February 3 to March 26 – Alec Soth: A Pound of Pictures at Fraenkel Gallery: Alec Soth’s iconic large-format color photographs of people and scenes from middle America were met with immediate critical acclaim. Rooted firmly in the narrative framework of traditional photographic expression, Soth has continued to push the boundaries of the medium through his long-term projects and his prolific book-publishing activities. This exhibition presents new photographs made on road trips across the U.S. Recording people and locations with subtle connections, the series features images that reference photography itself, investigating the physicality of the medium and the photographer’s quest to preserve what is fleeting. Fraenkel Gallery is located at 49 Geary Street in San Francisco.
Ongoing to March 26 – Midas: How Art Becomes Life & Life Becomes Art at Berkeley Art Center: Featuring works by an intergenerational group of Bay Area artists, the show includes objects of inspiration and remnants from the studio alongside finished works. These objects hint at the ways in which artists absorb ideas and material culture, and then transcribe them into gestures, patterns, forms or even a way of life. Exploding with exuberant color, sly humor, and surprising personality, the artworks in the show include painting, works on paper, textiles, ceramics, and sculpture. The exhibition serves as a testament to joy as a kind of strategy in the face of the absurdity of our current social and political situations. This exhibit is curated by Squeak Carnwath and includes Ricki Dwyer, Linda Geary, Maria A. Guzmán Capron, Sahar Khoury, Jerry Leisure, Kyle Lypka & Tyler Cross, and John Moore. Berkeley Art Center is located at 1275 Walnut Street in Live Oak Park, Berkeley.
February 25, 12 noon on Zoom – Artists in Conversation: Join Ricki Dwyer, Linda Geary & Maria A. Guzmán Capron alongside guest curator Squeak Carnwath for a conversation about the mysteries and certainties of the creative process. Register here.
Ongoing to March 18 – Daisy May Scheff: Hid it Well in a Walnut Shell at Ratio 3: Sheff presents an array of paintings that showcases the breadth and rapid evolution of her imaginative approach to object- and image-making. Varying in scale, media, and painting style, the pictures comprising the exhibition achieve a distinctive balance of abstraction, figuration, and intuitive composition, each offering a glimpse into Sheff’s uniquely evocative depictions of dreamlike narratives. Ratio 3 is located at 2831A Mission Street in San Francisco.
Ongoing to February 18 – Sahar Khoury: Orchard at Rebecca Camacho Presents: Khoury debuts an ensemble of two- and three-dimensional landscape constructions in metal, ceramic, paper-mâché and wood pruned from the artists’ own walnut and apple trees. Khoury’s introduction of wood to her practice is one of seasonal maintenance turned material inquiry. In 2021 while an artist in residence at the Headlands Center for the Arts, Khoury brought pruned walnut branches from her yard and tension suspended them in the studio window. Those same branches find their way into the chandelier mobile that hovers over the main space in this exhibition. Rebecca Camacho Presents is located at 794 Sutter Street in San Francisco.
Ongoing to February 25 – Livien Yin: Ka-la-fo-ne-a at Friends Indeed Gallery: The paintings in Ka-la-fo-ne-a continue Yin’s ongoing Paper Suns series, named after the Chinese-born “paper sons and daughters” who entered the United States during the Chinese Exclusion Act (1882 – 1943) by adopting forged identities through paper documentation. Yin employs visual references from photographic archives of early Chinese Americans and Chinatown communities to imagine, and reimagine, the lives and futurities of these ”paper” identities. Yin’s process of recontextualization weaves between moments of history, documentary, and narrative to depict vignettes of leisure—from directly modifying historical photographs found through archival research to imagining new figures when working from an absence of archival visual representation. Friends Indeed Gallery is located at 716 Sacramento Street in San Francisco.
February 4 to March 25 – Tucker Nichols, Never Better at Gallery 16: Northern California based artist Tucker Nichols creates iconographic works that transform the simplest objects into visual curiosities. Often drawing inspiration from nature, including his upbringing as the son of a prominent flower arranger, the artist layers various talismanic depictions of stones, plants and flowers in his sculptures, installations and drawings. This solo exhibition features new paintings and sculptures. Gallery 16 is located at 501 3rd Street in San Francisco.
Ongoing to February 26 – David Wilson: Framings presented by Small Works at Minnesota Street Project: Oakland based artist David Wilson creates observational drawings based in direct experiences with the landscape and orchestrates site-based gatherings that draw together a wide net of artists, performers, filmmakers, chefs, and artists into collaborative relationships. This exhibition centers on two new large-scale works on paper and in turn, two new large scale wood frames made in an active collaboration between artist and framer. One large work, made in sumi ink while sitting through the Summer and early Fall on the northwest side of Mt Tam faces a second large work, made in watercolor while sitting through the late Fall on the southeast side of Mt Tam. Additionally, Framings features a selection of smaller works, a new screen print edition, and a day bed for enjoying a moment of repose. Presented by Small Works, this exhibit takes place at Minnesota Street Project, located at 1275 Minnesota Street in San Francisco.
Saturday, February 5, 3pm to 4pm – Special Event: In Song Sing On, a songbook Sing-a-Long This event is an inclusive group sing-a-long using a songbook compiled by artists David Wilson and Colter Jacobsen for the purpose of singing together.
February 11 to 15 – Dana Hemenway, Kija Lucas, and Alise Anderson at Recology AIR: The Recology San Francisco Artist in Residence (AIR) Program is an art and education initiative that awards Bay Area artists access to discarded materials, an unrestricted stipend, and an individual studio space. This exhibition marks the culmination of the residency that began in October of 2021 with artists Dana Hemenway, Kija Lucas and Alise Anderson. Exhibition viewing dates are below, reservations are required. Make a reservation here.
Friday, February 11 from 4:30–7:30pm and Saturday, February 12 from 12–3pm
Tuesday, February 15 from 5–7pm: Artist talk by Dana Hemenway at 6pm and Kija Lucas 6:30pm (both talks will be live streamed on Instagram.