On Sunday afternoon, two iconic artists and CalArts faculty members, Charles Gaines and Wadada Leo Smith, come together to perform a one-day-only performance at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) in Downtown LA. The Charles Gaines Ensemble, an improvisational jazz quartet featuring guest Smith on trumpet, Loren Pickford on saxophone, John Lindberg on bass and Gaines on drums, hits the stage at 3 pm.
The performance is presented in conjunction with Selections from the Permanent Collection, a chronological installation of significant works in MOCA’s collection from the 1940s to the present, which features three of Gaines’ works from the Incomplete Text Series. The series was on view last fall at the Pomona College Museum of Art and the Pitzer Art Galleries in Claremont, Calif.
Earlier this year, Gaines, who teaches in the School of Art at CalArts, was selected as a 2013 Guggenheim Fellow for his achievement in artistry and his exceptional promise. During his 40-year art practice, Gaines has had more than 65 solo shows and several hundred group exhibitions.
Smith, a legendary trumpeter and composer primarily of avant-garde jazz and free improvisation music, was one of three finalists for the 2013 Pulitzer Prize for Music for his expansive jazz work, Ten Freedom Summers. Smith was also recently voted “Composer of the Year” in the 2013 DownBeat Critics Poll.
Below is a video of Gaines answering the question “What is the blues?” in conjunction with the recent exhibition at MOCA last fall, titled Blues for Smoke: