The San Diego Mesa College Glass Gallery Presents

The San Diego Mesa College Glass Gallery is proud to present a unique African art exhibition that features unusual puppets, as well as masks and masquerades.  The exhibition will be on display in the Library Atrium of the Mesa College Learning Resource Center from Friday April 4 to November 30, 2008. The public is invited to attend an opening reception on Friday, April 4 from 5 to 7 p.m. The reception will feature an African Masquerade Performance, a Silent Auction, refreshments, a video presentation and an illustrated discussion led by the Mesa College Professor and Exhibit Curator Barbara W. Blackmun.

The exhibit and video display demonstrate varieties of African creativity, according to curator Barbara Blackmun.  The mouths of Ogoni talking heads open and close as they speak, large constructions of comic animals are animated by hidden performers, and fantastic creatures float across dark lagoons.  During civic street parades in Bamako, brightly-costumed puppets interact in skits and wave to the public from decorated floats, accompanied by singing crowds of young adults.

On a smaller scale, silent figures point their fingers during private sessions of clairvoyant divination, and circles of listeners gather around storytellers who illustrate their tales with tiny puppets on strings. Larger puppets are manipulated from behind public platforms, entertaining, shocking, and amusing spectators.

In addition to the exhibition’s video clips, a live masquerade featuring two traditional characters from Guinea will be danced by the Bomani Drum and Dance Group at 5:00 pm at the Opening Reception.  Through a display of these varied theatrical artworks, the exhibition samples African arts that are rarely exhibited or seen  in performance, outside of Africa.

San Diego Mesa College Glass Gallery exhibitions are supported entirely by the generosity of private donors, and are installed with the aid of student volunteers.








April 4 – Nov 30, 2008


Opening Reception:


Friday, April 4,   5:00 – 7:00 PM, LRC Library Atrium

Refreshments, African Masquerade Performance, Silent Auction,

Videos, Illustrated Discussion by Curator Barbara W. Blackmun


Admission and parking are free to the public

Exhibition viewing hours:  Regular LRC hours

                       7:00 am – 10:00 pm (Monday – Thursday)

                      7:00 am – 5:00 pm (Friday)

                       8:00 am – 3:30 pm (Saturday)

                       Closed Sundays



PARKING IS FREE ON RECEPTION NIGHT.  Due to construction on campus at the Mesa College Drive entrance, please use the Genesee-Marlesta-Chasewood entrance.  On April 4, you may park anywhere in the lower lots as well as in the upper parking areas near the flagpole.


To reach the upper parking areas from the Marlesta and Chasewood entrance, turn right at the end of Chasewood, and drive uphill. After the road bends to the left, you will see faculty parking lots on both sides of the road.  You may park in either one.


The wide stairway entrance behind the flagpole leads into the central campus.  You will see the LRC directly in front of you, which is the largest building on the horizon.  (It is to the right of the Mesa College Art Gallery entry).


During regular college hours, use the visitors’ metered spaces across the street from this flagpole entrance.  For additional information, call 619-388-2498 or 619-461-5930.