Diversity News

Posted on Tuesday, December 18, 2012 by Matthew Harrison Tedford

The Walls of Hope project in progress in Monthey, Switzerland

Claudia Bernardi (today a professor in CCA's Community Arts Program, but who also teaches in a wide range of disciplines, including Diversity Studies, Fine Arts, and Visual and Critical Studies programs) was a student at the university of art in Buenos Aires in 1976, the year the military dictatorship took power in Argentina.

"Those were very dark years -- very tragic, painful, and violent. The ones who survived learned to look at life, history, and art quite differently."

Read the rest

Posted on Friday, November 16, 2012 by Rachel Walther

Glen Helfand (in the green T-shirt) with CCA students and Creativity Explored artists

A hall of mirrors reflecting an artist's actual view of the world; sculptural train tracks coming out of the wall and into the gallery space; colorful, hanging text-mobiles that evoke psychologically charged word-clouds; a fashion magazine devoted to one fabulous model; and a pop-up shop selling equestrian-themed T-shirts, jewelry, and drawings:

These are the works that will be on view in Fabricators, the culminating exhibition for Glen Helfand's fall 2012 ENGAGE at CCA course, at Jack Fischer Gallery in San Francisco, December 12-22, 2012. The public is invited to the reception on Saturday, December 15, 3-5 p.m.

Read the rest

Posted on Thursday, November 8, 2012 by Matthew Harrison Tedford

The Cast of La Bamba 2: Hell Is a Drag

"I wrote a sequel to From Dusk Till Dawn when I was in seventh grade."

So began the filmmaking career of Rob Fatal (MFA 2012). His obsession with film proceeded apace, but it took him a surprisingly long time, he says, to realize that there was a person called a director -- that movies didn't just spring into existence like Athena from Zeus's head.

Inspired by Quentin Tarantino, Mel Brooks, and Robert Rodriguez, Fatal began writing screenplays at age 12. "I loved camp and sci-fi films before I even knew they were genres." At 19 he borrowed his father's camcorder and made a 30-minute film about DJs with magical turntables. "It was accidentally campy. It was accidentally bad. But it had a lot of sincerity." Much to his surprise, it did well, even getting into a couple of festivals.

Film Maker, Filmmaker, or Artist?

Fast forward a few years. Fatal was still working in film and experimenting with video art, but not quite to the point of considering himself a filmmaker, and certainly not an "artist," whatever that meant. But one day, in the midst of editing a video documenting an experimental opera by Fatal's collaborator/mentor Juliana Snapper, he recomposed portions of the footage into a new composition and showed it to CCA faculty member Cheryl Dunye. Dunye delivered the unexpected news that what he was doing was art, and urged him to apply to CCA's MFA program. The faculty there, she said, were pushing the boundaries of genres, and dealing with gender politics and racial identity -- fields of study Fatal had been researching for years in his graduate program at Sacramento State University. CCA presented Fatal with a place to finally bridge his dual love of film theory and practice.

Read the rest

Posted on Tuesday, November 6, 2012 by Jim Norrena

CCA MFA Program in Writing and Writing and Literature Program faculty member Gloria Frym recently was invited to read at the historic City Lights Bookstore in San Francisco, a landmark independent bookstore and publisher that specializes in world literature, the arts, and progressive politics.

Read the rest

Posted on Monday, November 5, 2012 by Rachel Walther

Zarouhie Abdalian (MFA 2010) maintains quite the hectic travel schedule. This fall she made a trip to Bergen, Norway, to participate in the Kunstindustrimuseum's Material Information exhibition, and afterward she headed to the 9th Shanghai Biennial as a participant in the San Francisco pavilion. She's exhibited work and created site-specific installations throughout the United States and eight other countries; right now you can see one of her works, The fall without the fruit, at the CCA Wattis Institute's When Attitudes Became Form Become Attitudes exhibition, on view through December 1, 2012.

Abdalian's work has evolved dramatically since her years as an undergraduate at Tulane University, where she focused on painting and printmaking. While at CCA she developed an entirely new way of working that is sculptural, and profoundly site specific. A new piece doesn't begin until she researches the place where it will be located. Visually and historically, her installations engage in dialogue with their viewers and -- ideally -- disrupt their typical interaction with a particular place.

Read the rest

Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 by Matthew Harrison Tedford

Zena Adhami's 2012 Design MFA thesis presentation

During the height of the Arab Spring, Zena Adhami (MFA Design 2012) was watching from her apartment in San Francisco as revolution erupted back home.

She decided to make it the subject of her CCA graduate thesis: an examination of the specific media and technologies that were making it possible for her to stay informed from halfway around the world.

This time of upheaval also represented a culmination of Adhami's efforts to reconsider graphic design as a more politically engaged pursuit. "Every once in a while there's a degree of social consciousness among designers, but usually I feel that they're talking to themselves, and that's a failure of design intelligence," she opines.

Read the rest

Posted on Wednesday, September 5, 2012 by Chris Bliss

New Painting/Drawing chair Linda Geary meets with students.

California College of the Arts (CCA) is pleased to welcome several new full-time faculty members and four new undergraduate program chairs for 2012-13 academic year.

New Program Chairs

Architecture is now headed by Mark Donohue, principal and cofounder of Visible Research Office; his focus is on researching new fabrication techniques and innovative materials.

Read the rest

Posted on Wednesday, August 22, 2012 by Allison Byers

Imagine you find yourself being followed on a dark street corner, in the middle of the night, by your town’s resident bad guy, and the only person who could save you is Superman. But wait, isn’t Superman an undocumented immigrant?
For artist Neil Rivas, 28, the concepts of immigration and superhero comics, like good wine and cheese – were the perfect marriage.

Visit source »

Read the rest

Posted on Tuesday, August 14, 2012 by Jim Norrena

Kaii Tu's innovative design process has him in the spotlight. (Photo: Clint Bowers, Interiors & Sources)View slideshow 

Windgate Fellow

To say CCA alumnus Kaii Tu (BFA Individualized Major 2012) is on the right path toward career success is probably the understatement of the year. That's because Tu, who graduated with high distinction, was recently awarded a 2012 Windgate Fellowship by UNC Asheville’s Center for Craft, Creativity and Design (CCCD).

Read about the 2012 Wingate Fellows »

The $15,000 fellowship, for which more than 120 universities across the United States nominate two graduating seniors with exemplary skill in craft, is one of the largest awards in art and design in the nation.

Tu graduated from Harvard University summa cum laude with a degree in Visual and Environmental Studies, but he's also one of the youngest persons to reach the level of brand manager at Procter & Gamble, his employer from 2005 to 2009 in Cincinnati, where he worked in product design, brand architecture, and business management.

Read the rest

Posted on Tuesday, August 14, 2012 by Lindsey Westbrook

Scholarship recipients Renata Maria Araujo (in black dress, with a friend) and Lionel Ramazzini

The following speeches were delivered by CCA scholarship recipients at the Scholarship Dinner in fall 2011.

Renata Maria Araujo

My name is Renata Maria Araujo. I am a fourth-year Architecture student, and I would not be here without the Lloyd H. Oliver Memorial Scholarship. It is the reason I attend CCA. I share your understanding that education is the most transcendent gift one can be given, and it allows us to have a foot in the door of the future.

Knowing I have been awarded this scholarship makes me feel proud, and, at the same time, obliged. No artist is an island, and I am very aware of the community I aspire to be part of. More than anything, though, every time I present my work I am thankful for the trust and encouragement this award represents.

I lived abroad almost all my life, so arriving at CCA was a dramatic change. I was even unsure about pursuing architecture. Now, I am in my fourth year, and it is my future career. I've met new housemates, work buddies, and the city of San Francisco. I've learned how to take a design from my mind, to paper, to physical reality. This knowledge has changed the way I see the world. Sometimes I'll look at a building today and think now I understand, or, sometimes, ignorance is bliss.

Read the rest

Pages