Santa Cruz Good Times

Wednesday
Apr 01st
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

Crossing the Continent to Cross Disciplines

blog slugreportSLUG REPORT > UC Santa Cruz's plans for an art and science museum move forward with new director

A space conceived to connect the arts with the sciences will also be connecting the West Coast with the East Coast.

“I’ve been aware of this project for a long time,” says John Weber, currently the Dayton Director of the Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery at Skidmore College in New York. Weber was recently hired by UC Santa Cruz to direct the University Museum of Arts and Sciences, a planned museum meant to link the disciplines.

Weber’s experience within the field of museum stewardship spans the country. A graduate of UC San Diego’s Master’s in visual arts program, Weber began as a curator of contemporary art at the Portland Art Museum in Oregon in 1987. Later, he became the Leanne and George Roberts Curator of Education and Public Programs at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art in 1993, and then the Dayton Director at Tang in 2004.

As one of the “top four initiatives” for the university’s fundraising campaign, the University Museum of the Arts and Sciences will be an “institute of creativity and curiosity,” according to the UCSC art department website. The completed project will reside in the arts complex on campus.

Currently in its conceptual phase, the museum is intended to function as the “cultural hub” for faculty and visiting scholars, and potentially serve as a complement to the classes students take each quarter.

“This is in the really early stages—but that’s what’s actually so exciting to me,” Weber says. “Usually when you come into projects, everything’s already decided … where you might have done it way differently. To come in before they’ve even selected an architect is really exciting.”
 
Dean of Arts David Yager says that Weber’s “broad experience” is not the only enticing aspect of the founding director’s resume.

“He comes from an academic institution that has been one of the most important exhibition spaces in America in the past five years in terms of what they do,” says Yager.

With a private collection of more than 5,000 contemporary and historical works, the Tang has been nationally recognized as a revolutionary space of “intersection”—between poetry, history, social justice, literature, and theater—on the Skidmore campus.

While the UCSC museum will share many similarities with Tang, Weber says that he is eager to incorporate science, technology, and a strong graduate student population into the new project.

“Tang … is in a strictly liberal arts, small, undergraduate university,” Weber says. “UCSC has much larger graduate student population … and a relationship with technology that I’m particularly interested in, [such as] their relationship with Silicon Valley.”

Weber says he is also fascinated by museum architecture, having spent a long time traveling to different museums around the world to study the impact museum design has on the museum goer’s experience.

Yager says that they are hoping to select an architect next spring.

“A large part of his role will be fundraising for a couple of years … we haven’t started yet,” Yager says of Weber, adding that a seed gift from Plantronics is the only funding for the project so far. “[His other current main roles are] building a physical program in terms of what the building will be like and building from collaborations, and getting to know who could be the [future] museum staff.”

Comments (0)Add Comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

Panel Discussion

After 39 years in business, the owner of Santa Cruz’s Atlantis Fantasyworld looks back at how comics have evolved

 

Passion Week, Eclipse, Full Moon, Aries Festival, Passover and Easter

We have entered a most important week of multiple festivals. Three ages and religious festivals—stages for humanity’s development—are occurring simultaneously. Aries (Age of Laws), Pisces (Age of Faith), and Aquarian (Age of Science and Humanity); Jewish, Christian/Catholic and Esoteric teachings. The first of the three Spring Festivals occurs Saturday along with the full moon, a total lunar eclipse (something in form and matter has come to an end, its usefulness completed). It’s also Passover, celebrating the passage from the Taurus to the Aries Age, symbolized by the Hebrew people’s walk of 40 years from Egypt through the Sinai Desert to Canaan (land of milk and honey), culminating with Moses receiving the 10 Commandments—laws that directed humanity through the Aries Age. Passover celebrates their safe passage out of Egypt, “the Angel passing over the Jewish homes, safeguarding their first born.” The Aries Festival (first of three Spring Festivals—Aries, Taurus, Gemini) celebrates the love of God. Accompanying the Aries light (light of life itself) are the forces of restoration (restoring humanity’s hope) and the spirit of resurrection (uplifting humanity in need of new education, resources, direction and guidance). Guidance to be given by the New Group of World Servers. Saturday’s solar Aries festival (at the full moon lunar eclipse) is celebrated by the New Group of World Servers worldwide. Join us everyone. Sunday is Easter, celebrated by humanity worldwide. The three religious festivals arriving simultaneously signal that the coming new world religion is at hand, a synthesis and integration of all religions. We stand with our brothers and sisters everywhere in celebration. We see what is no longer needed—that which created separations between us—disappear. We stand forward together in the new light, with the spirit of resurrection directing us. Hosanna!

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Let’s Get Wrecked

Unsung ’60s musicians score in pop doc ‘The Wrecking Crew’
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

Wheat Will Rock You

Companion Bakeshop scores again with Ryan Roseman’s harvest

 

What’s the best/worst April Fools’ Day prank you’ve ever heard?

This girl in my seventh grade class convinced our entire Christian school that she had cancer. Everybody started praying for her and stopped all the classes. At the end of the day she let everybody know it was an April Fools’ joke. Zach Scotton, Santa Cruz, Retail Manager

 

Odonata Wines

Easter is coming up this weekend, the perfect excuse to treat yourself and your loved ones to a little bit of bubbly with Easter brunch—and a special bubbly at that.

 

Ella’s at the Airport

Tiffany Ella King on her new fine dining restaurant in Watsonville