Happiness is… @ Montalvo Arts Center, Saratoga, CA

Happiness Is… just opened tonight and I couldn’t be happier about the exhibition. My colleagues and fellow artists Susan O’Malley and Leah Rosenberg are bright, inquisitive, hard-working and extraordinarily generous. Montalvo’s lovely Residency and Facilities staff has provided so much support. I’m so pleased with what we were able to accomplish together, and having the chance to share it finally, it is flat-out euphoric.

Tomorrow’s Flag Raising Ceremony and Artist’s Talk promise to be fun and engaging. Come by if you can, or stop in the show during its three-month run.

January 25–April 14
Happiness Is…

Montalvo Arts Center Project Space Gallery
15400 Montalvo Road, Saratoga, CA

Take Charge of your Happiness by Christine Wong Yap

On Friday, January 25, Montalvo Arts Center will inaugurate its new 20-month-long programming theme Flourish: Artists Explore Wellbeing with an exhibition entitled Happiness is… which will run through April 14. Installed in the Project Space Gallery and also making use of Montalvo’s 175-acre grounds, the show is organized by the Lucas Artists Residency Program (LAP). Participating artists Susan O’Malley, Leah Rosenberg, and Christine Wong Yap address the question: How do we foster happiness and build a contented life?


Wong Yap’s series of texts sewn from ribbons and installed directly on the gallery wall convey messages encouraging positive mental habits. Rosenberg explores how color, light and material impact our sense of contentment with her Illuminated Stripe Works, a series of small striped light boxes. O’Malley has created a space in the gallery where she invites visitors to relax and reflect.
Happiness is… extends outside the gallery, with Wong Yap’s Irrational Exuberance Flags. Activating a flagpole in front of the Lucas Artists Residency, these rotating colorful banners represent the spirit of energetic optimism. O’Malley and Rosenberg have collaborated to create a guided walk through Montalvo’s forest trails punctuated by signs offering positive and happiness-affirming directives and colorful design elements.


Happiness is…
Related Events

Friday, January 25
Project Space Gallery, Free admission
Be one of the first to view the new exhibition, and enjoy two exhibition-specific “happenings” with the artists. At 7:30pm, take a 15-minute silent walk through Montalvo’s grounds, led by Susan O’Malley. The experience, entitled Happiness is WALKING, will take place rain or shine. Participants are asked to wear comfortable shoes. Flashlights will be provided. At 8pm, return to the gallery and participate in a ritual of sharing, pleasure, and community, by sampling site-specific cookies baked by Leah Rosenberg.

Saturday, January 26
Lot One, Lucas Artists Residency, Free admission
Join Christine Wong Yap in the raising of her Irrational Exuberance Flags
Phelan Library, Historic Villa, Free admission
Join all three of the Happiness is… artists and Carole Pertofsky, Director of Wellness and Health Promotion Services at Vaden Health Center, Stanford University, for a conversation about the pursuit of happiness.

Wednesday, March 20

Phelan Library, Historic Villa, Free admission
Celebrate the first International Day of Happiness with an evening of reading and performance led by poet Genine Lentine and cellist/vocalist Theresa Wong.

Saturday, March 23
Phelan Library, Historic Villa, General: $25; Members: $20; Students: $15
Cellist/vocalist Theresa Wong and poet Genine Lentine offer an afternoon of vocal and writing exercises exploring the relationship of voice, language, and happiness. This workshop is suitable for all levels of experience and is open to all ages, including children.

Created by artist Susan O’Malley,
A Space (for you) is an area in the Project Space Gallery dedicated for visitors to relax and reflect. From January 26 through April 14, 2013, visitors are invited to rest and engage with others in the gallery. O’Malley also invites visitors to participate in several community healing events. For more information about these events, please visit:



Happiness is… Photo Contest
Submit a photograph that best conveys what makes you happy along with a “Happiness is…” caption and you could win a signed inspirational poster by artist Susan O’Malley of $50 value (from the series seen below). Share your photos on Instagram or Twitter by tagging @montalvoarts and adding a “#Happiness is…” caption, on Facebook at lbaines. Select entries will be posted on our website. However you participate, don’t forget to add your “Happiness is…” caption. Deadline to submit is March 19, 2013. Winner will be announced March 20, 2013.

Image Credits:
Christine Wong Yap, take charge of your happiness, 2011, 83 × 24 × 1 in, ribbon, thread, pins.
Leah Rosenberg, Paint confetti, 2012, acrylic paint. Photo credit: Tammi Campbell.Susan O’Malley, Everything Will be Okay, 2009, print.

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