The Hi-Desert Cultural Center in Yucca Valley will present the world premiere of The Pearly Gates Collection at its new Yucca Valley Visual & Performing Arts Center (YVArts) on Nov. 3, 2018, with a celebratory public gala from 6-9 p.m. The Pearly Gates Collection pays tribute to the late art curator Walter Hopps — at one time the youngest museum director in the United States — whose pioneering curatorial approach garnered him much acclaim. The exhibition will unveil 50 original artworks from renowned artists, curated by YVArts Executive Curator Michael McCall, who was a close friend of Hopps.
McCall says the Pearly Gates project, started four years ago, was the culmination of a 3-decade mentorship under Walter Hopps, who died in 2005. Hopps’ obituary in The Washington Post described him as a “sort of a gonzo museum director — elusive, unpredictable, outlandish in his range, jagged in his vision, heedless of rules.” In that spirit, McCall began in November 2014 a “curatorial performance event,” trading banknotes Hopps had collected on his many world travels to artists McCall knew in exchange for artworks. Using what he labeled “Hopps Money,” McCall amassed a collection Hopps could appreciate from beyond the pearly gates.
Stephen Seemayer traded his painting “Goofy Death (Study)” for this bank note once owned by Walter Hopps.
The Pearly Gates Collection features artworks and writings by Richard Amend, Anthony Ausgang, Larry Bell, Gary Brewer, Matthew Couper, Woods Davy, Doug Edge, Joe Fay, Jim Finnegan, Ed Flynn, Clark Fox, Megan Frances, Peter Frank, Nick Fyhrie, Mat Gleason, Ed Glendinning, Brian Goings, Peter Goode, Emily Halpern, George Herms, Charles Christopher Hill, Brad Howe, Paula Izydorek, Terry Karpowitz, Ed and Nancy Keinholz, Rockne Krebs, Tom Lieber, Laurie Le Clair, Gary Lloyd, Aline Mare, Darwin Estacio Martinez, Michael McCall, Todd Monagham, Jim Morphesis, Andy Moses, Lindsey Nobel, Al Nodal, Loren Philip, Pierre Picot, Ave Pildas, Robin Rose, Catherine Ruane, Rafael Serrano, Stephen Seemayer, Alan Sonneman, The Art Guys, The Dark Bob, Jeffrey Vallance, Bob Wade and Norton Wisdom.
The Pearly Gates Collection runs Nov. 3, 2018, through Jan. 20, 2019, with an opening gala free to the public on Sat., Nov. 3, 2018, from 6-9 p.m.
Yucca Valley Visual & Performing Arts Center
58325 California 62
Yucca Valley, CA 92284