Diversity News

Posted on Tuesday, January 12, 2016 by Jim Norrena

2016 Sundance Ignite Fellow Janak Reddy VootkuruView slideshow 

MFA in Film program's Janak Reddy Vootkuru, a second-year student and digital photographer and filmmaker who moved to San Francisco from India to study film at CCA, was recently accepted into the 2016 Sundance Ignite Fellowship program!

Now in its second year, the competitive Sundance Ignite program accepts only a select group of 18-to-24-year-old emerging filmmakers each year. This year’s participants will engage in a rigorous and exciting program schedule set for January 27 to 31 during the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah.

According to MFA in Film co-chair Rob Epstein, “CCA was one of only a select group of schools invited to submit candidates, so this is a really great accomplishment for Janak, our program, and CCA.”

As a studying filmmaker, Vootkuru is exploring the possibilities of time-based media. He is working in narrative, nonfiction, and hybrid forms, immersing himself in a range of practices throughout CCA’s two-year MFA in Film program. 

Watch a selection of Vootkuru’s films

Posted on Tuesday, January 12, 2016 by Jim Norrena

The 2016 Creative Capital Awardees have been announced, and alumna LaTasha N. Nevada Diggs (MFA Writing 2008) has been named an awardee in the Literature category for her project Global Studies, a collection of poems and flash prose that mimes the textbook structure to examine the ambiguity of history.

According to the Creative Capital website, the nonprofit invests in artists who shape the future. It has awarded $40 million to 642 groundbreaking artists nationwide through funding, counsel, and career development services.

Three distinct categories distinguish the 46 projects (Emerging Fields, Literature, and Performing Arts), and this year only six grantees represent the literature component.

Drawing on venture-capital principles, Creative Capital seeks out artists’ projects that are bold, innovative, and genre-stretching, then surrounds those artists with the tools they need to realize their visions and build sustainable careers.

Posted on Wednesday, December 9, 2015 by Laura Kenney

Textiles are my life, not only because of my cultural heritage but due to my family background as well. My mother’s family has been making traditional Mexican cloth dolls for 40 years; I grew up in Mexico City surrounded by colorful fabrics and ribbons. I wanted to do art using the materials and techniques I was raised with: not design, not the textile industry. 

My dad is an actor, and he introduced me to the art world. He is a storyteller in his own way, and I guess that’s why I love stories so much; I think everyone has something interesting to say, and the use of narrative in my work is fundamental.

It is odd that even though we have a rich textile culture in Mexico, there’s no program focused on textiles seen as fine art. I was very disappointed and thought about studying something else after high school, but my mom said that I needed to expand my search and look for other schools outside the country.

I was thrilled to discover CCA, and I’ve been very happy here—it has been a whole new experience, and the Textiles Program is amazing.

 

 

 

 

Posted on Monday, November 9, 2015 by Laura Braun

I am currently pursuing my master of fine arts degree at California College of the Arts. A lot of the work I am making is around the concept of color, specifically orange. I was having a discussion with the show’s curator, Rene Yanez, about the possibility of creating a space that honored the life of Sandra Bland.

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Posted on Thursday, October 1, 2015 by Jim Norrena

Marlon James at CCA Writers Series reading October 2

MFA in Writing master writer-in-residence Marlon James has been awarded the 2015 Man Booker Prize for Fiction for A Brief History of Seven Killings (Oneworld Publications), which tells the story of the attempted assassination of Bob Marley.

Posted on Wednesday, September 2, 2015 by Laura Kenney

Edith Garcia with Viola Frey's sculpture Woman with Elbow on Raised Knee (1994) at the Oakland Museum of California

California College of the Arts (CCA) is pleased to announce artist and visual critic Edith Garcia is the 2015–16 Viola Frey Distinguished Visiting Professor. Garcia is a sculptor, installation artist, and author noted for her innovative use of clay and haunting forms that reinterpret the figure. She has shown throughout the United States, Mexico, and Italy.

This fall she will teach Craft Theory and other courses; she will also give a free public lecture, “My Life in Sculpture,” at Nahl Hall on the Oakland campus on October 7 at 7:30 p.m.

Garcia is engaged in scholarship around “the absence and presence of human form” in figurative ceramics. As visiting professor she will have full access to the Viola Frey Archives at Artists’ Legacy Foundation in Oakland, a resource for scholars, curators, and the general public. Garcia plans to research a not widely known period of Frey’s work produced in the late 1970s.        

Posted on Thursday, August 20, 2015 by Chris Bliss

CCA students pose in front of new mural with faculty member Eduardo Pineda

A stunning new mural was unveiled this month on the Oakland campus of California College of the Arts (CCA).

Six CCA students were selected this summer to paint a new mural on the side of Martinez Hall. Led by faculty member and noted muralist Eduardo Pineda, the team set out to create a mural that would celebrate and promote diversity and social justice, two core values of the college.

Read more about CCA's core values »

Queen Califia Rules!

The central focus of the colorful mural is Califia, a mythical warrior queen who ruled over a kingdom of black women living on the "island" of California. Her representation here was inspired by depictions of the story of Our Lady of Guadalupe and Juan Diego, the 16th century Mexican peasant to whom the Virgin Mary was said to have appeared.

In the CCA mural Queen Califia represents the people, culture, and land of California, and she is surrounded by a landscape that is both natural and political.

Juan Diego, depicted as a black youth wearing a hoodie, offers Queen Califia light, water, and corn. Diego represents the long struggle for freedom and equality, while Queen Califia symbolizes an untamed and bountiful land prior to the arrival of Europeans to the Americas.

Posted on Thursday, August 13, 2015 by Jim Norrena

Xiaoyu Weng (Curatorial Practice 2009)

Xiaoyu Weng's (Curatorial Practice 2009) recent appointment to curate two exhibitions in 2016 at the Guggenheim Museum in New York is part of the museum's Contemporary Chinese Art Initiative, which was launched in 2013.

Weng was selected as The Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation Associate Curator of Chinese Art along with Hou Hanru as consulting curator. Together the two will curate two exhibitions of commissioned works to advance The Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation's longstanding commitment to the study and support of contemporary Chinese artists.

Read the press release »

Leigh Markopoulos, chair of CCA's MA in Curatorial Practice, expressed her delight at Weng's appointment: "Xiaoyu is the first of our students to be appointed to a position at the Guggenheim, and we couldn't be happier.

"We're thrilled that she'll be joining such a fantastic team and working on projects that draw on her experiences and interests -- this appointment is a real tribute to her as a person and a curator."

Posted on Wednesday, July 8, 2015 by Nick Janikian

The Tree of Life mural project (2015)

The Tree of Life (El Árbol de la Vida) is a six-foot-high by 30-foot-long community-based mural project made in May 2015 by currently detained* undocumented immigrant Central American youths and The School of Art and Open Studio of Perquin / Walls of Hope in El Salvador (cofounded by CCA faculty member Claudia Bernardi) and students and faculty from Mary Baldwin College in Staunton, Virginia.

* The location is undisclosed to protect the unaccompanied alien children (UACs).

The mural depicts the perilous journey Central American youths face as they cross the United States / Mexico border. It also alludes to the brutality and violence that exists due to trafficking of narcotics.

Posted on Monday, July 6, 2015 by Jim Norrena

CAFFEINATED OFFICIAL TRAILER HD(2015)

Hanh Nguyen (Film/Media 2009) recently completed her first feature documentary, Caffeinated, which was recently picked by New York-based distributor Filmbuff -- a company that specializes in independent films and documentaries -- following the film's screening at the 2015 Santa Barbara International Film Festival earlier this year.

The documentary is a coproduction of Running Reel Films and Evoke Mediaworks. Nguyen codirected and coproduced Caffeinated with Vishal Solanki and Vinay Gandhi as well as coedited the film with Ramon Cervantes and Christopher Roth.

The documentary is a coproduction of Running Reel Films and Evoke Mediaworks, and it was recently picked by New York-based distributor Filmbuff, specializing in independent films and documentaries, following its screening at the 2015 Santa Barbara International Film Festival this past fall.

Visit the Caffeinated movie page on Facebook»

Meet Alumna Hanh Nguyen

Nguyen is a Los Angeles-based director, cinematographer, and editor who approaches her work with professionalism, creativity, and dedication.

As a visual storyteller, her distinguishing style lies in her acute attention to detail, artful compositions, and skilled camera work. (Nguyen's visual techniques can be traced back to CCA Film cochair Rob Epstein.)

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