History

Mission & Overview Light Bringer Project is a nonprofit, Pasadena-based arts organization founded in 1990 by residents who were exploring the historic contributions that artists, architects and craftsmen made to the local environment. In keeping with its mission “to build community through the power of the arts and education,” Light Bringer Project has grown to deliver a range of unique cultural arts programs and special events that utilize high-degrees of collaboration, volunteerism and community-wide support. Cultural Activities & Special Events Through the 1990’s, Light Bringer Project became an active producer of visual, performing and literary arts programs that highlighted creative ‘voices’ from all sectors of the community. Our activities were designed to create public awareness, cultivate volunteers and bring additional resources to bear on areas of community need. The organization also emerged as a producer of major public art events. The most notable among these are the Pasadena Chalk Festival, the world’s largest street painting festival, and the Pasadena Doo Dah Parade, the annual spoof of the Tournament of Roses. Both annual events engage thousands of artists, spectators and volunteers, and have received national attention.

Through a grant from the California Community Foundation, the organization operated Metro Gallery in Old Pasadena, a showcase for emerging artists of the Pasadena and Los Angeles-area. Continuing its support of the artists’ community, the organization has produced selected exhibitions of emerging visual artists at the historic Castle Green in Old Pasadena along with unique performing arts salons. Light Bringer Project also maintained the 24-Hour Gallery, an outdoor visual arts showcase on Holly Street across from the Memorial Park Metro Station. The organization is currently developing plans to continue exhibiting artists from the greater LA area.

Arts & Learning Programs In 1997, the organization turned its attention to the pressing need for arts education in the schools. After examining the kind of role the organization could play in support of public education, a number of diverse programs emerged. Below are some of our accomplishments:
    • Cultural Passport, a partnership of Light Bringer Project, the Pasadena Public Library, Pasadena Unified School District and major arts organizations, served middle and high school students, developing literacy skills through arts and learning curriculum and live presentations. For its achievements in this area, the Program won the League of California Cities' Helen Putnam Award of Excellence in the area of public-private partnerships.
    • The organization also partnered with the Neutrogena Corporation in the design and delivery of the FACES Program, a folk art curriculum, exhibition and scholarship program offered to the students of the Los Angeles Unified School District.
    • In association with the Mental Health America (formerly the Mental Health Association of LA County), Light Bringer Project produces Expressing Feeling Through Art, a prevention program that exhibits outstanding artworks and provides scholarships for students of the Los Angeles County School System.
    • Begun in 2000, and formerly called the Ad&Design Academy, the L.A. Futures Academy has offered mentorship training, team building and portfolio development for upper-level high school students. The communications curriculum has been delivered in collaboration with major advertising and marketing firms, including TBWA\Chiat\Day Advertising, Saatchi & Saatchi, DDB, IgnitedUSA, GreyWorldwide, Muse Advertising, Rubin Postaer & Associates (RPA), and The Phelps Group.
    • In summer of 2008, Light Bringer Project staff members arrived in Scotland to attend an international gathering of Room 13 pioneers, young artists, and artists-in-residence. We heard from those who spoke with clarity and excitement about their personal studio experiences. By the time we left for home, we were even more assured that Room 13 belonged in our own backyard. Since that time, Room 13 has blossomed in America, with numerous studios launching locally and in the country. The organization currently provides technical assistance to the development of Room 13 studios in North America.
    • Light Bringer Project, in association with the City of Pasadena Parks & Natural Resources, participated in the Arroyo Trails Project. The initiative was committed to restoring five trails leading into the Central Arroyo Seco. Providing a youth component, we chose a team of public and private school students to research the history of the natural parkland, conduct community outreach and recommend design elements to be incorporated into the project.
    • Light Bringer Project is currently working in partnership with Lit4Life, a learning initiative which brings contemporary authors and literature into public schools.
[caption id="attachment_426" align="aligncenter" width="640"] Three generations of the Calvillos family participate in the Pasadena Chalk Festival.[/caption]
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