NEIGHBORHOOD AND VISITING SCHOOLS
School children from all over Los Angeles and nearby towns come to visit the Towers and the Arts Centers. Their visit includes a guided tour of the Towers, a video presentation on the life of Simon Rodia, discussion of the current gallery exhibition and an art-related project led by a professional community artist.
ARTISTS IN RESIDENCE
Neighborhood Schools Program – Howard Marshall, Jr.
Young Voices from Watts – David Brown
Watts Towers Arts Center Garden Studio – Alex Campos, Crystal de la Torre, Charles Dickson, Jessica Gudiel, Dominique Moody, Norma Haas Rosen, Kenzi Shiokava, and Carlos Spivey
Watts Towers Sculpture Project – Charles Dickson
Heart of Watts Project – R. Judson Powell
Jewelry Store Museum – Linda Czingula
Jazz Mentorship Program – Nedra Wheeler
WATTS TOWERS ARTS CENTER GARDEN STUDIO
Students ages 6 to 12 plant herbs, spices, vegetables and flowers and design weather vanes, paint and tile flower bed and plant containers and create sculptures for the garden. In 2010, students from LA’s Best also began tiling projects for the Watts Community. Instructors: Rogelio Acevedo, Augustine Aguirre, Alex Campos, Crystal de la Torre, Charles Dickson, Jessica Gudiel, Howard Marshall, Dominique Moody, Norma Haas Rosen, Kenzi Shiokava, Carlos Spivey, and Rosie Lee Hooks.
COMMUNITY ARTS PARTNERSHIP
The Community Arts Partnership (CAP) links California Institute Of The Arts (CalArts) to community art centers and public schools throughout Los Angeles County. Now in its 21st year collaborating with CAP, the Watts Towers Arts Center and the Charles Mingus Youth Arts Center, in conjunction with CAP, offer Piano, Jazz and World Music Programs and the Sony Pictures Media Arts Program at WTAC and CMYAC.
• CAP/JMP Piano Program
This year-round course offers an introduction to piano for young people and adults, although all levels of experience are welcomed. Students perform at public piano recitals at the Watts Towers Campus in the Spring.
• Sony Pictures Media Arts Program
This 30-week program for middle school students covers drawing, painting, animation and media arts, ending with a public exhibition and screening of the students’ artwork.
• Jazz and World Music Program
Music workshops taught by master artists are intimate one-on-one student/teacher classes in specific instruments. The program begins in October and continues through April, culminating with a concert in the spring.
SUMMER ARTS CAMP
During the month of July, students, ages 6-15 participate in daylong art activities covering a variety of mediums. They attend field trips to museums and galleries. Their completed artwork is displayed in the Summer Arts Camp Showcase in the Mingus Gallery.
SENIOR AND SPECIAL NEEDS
A significant part of the Watts Towers Tour Program includes groups of seniors and special needs groups. Experienced guides conduct specialized tours of the Towers. The visit also includes exposure to master artist exhibitions in the Galleries and a video presentation on Simon Rodia and the Towers. Weekly, art classes are led by Howard Marshall, Jr. in which participants design greeting cards using the motifs of the Watts Towers and the Heart of Watts.
CHARLES MINGUS YOUTH ARTS CENTER TUTORING PROGRAM
A program that provides one-on-one tutoring to students from the Watts Community who need assistance with their academic curriculum. Dakota McMahand, is the first tutor for this program.
THE POET LAUREATE PROGRAM
The Poet Laureate Program was conceived to offer a forum and voice to the Watts community in the tradition of the early spoken-word artists who helped to introduce the rich cultural history of this region to the world outside of Southern California. It was also designed to honor outstanding poets for their body of work within and around Watts and its surrounding communities. Our first Poet Laureate was J. Eric Priestley, followed by Amde Hamilton, Kamau Daáood, Ojenke, S. Pearl Sharp, Imani Tolliver, Jerry Quickley, and Otis O’Solomon. Each one serves as resident poet for the year.
DOCUMENTATION AND FILMMAKING
The resource library houses 21 videos documenting culturally diverse festivals and activities onsite and in the community. The partnership with LA CityView Channel 35, adds 10,000,000 viewers to each event produced by the Center. In addition, a wonderful, extensive series of photographs records visual images of our programs. Together, this documentation provides an excellent learning tool to artists, teachers, interns and the public. With the documentary, Fertile Ground: Stories From The Watts Towers Arts Center, a permanent record has been created through the personal accounts of early participants in the development of the Center. In Trading Dirt with Simon Rodia & Allan Kaprow, the artistry of several local artists was highlighted in homage to the Builder of the Watts Towers and the Creator of the ‘Happening’. A Tribute To Charles Mingus: Past, Present & Future, 27th Annual Watts Towers Day of the Drum Festival, 32nd Annual Simon Rodia Watts Towers Jazz Festival, Grand Opening of the Charles Mingus Youth Arts Center Charles Mingus – Son of Watts – Musical Caravan Project was completed in 2009.
JAZZ MENTORSHIP PROGRAM
The Jazz Mentorship Program (JMP), now in its 24th year, teams professional master musicians with young people interested in this original form of American music and presents a combined academic and concert forum. One of only a handful of Jazz education programs in the U.S., it provides aspiring young musicians with an opportunity to interact and play with seasoned jazz professionals. An environment is created that is conducive to jazz artists, enthusiasts and young people alike. The program’s outreach efforts include going into communities to bridge the gap between older and younger generations and joining people of diverse cultures together with one common goal — the appreciation of music. Founding mentors include Buddy Collette, Patrice Rushen, Ndugu Chancler, Sharon Hirata, Nedra Wheeler, Bobby Rodriguez, Danellen Joseph, Rick Moss, Estella Holeman, Rosie Lee Hooks and James Burks. More than 450 world-renowned musicians have participated in program sessions. Currently, JMP also co-sponsors the beginning piano classes.
TAI CHI CHUAN WORKSHOP
TAI CHI CHUAN
Join us Wednesday through Friday
9:15 a.m. to 9:45 a.m.
School of Healing Martial Arts,
Dr. Daniel Hoover , Lead Instructor
"Nuestro Pueblo" The Watts Towers of Simon Rodia
Thursday & Friday
10:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
10:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
12:30 p.m. – 3 p.m.