CCA News

Posted on Tuesday, December 12, 2006 by Hannah Eldredge

Animal Subjects, an interdisciplinary course designed to examine a wide range of stories, theories, and images of animals in history, is the 2006 winner of the Animals and Society Course Award from the Humane Society of the United States and the Center for Respect of Life and Environment.

This award is granted each year to three college undergraduate and graduate courses worldwide. The award includes a $1,500 prize, which will be used to expand CCA's library with resources relating to animal subjects.

Animal Subjects is part of the Critical Studies Program under the category of Methods of Knowledge, which are interdisciplinary humanities seminars required of all CCA undergraduate students in their third or fourth year. These courses are designed to teach critical thinking and to show students historical and cultural contexts.

Kari Weil, chair of Critical Studies and associate professor of Writing and Literature, teaches the course. By teaching Animal Subjects, she hopes for students to "sometime in their work try to make the empathic leap of envisioning a nonhuman perspective." The course evolved from her work on horse-human relations in 19th-century France, but has grown both in response to her research and student interest. Weil tries to integrate students' areas of study into the course. Last year the class took a field trip to the Oakland Zoo, where they learned about zoo design and conservation, which incorporated architecture and design.

Weil has been teaching at CCA for six years, and this is the fourth time she has taught the Animal Subjects course. She is near completion of the book The Equine Other in Nineteenth-Century France, a study that looks at the discourses around and representations of riding and breeding horses. Parts of the book are already published as articles. She also has a forthcoming essay called "Animal Death and the Struggle for Ethics" in a special issue of Configurations, a journal dedicated to animal and agricultural studies.

To learn more about the Critical Studies Program, see Critical Studies.

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Posted on Thursday, December 7, 2006 by Kim Lessard

Michael Palmer

Poet Michael Palmer, this year's winner of the prestigious Wallace Stevens Award, will be the spring 2007 writer in residence at California College of the Arts (CCA). During his residency, Palmer will teach a graduate poetry workshop, and he will give a public reading on February 22 as part of CCA's Centennial Graduate Lecture Series. The reading is free and will take place at 7:00 p.m. in Timken Lecture Hall on the college's San Francisco campus at 1111 Eighth Street.

Michael Palmer, whose work has been described as being both alluringly lyrical and intensely avant-garde, has inspired a wide range of poets working today. Robert Hass, on his recent selection of Palmer to receive the Wallace Stevens Award, called him "the foremost experimental poet of his generation and perhaps of the last several generations."

The MFA Program in Writing at California College of the Arts is one of the few of its kind, in which writers work side by side in a community with visual artists.

"As a poet who has engaged in multiple collaborations throughout the years with choreographers, visual artists, and composers, I was happy to accept the invitation to be the visiting poet at CCA this spring," says Palmer. "I look forward to what this vibrant context will add to our creative writing class discussions and exercises."

"Michael Palmer is one of the most distinguished poets working today," says Joseph Lease, chair of the MFA Program in Writing. "We are honored to have him. He will be a valuable resource and mentor for our students."

About Michael Palmer

Michael Palmer was born in New York City in 1943 and has lived in San Francisco for more than 30 years. He is the author of numerous books of poetry, including "Company of Moths" (2005), which was short-listed for the Canadian Griffin Poetry Prize; "Codes Appearing: Poems 1979–1988" (2001); "The Promises of Glass" (2000); "The Lion Bridge: Selected Poems 1972-1995" (1998); "At Passages" (1996); "Sun" (1988); "First Figure" (1984); "Notes for Echo Lake" (1981); "Without Music" (1977); "The Circular Gates" (1974); and "Blake's Newton" (1972). He is also the author of a prose work, "The Danish Notebook" (1999).

For over 30 years Palmer has collaborated with the Margaret Jenkins Dance Company, and he created the text for their piece "Danger Orange." Visual artists he has collaborated with include Gerhard Richter, Micaí«la Henich, Sandro Chia, Jess Collins, and Augusta Talbot.

Palmer has also translated work from French, Russian, and Portuguese. He edited and contributed translations to "Nothing the Sun Could Not Explain: Twenty Contemporary Brazilian Poets" (1997) and "Blue Vitriol" (1994), a collection of poetry by Alexei Parshchikov. He also translated "Theory of Tables" (1994), a book written by Emmanuel Hocquard, a project that grew out of Hocquard's translations of Palmer's "Baudelaire Series" into French.

In addition to the 2006 Wallace Stevens Award from the Academy of American Poets, Palmer's honors include two grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, a Lila Wallace-Reader's Digest Writer's Award, a Guggenheim Foundation fellowship, and the Shelley Memorial Prize from the Poetry Society of America. In 1999, he was elected a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets.

About the College

Founded in 1907, California College of the Arts is the largest regionally accredited, independent school of art and design in the western United States. Noted for the interdisciplinary nature and breadth of its programs, CCA offers 20 undergraduate and 6 graduate majors in the areas of fine arts, architecture, design, and writing. The college offers bachelor of architecture, bachelor of arts, bachelor of fine arts, master of architecture, master of arts, and master of fine arts degrees. With campuses in Oakland and San Francisco, CCA currently enrolls 1,600 full-time students.

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Posted on Friday, November 24, 2006 by Brenda Tucker

2005 Holiday Art Fair

CCA presents its annual Holiday Art Fair on Saturday, December 9, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The event will be held on the Oakland campus, located at 5212 Broadway (at College Avenue).

This year, shoppers can enjoy live jazz music while perusing one-of-a-kind gifts made by students, alumni, and staff. The sale will feature unique yet inexpensive handcrafted items, such as ceramics, blown glass, jewelry, clothing, photography, textiles, and paintings.

Proceeds go to the individual artists. Refreshments will be available. Parking is available on nearby streets.

For more information, call 510.594.3666.

About CCA

Founded in 1907, California College of the Arts is the largest regionally accredited, independent school of art and design in the western United States.

Noted for the interdisciplinary nature and breadth of its programs, CCA offers 20 undergraduate and 6 graduate majors in the areas of fine arts, architecture, design, and writing. The college offers bachelor of architecture, bachelor of arts, bachelor of fine arts, master of architecture, master of arts, and master of fine arts degrees.

With campuses in Oakland and San Francisco, CCA currently enrolls 1,600 full-time students.

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Posted on Wednesday, November 22, 2006 by Brenda Tucker

Design Within Reach (DWR) is collaborating with California College of the Arts during the fall 2006 semester for a course on contemporary seating design. The course, Production Furniture Design, is offered by the Interior Design Program and addresses issues in the creation and production of sustainable seating for the contract and residential markets.

The curriculum was developed through a collaboration between adjunct professor Brian Kane, an award-winning furniture designer in the Interior Design Program, and DWR executives, who are providing guidance to young designers throughout the semester.

"Cultivating and supporting emerging design talent at institutions like California College of the Arts is one of the most fulfilling aspects of what we do," said Ray Brunner, CEO of Design Within Reach. "We hope to challenge young designers to create innovative and sustainable designs that will endure for generations."

Student designers are creating four separate projects that examine all aspects of developing and creating sustainable seating solutions.

Tony Meredith, a student in the class, wrote: "The DWR furniture production class is a great opportunity for students to truly be supported by a sponsor in a very open and engaging way. Their multiple-person presence at the critiques and meetings has been incredibly helpful to us in our quest for an interesting, meaningful, manufacturable, and sustainable chair for their product line. It's been great to take much of the knowledge that I've gained in other classes here at CCA and put it to real world use."

The course curriculum includes an awareness of the contract and residential markets and how they work, the product development process in those industries, the manufacturing and material processes commonly used, ergonomic and human factors considerations, and full-scale product detailing and model making.

Design Within Reach's Jennifer Morla, creative director, and Karen John, vice president of design and general merchandise, will participate in the midyear and final course evaluations.

You can read about the course in the DWR blog. The blog entry on the final critique links to earlier entries, and student Tony Meredith reflects on the course in a later entry.

For more about Design Within Reach, visit www.dwr.com. For more about the Interior Design Program, see Interior Design.

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Posted on Tuesday, November 21, 2006 by Lindsey Westbrook

Alumni Notes feature many important contributions CCA alumni are making to the art world.

The following Alumni Notes are taken from the spring 2006 edition of Glance, CCA's full-color magazine, designed by Sputnik, the college's undergraduate design studio. The semiannual publication provides—among other things—the latest college alumni news: achievements, books published, awards received, and more!

Tell Us About Your Recent Alumni Note

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Posted on Monday, November 20, 2006 by Brenda Tucker

San Francisco campus, 2006

From its humble beginnings in 1907 with three classrooms, 43 students, and three teachers, California College of the Arts (CCA) has developed into one of this country's most prestigious art colleges. Today CCA boasts state-of-the art campuses in San Francisco and Oakland, 19 undergraduate and six graduate programs, 1,650 full-time students, nearly 500 faculty members, and an estimated 14,000 alumni.

"From the vision and determination of the founders to the recent accomplishments of faculty, students, and alumni, CCA's story is remarkable, rich, and inspiring.

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Posted on Sunday, November 12, 2006 by Jim Norrena

Alumni Notes feature many important contributions CCA alumni are making to the art world.

The following Alumni Notes are taken from the spring 2006 edition of Glance, CCA's full-color magazine, designed by Sputnik, the college's undergraduate design studio. The semiannual publication provides—among other things—the latest college alumni news: achievements, books published, awards received, and more!

Tell Us About Your Recent Alumni Note

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Posted on Friday, November 3, 2006 by Hannah Eldredge

Leanne Wierzba's design

Senior Fashion Design student Leanne Wierzba was recently awarded a three-month internship with Anne Valérie Hash in Paris. The internship was one of six grand prizes from the 2006 Arts of Fashion Symposium, where internationally renowned fashion experts from cities such as Paris, Brussels, Vienna, and London judged aspiring fashion designers.

The event was hosted by the University of North Texas, School of Visual Arts, and over 100 students from 43 U.S. colleges and universities participated.

The symposium began with a four-day series of master class workshops, which included seminars, debates, and lectures on various topics in the fashion industry, including copyright law, blogging, international scholarship, and business.

The event concluded with a runway-style fashion show featuring the designs of 40 candidates competing for the six grand prizes.

Students were asked to create fashion illustrations depicting the way to express the mind and the body. Of all the submitted illustrations, about 50 finalists were chosen to present their designs at the event. Wierzba presented a complete outfit, with a cutout bustier, skirt, and ankle boots, which was intended to express the feminine archetype in art and fashion and the Freudian slip. The outfit was made from ivory satin, with pleated portions in charcoal grey chiffon.

Wierzba describes her style as very personal: "It is about my experiences, concrete and otherwise. It comes out of history, memory, and the realm of dreams. I am driven by concepts that relate mostly to psychology and social behavior."

The three-month internship in Paris will most likely begin in May, at the end of the spring semester.

For more information on the Arts of Fashion Foundation, visit Arts of Fashion. For more information about CCA's Fashion Design Program, see Fashion Design.

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Posted on Wednesday, November 1, 2006 by Hannah Eldredge

North Pitney and Erin Elliott

Five CCA Media Arts students participated in Yahoo!'s University Design Expo, an annual event that explores how humans interact with technology and showcases student projects illustrating future uses for technology services and devices.

Yahoo!'s User Experience & Design (UED) group and Yahoo! Research hosted the annual event on July 31 at the company's headquarters in Sunnyvale.

CCA and four other interdisciplinary graduate design programs were invited to participate: New York University, Interactive Telecommunications Program; Royal College of Art (London), Interaction Design Program; UCLA, Design and Media Arts Program; ESDI (Rio de Janeiro), Graphic Design Program.

Yahoo! provided CCA with $10,000 to create and present five projects. Professors Barney Haynes, Todd Blair, Allison Sant, and Anthony Burke led the students and encouraged out-of-the-box thinking in creating their interfaces.

Media Arts students Erin Elliott, Kate Richards, North Pitney, Rhonda Holberton, and Lucas Ketelle created projects for the expo. Projects ranged from Richards's living grass interactive project, in which users could run their hand over grass to trigger a video showing the world from a bug's perspective, to Elliott and Pitney's lollipop project, which consisted of lollipops with sensors that, when licked, controlled the movement of robotic babies.

"The mouth is underused in interactive art and design. This is a good example of a fun way to show you how you can use your mouth to control computers and machines," said Elliott.

The expo was launched 17 years ago by Joy Mountford, who was looking for a way to promote new ways of thinking about computers and design among engineers. She began the expo while at Apple Computer, but has recently moved to Yahoo! and has kept the expo going. She estimates 1,800 students have participated over the years.

CCA has received an invitation to participate in the event next year as well.

For more information about the CCA Media Arts Program, see Media Arts.

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Posted on Saturday, October 14, 2006 by Jim Norrena

As a Wornick Distinguished Visiting Professor in Wood Arts, David Trubridge worked with graduate students in Fine Arts and with a group of undergraduate students enrolled in the Studio: Atelier course.

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