Island Arts

Lunar New Year is one of the most important of the traditional Chinese holidays. This year, the Lunar New Year began on Jan. 31 marking the start of the Year of the Horse in the Chinese Zodiac. People born in the Year of the Horse are thought to be energetic, clever, warm-hearted, able and popular.

A unique show of mixed media work by clients of Oakland’s Clausen House are now on display in the Signature Gallery of the Frank Bette Center for the Arts (FBCA). The show continues through March 2. Founded in 1967, Clausen House aims to help adults with developmental disabilities gain competency, develop relationships and join the community with increasing command over their own lives. The organization builds life skills through art, nutrition, health, money management and information technology classes. Art is an important component of the adult education program at Clausen House.

The Altarena Playhouse is currently presenting Side Show; a semi-biographic musical based on the life of Daisy and Violet Hilton.

Daisy and Violet are perhaps more widely known as the glamorous conjoined twins who fueled lurid imaginations and provided fodder for tabloids up until their deaths in 1960.

Given the show’s misleading title, many might anticipate a show that barely rises above an actual side show or expect a lurid stage rendering of an anthology of anecdotes derived from tabloids; that’s your prurient mind playing tricks on you.

Large (3-foot by 4-foot) charcoal drawings by Alameda resident Katherine Meyer, featuring Crown Beach (pictured), the Elsie Roehmer Bird Sanctuary, and the Martin Luther King, Jr. Regional Shoreline are currently on display at the Triton Museum in Santa Clara.

"The purpose of my drawings is to remind people of the restorative power of nature when we experience it slowly, in solitude," said Meyer.

The opening reception at the Triton Museum takes place Friday, Feb. 21, from 6 to 8 p.m. and is free and open to the public. The show continues through May 4.

Five museums call Alameda home: the Alameda Museum, 2324 Alameda Ave.; the Meyers House and Gardens, 2021 Alameda Ave.; the Naval Air Museum, 2151 Ferry Point; the USS Hornet Museum, 707 W. Hornet Ave.; and the Pacific Pinball Museum, 1510 Webster St.

If the California Historical Radio Society (CHRS) gets its wish it will soon add the Bay Area Radio Museum and Hall of Fame to this list. CHRS is currently reaching out beyond its 400 members to help raise cash to purchase a building in Alameda to house its collections.

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