Check back here from time to time to get updates on what we like, exhibits to see, and art related ideas. If you’re interested in more information about what you see here, please email us.
Tuesday October 14, 2014
As part of our ongoing educational programming, we invited a group of our clients and colleagues on a guided tour of the exhibit @Large: Ai Weiwei on Alcatraz. Our group was a diverse mix of design and architecture professionals, developers, collectors and curators. As with our other events, we encourage a dialogue amongst our guests that enriches the experience of looking at and thinking about art. This exhibit specifically brought up discussion around basic human rights, the role and responsibility of individuals to make social change, art in public places and the logistics of mounting an exhibit of this scale and international importance.
With Wind is a rendition of a traditional Chinese dragon kite and is meant to be a symbol for personal freedom. Ai Weiwei designed the imagery and then employed kite makers to fabricate the piece. The artwork features stylized renderings of birds and plants that are icons for nations with records of violating human rights and civil liberties.
Trace gives the global phenomenon of political detainment a human face – or many faces. In portraits constructed from LEGO bricks, Ai represents more than 175 people from around the world who have been detained because of their beliefs or affiliations. The artist collaborated with Amnesty International and spent 7 months compiling the list of detainees. The people represented here are the same prisoners that you can write a postcard to later in the exhibit. In contrast to the ‘worst of the worst’ famous Alcatraz prisoners, the prisoners here are non-violent people who have lost their freedom for expressing ideas.
Refraction is based on the structure of a bird’s wing, expanded to imposing scale. The wing’s feathers are reflective panels used as solar cookers in Tibet, a region that has long struggled under Chinese rule. Like With Wind, this piece uses imagery of flight to evoke the tension between freedom and confinement. The sculpture’s enormous bulk and weight (more than 5 tons), along with it being installed on the lower level, emphasizes it as earthbound. Viewing it from the narrow gun gallery gives the visitor a position of authority, further illustrating it’s caged restriction. Also interspersed throughout the sculpture are pots and tea kettles, symbols of self preservation and basic human rights.
Stay Tuned is a sound installation featuring music, poetry, and spoken words by people who have been detained for the expression of their beliefs. Inside the cell the sounds of speech and singing create a powerful contrast to the isolation and enforced silence of imprisonment. From 1933-1937 Alcatraz was a silent prison and inmates would try to communicate through pipes and by leaving notes in library books. Ai has said ‘The most terrible thing about jail is not the treatment you receive, but the isolation.’
Blossom transforms the utilitarian fixtures in several hospital ward cells and medical offices with fantastical, fragile porcelain bouquets. Like With Wind, this work draws on and transforms natural imagery as well as traditional Chinese arts. For Ai, flowers are a universal symbol for both freedom and remembrance. In 1956 during the Hundred Flowers Campaign the Communist Party of China encouraged citizens to openly express their opinions (let a hundred flowers bloom) which became a means of entrapment for ‘enemies of state’. Ai created the #aiflowers Twitter hashtag and invited people everywhere to make paper flowers memorializing children killed in the 2008 earthquake. Beginning in 2013, Ai puts fresh flowers everyday in his bike basket outside his Beijing studio until he gets his passport back. Fitting the bouquets into the sinks, tubs, and toilets references self-preservation, cleanliness and basic human rights. Also of note is when Ai’s family was in exile, his father was forced to scrub toilets.
Yours Truly aims to encourage a global conversation, letting prisoners of conscience know that they are not forgotten. You are invited to choose a postcard addressed to an individual prisoner and write any message you wish. The postcards are addressed to the same prisoners featured in Trace, there is a binder with their stories on the table. Every evening @Large volunteers collect the postcards and mail them. With this piece Ai further promotes communication. Ai says that this piece, along with Stay Tuned, are most closely related to his experience of being incarcerated and his isolation from communication.
Wednesday October 1, 2014
Ongoing through November 14th – Shoebox Orchestra at Ampersand International Gallery: Shoebox Orchestra marks the reopening of the Ampersand International Gallery under the direction of Theodora Mauro. The exhibition looks at the lasting impact Ampersand has had in the Bay Area arts community through the work of artists who were included in past shows including Lauren Davies, Lori Gordon, Amanda Hughen, Jeff Morris, Sarah Smith, Andy Vogt, and Arngunnur Yr. The gallery is open Thursdays and Fridays from 12 pm to 5 pm and by appointment. Ampersand International Arts is located at 1001 Tennessee St, San Francisco.
Ongoing through November 1st – William Swanson: Subsurface Continuum at Eleanor Harwood Gallery: William Swanson’s new paintings use a variety of methods of mark making to depict manipulations of terrain and architecture. The work explores the collapse of time on a geologic scale through forms and shapes generated by his discoveries in the topography of the paint. The gallery is open Thursday through Saturday from 1 pm to 6 pm and by appointment. Eleanor Harwood Gallery is located at 1295 Alabama St, San Francisco.
Ongoing through November 21st – Yinghua Zhu at Headlands Center for the Arts Project Space: As part of the Headlands Center’s Artists in Residence Program, Project Space features artists whose work is designed to be socially engaging. Yinghua Zhu seeks to evoke a sense of “searching” by creating site-specific installations in which she alters commonly understood space and objects, causing viewers to question physical functions that are often taken for granted. Project Space is open Sunday through Thursday from 12 pm to 5 pm. The Headlands Center for the Arts is located at 944 Simmonds Rd, Sausalito.
FUNDRAISERSSaturday October 11th – San Jose ICA 34th Annual Art Auction Silent Auction Party, 6PM: The 2014 ICA Auction Exhibition will be on view at the museum from September 27th to October 25th and includes a variety of events featuring work by over 200 contemporary artists from throughout the country and around the world. The Silent Auction Party is a great opportunity to view and purchase available work, proceeds go to help support the museum. Admission to the auction party is free, find a full list of events here and a preview of art work that will be for sale can be found here. The San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art is located at 560 South First Street, San Jose.
Thursday, October 23rd – Root Division’s 13th Annual Art Auction, 7PM: This year’s Root Division Art Auction will feature work from over 100 established and emerging Bay Area artists. Root Division is a community arts and education organization and proceeds from the event directly benefit local artists, free art classes for Bay Area youth, and the continuation of Root Division’s unique model for keeping artists in San Francisco. A VIP Preview will be held at 6:00 PM followed by a silent and live auction later in the evening, tickets and more information can be found here. Root Division’s Pop-UP is located at 1059 Market St, San Francisco.
Thursday, October 23rd – Kalassal, Kala’s Annual Half-Off Art Sale & Fall Fundraiser, 6 PM: For the first time ever Kala Art Institute’s annual half-off fundraiser KALASSAL and the Artists’ Annual Exhibition will open on the same night. Proceeds from the fundraiser allow Kala to help artists sustain their creative work over time through its Artist-in-Residence and Fellowship Programs, and to engage the community through exhibitions, public programs, and education. A Members Preview will be held at 5:00 PM followed by an opening party, admission to the event is free. There will be additional viewing times on Friday and Saturday as well as a free Family Art Making Day on Saturday. Kala is located at 2990 San Pablo Avenue, Berkeley.
While in New York for client meetings, we had the opportunity to visit the many recently opened exhibits. We’re happy to share these highlights.
Wednesday September 24, 2014
On this visit to Chicago we looked beyond the amazing public art in Millennium Park to visit gallery exhibits, a corporate collection and the international contemporary art fair EXPO Chicago on the Navy Pier.
Mickalene Thomas: I was Born to do Great Things at Kavi Gupta Gallery
I was born to do great things are the quoted words of Sandra Bush, Mickalene Thomas’s late mother, a statement that speaks for both the dynamic life that she lived as well as her influence and inspiration on Thomas’s artistic practice as her longtime muse. Bush has been prominent as a subject in Thomas’s works over the past 14 years, inspiring her examinations of identity and style through her magnetic personality and undeniable presence. This presentation of new work explores the personal story of the woman behind the inspiration. This is a story in celebration of womanhood, motherhood, and the power of art as a totem for personal memory, a story in celebration of Sandra. ~ Kavi Gupta Gallery
Samantha Bittman: Razzle Dazzle at Andrew Rafacz Gallery. Chicago artist Samantha Bittman created loom-woven textiles with thick acrylic painted surfaces, that are installed on site-specific custom wallpaper. Referencing the dazzle camouflage technique used on World War I naval ships, the exhibition incorporates bold patterns to confuse, not conceal, throwing texture to the viewer as a distraction from the underlying patterns in the woven surface below.
Carol Jackson: High Plains Drifter at Threewalls Gallery In this exhibition Jackson builds a car wreck emerging from the wall, mixed media prints, and archival prints from webcam stills of California Highways all inspired by John Milton’s epic poem, Paradise Lost. The artworks explore America’s fascination, romance and dependence on the automobile.
Hank Willis Thomas: Bench Marks presented by Monique Meloche Gallery’s Off the Wall project Bench Marks is installed onto various public bus benches throughout Chicago’s Wicker Park Bucktown neighborhood. The installation includes a selection of images from three different bodies of the artist’s work, namely: Branded, Fair Warning and Strange Fruit.
EXPO Chicago Art Fair
Chicago artist Jenny Kendler has been chosen to be the founding participant in the Natural Resources Defense Council’s Artist-in-Residence program. Kendler’s works explore the intersections between human culture, perceptions of the natural world, and declining biodiversity. For the NRDC EXPO Chicago booth, exhibit walls are covered in lichen-camouflage wallpaper and adorned with delicate sculptures of birds, which Kendler creates by altering and ‘rewilding’ vintage porcelain figurines. These intimate, yet uncanny sculptural works stand in for real-life bird species, threatened or endangered by environmental hazards like habitat loss, energy projects and climate change.
Private Collection Visit
We try to take advantage of VIP programming at the art fairs we attend and visit private collections. Collectors have such unique ways of engaging and living with art. A visit to Richard Sandor’s collection at his Environmental Financial Products offices was a fascinating experience. Mr. Sandor has been collecting photography for so long that his collection is broad and deep. Sandor is known as the ‘father of carbon trading’ so you might expect that his collection has an environmental focus. Of interest to us was the emerging work he has been buying in China for the last 10 years. Sandor says the first thing he does when he gets off the plane is to go out and look at photography because it connects him to the culture in a more meaningful way than his meetings around economics and trade.
Monday September 15, 2014
Artsource Consulting went to Los Angeles this weekend to check out the latest shows at some of L.A.’s top galleries and the opening of Stas Orlovski: Chimera at the Pasadena Museum of California Art.
Gary Hill’s familiar work Isolation Tank (previously viewed during ‘An Evening with Gary Hill’ at Artsource) in Augment this (Meditations on the Image) curated by Christopher Eamon at Cherry and Martin
Tuesday September 2, 2014
Ongoing through May 2015 – Secondhand at Pier 24 Photography: Pier 24 Photography is an exhibition space devoted to photography, which hosts rotating exhibitions and houses The Pilara Foundation Collection. Their current exhibit Secondhand is comprised of works that incorporate found photographs alongside selections from The Pilara Foundation Collection. Artists featured include Maurizio Anzeri, John Baldessari, Viktoria Binschtok, Melissa Catanese, Daniel Gordon, Erik Kessels, Mike Mandel, Matt Lipps, Richard Prince, Rashid Rana, Joachim Schmid, Larry Sultan, Hank Willis Thomas, and selections from the Archive of Modern Conflict. The exhibition is open Monday – Friday from 9 am to 5 pm by appointment only, find out more information about visiting Pier 24 here. Pier 24 Photography is located on 24th Pier on The Embarcadero, San Francisco.
Ongoing through September 12th – Kelly Ording: Reflection / Refraction at Luna Rienne Gallery: Reflection/Refraction is a solo show of new work by Kelly Ording. These new works on paper feature her characteristic geometric shapes on tea stained paper that are based on the spectrum of colors. Through a series of repetitive, hypnotic visual patterns Ording blends mathematics and art. The show features a colorful site specific 7-part installation. The gallery is open Thursday through Monday from 12 pm to 6 pm and Tuesday and Wednesday by appointment. Luna Rienne Gallery is located at 3318 22nd Street, San Francisco.
Saturday September 6th, 2 – 4pm – Christine Lee opening reception at The Workshop Residence: The Workshop Residence engages the worlds of craft, art and design by pairing visiting artists and designers with local fabricators to create beautiful, useful and affordable objects. Current artist in residence Christine Lee is an interdisciplinary research artist, designer and lecturer with a creative practice characterized by an objective to reveal the latent potential of disregarded material. During her residency at The Workshop, she is developing products created from a patent pending non-toxic wood and recycled fiber composite board Christine developed in partnership with engineer John F. Hunt and the USDA Forest Service Forest Products Laboratory. The Workshop Residence is located at 833 22nd St, San Francisco.
September 6th – October 18th – Jim Campbell: New Work at Hosfelt Gallery: Jim Campbell is a new-media pioneer and is considered one of the leading artists working today in this field. Campbell uses LED technology to create mesmerizing works that blend his engineering and film-making background. New Work continues his examination of the liminal space of perception, where data becomes image and light becomes material. The gallery is open from Tuesday through Saturday from 10:30 am to 5:30 pm and Thursday from 11 am to 7 pm. An opening reception for the show will be held on Saturday, September 6th from 4 to 6 pm. Hosfelt Gallery is located at 260 Utah St, San Francisco.
September 27th – April 26th – @Large: Ai Weiwei at Alcatraz: The internationally renowned Chinese artist Ai Weiwei has created a site-specific exhibition on San Francisco’s island prison. Because of his background as an activist and advocate for human rights in his native China, Alcatraz prison provides a particularly poignant background for this important exhibition. This project is made possible by the For-site Foundation, a San Francisco based non-profit dedicated to the creation, understanding, and presentation of public art that is about place. Visiting this exhibition requires buying ferry tickets to Alcatraz in advance. Find information on purchasing tickets and guided tours here.
Wednesday July 23, 2014
Our London correspondent popped in to see the newest iteration of Sketch, the London restaurant owned by Mourad Mazouz and Pierre Gagnaire. David Shrigley is the latest artist to take over the space this June, replacing the previous concept designed by artist Martin Creed. Shrigley’s installation at Sketch includes over 200 wall works and a custom 22-piece tableware set alongside interior designs by India Mahdavi.
Wednesday July 2, 2014
Artsource is proud to have contributed to the Art + Real Estate issue of The View for the CREW Network SF. Find our article ‘The Value of Art in Corporate Spaces: Public and Permanent Programming’ below or read the issue in its entirety here.
Monday June 30, 2014
Ongoing through August 1st – Leonardo Drew at Anthony Meier Fine Arts: Featuring new works by New York based artist Leonardo Drew that are composed entirely from wood in a variety of scale and form. The sculptures juxtapose white with black, clean lines with raw edges, and organic forms with organized grid lines. Gallery hours are Tuesday – Friday from 10:00 am – 5:00 pm. Anthony Meier Fine Arts is located at 1969 California St, San Francisco.
July 9th – A Project for Creative Growth’s 40th Anniversary, 6:00 PM : For Creative Growth’s 40th Anniversary, artists Anne Collier, Trisha Donnelly, Chris Johanson, Nate Lowman and Laura Owens were invited by curator Matthew Higgs to create limited edition screenprints. These screenprints were then further worked on by over 100 Creative Growth artists to create new works that will be on view and for sale at the fundraiser. Funds raised go to support Creative Growth, an art center serving adult artists with developmental, mental and physical disabilities by providing a professional studio environment for artistic development, gallery exhibition and representation and a social atmosphere among peers. Tickets begin at $100 and can be purchased here. Creative Growth is located at 355 24th St, Oakland.
July 11th – Southern Exposure’s Annual Monster Drawing Rally, 6:00 PM: Over 120 artists will work side by side at this exciting live drawing and fundraising event. Viewers will be able to watch artists work and all pieces will be on sale at the rally for $60. Music, dancing and curbside food will accompany the live drawing for a fun filled evening. Funds raised go to support Southern Exposure, an artist-centered non-profit organization committed to supporting visual artists. Tickets are $15 for Southern Exposure Members, $20 for the public and will be sold at the door. The Monster Drawing Rally will be located at the Verdi Club, 2424 Mariposa St, San Francisco.
July 13th – October 28th – Project Mah Jongg at the Contemporary Jewish Museum: Project Mah Jongg uses this historic game as a lens to look at the connection between Jewish and Chinese culture and its impact on identity, fashion and style, including artifacts such as scorecards, aprons, packages, tiles. As part of the exhibition, every third Thursday the museum will host Jews for Dim Sum, where artist Imin Yeh and Blue Bottle pastry chef Leah Rosenberg will share stories as they roll out a limited edition screen printed mah jongg snack box, find out more details here. Museum hours are Friday – Tuesday from 11:00 am–5:00 pm and Thursdays from 11:00 am–8:00pm. The Contemporary Jewish Museum is located at 736 Mission Street, San Francisco.
July 18th – October 5th – Bay Area Now 7 at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts: The YBCA will be hosting the latest version of Bay Area Now, a triennal art exhibition. This year, instead of individual artists, YBCA is featuring 15 Bay Area arts organizations who will be curating site-specific projects throughout the galleries and campus. For tickets, information and a full list of programming and events click here. Regular YBCA hours are Thursday – Saturday from 12:00–8:00 pm and Sunday from 12:00–6:00 pm. An opening night party will be held Friday, July 18 from 8:00-11:00 PM in the YBCA Grand Lobby. Yerba Buena Center for the Arts is located at 701 Mission St, San Francisco.
Thursday June 19, 2014
Why art matters…
Artists play a valuable role in our society as problem solvers by seeing and interpreting the world in a way that inspires new ways of thinking. “What Do Artists Know?” by Francis Whitehead and the Embedded Artist Project highlights some of the valuable insights we use to help our clients understand the way artists think.