Faculty News

Posted on Monday, November 14, 2011 by Jim Norrena

Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, "Bay Area Now 6" (video still)

Alumnus David Huffman (MFA 1998), who is a recently tenured assistant professor in CCA's undergraduate Painting/Drawing Program and Graduate Program in Fine Arts, is one of three featured artists in the current group exhibition SHIFT: Three Projects Constructing a New Dialogue About Race in America at the San Francisco Arts Commission Gallery (through December 10, 2011).

Shifting Demographics, Shifting Races

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Posted on Monday, November 14, 2011 by Allison Byers

These M.B.A.’s, which focus on design, don’t require sketch pads but do teach creative thinking.

Although CEOs claim to value creativity, they rarely consider candidates with backgrounds in visual arts for job opportunities. At least that's the view of Ray Allen, provost and vice president for academic affairs at Maryland Institute College of Art, who is willing to shoulder some of the blame.

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Posted on Monday, November 14, 2011 by Allison Byers

When Gwen Lutz, a clothing designer and avid bicyclist, was asked to produce a bike fashion event at the annual San Francisco Bike Expo three years ago, she struggled to find outfits that would not seem out of place at work or in a bar. For so long, bike-centered apparel could be summed up in two words: neon Spandex.

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Posted on Wednesday, November 9, 2011 by Allison Byers

The beds in the photographs are like any other unmade beds — messes of rumpled sheets and dented pillows occasionally punctuated by a stray article of clothing or a curious pet. Except that they are not like other beds: they are, as the title of Tammy Rae Carland's 2002 series of depopulated portraits informs the viewer, "lesbian beds."

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Posted on Tuesday, November 8, 2011 by Allison Byers

If you're in the habit of kissing the clock at 11:11, you should know that Eleven Eleven, the literary journal produced by the graduate program of the California College of the Arts, is releasing its eleventh issue this Friday, 11/11/11. To celebrate, Faculty Editor Hugh Behm-Steinberg, who has had the helm since late 2007, has invited one contributor from each issue to read at the release, and one staff member from each respective issue to introduce them.

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Posted on Monday, November 7, 2011 by Allison Byers

From grand old masterpieces to streamlined contemporary constructions, the buildings that surround us capture imaginations, inspire innovations and, on occasion, offend aesthetic sensibilities. Building bust or boom, the East Bay has no shortage of sensational structures to keep the conversation buzzing. Following, a few standouts that locals reference when asked to name buildings that move them.

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Posted on Monday, November 7, 2011 by Jim Norrena

Biodynamic Structures final presentations [photo: Jim Norrena]

For a second year in a row California College of the Arts hosted the summer Biodynamic Structures architecture workshop. The annual two-week intensive workshop, which took place July 11-22 on the San Francisco campus, is made possible through the Visiting School Program of the Architectural Association School of Architecture (AA) in London.

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Posted on Wednesday, October 26, 2011 by Lindsey Westbrook

Jens Hoffmann leads CCA Curator's Forum tour of Istanbul Biennial (Kris Martin's work in foreground) (photo: George Jewett)

The Istanbul Biennial is a key event in the international contemporary art scene -- a highly visible, highly respected exhibition that draws more than 100,000 visitors to the city and exposes them to some of the most engaged and relevant art being made today. In its opening week, the 12th Istanbul Biennial (which remains open through November 13) was attended by almost 4,000 guests, including critics, curators, museum and gallery administrators, and approximately 400 members of the press from 50 different countries. Everything they saw (whether they realized it or not) bore the marks of a CCA affiliate's hand -- specifically two CCA curators, one CCA graphic designer, and one CCA editor. They also saw the work of one faculty member and three alumni; all three alumni had entire galleries devoted to their work.

CCA President Stephen Beal, chair of the Board of Trustees F. Noel Perry, other trustees, and several members of the CCA Curator's Forum (a dedicated group of Wattis Institute supporters) flew to Istanbul for the opening weekend. Stephen Beal remarked, standing at the biennial entrance, "It is very gratifying to see the college so prominently represented here. It is evidence of the major relevance, at the international level, of what we are doing, and the kinds of experiences and access that CCA makes available to its community."

The Curators

It was almost two years ago that Wattis Institute director Jens Hoffmann accepted the invitation to co-curate the 12th Istanbul Biennial. Beginning with that moment, what began as a single thread of connection between the college and the city of Istanbul expanded into a densely packed web involving multiple individuals.

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Posted on Thursday, October 20, 2011 by Allison Byers

Last week the show More American Photographs opened at the CCA Wattis Institute in San Francisco.
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Posted on Thursday, October 13, 2011 by Simon Hodgson

Jon Sueda and Martin Venezky (photo by Nikki Ritcher)

Today, professors Martin Venezky and Jon Sueda seem like two sides of the same coin. In the Graphic Design courses they co-teach at CCA, they listen to their students before speaking, argue with each other fruitfully and comfortably, then almost always agree on what the student should do next. In addition to their academic work, each has forged a successful professional career. Venezky is one of the most influential designers of his generation. His projects include work for SFMOMA, Reebok, the Sundance Film Festival, and the two-volume, 600-page, award-winning publication for the International Center of Photography's The Mexican Suitcase, documenting recently unearthed Spanish Civil War photographs by Robert Capa and others. Sueda just finished a major international commission, designing the graphic identity for the 12th Istanbul Biennial. He is also curating an exhibition at the International Biennial of Graphic Design in the Czech Republic in 2012. While the rapport and respect between these two designers is solid and obvious today, it's not a relationship that developed overnight. This is the story of a mentorship spanning two continents, four states, and 15 years.

Back in 1996, the 25-year-old Sueda enrolled in CCA's undergraduate Graphic Design Program. A tennis-playing Hawaiian with a BFA from UC Davis and a background in painting and printmaking, he signed up for a class with Venezky. "Jon was extraordinarily shy and basically terrified," says Venezky. "He was also really, really good. He hated the critiques, but when I made suggestions, he followed through and went much further, and I was really impressed with that. His development was amazing to watch." Says Sueda, "I didn't know what graphic design was, and I wasn't sure what I was getting into. At UC Davis, we never really had critiques. So I wasn't prepared, and I found it hard. I didn't even know I needed a computer. I went through the first semester doing everything at Kinko's."

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