Arts organization provides decade of access to Art across San Gabriel Valley

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Enrique Diaz, founder of the Nuvein Foundation for Literature and the Arts, in 2004 was asked why the urgency to create a local arts organization for the San Gabriel Valley, he simply stated,

“We are dedicated to voices rarely heard in a world increasingly devoid of diversity.”

Nuvein PartnerFor nearly ten years, a small group of community leaders, educators, business owners, artists, and activists have banded together to connect various communities to free arts programming.

The Nuvein Foundation for Literature and the Arts, an El Monte based arts non-profit organization, has provided arts programming, arts advocacy, arts scholarships, and funding for arts projects since its incorporation in 2007.

From creating and organizing annual arts and culture events like Dia de Los Muertos in El Monte or the annual San Gabriel Valley Comic Book Expo in cities such as Baldwin Park, Monrovia and other communities, creating and developing the La Puente Artwalk, sponsoring and supporting the El Monte/Rosemead Adult School with art supplies, as well as funding the PoetryPalooza event organized by the ZzyZx WriterZ group, and handing out scholarships to high school students from Baldwin Park, South El Monte, and other communities, the foundation’s work has been extensive.

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Across the years, Nuvein has enjoyed partnering or participating with groups or organizations such as the East Valley Arts Association, KCET Departures – Youth Voices, Greater West Covina Business Association, South Pasadena Arts Council, El Monte/South El Monte Chamber of Commerce,  Twin Palms Recovery Center, East Valley Boys and Girls Club, South El Monte Arts Posse, M.E.Ch.A., San Gabriel Valley Club Cubano, Monrovia Association of Fine Arts, El Monte La Historia Society, Baldwin Park Arts and Recreation Center, Old Town Puente Association, Arts for LA, San Gabriel Valley Literature Festival, City of La Puente, LA County Public Library, Downtown El Monte Business Association, Downey Arts Coalition, and many others to provide arts programming across the San Gabriel Valley.

These partnerships have helped Nuvein further its charitable mission of promoting arts and culture in a traditionally under served area with limited access to art experiences.

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For this and other reasons, Nuvein also provides funding for arts education.

Specifically, Nuvein awards two annual arts scholarships for junior and senior high school students residing in the San Gabriel Valley  area who are creative and inclined to pursue an artistic profession through higher education at an accredited community college or university.

Nuvein has awarded scholarships to students from San Gabriel Valley communities from South El Monte, El Monte, and Baldwin Park. Past recipients have gone on to major in graphic design, become entrepreneurs, and local representatives of their communities.

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Nuvein is a proud supporter of greater inclusion of arts in education, and has proudly partnered with educators and arts advocates in various surrounding communities to provide students of all ages meaningful learning experiences that provide an arts and culture formation.

Nuvein is a volunteer driven CA 501(c)3 non-profit organization that relies on fundraising, donations, grants, and other charitable gifts to sustain its mission to connect the communities of the San Gabriel Valley to and through the arts.

Nuvein Board PowerNone of its board members have ever, since its founding, gained any financial compensation, incentives, or reward for their efforts, as each position is at-will and voluntary.

Since the beginning, all events and programs organized by the Nuvein Foundation are free to the general public.

For more information on the Nuvein Foundation – how to volunteer, donate, participate at events, or address general questions as to the programs and services Nuvein provides, please visit the organization’s website at www.nuvein.org or at the organization’s facebook page at www.facebook.com/nuvein you can send an email to info@nuvein.org.

We look forward to to continuing our commitment to educate, encourage, and showcase the arts in all its forms across the San Gabriel Valley for many more years.

 

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Guide to 5th Annual Dia de Los Muertos – El Monte

General Event Information

The 5th Annual Dia de Los Muertos – El Monte event is an artistic and cultural celebration of life, death, family, traditions, and community.  The event is developed by the Nuvein Foundation for Literature and the Arts in partnership with the Downtown El Monte Business Assocation. This year’s event is dedicated to the memories of El Monte’s own Enrique Diaz, Bobby Salcedo, Emily Ishigaki, and Adrian Castro.

5th Annual Dia de Los Muertos  – El Monte

Saturday, October 18th, 2013
1pm-7pm

El Monte Valley Mall
along Valley Mall (between Lexington Ave and Clemenson St.)

Presented by the Nuvein Foundation for Literature and the Arts
Sponsored by the Downtown El Monte Business Association

Supported by
El Monte / South El Monte Chamber of Commerce
City of El Monte
Mid Valley News
Mid Valley Radio
El Monte Television Channel 3
Cultura y Mas

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The event will also feature over 50 artists from across the Southern California region and beyond in a curated art exhbit entitled “!Galeria Alegrarse!” curated by La Puente based artists/curators/organizers
Christopher “Cakeshop” Penalber and Melissa Lyndell of CakeShop Oddities and Double Agent: the Art of Melissa Lyndell respectively. Christopher and Melissa are active leadership and organizers of the La Puente Artwalk. They have both organized numerous art shows across Southern California and have exhibited in as many as well.

The event will also feature the artwork of Andrew Cervantes, a native of Los Angeles, who goes by the artistic name of “Glittering Andy”.

Andrew is a 4th generation artisan whose work is based on and inspired by traditional Mexican crafts and techniques passed down through his family. His discipline mixes modern and traditional art forms to find combinations of genres/styles that are fascinating and eye-catching. His art expresses into various mediums, including painting, sculpting, papier mache, and glass painting. Andrew was recognized by the City of Los Angeles for his papier mache, community workshops, and fine arts. He has also received awards for his Dia de los Muertos altars, and has been invited to share his passion and inspiration with our guests at this year’s event.  He also offers workshops for aspiring artists of all ages as the current Curator and Artist in Residence at Holy Grounds Coffee and Tea in El Sereno, where he teaches monthly workshops out of the patio there on varied arts. He also teaches hand-built ceramics at Plaza de la Raza. Finally, Andrew is also a part of El Sereno Community Arts (ESCA) with whom he also offers community based workshops and events, including the upcoming El Sereno’s 5th Annual Dia de Los Muertos Festival.

Facebook Event Page

Map of 2014 DDLM El Monte

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Parking Instructions/Directions

NOTE: Please be aware that this event happens right after the El Monte Children’s Parade, a large city event, that will close down access to Tyler Ave from Valley Mall down to Arceo Park (past the 10 Fwy), parking may be limited on the parking lots. Early arrival encouraged.

 

FROM LA METRO/WEST SGV

  • Head EAST on FWY 10 towards San Bernardino
  • Exit Santa Anita Ave (merge onto Asher Ave.)
  • Make a left onto Northbound Santa Anita Ave.
  • Make a right onto Valley Mall (Pollo Loco on Corner)
  • To park closest to Valley Blvd (North Lots) make the first and only left onto N Granada Ave. (lots on your right)
  • To park closest to  Ramona Blvd (South Lots) make the first and only right onto S. Granada (lots on your left)

FROM INLAND EMPIRE/EAST SGV

  • Head WEST on FWY 10 towards Los Angeles
  • Exit Valley Blvd (merge onto Valley Blvd)
  • Head east on Valley Blvd
  • To park closest to Valley Blvd (North Lots) make a left on either Center/El Monte/Monterrey/Granada Ave (lots on either side)
  • To park closest to Ramona Blvd (South Lots) make a left on Granada, go past Valley Mall (lots on lett)

FROM PASADENA/NORTH SGV

  • Head EAST on FWY 210 towards the 605 FWY
  • Take SOUTH 605 FWY towards Long Beach
  • Take WEST 10 FWY towards Los Angeles
  • Exit Valley Blvd (merge onto Valley Blvd)
  • Head east on Valley Blvd
  • To park closest to Valley Blvd (North Lots) make a left on either Center/El Monte/Monterrey/Granada Ave (lots on either side)
  • To park closest to Ramona Blvd (South Lots) make a left on Granada, go past Valley Mall (lots on lett)

FROM ORANGE COUNTY/LONG BEACH

  • Take NORTH 605 FWY towards Azusa/Duarte
  • Take WEST 10 FWY towards Los Angeles
  • Exit Valley Blvd (merge onto Valley Blvd)
  • Head east on Valley Blvd
  • To park closest to Valley Blvd (North Lots) make a left on either Center/El Monte/Monterrey/Granada Ave (lots on either side)
  • To park closest to Ramona Blvd (South Lots) make a left on Granada, go past Valley Mall (lots on lett)

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Event Itinerary

FEATURING

  • Live Traditional and Cultural performances of ballet folklorico, danza azteca, mariachi music, poesia/poetry, and much more!
  • Over 40 artisan vendors and craftsmakers as well as local charities and organizations
  • Curated Art Gallery and Artistic Altar Creations and Displays

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OTHER INFORMATION

VENDOR CHECK IN/SETUP/BREAK DOWN

  • Check in and Set up for vendors will begin at 11am along Valley Mall
  • Vendors are to report to the Nuvein Booth located at the Intersection of Valley Mall and Palm Ct (look for Yellow Shirts)
  • Walk ins will be processed at Nuvein Booth. Report to Jeffrey Bickel.
  • Spaces will be assigned by Nuvein.
  • Break down will begin immediately after the event at 7pm.

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PUBLIC UTILITIES/AMENITIES

  • Bathrooms can be found in the several eateries along Valley Mall
  • Public access bathrooms.commodes will be set up on Palm Ct and Valley Mall
  • Limited event seating will be available near the stage area
  • Sidewalk benches open for all use along Valley Mall
  • City waste receptacles will be all along Valley Mall and Event waste bins will be along event route
  • Sidewalk and Streets are wheelchair, walker, and stroller accessible
  • Event volunteers will be at event to facilitate navigation of event

 

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FAQ – 2014, 5th Annual Dia de Los Muertos

This is a FAQ section for Dia de Los Muertos. Forms for the event on available on the main page.
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When is the 5th Annual Dia de Los Muertos – El Monte event? What are the details?
The 5th Annual Dia de Los Muertos – El Monte (DDLM) event will take placeSaturday, October 18th, 2014 from 1pm to 7pm at the El Monte Valley Mall. This is a FREE event that is OPEN to the general public.The DDLM event will unfold along Valley Mall from Lexington Ave. to Clemenson St from approximately 10801 Valley Mall  to 10933 Valley Mall.
The event will host a main stage/performance area on Lexington Ave facing Valley Mall with seating area on the intersection of Valley Mall and Lexington. Additionally, the event will host 5 local El Monte eateries in a food court area at the adjacent park facing Valley Mall. Adding flavor and magic to the event will be more than 70 artisan vendors that will line Valley Mall from Lexington to Clemenson, and altars along Monterrey Ave facing Valley Mall. Lastly, the event will host a featured artist at the Children’s Playground area at Clemenson and Valley Mall along with a indoors curated art gallery at a local business on the Valley Mall curated by two of the most dynamic organizers in the San Gabriel Valley.For more details see map below and visit the DDLM Facebook event page
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How can one arrive at the 5th Annual Dia de Los Muertos – El Monte event? What are the travel/transit details?
There are multiple points of access to the DDLM event.
BY CAR
From the North (Pasadena, Monrovia, Azusa)
Take either the 210 FWY East or West towards the 605 FWY South
Take the 605 FWY South to the 10 FWY West
Take the 10 FWY West  to Valley Blvd Exit (make a right)
Take Valley Blvd to Ramona Blvd (make a left)
Take Ramona Blvd to Lexington Ave (make a right)
Take Lexington Ave towards Valley Mall (make a right at alley by closure)
Park anywhere on the South Parking Lot
From the East  (West Covina, Rowland Heights, Pomona)
Take either the 60 FWY West or 10 FWY West towards Los Angeles
If you take the 60 FWY take the 605 FWY N to merge with 10 FWY West
Take Valley Blvd to Ramona Blvd (make a left)
Take Ramona Blvd to Lexington Ave (make a right)

Take Lexington Ave towards Valley Mall (make a right at alley by closure)
Park anywhere on the South Parking Lot side

From the West (East Los Angeles, Downtown LA, West LA)
Take the 10 FWY East towards El Monte/San Bernardino
Take the N Peck Rd/Valley Blvd exit (make a right)
Keep left to make a left onto Valley Blvd
Take Valley Blvd past Tyler Ave towards Center Ave/El Monte Ave/Monterrey Ave (make a left)
Park anywhere on the North Parking Lot side
From the South (Whittier, Downey, Long Beach)
Take the 605 FWY North towards Irwindale/Azusa
Merge onto the 10 FWY West towards Los Angeles
Take the 10 FWY West  to Valley Blvd Exit (make a right)

Take Valley Blvd past Tyler Ave towards Center Ave/El Monte Ave/Monterrey Ave (make a left)

Park anywhere on the North Parking Lot side

BY PUBLIC TRANSIT
Use Metro Buses 76 or 268 to exit on Tyler Ave/Valley Blvd or El Monte Ave/Valley Blvd and walk west to event
Use Metro Bus 487 or 489 to exit Santa Anita/Valley Mall and walk east to event
Use MetroLink to exit El Monte Metrolink Station and walk south on Tyler Ave to Valley Mall and walk east to event
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I am an artist/artisan. How can I participate at this event?
That’s great!
We welcome any and all artists to participate as a vendor at the event, displaying artists as part of the curated DDLM gallery, and/or by creating an altar.
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I’d like to participate in the DDLM Art Gallery. What do I need to do?
The DDLM event is proud to present “Galeria Alegrarse”, a curated exhibit produced by Cakeshop Oddities and Double Agent.
The Gallery is curated by Chris Penalber and Melissa Lyndell. The exhibit will be housed in a local El Monte Valley Mall business space and will be supported by both the Nuvein Foundation and the Downtown El Monte Business Association.
To display at the exhibit contact Chris Penalber or Melissa Lyndell at
Chris Penalber  –  cprisechris001@gmail.com
Melissa Lyndell – melissa.lyndell@gmail.com
 
For more information on Galeria Alegrarse visit the Facebook event page athttps://www.facebook.com/events/314516092058916/

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I’d like to create an altar for the DDLM event. What do I need to do?
Please email Chris Trevilla at ctrevilla@nuvein.org for more details on how to participate. Any and all concepts will be entertained. Just keep in mind that this will be a family event with children present.

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I just want to vend at the event. What do I need to do?
All artisans/artists/small business/charitable organizations, and community groups are welcome to take part in the DDLM event.
To be considered for participation, one must download the DDLM Participant application and agree to the Nuvein Terms of participation found here  and follow instructions on application to send completed application and payment to the Nuvein Foundation.
Nuvein will confirm reservation for vending space with each individual, business, group ahead of the event.For more details, please review the application for additional instructions.
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Are there different prices for vendors? Why?
Yes, the information and explanation of the rates are on the application itself. Prices vary based on type of booth/display, as well as number of spaces. See application for more details.
The DDLM event is a substantial investment of time, effort, and resources for Nuvein, by charging a Participant fee we are able to recover some of the costs associated with the event. Nuvein is a charitable organization that depends on monies raised by events like DDLM to provide free arts programming to communities like El Monte, La Puente, Montebello, and greater San Gabriel Valley.
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What is the Nuvein Terms of Participation? Why must we agree to them?
Simply put, the Nuvein ToP are agreements for photo/media release, waiver of liability, and other essential legalities involved in producing an event like DDLM. For more information, please read through the Nuvein Terms of Participation. Nuvein is a charitable organization that strives to create safe, meaningful, and positive experiences for the general community, its artists, performers, musicians, and organizers. Any means of protecting our ability to continue to offer free arts programming throughout the San Gabriel Valley are set forth through the ToP process.
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I am a school art teacher. How can my students participate at this event?
DDLM will welcome any and all, especially the youth.
If your class is interested in preparing an altar, please contactChris Trevilla at ctrevilla@nuvein.org for more details on how to participate.
For more information on the DDLM event,  please visit the DDLM Facebook event page at https://www.facebook.com/events/314516092058916/
If your class is interested in displaying at Galeria Alegrarse curated exhibit, please contact

the curators Chris Penalber or Melissa Lyndell at
Chris Penalber  –  cprisechris001@gmail.com
Melissa Lyndell – melissa.lyndell@gmail.com
 
For more information on Galeria Alegrarse visit the Facebook event page at https://www.facebook.com/events/314516092058916/
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I am a musician/performance artist. How can I participate at this event?
Any and all interested performers, dancers, poets, and participants can contact Chris Trevilla of the Nuvein Foundation at ctrevilla@nuvein.org for more details on how to participate.
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I want to volunteer at the event? What are some of the ways I can support this event?
Any and all interested volunteers can contact Bryan Coreas of the Nuvein Foundation at bryancoreas@nuvein.org
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I  want to donate to support the event? What are the details for sponsorship?
For information on giving, please email Jeffrey Bickel of the Nuvein Foundation at nuvein@gmail.com
Or, you can donate to Nuvein on our website at www.nuvein.org, via our PayPal donate button.
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Nuvein Foundation for Literature and the Arts
 
PO BOX 4250, El Monte, CA 91731
EDUCATE ENCOURAGE SHOWCASEThe Nuvein foundation is a 501(c)3 non-profit arts organization that works to connect the communities of the San Gabriel Valley TO and THROUGH the arts in all its forms.
 

Poetrypalooza 2014

I am in awe​​ about all the events that are happening around the arts in the San Gabriel Valley, especially around my local neighborhood of La Puente.

Most recently, members of the Bridgetown DIY Collective organized an evening of music, art and lots of poetry as a part of Poetrypalooza. For the past four years, the ZzyZx Writers group has been reaching out to local organizations to host such events Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings in August. The collective of short story prose led by fellow Nuvein member Kimberly Cobian aims to bring awareness to this literary form and to the many talented artists groups that gather at coffee shops, pizza parlors and community centers. This year, the tour is consists of over 15 stops.

The “Living Voice” poetry night, the first such event as a part of Poetrypalooza and the second overall at Bridgetown DIY which traditionally hosts local and touring bands, was amazing. It featured Spanish style guitar player David Holguin, published poet Jeffrey Graessley and local artist/illustrator Jean R. Bisscay as well as Armando Ortiz and Michael Church from the ZzyZx Writers. For communities like Valinda and nearby La Puente, having such events provides an opportunity for everyone to explore and enjoy the arts.

It feels great to be a part of a community that engages actively to create such opportunities for all it’s members. I really encourage you to check out the nearest Poetrypalooza event near you and to show case your own talents in this and future events.

{More photos on Facebook}

Bryan Coreas

bryancoreas@nuvein.org
Executive Board Secretary Chair, Education Committee

 

Roberta Lujan


Roberta Lujan was born in Fabens, Texas, an isolated community surrounded by desert with a population of 1200. Seeking to explore beyond her small town, Roberta moved to California in 1976 where she met Nuvein founding member Enrique Diaz in 2003.

She has always been a people person and wanted to help children learn about the arts and craft-making. Thus with hardly a second thought, Enrique quickly convinced her to become part of the Nuvein Board in 2004, where she took lead in the marketing aspects of the organization. Roberta has had many years experience working with children and youth throughout the Whittier, Pico Rivera, and San Gabriel Valley area.

Roberta feels most proud of her children and all that they have accomplished thus far. Herself the middle child of 12, she recalls having to fight for everything, especially with her 9 sisters. It was her upbringing that showed her the value of working together.

Roberta has proudly served Nuvein in many capacities, often helping with organizing volunteers and soliciting charitable donations from local business and organizations. Roberta is a strong supporter of providing students with a proper arts education, especially those children who aren’t in a position to push for these opportunities that they need. She works diligently to provide our Nuvein Memorial Scholarships to local area students and helps Nuvein operate its meetings and programs efficiently as the Executive Board Sgt-at-Arms.

Learn more about the Nuvein team

Comic Book Culture front and center at San Gabriel Valley Expo and Art Exhibit

Comic Book Culture front and center at San Gabriel Valley Expo and Art Exhibit

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The Nuvein Foundation for Literature and the Arts (Nuvein) is a CA arts organization committed to connecting the communities of the San Gabriel Valley to and through the Arts in all its forms. Among the Arts many forms, the prominence and surge of popularity in all things comic books, and the creativity, passion, and dedication behind it has found a mainstream acceptance in film, television, digital format, paper print, and other media.
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 In an effort to highlight the art form, the creative minds behind the art, and unite them with fans new and established of all ages, Nuvein’s then Arts Program Director, Javier Hernandez, suggested the creation of an event that showcased local independent comic book creators, their art work, and comic book creations. The San Gabriel Valley Comic Book Festival debuted at the Cuban Club of the San Gabriel Valley in 2008 to a positive reception. Since then, the San Gabriel Valley Comic Book Expo (SGV CBX) event has taken place in El Monte, Monrovia, and most recently in Baldwin Park.
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The 2014 edition of the SGV CBX, formerly known as the SGV Comic Book Festival, took place on Saturday June 28, 2014 11am-5pm at the Baldwin Park Arts & Recreation Center (ARC) in the City of Baldwin Park. The event, organized by Nuvein in collaboration with the ARC, returned to Baldwin Park after a highly successful reboot in Summer 2013 that incorporated more panels and featured speakers, an indoor comic book artist exhibitor floor, an animation screening, children’s arts and crafts activities, children’s art workshops, and a curated comic book art themed exhibition. The event was organized by Nuvein President Chris Trevilla, Independent Comic Book creative and Nuvein Advisory member Grasiela Rodriguez, and ARC Program Director Helen Hernandez.
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The 2014 SGV CBX added more panels, outdoor vendors, and food trucks among its many expanded features. One main attraction of the event was the participation and presence of the 501st a dedicated group of Star Wars cosplayers who provided great camera moments for the event’s participants.
See more photos on FacebookThe event attracted well over 1,000 guests throughout the day, with many children and families enjoying the variety of free arts programming offered to them by Nuvein and the ARC in the form of comic book workshops, animation screenings, arts and crafts activities, and live performance storytelling Legion members session. Overall, the success of the event was made possible by the work of Nuvein and the ARC volunteers, staff, and organizers as well as the support and resources provided by the City of Baldwin Park, including the installation of billboard advertising the event along the I-10 Freeway. Nuvein, on behalf of the participating artists, comic book creatives, panelists, and the children, youth, and families in attendances wishes to express a heartfelt thanks to the City of Baldwin Park, the ARC, and other City departments who played a part in the event’s success. Next summer’s SGV CBX event promises new surprises, attractions, and much more, so stay tuned!
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For more information on the event , see Mid Valley News’ article on the event, as well as visit the SGV CBX Facebook page.
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Kimberly Cobian

Kimberly Cobian is a multi-faceted literary & performance artist & an arts and cultural community organizer from North Whittier, CA. She is an active educator, writer, and belly dancer. Fascinated by the Gypsy proverb: “How can you walk straight, when the road bends”. She believes artists do the same in their life whether its making it or creating it, the soul knows which is the “tacho drom”, or the truest path.

 

She has been in love with the written word since childhood, when she first began to express herself creatively, making use of her imagination. It was Christopher Trevilla, President of Nuvein who saw this very same passion in her at a poetry reading at Half Off Books in Whittier, and introduced himself and Nuvein to Kim over the course of a year, before formally inviting her to join the board as its current resident gitana poeta organizer. She has been a proud Director at Nuvein since January 2012.

 

Kimberly is also the President of the ZZyZx WriterZ, a dynamic group of poets, writers, musicians, artists, and performers from across Los Angeles. Based out of El Sereno/Alhambra, the ZZyZx WriterZ are one of the organizing influences behind the arts and culture renaissance of El Sereno, as they organize a monthly poetry and performance open mic at the thriving Holy Grounds Coffee and Tea.

 

Yet the grandest undertaking that the ZZyZx WriterZ take on under Kimberly’s leadership is the annual organization of PoetryPalooza, a yearly arts, poetry, and performance tour and showcase of community creativity that spans Los Angeles County. Poetrypalooza takes place annually each summer in August. The event tour is a huge passion project for Kimberly, who oversees multiple partnerships that ensure each event highlights the local culture, creativity, and artistry of each respective community. Kimberly is very proud and passionate about what she and the WriterZ have helped create and sustain with PoetryPalooza. Kimberly has seen how this passion project has served to unite and nurture all who share their gifts and attend this celebration unique to Los Angeles.

 

Poetry is important to Kimberly as it is a muse to the other art forms and vice versa, as well as being vital to younger generations who need a means to express their ideals, dreams, frustrations, and ideas. A successful published poet and acclaimed performer herself, Kimberly understands the importance of crafting personal yet universal statements through spoken word and movement. Her poetry has been featured in publications such as the ZZyZx WriterZ anthologies, the San Gabriel Valley Poetry Quarterly, and other publications. Her performances, often combine her poetry with belly dance have been enjoyed as part of PoetryPalooza across LA, as well as the Green Salon in Downey, the San Gabriel Valley Literature Festival, the La Puente Artwalk, and many other venues, festivals, and events.

 

Kimberly is very motivated to share her poetry and help others while doing it. Aside from curating at Holy Grounds and directing PoetryPalooza, she has overseen and developed poetry workshops and organized the SGV Poetry in Motion teen and youth event at the Arcadia Library with Nuvein as part of the SGV Poetry Festival. Additionally, Kimberly has been the organizer of the Poet’s Corner at the La Puente Artwalk, a growing spoken word, music, and performance art destination during the quarterly event. In fact, she was one of the featured poets at the inaugural edition of the La Puente Artwalk, then organized solely by the Nuvein Foundation.

 

As a poet, Kimberly draws inspiration for her works from her personal experience and the shared experience of some of her favorite poets and authors. Among her favorite poems are “The Weary Blues” by Langston Hughes, “Romancero Gitano” by Federico Garcia Lorca, & “Full Moon and You’re Not Here” by Sandra Cisneros. As an organizer, she admittedly sees inspiration in the personal journeys and labors of her parents, who continue to inspire her to this day.

 

Learn more about the Nuvein team

Michael Churchman

Michael Churchman says that he is just like everybody else  —  he wakes up each morning and has to learn how to think, how to feel, how to exist, how to love, and how to be human all over again.  Sometimes he writes about these things, and sometimes he writes about things that don’t make sense at all, not to himself or to anyone else.

“Whatever roles we are supposed to be playing in this world,” he says, “we can at least play them with full and open hearts, and with style; if it’s a show, we can put on a good one.”


He works as a technical writer, and writes short stories and poetry to keep himself sane.  He has been involved in the arts and allied activities at the community level since his teens, and has served as both a volunteer and board member for a variety of community organizations, including the Shantih Youth Coffee House, the I Care Counseling Center, and the Santa Maria Valley Arts Council.  He has also been involved in several poetry and writing groups, including the Tuesday Poets of San Luis Obispo and Echo Poetry in Claremont.  He is currently an active member of ZZyZx Writerz and the Coffee House Writers Group. Michael, as part of the ZZyZx Writerz along with fellow Nuvein director Kimberly Cobian, helps organize the annual art and literature festival known as Poetrypalooza.

Learn more about the Nuvein team

Miguel Sankitts


Miguel Sankitts is a proud member of the Nuvein Foundation for Literature and the Arts since 2004. He was invited to join the Foundation by its founder, Enrique Diaz, who saw great promise in him. Miguel met Enrique through a series of encounters at local El Monte and San Gabriel Valley Chamber mixers and meetings, as well as a personal invitation to explore the Digital Business and Design College. The experience combined three deep interests of his life  entrepreneurism, computers and technology, and the Arts. From there, Miguel’s dedication to Nuvein’s mission of spreading arts and culture began. He has proudly served as Vice President of Nuvein since its earliest days.  However, his passion and love for art, beauty and cuture began long ago.

As an American from the St. Croix US Virgin Islands, Miguel’s journey has crossed land and sea. He fell in love with art at an early age,  as a young boy with big dreams on a small Island. He immediately  fell in love with natural beauty of his homeland, often admiring  the landscapes he grew to love. This passion and admiration for beauty followed him when his family moved to the United States mainland. As a student in  junior high his artistic aspirations and inspirations were fostered and encouraged by his art teacher, who motivated him to draw and let his young mind wonder to new and exciting places and just draw. Additionally, in school he then  began to notice the art and beauty of different cultures.

Miguel prides himself to  have always thought outside the box, and is a keen and multifaceted problem solver and  change agent. He is a big believer in personal responsibility, self discipline, holistic health practices, and critical thinking. As a young man he became fascinated with martial arts and pursued the discipline of Muay Thai. This particular discipline has its origins in Thailand. Miguel sees the connection between all the different forms of art he has encountered in his life journey through its passion, love, patience, pain, and so much more.

As a member of Nuvein, Miguel is deeply committed to its vision and mission, as he often looks fo opportunities to share his personal story of his encounters with art to all who will listen so as to hopefully inspire someone to pursue their dreams, think outside the box, enjoy mother nature, be open to take advice, and to train and work hard to obtain whatever goals  one seeks to achieve in life. His message to all those interested in Nuvein and its work is that “Art is all around you, open your senses, hear it, feel it, see it, smell it, touch it. Remember art lives in all of us in one form or another.”

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Jeffrey Steven Bickel

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Jeffrey is an arts and education advocate who was raised in Alhambra and has lived the past 25 years in the community of Baldwin Park. Jeffrey works as a film preservationist, preserving and restoring news film and documentaries for the UCLA Film and Television Archive. In addition, he periodically does public presentations of his restoration work at UCLA’s Billy Wilder Theater in Westwood and at other archival and academic institutions.

In 1996, Jeffrey assisted his late husband, Enrique Diaz, in creating one of the first online literary magazines, Nuvein Magazine. The magazine provided a space for writers who found themselves outside the mainstream literary community and often featured LGBTQ writers. A decade later, Enrique, Jeffrey and a small group of San Gabriel Valley natives founded the Nuvein Foundation for Literature and the Arts. The Foundation was created to raise funds for students interested in pursuing an education in arts or literature and to showcase the rich and diverse arts and literary scene in the San Gabriel Valley. Since Nuvein’s inception, Jeff has proudly served as Executive Board Treasurer, ensuring the vision and work of Nuvein remained true to its charitable mission and in compliance with 501(c)3 requirements.

Since his spouse’s death, Jeffrey has attempted to carry on Enrique’s visionary legacy. He continues to work to build the Nuvein Foundation into a thriving and dynamic institution that promotes arts education and facilitates arts and cultural events throughout the San Gabriel Valley.

Learn more about the Nuvein team