Visual Studies News

Posted on Wednesday, November 19, 2014 by Laura Braun

Architect Katherine Lambert—of the California firms Lambert MacDonald and Metropolitan Architectural Practice—and her business partner and creative collaborator, filmmaker and academic Christiane Robbins, had been looking for a plot of land on which to build when they learned about the property. Despite their immediate interest in the building, they were also “a bit frightened,” Lambert says, given the fact that old-growth redwood had long since ceased to be commercially available. “The house was derelict and felt really sad,” Lambert says. “Some friends said, ‘Are you crazy?

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Posted on Friday, October 10, 2014 by Laura Braun

Matteo Bittanti, a writer, artist, and teacher in the Visual Studies program at California College of the Arts, told me that we're still waiting for the video game version of Martin Scorsese's The Last Temptation of Christ or Pier Paolo Pasolini's The Gospel According to St. Matthew, but that we shouldn't hold our breath.

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Posted on Thursday, June 26, 2014 by Laura Braun

Another rare account of LGBT life in the U.S. during the war was captured in Tina Takemoto's documentary, Looking for Jiro , Graves noted. The documentary unearths the story of Jiro Onuma, a gay Japanese man who was incarcerated in central Utah during World War II. Takemoto is an artist and associate professor at the California College of the Arts in San Francisco.

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Posted on Wednesday, June 18, 2014 by Lindsey Westbrook

Grand Theft Vito
Concrete Press, 2014
Paperback, 234 pages, $99

Between July 3 and 25, 2013, the San Francisco-based artists COLL.EO (comprised of Visual Studies faculty member Matteo Bittanti and partner in crime Colleen Flaherty) walked through the streets of Liberty City, the fictional metropolis of Grand Theft Auto IV, under the guise of Vito Acconci. Titled Following Bit, the performance was meant as a replay of Acconci’s seminal Following Piece (1969). Forty-four years earlier, Acconci followed for an entire month a random person each day in New York, stopping only if they entered a private space. Acconci typed up an account of each "pursuit" and sent a report to a different member of the art community the subsequent month.

COLL.EO’s 2013 replay generated an enormous set of data, consisting of 23 digital videos in high definition over 118 gigabytes in size; 13,300+ digital photos; 60 digital prints; 23 written accounts sent in tweet form, plus several typewritten pages of notes, framed and mounted to a board.

A Game Art walkthrough, this book provides a unique, in-depth documentation of Following Bit and the related art mod Grand Theft Vito (2013) through texts, screengrabs, annotations, and a long conversation between COLL.EO and the San Francisco-based artist Carlo Ricafort.

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Posted on Wednesday, January 22, 2014 by Laura Braun

The playfulness is plentiful in what Bittanti, a California College of the Arts adjunct professor, and Flaherty, a painter, have created. For one, their website notes that the pieces — not for sale — will be on display at the Concrete Gallery, a virtual space itself. Even the title is an allusion to an option on Google’s online map.

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Posted on Tuesday, December 3, 2013 by Lindsey Westbrook

CARJACKED
Concrete Press, 2013
Hardcover, 100 pages, $122.86

CARJACKED is a counter-appropriation of the BMW Art Car initiative, developed within the virtual spaces of the popular Forza Motorsport video game. This limited edition book provides a visual and critical documentation of CARJACKED, a project developed in 2012 by COLL.EO (the artist Colleen Flaherty and Visual Studies faculty member Matteo Bittanti.

The book features contributions and essays from Isabelle Arvers and Jeffrey T. Schnapp and a long conversation between COLL.EO and Carlo Ricafort.

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Posted on Monday, November 11, 2013 by Lindsey Westbrook

Smaller Than Life
Concrete Press, 2013
Hardcover, 80 pages, $57.99

Operating in the hybrid zone between sculpture, craft, miniature making, and conceptual art, Visual Studies faculty member Matteo Bittanti creates seven self-portraits that simultaneously appropriate and reconfigure a peculiar medium: die-cast model cars. This limited-edition book features photographs by the artist Colleen Flaherty and a long conversation between Bittanti and the Bay Area artist Juan Carlos Quintana.

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Posted on Friday, August 30, 2013 by Chris Bliss

Neeraj Bhatia is a new Architecture faculty memberView slideshow 

New Tenure-Track Faculty

Joining the Visual Studies Program is Makeda Best, who comes to CCA from the University of Vermont. Her research focuses on the history of photography, with an emphasis on the nineteenth century.

Neeraj Bhatia is teaching in the Architecture Program. His work looks at the intersection of politics, infrastructure, and urbanism, and he has previously taught at Rice University, Cornell University, the University of Toronto, and the University of Waterloo.

The Interaction Design Program welcomes Haakon Faste, who has worked for 15 years in the fields of visual art, interaction design, and virtual reality. Most recently he was on the faculty of the Human-Computer Interaction Institute at Carnegie Mellon University.

Visiting Faculty

Chris Treggiari is this year’s scholar in residence at the Center for Art and Public Life. Much of his work involves collaborations, often with local nonprofits, often with mobile stages that he brings to public events.

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Posted on Friday, August 23, 2013 by Claire Fitzsimmons

Aimee Le Duc (center) with artists Jenifer Wofford and Stephanie Syjuco at the SFAC’s Passport 2012 event

The San Francisco-based curator, writer, and arts administrator Aimee Le Duc (MA Visual Criticism 2003, MFA Writing 2004) resists the concept of the curator-as-itinerant-worker, traipsing around the world, dropping in and out of various local situations.

Rather, you might call her a homegrown talent, with deep roots in a particular place. CCA, the San Francisco arts community, and the city itself have shaped her and her career. And now Le Duc sees her role as galleries manager at the San Francisco Arts Commission essentially as giving back.

"I feel very, very lucky. I've got a network that I use every day, and it includes many teachers and peers I first met at CCA. This network has sustained me, and I now see my role as sustaining it."

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Posted on Monday, July 8, 2013 by Rachel Walther

An "elective" at art school is in many ways the opposite of what the term means for a traditional university student. Rather than taking a painting class for fun in between economics and political science, art students have to decide what math class to fit in between their painting courses.

All undergraduates at CCA (except Architecture majors) are required to take 51 units of Humanities and Sciences coursework, which by the time they graduate ends up representing about a third of their total units.

All of these courses are highly rigorous. Some are essential and required (for instance writing and art history) but many are creatively designed electives open to students in all majors. In "Bad Science at the Movies," for instance, professor Christine Metzger uses preposterous representations of geology and climate change in popular films to launch an in-depth survey of environmental science.

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