The Compound

The Compound is scheduled to to open in September of this year with plans for socially distanced exhibits and events.

A space that hosts exhibitions, performances, workshops, community projects and more in the Zaferia District is opening its doors to the public this September.

Called Compound, creators of the space say it is intended to promote empathy, social equity and spiritual and physical well-being with the help of contributions from Long Beach artists and community members.

“Our mission is to create a place that is affirming, inclusive, and open. At Compound, our hope is that all visitors will find community, healing, and a great sense of belonging," Megan Tagliaferri, founder and executive director, said. "We believe that culture shifts consciousness, and all are welcome to join us in experiencing art and wellness."

The collective was originally scheduled to open this spring, but due to COVID-19 concerns, that opening was postponed and exhibits were adjusted to account for social distancing. When it opens this fall, people will be able to schedule tours while being mindful of the city's current health order.

But the delay hasn't stopped the Compound team from creating content.

They partnered with the Artist Relief Program⁠ — a national program dedicated to helping artists find remote ways to work and make money while the coronavirus impacts show spaces⁠ — to launch a series online every Monday.

The current issue of their online publication, called Compound-ed, features works from Long Beach artists Daniel Alexander Jones, Fariha Róisín, Jackie Sumell, Miguel Gutierrez, Nicolás Dumit Estévez Raful Espejo, Sharon Bridgforth and Mario Ybarra Jr. Articles and artworks that focus on social justice, meditation and healing and more emphasizes the need for the community to stand united in world littered with uncertainty. 

“It is important for us to be there for our community, to help them heal, learn and have access to the arts, even before we open,” Tagliafferi said.

When Compound finally opens, more content and workshops will be available, including yoga, healing workshops, youth art classes and poetry readings in English and Spanish. 

There's also an eatery on site, with a menu courtesy of Ellie's of Long Beach's Chef Jason Witzl. From start to finish, Compound is the result of community effort and the need to have voices from each corner of the city lifted, organizers said.

The design and architecture was conceptualized by Long Beach's BOA Architecture, emphasizing that community members can continue to support other community members across all industries.

"Compound is an inclusive space for the community, and I want the design to reflect that," Tagliaferri said. "Long Beach has a rich craft tradition, and we want the community to feel empowered by that history."

Compound is located at 1395 Coronado Ave. For more information, go to compoundlb.com.

Stephanie Stutzman can be reached at sstutzman@gazettes.com.

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