Faculty News

Posted on Thursday, June 13, 2013 by Allison Byers

Glen Helfand is with the California College of Arts in San Francisco. He says, "There used to be a network of grants that artists could get to fund projects. I mean way back in the ancient history, galleries might have given artists stipends. Now it's a much tougher game."

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Posted on Wednesday, June 12, 2013 by Allison Byers

Went to a memorial service the other day, or rather to a celebration of the life of in this case Michael Cronan, the protean designer and painter and mentor and doer of good works. He died way too young, at 61, and lots of people went down to the California College of the Arts to pay their respects.

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Posted on Monday, June 10, 2013 by Allison Byers

Now a tenured professor and Chair of the Sculpture department at the California College of the Arts, Smith was once an emerging artist living in New York City. In 2004, she began a series of large-scale public art events hinged on the aesthetic vernacular of the American Civil War. The project, called The Muster, took its name from a military term meaning a gathering of troops to critique, exercise, and display. The project culminated with an encampment on Governors Island in 2005.

Posted on Monday, June 10, 2013 by Allison Byers

Social practice is a relatively new term for art that puts less emphasis on objects made for individual contemplation and more energy into projects involving participation, activism or community organizing. Of course, plenty of artists were making art like this before critics and scholars christened it “social practice.” One such artist is Allison Smith, whose exhibition “Allison Smith: Rudiments of Fife and Drum” combines elements of craft, performance and participation and is currently on view at the Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum in Ridgefield, Conn.

Posted on Wednesday, June 5, 2013 by Allison Byers

Owen’s brainchild is the Sparse bicycle light, which slips onto the stem or seat post of a bike, deterring potential thieves who would need to undo the frame to access the aluminum LED light. As an assistant professor of industrial design at California College of the Arts who has lent his design talents to Nokia, NASA, and Nike, Owen (who is also an avid cyclist), wanted to make something beautiful. “The lights that are out there are garbage. I wanted it to be invisible when it’s off and echo the lines of the bike,” he says.

Posted on Tuesday, June 4, 2013 by Allison Byers

In the Hayes Valley neighborhood of San Francisco, I also came across a project called Proxy, which recovers the land left behind where a highway had been. After the Central Freeway was taken down, residents petitioned the mayor to do something with a few of the vacant lots it left behind. Douglas Burnham, a local architect who runs the firm Envelope A+D, proposed Proxy: a shifting, temporary campus of modified shipping containers hosting retailers, art galleries and cafes.

Posted on Tuesday, June 4, 2013 by Lindsey Westbrook

Star 82 Review issue 1
CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2013
Paperback, 44 pages, $9.95

Printmaking faculty member Alisa Golden has started an online and print-on-demand art and literary publication called Star 82 Review. The inaugural issue includes poems by two CCA faculty members, Stephen Ajay and Hugh Behm-Steinberg, as well as pieces from alumni Leonard Crosby (MFA Writing 2012), Lisa Kokin (BFA 1989, MFA 1994), and Rachel Smith (Illustration 2010).

Golden says: "In this issue, memory shimmers and vision lights up. Conflicts arise and are met. Words dance and talk and sing through childhood and beyond. We have objects of wonder that are pivots for the works: ruler, pineapple. baseball, pencil sharpener, knife, scarecrow, wallpaper, half of a twenty dollar bill, and more. The categories included are: flash, postcard lit, art post images, and erasure texts.

Posted on Tuesday, June 4, 2013 by Lindsey Westbrook

Machinima! Teorie. Pratiche. Dialoghi
Ludologica, 2013
Paperback, 288 pages, 19 Euros

This collection of essays (in Italian) is edited by Visual and Critical Studies faculty member Matteo Bittanti in collaboration with Stanford University's Henry Lowood. Bittanti also wrote one of the essays. The book has been released in Italy in the ongoing Ludologica book series and features 27 contributions from scholars, artists, and critics on the topic of machinima, digital games, and contemporary art. The book jacket is designed by the new-media artist Mauro Ceolin. Watch the book trailer!

Posted on Tuesday, June 4, 2013 by Lindsey Westbrook

Modern Print Activism in the United States
Ashgate, 2013
Hardcover, 270 pages, $99.95

Director of Humanities and Sciences Rachel Schreiber edits this book devoted to the explosion of socially and politically activist print culture that occurred in the United States at the turn of the 20th century. These essays focus on specific groups, individuals, and causes that relied on print as a vehicle for activism. They also take up the variety of print forms in which calls for activism have appeared, including fiction, editorials, letters to the editor, graphic satire, and non-periodical media such as pamphlets and calendars.

Posted on Tuesday, June 4, 2013 by Lindsey Westbrook

Power to the People: The Graphic Design of the Radical Press and the Rise of the Counter-Culture, 1964-1974
University of Chicago Press, 2013
Hardcover, 264 pages, $45

Though we think of the 1960s and the early '70s as a time of radical social, cultural, and political upheaval, we tend to picture the action as happening on campuses and in the streets. Yet the rise of the underground newspaper was equally daring and original. Thanks to advances in cheap offset printing, groups involved in antiwar, civil rights, and other social liberation issues began to spread their messages through provocatively designed newspapers and broadsheets. This vibrant new media was essential to the counterculture revolution as a whole, helping to motivate the masses and proliferate ideas.

This book is assembled by the renowned graphic designer and CCA Design faculty member Geoff Kaplan of General Working Group. It presents more than 700 full-color images and excerpts from these publications, many of which have not been seen since they were first published almost 50 years ago.

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