Archive for November, 2012

Proposal for a Museum: Le Corbusier’s Project for a ‘Museum of Unlimited Growth,’ 1931

11.30.2012  |  By
Filed under: Projects/Series

In 2013 SFMOMA will close for an ambitious expansion planned to last nearly three years. Reflecting on the closure, grupa o.k. asked several friends and colleagues to imagine their own proposals for a museum in San Francisco. Amongst those proposals the editors will intersperse some historical proposals and projects drawn from the history of art an... More

Receipt of Delivery: Patricia Tavenner – Mail Queen

11.30.2012  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.

Today let us bow to the Mail Queen, aka Patricia Tavenner,and her long reign as a contributor to and curator within the global network of mail art and artists’ stamps. The Oakland-based artist adopted this nom de plume around the time that she began teaching courses on the “hidden” history of women artists. In 1972 she cofounded the Northern California Women’s Caucu... More

Location & Practice: Amy Franceschini, Dominic Willsdon, Apsara DiQuinzio

11.30.2012  |  By

Location & Practice: A Roundtable Discussion

In this brief excerpt from the exhibition catalogue for Six Lines of Flight: Shifting Geographies in Contemporary Art, Amy Franceschini of Futurefarmers, in conversation with SFMOMA curators Dominic Willsdon and Apsara DiQuinzio, talks about what it has meant for Futurefarmers to have made a commitm... More

Reimagining the Civic

11.29.2012  |  By
Filed under: 151 3rd, Field Notes

This Saturday, as the centerpiece of the Here, There, and Elsewhere festival, SFMOMA is hosting a daylong symposium, on- and offline, on the subject Creating the Periphery. What and where is a “periphery” in contemporary art? When does a single city contain elements of activity that feel both center AND periphery? Aaron Levy, the execut... More

Six Lines of Flight International Playlist – Thanks, Chris Dixon

11.28.2012  |  By
Filed under: 151 3rd, Field Notes

A bit of sound for you, as we roll into the multi-day, multi-program Here, There, Elsewhere festival. Playlist of tracks from some of the countries included in  Six Lines of Flight, provided by the exceptionally awesome Chris Dixon, proprietor of Explorist International, a record store in San Francisco’s Mission district, specializing in eclectic and esoteric vinyl from around the world. Chris can often be heard DJing around the city, too, under the name Phengren Oswald, spinning ’60s and ’70s soul, international underground ... More

Here, There, Elsewhere: Assembling Communities begins today with Helena Producciones, at Kadist Art Foundation

11.28.2012  |  By
Filed under: 151 3rd, Field Notes

SFMOMA is collaborating with 7 other Bay Area art institutions on 15 events over the next 12 days — beginning tonight (6 p.m., FREE) at Kadist, with an evening of seven live performance proposals. The semifinalists presenting this evening were selected through an open call for actions and gestures that emphasize visual commentary on urgent soci... More

Diary of a Crazy Artist: The Hurricane and Courtney Love

11.27.2012  |  By
Filed under: Projects/Series

Sunday, October 28, 2012

I had no idea it was going to be a Bay Area art reunion when photographer Mariah Robertson convinced me to help make costumes at MOMA/PS1′s First Annual Artist’s Halloween Carnival and Parade. I also had no idea — until the last minute — that Courtney Love was the official judge for the costume contest.

I ... More

Proposal for a Museum: Zarouhie Abdalian’s Museum of the Witnessing Object

11.27.2012  |  By
Filed under: Projects/Series

In 2013 SFMOMA will close for an ambitious expansion planned to last nearly three years. Reflecting on the closure, grupa o.k. asked several friends and colleagues to imagine their own proposals for a museum in San Francisco. Today’s proposal is by Zarouhie Abdalian.

The Museum of the Witnessing Object is dedicated to exhibiting objects as a... More

Proposal for a Museum

11.26.2012  |  By
Filed under: Projects/Series

In Summer 2013 SFMOMA will close its doors to the public to accommodate construction for an impressive expansion, currently planned to last nearly three years. And while these months of closure will be filled with off-site programming and exhibitions at other places, it will nevertheless be felt keenly among those who care about art and its institu... More

A Faraway Place

11.26.2012  |  By
Filed under: Field Notes


I’d barely registered the Highlight Gallery on the first block of Kearny, right where I used to go for Cigarettes for Less, in the halcyon days when I needed that store so badly. Right now Highlight is blossoming between the Discount Camera place and a Japanese toy store called something like “Angelic and Pretty.” It’s the last plac... More

Receipt of Delivery: No Nothing Cinema

11.24.2012  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.

“A long time ago (or so it seems), people made films just for the fun of it. Then someone got the idea that film had to hurt. No pain, no gain. Somehow film showcases decided they were right. Today people still make films just for the fun of it. And we show them at the No Nothing Cinema.” — Dean Snider, 1983, co-founder, No Nothing Cinema (1982-1997, now New Nothing Cinema)


T... More

Show Me the Money: Kala Art Institute Part 2

11.23.2012  |  By

Show Me the Money is an earnest attempt to get people to talk about money in the visual arts.

This is Part 2 of an interview with Archana Horsting of Kala Art Institute. Go here to see Part 1.

graphic developed with Lauren Venell

Do you ever start programs because you find a funding opportunity, or does it work the other way around (you develop the project and then you look for the funding), or do you develop programs in partnership with a funder?

Archana Horsting: Well, all of those happened. While we have a long history of just doing and then finding the funding as we go along. You’re better off convincing people and educating your funders about what you want to do and what you are... More

Happy Thanksgiving! Keyword: ‘pie’

11.22.2012  |  By
Filed under: 151 3rd, Back Page

In a search for something pleasing from the museum’s collection to share with you all today, I typed “pie” into ArtScope. And what a nice return on my effort: 141 works came up. That’s because PIE returns Pierre, and Pierrot, and pier, and pierce; along with photocopies and poppies, and more. I chose a handful of favorites I hadn’t fallen in love with before:


Diary of a Crazy Artist: Occupy to the Rescue: Revenge of the Hippies: Martha Rosler at MoMA

11.21.2012  |  By
Filed under: Projects/Series

Call it the revenge of the hippies. Many people forget that back in the 1960s the hippies were just as obsessed with corporate corruption as they were with psychedelic drugs. When people talk about hippies these days they always forget about all their experiments with alternate economic systems and all the volunteering the long-haired kids did. Man... More

Erica Gangsei on Story Board

11.21.2012  |  By
Filed under: Field Notes, One on One

Recently I worked on a digital hub for the SFMOMA website, called Story Board, which expands on the exhibition Six Lines of Flight and other SFMOMA projects by braiding together museum-produced content with links to the web at large. The interface allows for new associations among the different stories that we tell around artworks and artists. For me, the most compelling of these stories are those that deal in cultural critique.

If, like me, you have progressive values, it’s hard not to feel trapped by culture — even counterculture. Capital... More

Show Me the Money: Kala Art Institute, Part 1

11.20.2012  |  By

Show Me the Money is an earnest attempt to get people to talk about money in the visual arts.

For this installment of Show Me the Money, I will be focusing on the Kala Art Institute. Kala’s mission is to help artists sustain their creative work over time through its artists-in-residence and fellowship programs, and to increase appreciation of this work through exhibitions, custom printing, art sales, public programs, and education. Additionally, Kala offers art education to the general public and public school children through its on-site classes and workshops and its Artists-in-Schools program.

We are at an interesting point in the histories of nonprofits. In the burst of utopian exubera... More

(Re)Brand USA: Karen Fiss

11.19.2012  |  By
Filed under: Projects/Series

To wrap up the “(Re)Brand USA” series, a meditation on nation-branding by guest contributor Karen Fiss. (All previous entries can be found here.)

Though thankful to be writing in the wake of an Obama victory, I’m going to take as a departure point for my reflections on the practice of nation-branding Jeremy Mende’s imagined outcome of a Republican triumph. Envisioning the need for a “sweeping public relations campaign” in 2014 after an ensuing foreign policy quagmire, Mende’s project depicts the official installation of a ... More

Christian L. Frock on Doris Salcedo

11.19.2012  |  By
Filed under: One on One

Christian L. Frock

A pair of your daughter’s shoes sits on your desk: diminutive yellow Mary Janes with a leather ruffle T-strap. Of course, she didn’t choose them — she was an infant when you bought them, accessorizing vicariously through her. Once they were outgrown, you kept them like a souvenir from your life and a distillation of that mo... More

Kevin Killian’s Wet Paint

11.16.2012  |  By
Filed under: 151 3rd

We had such a tremendously fun time last week before, during, and after the Poets’ Theater performance of Kevin Killian‘s Wet Paint, I thought, Why not share THE SCRIPT with you all? and Kevin graciously agreed. Download it here.

From the evening’s program:

Wet Paint was commissioned by Bill Berkson at the San Francisco Art Instit... More

Miranda Mellis on Richard Diebenkorn

11.14.2012  |  By
Filed under: One on One

Miranda Mellis

Certain models of mind say that consciousness and environment are inseparable. As a figure (a representation of consciousness) contiguous with an abstracted ground (environment), Richard Diebenkorn’s Woman in Profile (1958) enacts and prophesies this theory of indivisibility. Her left hand is becoming a paw while her right seems to melt into the creamy table. The outer seam of her torso literalizes the concept of a blurred border, in this case between a painted skein of light and a lighted skein of paint. The visible (paint) an... More

Collection Rotation: Jason Fulford

11.12.2012  |  By
Filed under: 151 3rd, Projects/Series

Our regular feature Collection Rotation. Each month a guest organizes a mini “exhibition” from our collection works online. Today, please welcome artist Jason Fulford.

Here is a proposal for a group show — one room, 13 pieces. The room should have a door, hand-painted with the title of the show: November Pictures. Headphones are avail... More

Receipt of Delivery: Sound Series I

11.09.2012  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.


TONIGHT: Kevin Killian and Poets’ Theater Present WET PAINT

11.08.2012  |  By
Filed under: 151 3rd

THEY INVENTED A NEW KIND OF ART … AND A NEW KIND OF SEX TO GO WITH IT! What do Jay DeFeo, Janis Joplin, Diego Rivera, and a trio of Hungarian refugees have in common?  It’s not quite clear! Join us in the Wattis Theater *tonight* to find out, in a one-night-only performance of super sparkling star Kevin Killian’s Wet Paint — the story of Jay DeFeo and San Francisco’s bohemian underground, with a superb cast of artists, poets, filmmakers, musicians, critics, and other San Francisco luminaries, playing in tribute to th... More

Gestures of Love, or L’insurrection qui vient?

11.08.2012  |  By

“…artistic and cultural projects that take a critical and emancipatory approach and attempt to resist the new oligarchy and its cultural alliances are emptied of real political substance and neutralized through the process of commodification. At the same time, the fervent embrace of iconic architecture…and the inflexible replication of the conventions of Western artistic modernism… have a devastating tendency to undermine the most inventive and original aspects of local cultural and creative energy.” Hou Hanru


Time Travel in the Arts

11.08.2012  |  By
Filed under: Essay, Miscellany

Ever since seeing Chris Marker’s La Jetee decades ago, I’ve loved movies about time travel. My addiction to Turner Classic Movies delivers a subtle kind of time travel movie every night. Take for example Van Dyke’s San Francisco, made in 1936 about an event in 1906. Seen from my position in 2012, the nuances of time echoes are enough to get my head spinning. The earthquake was for them a relatively recent phenomenon–thirty years previous. However, those thirty years were tumultuous–World War One, Prohibition, the Depression. Victorian San Francisco of 1906 must’ve seen very quaint to these hardened people. We are seventy-six years displaced from that Clark... More

Art MicroHubs: The GLBT History Museum (SF, CA); Right Window (SF, CA); Norte Maar (BRKLYN, NY)

11.07.2012  |  By

Three more spaces from our Art Microhubs Tumblr resource project, collecting information about the smaller-scale art and culture spaces you organize, frequent, or love. We’re highlighting a few on Open Space each week, and planning a broadcast conversation among contributors later this year. Participate!

What’s it called and where is it? ... More

Part 3 – Poetic Politic: An Agitated Butterfly Searches the Internet

11.06.2012  |  By
Filed under: Field Notes

This is the last of a three-part conversation between Vietnam-based curator and Sàn Art Director Zoe Butt and art historian and writer Moira Roth. See below for links to previous posts.

Moira Roth, email; Thursday, September 27, 2012; Berkeley, California
And now let us return to an exchange about your exhibition in San Francisco!

Can you tell me... More

Tim Svenonius on Petah Coyne

11.05.2012  |  By
Filed under: 151 3rd, One on One

Tim Svenonius

I cannot say for sure whether I already saw a recumbent figure there beneath the dark foliage, before finding the protagonist’s name nested deep within the title. It’s difficult now to look at this cocoon of feathers and flowers without pondering who is entombed or entangled within.

Its surfaces erupt in clusters of fabric flo... More

Receipt of Delivery: Lew Thomas – 8 x 10

11.03.2012  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.

“The event resulted in a collaborative network that exceeded the boundaries of a single institution and its authority.” —Lew Thomas on 8 x 10, 1975


Diary of a Crazy Artist: On Finding Barry McGee in Brooklyn

11.01.2012  |  By
Filed under: Projects/Series

In case you haven’t heard yet, a new Barry McGee mural was just completed in Brooklyn. It was commissioned by Vanity Fair and kicks some serious ass. The mural adorns a 100-foot wall on the Mark Morris Dance Center in Fort Greene. It is refreshing because it does not pretend to be a site-specific community mural, as so many murals are these d... More