for immediate release
contact: Gerry Fialka 310-306-7330
and Bryan Embry 972-743-5895,

 THE 9 DUDLEY PROJECT proudly presents SPONTO LIVES art exhibition
from Aug 24 to Sept 7, 2013 at 9 Dudley Ave, Venice CA 90291, 972-743-5895

Featuring artists:
Vincent Digaetano 
Mark X Farina
Gerry Fialka
Lisa Green
Barbara Mastej
B. Meade
Dougo Smith
Andrea Wittenberg

Featuring photographers:
Dave Healey
Margaret Molloy
Ned Sloane
Opening party: Sat, Aug 24 from 6-9pm.
Closing bash: Sat, Sept 7 from 6-9pm.
Free admission. With live unplugged music and poetry


The 9 Dudley Project & Venice artists celebrate the spirit of legendary artist/curator Mark "Sponto" Kornfeld, who nurtured the creative and Love community in Venice, California for 24 years at his 7 Dudley Avenue. This location was the very same home of the infamous Venice West Cafe from 1958 to 1966, one of the birthplaces of a free-spirited literature and art movement. The Beats shared themes of spirituality, environmental awareness and political activism. Sponto felt the sacred ground bubbling up from the Beat roots, and extended it. 

Calling out a S.O.S. = Summer Of Sponto, which evokes the bebop tune "Now Is The Time," by Charles "Yardbird" Parker, who shares the same birthday with Sponto: August 29. These Venice artists and photographers live in the present and create a history of the future.

“Sponto” by Barbara Mastej ( view it at )
is part of her series of portraits of
some of the atypical personalities that are so typical of Venice.
It is apropos that this painting will be shown at 9 Dudley,
because three of the other artists exhibiting in “SPONTO LIVES”
(Gerry Fialka, Bruce Meade, Mark X Farina) are also depicted in the background.

The painting was referenced from three different images;
the first is Sponto wearing his lucky jacket at a 4th of July party,
another from a shot of the open door at a Sponto Gallery opening,
and a third of the exterior taken as people gathered in front of 7 Dudley
for an impromptu vigil the night they learned that Sponto had passed.

More info: 310-306-7330

Spontodaciously Where No Art Gallery Ever Went


Venetians remember Sponto.
January 5, 2008 7:23PM. Venice--Mark "Sponto" Kornfeld (Aug 29, 1949 to Dec 28, 2008) greeted folks with the vivacious "Yo We." The "We" took his Spontolicious sing-songy slang into the "We are all oneness" realm. He hybridized "spontaneous" simultaneity with that feisty "pronto" punch, reinventing the spirit of the Beats.

Artist/curator Sponto nurtured the creative and Love community in Venice, California for 24 years at his 7 Dudley Avenue. This location was the very same home of the infamous Venice West Cafe from 1958 to 1966, one of the birthplaces of a free-spirited literature and art movement. The Beats shared themes of spirituality, environmental awareness and political dissidence. Sponto felt the sacred ground bubbling up from the Beat roots, and extended it. Outty. Spontropy.

Sponto cultivated a glorious garden of wonders and Spontasmagorical liberation. He transformed the whole concept of the art gallery into perceptual otherness--the SPONTOFICATION RITUAL. Now here this!

Sponto Gallery was and is: 1- Art gallery - locals, international, homeless, children's art. Where no percentage was taken, all sales go to the artist. Whaa???
2- Very Live music venue - Azar Lawrence, Country Joe McDonald, Jazz Funk Fest, and tons more - The Beat Goes Spon.
3- 7 Dudley Cinema - earth shaking experimental films and discussions - all volunteer, free admission.
4- Exotic playground where many a soulmate met their match.
5- Poetry center carrying on the Venice West Cafe Beat tradition.
6- Political activist forum with the likes of Alexander Cockburn, Blaise Bonpaine, Paul Krassner and much more like raising money to feed the homeless and helping New Orleans musicians.
7- Sponto championed bicycle activism and 7 Dudley Cinema showed Critical Mass bike films. His assemblage sculptures were often made of found objects, like the Sponto Cristo, which was composed of bike parts.
8- One of a kind events like Ms Beatnik Contest, and the Dumpster Diving Fashion Show.
9- Party central - ain't no party like a sponto party cause a sponto party don't stop. Backgammon Spontoisseurs.
10- SIC - Spiritually Incorrect Comedy - Live.
11- Got additions?

Shall I go on? We'z in double figures and there so much more to add. The Spontorage rages Eternal in Love and Laughter and Laughtears and whatever other word that describes what living is really all about, a word that hasn't been invented yet.

Sponto nourished our clan, and there ain't no stopping us now. We're on the move. Don't matter where the place is. We are on top of it. We are the Little Rascals puttin' on THE show. He was and always will be our Righteous Entrepreneur of Rascality, and we ain't gonna let him down. Yo We. One Love Mojo. Spontodelic Spontoons.

If you ever burned a fatty wif dis bad boy, ya know what i be talkin bout. Spontorific herbal knowledge. Ya be diggin infinity till the cows come home. Dancin barefoot round da campfire. Ya be shootin up to da rafters, homey. Rasta Sponto. Spontolini 7 1/2. The Man, the Myth, the Movie - 4:20 to Zuma. Where else in this multi-verse could one actually raise consciousness and vote under the same woof? The Bomb. The Atomic Dawg barkin' the history of the future. Non-medical. Get on the Doobie Nova Bus. Squanto.

Sponto was a real mutha fo'ya. He showered generous gifts at Mother's Day to many, often rapping them in aluminum foil, which he called Sponto Rap. He loved shiny. Sponto was once an almost-pro-tennis-player. He loved cheese on everything. His Spontopolis operated in the inclusive realm, not in the "guilty until proven rich" exclusivity - a direct democracy utopia of participatory involvement. He often employed houseless people, one of which declared "They'll never get him out of there now." Spontoneers and Spontonarians unify in the Spontopolitan Bohemia.

Abbott Kinney invented Venice and Sponto reinvented it. Soon after Kinney died, the pier burned. Soon after Sponto died, the Gallery may close, but we'll be burnin' the Sponto light forever. Bustin' the bardos loose. Wanna be King of the Spontoprize. Let's meet and have community now.

"It's all good, Sponti."

--Gerry Fialka

          GERRY FIALKA 310-306-7330 Bio -

Gerry Fialka has been called "the multi-media Renaissance man” - LA Times, a "cultural revolutionary" - LA Weekly, and  "Los Angeles' preeminent underground film curator"
"Gerry Fialka is the Studs Terkel of Venice, California - nurturing active participation for common ground." - Michele Raven, Writer/Producer

"Fialka's vision is central to the identity of alternative Venice." - John O'Kane, author of Venice, CA: A City-State of Mind (which includes a whole chapter on Fialka) and editor/publisher of AMASS Magazine

"Fialka has been a mainstay of the Venice scene for over 30 years. He’s a filmmaker, a voracious event organizer who regularly hosts five multimedia events each month along with numerous special events he creates with filmmakers, authors, musicians and artists of all stripes. He has worked for the late Frank Zappa and is a musician in his own right playing guitar with the avant garde group Black Shoe Polish. He is a friend to the homeless and has more sides than a kaleidoscope. Throughout his various interests and passions runs the theme of community." - Tryg Hanson, Abbott Kinney 1st Fridays Online Magazine
"Gerry Fialka is one of the most giving impresarios that ever landed in Venice, California. He continues to fulfill Venice founder Abbott Kinney's dream of Chautauqua's influence on people. Fialka is the glue of the Venicessance. " - Jeffrey Solomon, Historian,

"Gerry Fialka couldn't come at a more propitious moment. One of Los Angeles' great celluloid underworld overlords, relentless cultural provocateur and filmmaker Fialka has been successfully bedeviling our popular consciousness since the late 20th century. A recognized artistic force since his early 1970s breakout as head shot-caller at the notorious Ann Arbor Film Co-op and renowned as the veteran curator of PXL THIS, Hollywood's second oldest film festival, any presentation of Fialka's work is guaranteed to rate as a mind-bending affair. ... It's a veritable stampede of visual strangeness, theoretical acrobatics and sociocultural redefinition, all delivered through the singular prism of Fialka's self-defined prime directive: 'exploration of the hidden psychic effects of human inventions.'" - Jonny Whiteside, LA Weekly

"Eminent McLuhanite, eccentric Joycean, and all-around experimental thinker, Gerry Fialka tirelessly excavates the future of art, media, and culture. His longstanding Marshall McLuhan-Finnegans Wake Reading Club in Venice is a throbbing epicenter of pulsating brainwaves and eccentric new ideas that will challenge your mind more than your weirdest university course ever could." - Peter Quadrino, Joyce scholar 

"Gerry Fialka’s annual PXL THIS (the second oldest film festival in LA) is a reliably surprising and seductive round-up of recent work achieved with the PXL 2000 camera. This humble outdated “toy” continues to bring out the visionary child in filmmakers and viewers alike, and no one has kept the PXL flame burning longer or brighter than Gerry." - Michael Almereyda, director 

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