Utopia For Some
Last updated: October 26, 2021
Since the Gold Rush Americans have been traveling across country to California in search of a better life; seeking riches, health, or spiritual transcendence. A self-selecting elite, some came as part of existing religious groups, others came to establish their own. Some wanted to establish a more egalitarian society, showing by example that communities could be structured as collaborative partnerships. Others wanted to leave city life behind, and find health and happiness in a return to blissful nature. All shared a utopian faith in improvement, that life would be better in the bright, healthful sunshine of the Golden State, and even better if removed from the perceived oppressive regulations imposed by the State on individuals. These various counter-cultural impulses have both inspired and intrigued artists, and this Collection takes a look at both the history of utopian communes in Southern California, and a variety of responses to that history.
Countercultural Positions, Motherhood, and Reclaiming Craft as a Feminist Practice by Cathy Akers
Installation view 1, A Utopia for Some: Morningstar and Wheelers Ranches Reconsidered, Lenzner Family Gallery at Pitzer College, Claremont, CA, February 2 – March 28, 2019. In response to Cathy Akers’s exhibition, A Utopia for Some: Morningstar and Wheeler’s Ranches Reconsidered, a panel discussion was held at the Broad…
New Music for a New Age: Return to Nature! by Adam Overton
With one foot planted squarely in new music and the other in avant-garde spirituality, eden ahbez, Anton Szandor LaVey, and Pauline Oliveros represent a motley survey of mystical-musical experimentation over the last century. Although such crossover isn’t unheard of, these three—the Nature Boy, the founder of the Church of Satan, and the founder of Deep Listening, respectively—in spite of their radically differing demeanors and manifestos, all share a remarkable affinity in their anxious plea for a return to nature. What follows is a glance at their music and their doctrines as seen from their distinct vantages.
Utopia For Some Archive