Wattis Institute News

Posted on Friday, June 1, 2012 by Allison Byers

ON a brisk Saturday morning in April, a group of young architecture students from Bologna, Italy, walked down a white granite promenade in the St. Johann neighborhood in Basel, Switzerland, to take in 14 “starchitect”-designed buildings that have sprung up in recent years. An opaque glass structure by Yoshio Taniguchi resembled a floating box. A soaring Frank Gehry design of contorted cubes stood just beyond. And over near the large Richard Serra sculptures, a Tadao Ando building converged into a razor-sharp triangular edge.

Read the rest

Posted on Wednesday, April 25, 2012 by Allison Byers

We asked the top art curators in the state to help us pick the 10 California artists who are on the rise. On the panel were Franklin Sirmans (Chief Curator of Contemporary Art, LACMA), Jens Hoffmann (Director, CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts), Rebecca Morse (Associate Curator, MOCA, LA), Jill Dawsey (Associate Curator, Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego), Eli Ridgway (Owner of Eli Ridgway Gallery in SF), and Craig Nelson (Director of Fine Art Painting, Academy of Art University). Now, find out who made the cut.

Read the rest

Posted on Thursday, March 29, 2012 by Allison Byers

If you've ever imagined plunging into a Mobius strip, I have just the exhibition for you: "Architecture in the Expanded Field," at the San Francisco campus of the California College of the Arts.

Visit source »

Read the rest

Posted on Thursday, March 15, 2012 by Allison Byers

The Shanghai Biennale has announced the curators for its 2012 edition. The chief curator, Qiu Zhijie, is a professor at the School of Inter-media Art of China Art Academy, as well as the director of Total Art Studio and a member of the supervisory team in the Art and Social Thoughts Institute. As an artist, Qiu has exhibited in the 53rd Venice Biennale and the 25th Sao Paulo Biennale, and has been featured in solo shows at the Haus of World Culture in Berlin and the Ullens Contemporary Art Center in Beijing.

Visit source »

Read the rest

Posted on Monday, March 12, 2012 by Allison Byers

In the 1930s and '40s, the federal Farm Security Administration ran a photography program headed by Roy E. Stryker to document the plight of rural farm workers affected by the Great Depression. It launched the careers of many extraordinary photographers, including Walker Evans, Dorothea Lange and Gordon Parks.

Visit source »

Read the rest

Posted on Friday, March 9, 2012 by Allison Byers

The more art I look at, the happier I am that I'm not an artist. What a miserable life.
You spend all day observing the outward bounds of human behavior — and that's rarely pretty — and then all night rendering them in paint or clay or ink or some other uncooperative material, so the rest of us can get inside your tortured head.

Visit source »

Read the rest

Posted on Tuesday, February 7, 2012 by Lindsey Westbrook

More American Photographs
CCA Wattis Institute, 2012
Paperback, 106 pages, $28

As the United States slowly emerges from its most significant economic downturn since the Great Depression, the [CCA Wattis Institute] reexamines the well-known photography program of the Farm Security Administration (1935-44). In More American Photographs, 12 contemporary photographers were commissioned to travel the United States, documenting its land and people. These new works are presented alongside historical images by original FSA photographers such as Dorothea Lange in a catalogue whose design was inspired by Walker Evans's seminal book American Photographs. The featured photographers include Walead Beshty, Esther Bubley, Larry Clark, Roe Ethridge, Walker Evans, Katy Grannan, William E. Jones, Dorothea Lange, Russell Lee, Sharon Lockhart, Catherine Opie, Gordon Parks, Martha Rosler, Collier Schorr, Ben Shahn, Stephen Shore, Alec Soth, Hank Willis Thomas (MFA and MA Visual Criticism 2004), and Marion Post Wolcott. The exhibition was curated by Wattis director Jens Hoffmann, who contributes an essay, and the book is designed by Graphic Design faculty Jon Sueda.

Read the rest

Posted on Tuesday, February 7, 2012 by Lindsey Westbrook

CCA Wattis Institute: Painting Between the Lines
CCA Wattis Institute, 2012
Hardcover, 72 pages, $25

Writing and painting have been intertwined throughout history, but literature has of late become a diminished subject in the medium of painting, which has looked more to history, society and politics for inspiration. With Painting Between the Lines, the CCA Wattis Institute sought to reinvigorate the relationship between these two fields by commissioning 14 contemporary artists to create works based on descriptions of paintings in historical and contemporary novels. Here, art that until now has only existed in the mind's eye can now be seen, as interpreted by the likes of Fred Tomaselli (on Samuel Beckett's Watt) and Marcel Dzama (on Haruki Murakami's Kafka on the Shore). Additional materials include images of first-edition book covers and installation images from the accompanying exhibition. The exhibition was curated by Wattis director Jens Hoffmann and the book is designed by Graphic Design faculty Jon Sueda.

Read the rest

Posted on Monday, February 6, 2012 by Lindsey Westbrook

Create
Berkeley Art Museum, 2011
Paperback, 179 pages, $27.50

Writing and Visual and Critical Studies faculty member Kevin Killian contributes to this book, published on the occasion of a groundbreaking museum exhibition curated by Lawrence Rinder (former CCA Wattis Institute director) with Matthew Higgs (former CCA Wattis Institute curator). Create showcases work made at the three Bay Area centers for artists with developmental disabilities: Creative Growth Art Center in Oakland, Creativity Explored in San Francisco, and the National Institute of Art and Disabilities in Richmond. Florence Ludins-Katz and Elias Katz, who today are recognized as pioneers of the art and disabilities movement, founded these centers between 1972 and 1982. This richly illustrated catalogue offers an overview of the work being made there today, including works on paper, paintings, and sculpture.

Read the rest

Posted on Thursday, December 15, 2011 by Allison Byers

Of the approximately 250,000 images taken during the Farm Security Administration's photography program documenting the Great Depression, one has stayed lodged in our collective memory as synonymous with the Depression -- the migrant mother with a hardened look and pair of children burrowing their little faces into her shoulders.

Visit source »

Read the rest

Pages