"'A Great Day in San Francisco' is a picture of faculty, students, staff, alumni, and families and friends of the LGBT community at California College of the Arts," explains Painting/Drawing chair Kim Anno in reference to her latest project, a tribute to Art Kane's 1958 masterful photograph, "A Great Day in Harlem" (1958), that captured the historic gathering of 57 of the century's most influential jazz musicians on the steps of a Harlem brownstone.
Posted on Friday, November 25, 2011 by Jim Norrena
"A Great Day in San Francisco" [photo: Chris Nickel]
Posted on Wednesday, November 23, 2011 by Simon Hodgson
Lisa Mishima and Yvonne Mouser turn food into art at Sam's Movie Night
From painter to pastry chef, ceramicist to wine cellar owner, innovative CCA alumni are shaping creative niches across the world of food and drink.
Twenty people stand around a long butcher-block table. The lights above cast a pale glow on its surface, illuminating the ingredients piled in its recessed trough -- lemons, lettuce, flour, eggplants, bell peppers -- without lighting the faces of the diners. They are here for Hands On, a food-making experience in which they use their hands rather than utensils to create a three-course meal.
"Cooking is very much a form of art," says Lisa Mishima (Graphic Design 2005), who concocted Hands On together with her boss, Randall Stowell of the creative production company Autofuss, and friend Yvonne Mouser (Furniture 2006). "Both cooking and art involve concepting, crafting, and presenting a piece. But there is something about consuming one's creation that feels even more personal, immediate, and honest."
Initially, the guests are nervous, even clumsy. Flour falls to the floor. Slowly, the experimental chefs grow more confident. There are giggles around the room, then nods of approval as the dishes take shape. The menu features Caesar salad, handmade pasta with pesto sauce, and tiramisu. Some diners shape vegetables into utensils and use those instead of spoons or spatulas. Maybe there will be a meal at the end of this.
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."
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."
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.
Posted on Monday, August 8, 2011 by Jim Norrena
Remembering Larry Sultan, Photographer and Friend
In June 2011 Photography faculty members Jim Goldberg and Todd Hido (MFA 1996) discussed the influence of their friend and teacher, photographer Larry Sultan, (1946–2009), who taught at CCA for 20 years!
Heroes & Mentors: Jim Goldberg & Todd Hido On Larry Sultan was published online by Photo District News on August 3, 2011:
Todd Hido: When did you meet Larry and what did you learn from him?
Posted on Monday, July 25, 2011 by Jim Norrena
Jim Goldberg's photography is currently featured in two San Francisco exhibitions
Posted on Monday, July 18, 2011 by Simon Hodgson
Rebecca Najdowski with Tio Lino. They created Rocinha Foto Project, a photography course for community youth
Even after the end date of her nine-month Fulbright scholarship in São Paulo, Brazil, the photographer and artist Rebecca Najdowski (MFA 2010) couldn't resist staying just a little longer to make one more trip, south to the Argentinean border, to see the legendary waterfalls of Iguaçu.
Art and travel have been soldered together in her life for as long as Najdowski can remember. She grew up in Santa Fe, a city world-renowned for its art scene. "I was surrounded by this impulse for craft. My dad was a silversmith and had a studio attached to the house. His work wasn't separate from his regular daily life. My mom was a school counselor and teacher at a public elementary school. During school holidays, she'd take off to Mexico, Honduras, Ecuador, with organizations like Save the Rainforest, and often brought me with her. I've definitely inherited my love for travel from her, the drive to really experience other parts of the world."
Movement infuses Najdowski's own artistic practice, from her Spectra photogram experiments with color and light to her photographs of rural Brazilian storefronts to her roaming investigations into South American shamanism. "Travel forces you to be really open to new people and experiences. During my time in Brazil I couldn't stop traveling, moving around to collect experiences and material. I went to Rio, to Brasília, to Recife for a folk carnival (a super cool experience), and took a three-day boat trip on the Amazon River between Belém and Santarém. The river is so massive, sometimes you feel you're on a lake. Near the northern Brazilian outpost of São Luís, I went to see a tidal bore known as the pororoca, from the word for 'destructive noise' in the indigenous Tupi language. It is an immense wave caused by salt water crashing over fresh water during the new and full moons. It's not exactly on the tourist map -- I had to go through hoops to get in touch with local surfers to reach it."
Posted on Monday, July 11, 2011 by Lindsey Westbrook
Nazraeli Press, 2011
Hardcover, 72 pages, $75
David Maisel’s (MFA 2006) work has always been concerned with processes of memory, excavation, and transformation. In the History’s Shadow series, Maisel re-photographs, then scans and digitally manipulates, X-rays from museum archives that depict artifacts from antiquity. X-rays have historically been used by art conservators for structural examination of art and artifacts much as physicians examine bones and internal organs; they reveal losses, replacements, construction methods, and internal trauma invisible to the naked eye. Maisel's mages seem like transmissions from the distant past, both spanning and collapsing time. The book, designed by Graphic Design faculty member Bob Aufuldish, contains an original short story by Jonathan Lethem that was inspired by Maisel's images. It was named one of American Photo magazine's Best Photography Books of the Year!
Posted on Wednesday, June 29, 2011 by Lindsey Westbrook
Julius Shulman Los Angeles: The Birth of a Modern Metropolis
Hardcover, 240 pages, $60
Volume Inc., of which Eric Heiman (Graphic Design faculty) is a principal, designed this book featuring four decades of photographs of Los Angeles by Julius Shulman. Shulman, whose life and career spanned nearly a century, played a key role in the mid-century modernist movement through his photographs of the pioneering architecture of Richard Neutra and Charles Eames, among others. His pictures have been widely published, but this monograph presents many never-before-seen images on a subject closest to Shulman's heart: Los Angeles and its environs, including Palm Springs and other suburbs. In the pictures, Los Angeles becomes a living organism, simultaneously vibrant and volatile, depending on the neighborhood. Many of the buildings and neighborhoods have since been torn down or otherwise altered beyond recognition, making these photographs some of the only lasting testaments to their existence.
Posted on Thursday, June 2, 2011 by Jim Norrena