Photo by Nicholas Lea Bruno/CCA.

Events + Exhibitions

California College of the Arts (CCA) offers interdisciplinary programming of more than 150 art shows, talks, exhibitions, and events each year to foster meaningful dialogue among artists and the wider community. Featured and current events on both Bay Area campuses, throughout San Francisco, and in our galleries, including the acclaimed Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts, echo the creative and intellectual curiosity that make CCA a top-ranked art school.


Adam Linder, Full Service, 2018, at Wattis Institute. Choreographic Service No. 2: Some Proximity, 2014, duration variable. Two dancers and one writer: Justin Kennedy, Josh Johnson, and Jonathan P. Watts/ Michele Carlson. Photo: Allie Fora

Due to CCA’s ongoing response to the evolving COVID–19 outbreak, we have suspended events and exhibitions until further notice. This action follows recommendations by the San Francisco Department of Public Health and other health officials. Visit the CCA COVID–19 information page for updates.

For audiences across the Bay Area

We bring award-winning artists, designers, authors, scholars, and alumni to the Bay Area to engage and inspire audiences with lectures, performances, and workshops. Our exhibitions present voices of today and tomorrow. Attend gallery art shows and view new work by emerging student talent, internationally recognized faculty, and influential artists visiting from across the globe. All of CCA’s public events and exhibitions are free and open to all.

Exhibitions at CCA

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Oct. 27, 2020

"Refugee Futurity: Counter-memories and Critical Dystopia in Contemporary Film and Video Art⁠" is a video lecture by Professor Nilgun Bayraktar available on the Make. Act. Resist website (link in bio).⁠

In this lecture, Nilgun discusses issues such as: how film conjures radically different futures for those who have been left outside the dominant narrative of Western progress; how artists and filmmakers imagine alternative futures for regions marked by prolonged displacement, violence, and conflict; and how creative visions of the future might illuminate a present that continues to be shaped by histories of colonialism, slavery, and neocolonial practices ⁠

This talk explores recent film and video works that concern questions of forced displacement, dispossession, and futurity in geopolitical contexts marked by a perpetual sense of crisis and conflict. In such conditions, crisis rhetoric has become a common mechanism for authorizing exceptional measures, states of emergency, limits on civic or human rights, and biopolitical control. With a specific focus on “refugee crisis” across European borderlands and within a Palestinian/Israeli context, Nilgun examines the ways in which cinematic and artistic practice can counter and disrupt the crisis framework by activating counter-memories and envisioning alternative, decolonial futures.⁠

If you have interest in these questions and topics visit the Make. Act. Resist page! There's lots of content, podcasts, lectures, video essays.⁠ ⁠

#MakeActResist #creativecitizensinaction⁠

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Oct. 26, 2020

@ccapainting students are doing a project around the election called Believe In Truth, using the book On Tyranny and postcards designed by Lena Wolff. They're committing to voting, and to getting 3 others to vote too. Their virtual show runs today through election day, Tuesday, November 3, AND, they will lead a roundtable discussion about this project and the election on Wednesday, October 28 at 4pm (link in bio).⁠



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Oct. 25, 2020

Support the work of @TheBridgeEsElPuente, a refuge for asylum-seeking women and children from Central America directly impacted by the United States’ Migrant Protection Protocols. Get to know more about the organization and their virtual fundraiser with their three-part interview series at the Make. Act. Resist link in our bio⁠.⁠

#MakeActResist⁠ #creativecitizensinaction⁠

📷 Casa Hogar E Puente

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Oct. 24, 2020

Ron Rael will be giving the closing keynote lecture for⁠ Make. Act. Resist: A Teach-in on Borders and Migration via Zoom on Monday, October 26 from 6–7:30pm. Rael is principal of Rael San Fratello and Professor at @ucberkeleyofficial. He is joining #CCArts ⁠for a teach-in event about public art that addresses the politics of borders and migration. To learn more about this #MakeActResist event, follow the link in our bio! ⁠

#creativecitizensinaction #CCArts #californiacollegeofthearts⁠

'What we offer is free' exhibition at Hubbell Street Galleries

Installation view of What We Offer Is Free, an exhibition honoring Ted Purves at the CCA Hubbell Street Galleries in 2017

Watch the future of art and design unfold

Exhibitions at our San Francisco and Oakland campuses and the Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts serve our community as sites of experimentation and investigation. With over 100 art shows mounted each year, visitors can enjoy an ever-changing array of work by students, faculty, staff, and visiting artists.

Oliver Art Center

Oliver Art Center with work by retired faculty member Linda Fleming

Show your work in a CCA gallery

Each campus gallery is an integral part of the CCA curriculum. By mounting exhibitions, students gain professional skills in curation, preparation, production, and documentation.

During their senior year, undergraduate fine arts students plan, promote, and install individual senior exhibitions, and graduating students from all programs are invited to create work for the annual Commencement Exhibition.

PLAySPACE is a graduate student–run gallery that provides the resources for student artists and curators to conceptualize and present long-term exhibitions, whereas the Project Space Takeover program offers more informal opportunities to share and develop works-in-progress, including performances, social practice projects, collaborations, readings, screenings, prototypes, and experiments.

Seriously Weird: CCA Illustration Biennial Alumni & Faculty Exhibition, which took place at the CCA Hubbell Street Galleries in November, 2019

Seriously Weird: CCA Illustration Biennial Alumni & Faculty Exhibition, which took place at the CCA Hubbell Street Galleries in November, 2019

Hubbell Street Galleries

Located near the corner of Hubbell and 16th, four individual spaces comprise Hubbell Street Galleries. They’re home to the CCA Exhibitions office, galleries showcasing work by CCA students and visiting artists, PLAySPACE graduate student gallery, and the Project Space for short-term experimental work.

161, 151, 141, and 131 Hubbell Street
San Francisco, CA 94107 (map)

Male dancing on lighted floor at PLAySPACE opening reception

A visitor interacts with This Might Be Just The Place by Jaime Knight at PLAySPACE Gallery in spring 2019


PLAySPACE, The Paulette Long and Shepard Pollack Art Community Experiment, is a graduate student–run exhibition program that provides the resources for student artists and curators to conceptualize and present programming oriented toward the academic community. PLAySPACE is operated by a team of current graduate students that receives an annual staffing stipend and operating budget to present exhibitions, programs, and more for the duration of their directorship.

141 Hubbell Street
San Francisco, CA 94107 (map)

people talking and looking at art in a large, white room.

The opening reception for Making (It) Work at the Oliver Art Center

Oliver Art Center

The Oliver Art Center is an expansive exhibition space in the center of the Oakland campus. The gallery presents lively, rotating displays of contemporary painting, photography, printmaking, sculpture, and experimental work by both emerging and established artists.

5212 Broadway Avenue
Oakland, CA 94618 (map)

Minami Oya and her installation, Collective Consciousness, at Isabelle Percy West Gallery in February, 2020:

Minami Oya and her installation, Collective Consciousness, at Isabelle Percy West Gallery in February, 2020

Isabelle Percy West Gallery

Isabelle Percy West Gallery is located on the mezzanine level of Nahl Hall on the Oakland campus. This intimate space typically features student work from across CCA’s diverse programs.

5212 Broadway Avenue
Oakland, CA 94618 (map)

CCA Wattis exhibit

Doing the Best I Can, an exhibition of work by Diamond Stingily at CCA Wattis Institute

Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts

Founded in 1998 at California College of the Arts in San Francisco and located a few blocks from its campus, Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts is a nonprofit exhibition venue and research institute dedicated to contemporary art and ideas.

As an exhibition space, the Wattis commissions and shows new work by emerging and established artists from around the world. As a research institute, it dedicates an entire year to reflect on the work of a single artist, which informs a regular series of public programs and publications involving the field’s most prominent artists and thinkers. The Wattis also hosts the annual Capp Street Artist-in-Residence, which is one of the earliest and longest-running artist-in-residence programs in the country.

360 Kansas Street
San Francisco, CA 94103 (map)

Find what’s next in our calendar of exhibitions and events

View schedule