of the combustion engine and how the various systems of a car work together. We will go under the hood and learn about checking fluids, important maintenance procedures to remember, an introduction to changing oil, and what to keep in a basic tool kit. Everyone will have an opportunity to replace a flat tire with a spare, as a hands-on component to the workshop.
Led by Sarah Lyon.
Thursday, Apr 21, 7-10pm
A monthly curated series of performance, lecture, discussion, intrigue, speculation, seance, and minor arcana. The WCCW transforms each time with basic elements, such as borrowed carpets, funny lamps, film props from day jobs, bespoke smells, newly minted board games, etc, to make a momentarily mythic space… Acts that require the rehearsal of collectivism and collaboration, breach the permeable membrane of our daily lives, and attempt to create helpful new mythologies of conduct.
Led by Anna Ialeggio.
“You see the father as something separate from you. The power and failings of the father. That’s why you need to integrate it. To eat it. To process it and become energized by it.”
That message, while initially channeled through me and directed towards one woman, was a message I realized that many people, including myself, needed to hear. I saw how the earth mother will eat patriarchy. Will consume all the monumental buildings, the banks and trade centers constructed by patriarchy. That within the body of the mother, within the body of the earth, even the most powerful and destructive forces are processed and transformed into new life.
The spell that we will perform during the “Spell to Devour Patriarchy” ceremony are not aimed against men. The object of this work is not to alienate men, denigrate fatherhood, or punish anyone. Instead, the goal is to recognize that the power of “The Father” as a trope or historical ideal is not something alien to those of us who have felt oppressed by it. That in fact, within our own bodies we can shape and transform that power into a tool for healing and creativity.
Led by Amanda Yates Garcia.
Modern School of Flowers: Spring Flower Magic
Saturday, Apr 23, 1–3:30 pm
Spring brings blossoming branches, tulips, ranunculus, narcissus, and sweet peas. We will work with the best flowers the season has to offer, with a focus on locally sourced blooms, magical herbs, and flowers with meaning. Participants will receive a hands-on lesson in how to build a loose, garden-inspired vase arrangement. We will discuss structure and form, the subtleties of color, and honoring the gesture of each flower and leaf.
Led by Krystal Chang.
Tactical Magic Workshop
Tuesday, May 3, 7:30-9:30pm
This laboratory will use various approaches to explore the role of the witch in social justice and her own self care. Activities range from sculpting physical spells, and generating collective online vision boards, to actualizing the role of witches in current social justice movements.
Performance Persona Workshop
Wednesday, May 4th, 2016, 7-9pm
This workshop is designed for folks to begin the creation of a passionate performance persona that can serve as an outlet for creative, political, emotional, and formal desire. The exercises involve personal excavation of complex emotional experience, fantasy, utopia, joy, rage and humor, in order to get to the dirty and shiny diamonds of personal history. There will be movement! And writing!
Original Face Trace
Sunday, May 8, 2016, 11am-3:30pm
Taking a cue from the brand new book by Ruth Ozeki, “The Face: A Time Code,” you are invited to sit in meditation for three hours, looking at your face the entire time. The thread carried through the book and this event ties into the idea of identifying your Original Face, or answering the question “What did your face look like before your parents were born?” Participants are encouraged to bring their preferred note taking device (laptop, notepad) to scribble thoughts and generate blind sketches of themselves. This will be a silent meditation, and we do anticipate that the practice will bring about an amount of suffering (thoughts! feelings! out of body experiences? stir craziness!) but we will do our part to keep participants comfortable– offering time cues, occasional suggestions for focus, art supplies, cushions, and tea and a simple snack. All participants will receive a signed copy of “The Face: A Time Code” and a face mask upon completion.
Honoring LA Mothers of Magic: Mystic Leaders of Southern California, 1890s-1930s” Lecture
Friday, May 13, 2016, 7-9pm
We will learn about these women, some of whom have been otherwise lost to history, and trace their (often unacknowledged) influence across the years as a way of understanding the potential sites for female spiritual leadership in our present moment.Their urgent and sometimes bizarre attempts to manifest an ideal world into being in times of profound global uncertainty vibrates particularly in our present of political extremism and war; our environmentally devastated, potentially apocalyptic future.
Body Talk, Past and Present Curator-lead Walkthrough
Sat, May 14, 2016, 11am-1pm
The Huntington Library, Art Collection and Botanical Gardens
Curator Melissa Lo will introduce WCCW participants to select items from The Huntington Library’s Lawrence D. Longo and Betty Jeanne Longo Collection in Reproductive Biology. A recent and as-of-yet uncatalogued acquisition, this treasure trove comprises 2700 rare books, 3000 obscure pamphlets, and a dozen manuscripts that all shed light on the care, management, politics, construction, and culture of women’s bodies in the West from the 16th century to the 20th. During this show-and-tell we will focus on a handful of episodes in that history. These will likely include theories of conception and monstrous births, the 17th-century invention of the forceps, early modern “menstruating men” (!), the diagramming of the uterus in the wake of Newton physics, an early 19th-century English midwife’s account book, 19th-century treatises on hysteria and its treatment on the Continent, and early 20th-century handbooks that outlined American ideals about women’s health, fitness, and sexuality.
Let the Earth Help You Hold It
Tuesday, May 17th, 7-10pm
In this workshop we will learn about nervines, plants that support our nervous system, and how we can use them to help nourish and support us as we move through the stress we experience living with systemic oppression and trauma. We will talk about the different ways oppression and trauma can affect our bodies and how plant medicine can help guide us towards wellness and resilience. At the end of the class we will make a tea blend to take home.
Alchemy and Collage
Wednesday, May 18, 2016, 7-10pm
A night of cutups and collage animation- transmutation of energies through cutup collage techniques. Participants in this workshop can bring home a small collaborative film I will upload to dropbox or youtube for everyone, along with some cutout poems and collages! Expect a great time transmuting your emotions into some artwork.
Saturday, May 28th, 2-4pm
This is a two-part workshop.
1) The seminar will be a discussion group with the aim of conducting a conversation and reading of Freud’s text: “The Economic Problem of Masochism”. It is recommended to read the text ahead of time at least once, and come with thoughtful questions, wide-ranging or specific. The goal of the seminar will be to provide a portal to critique without centralized institutions or models that impose a binary–of teacher/ student, patient/analyst, etc.– offering a discussion with an orientation towards a need to revisit the relevance of self-annihiliation and evasion, in life and work, at once theoretical and practical. How does self-sabotage intervene against the quest to advance in life and achievements? Is the latter the former in another guise? The text provided is an offering, what it’s content brings up can be put on the table and introduced to others through speech. (60 min)
2) Speaking can be limiting in this exploration–the latter half of the workshop will involve guided movement techniques to emphasize the relevance of the somatic states in our moving bodies, what gets stuck from moving around or not moving around. The focus will be noticing compression and tension and hierarchies of movement. The attempt will be to bring some awareness to the present to help quiet racing or repetitive thoughts, by paying attention to the body, bound up as it is with the mind’s ways. Lastly, if you have personal techniques for quieting the mind please list them and bring the paper with you. I will create an email list and circulate them to all participants for tactics to use in daily life that bring ease and space without pharmaceuticals or vices. (60 min)
Wednesday, June 1st, 7-10pm
Moonbeaming: Using the phases of the Moon to Manifest
To many religions, the Moon represents the Female aspect of Divinity, shining softly and brightly. Understanding the the phases of the moon is helpful to any modern mystic, to any woman, and person—as our closest celestial neighbor, ruler ofthe tides, and a gentle guide to our own intuitive cycles. The moon is a powerful force circling round our planet, and harnessing her energy is a natural step when thinking about our own dreams and goals.
In this workshop we will discuss basic scientific facts about the moon, become familiar with its 8 different cycles, and discuss the symbolic importance of the moon in different cultures. We will go over basic types of manifestation work and spells as they pertain to the four key different moon cycles. Different magickal suggestions, types of spells, and intentions will be discussed.
We will end the workshop with a short guided meditation as it relates to the moon phase we are in. This course is intended for curious individuals, and for those practitioners who want to focus on using the power and energy of the moon in their meditations, manifestations, and spell casting.
A workbook going over the information in this workshop will also be handed out to participants.
Led by Sarah Faith Gottesdiener
Spirit Poems: Self-Love, Creativity, Justice
Sunday, June 5th, 10am-1pm
This is an in-person writing workshop that allows participants to connect with their intuitive wisdom, their embodied magic, their freedom dreams, and one another. Through guided meditation & gentle writing, we’ll create a space of being connected to Spirit and begin to call in that which we are most committed to creating in the world: our visions of joy, justice, love, freedom, community and more.
This workshop is for you if: you want to reconnect with your power & purpose, you want to open up to your artistry, you hold justice in your heart, and you want to invite new self-loving rituals into your life. As this workshop falls beautifully on the New Moon, we’ll charge our intentions up so our dreams will manifest with great power!
Led by Sofia Rose Smith
I Am My Own Ecstasy, Suffering, Love, Pain, and Magic, And I Will Write About it in the Face of Those Who Tell Me Not To
Sun, June 5, 2-5pm
A writing workshop that holds space, bears witness, journeys through the underworld, and finds empowerment in the dark. A space for those with mental illness, chronic illness, disability, neuro-atypicality, difference, trauma, wounds, sensitivity, visions, vulnerability, and/or the feeling of being all too permeable, to tell the stories, the magic, the poetry, and the knowledge that their bodies and souls hold. A space to honor, respect, excavate, articulate, and illuminate.
Autohagiography as a genre emerged in response and in resistance to hagiography (“the lives of the saints”): the religious texts written by literate, male priests that described Medieval women’s mystical experiences. It’s no surprise that the official Church-sanctified texts, which declared these women to be saints, also fetishized, censored, omitted, edited, and significantly altered the source material, as it was told by the women themselves. Autohagiography, then, is the taking back of one’s own seemingly ineffable experiences: the writing of your own body, emotions, ecstasies, and sufferings, especially when they are messy, de-legitimized, incorrigible, don’t follow the rules, and take you to a different place than the one you’re supposed to be.
Led by Johanna Hedva
Wednesday, June 15, 7-10pm
During this workshop, I will lead the group through my ideas of poetic expression, discuss the magic of on-demand poetry, and guide each individual through crafting a poem of their own. The end result will be almost like a personal mantra or prayer that each participant can walk away with.
Led by Jacqueline Suskin
Coven Performance Night
Monday, June 20, 7-9 pm
FRUMP will be hosting an artist-initiated program for the WCCW Spring 2016 season. The event is a curated night of performance revolving around the theme of a coven: a gathering of magical beings inspired to protect and strengthen their surrounding community. We intend to explore the concept of a coven by bringing together different artists, performers, and entertainers and engaging in a non-verbal dialogue through the sharing and presentation of different visual materials (i.e. videos, performances, etc.) This program is intended to expose the audience to a diverse cast of artists and to explore the different meanings of coven–whether they be familial, romantic, artistic or friendship based.
Our artists include:
Led by FRUMP
Bismuth Alchemy & Collage
Sunday, June 26th, 2-6pm
Join us for an afternoon of bismuth crystal growing followed by mixed media collage making as we creatively explore elements of our own mixed-race/multicultural identities. Participants will be emailed questions and suggested reading passages ahead of time to guide group discussion during the program. Snacks, bismuth ingot, and collage source materials will be provided, but feel free to bring food for yourselves or to share during the break between activities. Open to all identities and those interested in growing racial consciousness.
Led by Leana Scott