JD Beltran profile image

JD Beltran has over a decade of experience as an internationally recognized artist, filmmaker, designer, writer, and arts administrator.

For the last six years, Beltran has been the President of the San Francisco Arts Commission, a commission that oversees $20M of public funding for public art, grants, arts programming, and support for San Francisco artists, arts non-profits, and community organizations. She also served as the agency’s Executive Director in 2011.

Beltran also is Associate Faculty at California College of the Arts, where she has taught in both the MFA Design and Interaction Design Programs for the past five years.  While at CCA she collaborated with former Dean of Design (and now MFA Writing Program Chair) Leslie Roberts and the California Academy of Sciences in initiating and producing CCA’s successful, now annual “Nightlife” exhibition, as well as in overseeing multiple CCA design sprints pairing CCA students with various technology partners, and she also served as the faculty liaison for CCA’s website re-design. Beltran also has produced the Interaction Design Senior Thesis, Junior, and Sophomore Review Exhibitions for the past three years. In addition to being faculty at CCA, Beltran served as faculty at the San Francisco Art Institute from 2002-2017, teaching in multiple departments, and also directed the school’s City Studio arts education program for underserved youth, achieving close to $500k in grants to support the program over the course of 7 years.

In her studio practice, Beltran’s award-winning artwork has been screened and exhibited worldwide, including at the Walker Art Center, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the International Film Festival Rotterdam, the Getty Center, the Kitchen in New York, the MIT Media Lab, Cité des Ondes Vidéo et Art Électronique in Montreal, ProArte in St. Petersburg, Russia, the Fei Contemporary Art Center in Shanghai, China, the Kyrgyzstan National Museum, the Biennale for Electronic Arts in Perth, Australia, the Douro Global Print Biennial in Alijo, Portugal, the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, and in the 2006, 2008, and 2012 ZeroOne New Media Biennials.

Her artwork collaboration with Scott Minneman was awarded a 2018 Innovation Award by the Consumer Electronics Society and was featured at CES 2018 in Las Vegas. It also was nominated for the 2019 German Design Award. The work also was featured at the 2015 International Film Festival Rotterdam and achieved the international New Technological Art Award in 2014 as one of the top twenty Art +Technology projects worldwide.

Beltran also has garnered multiple awards and commissions for public art; she received the Americans for the Arts Public Art Network Award for creating one of the top public art projects in the United States (2009), and achieved multiple annual awards in Media Arts from ID Magazine. Her work has been reviewed in the New York Times, the UK’s Daily Mail, NPR, the Wall Street Journal, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Boston Globe, Wired Magazine, Art in America, ArtNews, the New Art Examiner, Art Practical, Art Papers, ID Magazine, 7x7, and Dwell. She's also been awarded grants by Artadia, the Workshop Residence, the San Francisco Arts Commission, Stochastic Labs, and a Creative Capital/Warhol Foundation Arts Writers Fellowship, and residencies at Skowhegan, the Pilchuck School (Hauberg Fellowship), the Atlantic Center for the Arts, and the Montalvo Arts Center.

She is a columnist on art and culture, writing for SFGate.com, the Huffington Post, and the Public Art Review, and is a member of the San Francisco Writers’ Grotto.

She serves as a Board Trustee of the Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture (where she co-produced the 2017 exhibition “Missing” by Sophie Calle, lauded by the San Francisco Chronicle as the “Best Exhibition of 2017”).  She also serves on the Board of the Recology Residency Program, and as an advisor on the Board of San Francisco’s Design Week.

Beltran has a BS in Psychology from the University of Oregon, an MFA in Painting and New Genres from the San Francisco Art Institute, and a JD from Boalt Hall School of Law (and briefly litigated cases in Intellectual Property before devoting herself to a full-time career in art).  She feels inordinately blessed to be able to work in art and design, and to travel the world in search of new adventures with her partner Scott Minneman (an inventor who is also CCA Faculty), and her son, Sebastien (a talented photographer and filmmaker, and the light of her life).

Adjunct Professor, Design


BS, University of Oregon; MFA, San Francisco Art Institute; JD, University of California, Berkeley

Website: www.jdbeltran.com