The new edition of the Joshua Treenial art festival is this weekend, April 12-14. Along the Pioneertown/Joshua Tree/29 Palms continuum, with a gathering and performance hub at BOXOProjects, a proliferation of art exhibitions, installations, land-art happenings and studio tours all highlight the affecting landscape and the unbounded creativity of its inspired denizens.
The majority of the weekend’s installations and performances take place at BoxoHOUSE, which is both curatorial and event/information HQ for the weekend, and where you’re most likely to find curators Bernard Leibov and KJ Baysa. Other local venues also host events, such as the Integratron (although that one is sold out) and Art Queen (an art oasis and shopping collective, which is open year-round). Several other area galleries and independent artists are invited to produce and highlight their own exhibitions and programming, as well as offering a slate of open studio tours with the artists themselves.
In 2017, the theme was Event Horizon, and works included strange objects and signs nestled among the boulders, sound and light events illuminating outcroppings, free-standing sculptures imparting middle-distance destinations and framing the landscape, and performative activations of, once again, the otherworldly landscape that is the magnet and muse of the whole idea.
The 2019 edition is titled Paradise::Parallax, and the curators’ point of view reflects an evolving conceptual focus that regards the history of the local environment, and the adaptations of flora and fauna — as well as human beings and community — in response to its hardscrabble beauty. The idea is that the high desert is a place where things thrive, or get lost, or come to be born and sometimes die; that all who worship at its endless horizons can’t help but find their own path. It is an eternal place whose only constant is change. Such are the thoughts at issue for both the core exhibition’s roughly 25 artists and for the local creatives who welcome you to their fringes.
Carl Berg & Cecilia Miniucchi; Johan Urban Bergquist; Ryan Campbell; Anibal Catalan; Rachel Dagnall; Jeff Frost; Séverin Guelpa; Mary Addison Hackett; Samantha Harris & Almond Zigmund; Adriene Jenik & Dominic Miller; Mathias Kessler; Angus McCullough; Paloma Menéndez; Michael Petry; Per Platou; Sabine Reckewell; Aili Schmeltz; Lewis deSoto; Benjamin Stanwix; Ivan Wong
Off-site venues and artist studios:
Aaron Sheppard; Angel Chen; Art Queen; Diane Best; High Desert Test Sites; Joshua Tree Highlands Artist Residency; JT Lab; La Matadora Gallery; Outpost Projects; Rough Play Projects; Kim Stringfellow; 29 Palms Art Gallery; Unpaved Gallery
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