Diversity News

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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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Posted on Monday, August 6, 2012 by Allison Byers

Predominantly raised in Las Cruces, New Mexico, Estela Hartley, 36, observed early on disparate communities coming together to develop a unique blend of Hispanic and American culture. As a student at The Illinois Institute of Art–Chicago, she combined her public health and design skills to revive VISioN, a student organization providing design students service learning opportunities with nonprofit organizations.

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Posted on Monday, July 30, 2012 by Lindsey Westbrook

Before CSI the television show there was still the scientific investigation of crime, and before computer software there were other (albeit more cumbersome) ways of using fingerprints found at crime scenes to convict criminals.

"Many aspects of crime detection are timeless," observes Pablo "Paul" Cardoza (Art Education 1982). And he speaks with authority here. A deep interest in art and visuality, new technologies, and creative problem solving led Cardoza from art school to the Contra Costa County Sheriff's Office, where he spent several years, to his current occupation as a private investigator specializing in computer-based forensics.

From CCA to the Sheriff's Department

"I loved CCA! I got the best grades of my life there," laughs Cardoza. "Shortly after I finished in 1982, I stumbled across an ad from the Sheriff's Department to take a test in fingerprint IDs. It was essentially evaluating our aptitude for pattern matching and negative-positive discernment. I scored really high, and was recruited for a job. I received training from the FBI and the California Department of Justice, and I also took some courses in crime scene analysis.”

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Posted on Wednesday, July 11, 2012 by Allison Byers

Fantagraphics Books and award-winning cartoonist Justin Hall have produced a definitive collection of the greatest LGBT comics created over the last four decades.

Out superheroes such as Northstar, Batwoman, and Green Lantern’s Alan Scott weren’t always a part of the landscape of comic book characters. Not so long ago even acknowledging the LGBT community was forbidden in the conventional world of comics. That didn’t stop queer cartooning and characters from existing, though.

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Posted on Monday, July 9, 2012 by Rachel Walther

Matt Silady loves teaching, storytelling, and drawing. And as CCA's unofficial "Professor of Comics," he gets to do all three every day. Silady's passion for his job is infectious. It is truly a calling, and it explains why every fall and spring semester course he's ever taught as part of both the college's undergraduate Writing and Literature Program and the MFA Program in Writing has been full to capacity.

"Any day that I can spread the word and show people what comics can do, it's a good day," admits Silady, whose plans are afoot to greatly expand CCA's graduate and undergrad comics curriculum to offer more opportunities to students interested in graphic storytelling.

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Posted on Tuesday, July 3, 2012 by Lindsey Westbrook

Watching their Carnaval float moving down Mission Street as part of San Francisco's massive annual parade, laden with dancers from the Brazilian troupe Sambaxé, accompanied by the vibrant beats of the Brazilian musical group Blocura and the powerful moves of the Brazilian ABADA Capoeira troupe, TV cameras rolling, people cheering from the sidewalks and the rooftops high above. . . It was a triumphant moment for CCA faculty member Sandra Vivanco and the 15 students in her Body and Spectacle course.

The Carnaval parade was the culmination of a semester of hard work and intensive collaboration -- not only among the CCA students, but also in coordination with a group of high school students enrolled in the Out of Site Youth Arts Center, the city of San Francisco, experts in construction and transportation, and beyond. The CCA course was offered under the auspices of Diversity Studies and attracted a correspondingly wide-ranging bunch, from Architecture and Interior Design to Graphic Design, Illustration, Fashion Design, and Painting/Drawing.

The students designed not only the Carnaval float structure, but also the costumes and props that made its appearance in the parade a real performance rather than just a potential site for one. They had done as much work as they could in the CCA shops, and then transported the pieces to Pier 40, where the city graciously donated space for final assembly.

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Posted on Tuesday, July 3, 2012 by Lindsey Westbrook

Equal of the Sun
Scribner, 2012
Hardcover, 448 pages, $26

Legendary women -- from Anne Boleyn to Queen Elizabeth I to Mary, Queen of Scots -- changed the course of history in the royal courts of 16th-century England. They are celebrated in history books and novels, but few know of the powerful women in the Muslim world, who formed alliances, served as key advisers to rulers, lobbied for power on behalf of their sons, and ruled in their own right. Equal of the Sun, a novel by Anita Amirrezvani (Writing faculty) is a tale of power, loyalty, and love in the royal court of Iran.

Her protagonist is Princess Pari Khan Khanoom Safavi. Iran in 1576 is a place of wealth and dazzling beauty. But when the Shah dies without having named an heir, the court is thrown into tumult. Princess Pari, the Shah’s daughter, knows more about the inner workings of the state than almost anyone, but the princess’s maneuvers to instill order after her father’s sudden death incite resentment and dissent. Pari and her closest adviser, Javaher, a eunuch able to navigate the harem as well as the world beyond the palace walls, are in possession of an incredible tapestry of secrets and information that reveals a power struggle of epic proportions.

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