By Danielle Gallegos
For The Signal
California Institute of the Arts, or CalArts, is leasing space in Downtown Newhall to put its students’ artwork on display, officials with the Valencia arts college announced recently.
The agreement at Newhall Crossings, which is set to be on display until the end of May, covers a retail space with three floors, according to Marylou Ferry, CalArts executive director of communications.
“Now our neighbors and friends have the opportunity to see and explore this work with a unique partnership between the city and CalArts and Newhall Crossings,” said Ravi Rajan, president of CalArts.
CalArts officials first explored the idea as a way to expand opportunities for their students in order for them to share their artwork with the community, especially during a time when it was difficult to create such exhibits.
“We wanted to have a place for the students to do something like this, especially during the pandemic,” Ferry said.
The Newhall Crossings venue will include walk-by exhibitions and outdoor projections in the popular district and feature projects from the schools of film/video, art and dance, according to the release.
The two main goals of the agreement were for artists of CalArts, who are known colloquially as “CalArtians,” to be able to have a place to display their work and for the community to be able to see their work in a public area, according to Ferry.
The deal was announced March 30, and according to CalArts officials, part of the potential for the Old Town Newhall Arts and Entertainment District in the city’s Arts Master Plan — a long-term roadmap for arts, entertainment and cultural development throughout the community.
When reached for comment last week, city officials noted support for the effort to display local artists, but clarified the agreement was between CalArts and Newhall Crossings, which was not city property.
“We have been inspired by CalArts students who push through the restrictions the pandemic has put upon them and continue to make art,“ Rajan said in a statement released with lease’s announcement. “They enter into the unknown and unexpected with their artistic practice and have created possibilities when others couldn’t easily see them.”
Newhall Crossings is located 24480 Main St., near the Lyons Avenue intersection in Newhall.