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To these artists, the public matters

The Visiting Artist series at Cal State Monterey Bay continues on April 9 with a presentation by Reanne Estrada and Mike Blockstein of Public Matters, a Los Angeles-based social enterprise.

Public Matters works with people to create media about their neighborhoods. The goal is to connect people to the places they live and work and to develop a sense of ownership over these places and a belief that they can directly shape their neighborhoods’ future.The media content reflects and benefits the community that has helped create it, advancing community-defined initiatives (for example, healthy food access in South and East L.A. and increased public awareness of immigrant contributions in historic Filipinotown).

Estrada, creative director of Public Matters, is a visual artist whose work includes installation, performance, video and public art. She worked for nine years as an educator and in cause-related marketing, design, and curatorial programming at Creative Growth Art Center, a studio and gallery for artists with disabilities. Her public art projects emphasize a collaborative approach and focus on community narratives in Asian American communities.

Reanne Estrada, Mike Blockstein
Reanne Estrada, Mike Blockstein

Blockstein, principal of Public Matters, is a visual artist and educator working in public art projects that use a sense ofplace as a way to address social, cultural and built environments. Connecting artistic processes, leadership development and civic engagement, he has created and led projects with youth, community development and arts organizations.

The talk will be held at 6 p.m. in the Visual and Public Art Complex, Building 72, on Inter-Garrison Road. It’s free, but visitors must purchase a parking permit from a machine on the lot or online.

The Visiting Artist Series is presented by the university's Visual and Public Art Department.

This semester’s visiting artist series got under way in February with a visit by Hiroko Kikuchi, whose work deals with cultural identity and social change. On March 26, Rigo 23, a muralist, painter and political artist, will visit campus. This semester’s series concludes with the April 9 presentation.

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