The American Gun Show

Call to Artists: American Gun Show

Open call for artwork:

Few technologies have had the impact on civilization that the gun has had. With a storied history of a millennium and having been woven into American culture, it is not surprising that it is as contentious as it is empowering.

Dorothy Santos and James Morgan are bringing together a series of works across media that consider all sides of this technology. From the historic use in war to the representations in photography, painting and film, we are also interested in the object as it represents an intersection of functional design and technology. We want to look backwards and forwards and seek works that express a viewpoint related to guns and/or the second amendment.

We are particularly interested in the reflections of underrepresented and underserved communities regarding the place of the gun in the United States. Our expectation is that these views are not often reflected in the public and mainstream media.

Our intuition tells us that there are more than two sides of this story, that there is a relationship between queer, trans* and other communities to guns.

We want to tell that story.

The show will take place from October to November of 2015 in San José, California. We are particularly interested in media based projects and visual responses to the topic.

Please respond via email with links to appropriate work to either ags@factorynoir.com or dorothy.r.santos@gmail.com before August 21 for full consideration.

Curatorial Statement

The gun is a thousand year old technology changed by contemporary prototyping and communication processes. The American Gun Show looks at cultural responses in the context of personal liberty at the intersection of our identity, as Americans, and relationship to the network and print-on-demand technologies. Cody Wilson designed a 3D printable single shot pistol in 2013 which he posted as a computer file online for the public. Within days the U.S. State Department demanded that the files be taken down. This dispute marks a significant event in both legal and technological history – the collision of the first and second amendments of the US Constitution. Free speech and personal liberty become central themes to The American Gun Show.

This exhibition is about the artists’ response to guns and, to a lesser extent, the design and aesthetics of the machine itself. The art and technology of guns as an objective focus for this exhibition has been a challenging one to meet, but the much needed dialogue around an object rife with cultural, social, and political meaning warrants examination through a multi-faceted lens. This show is an exploration of the American psyche and history steeped by gun violence. What is the political will of the American public to address the issues related this advanced form of weaponry? As curators, we explored artists, artistic practices, and expressions that can offer a form of neutrality or balanced perspectives on the issue of gun creation and control.

We understand and expect a wide array of reactions to the content and nature of the exhibition. To that end, people will find some of the work offensive or antagonist to either side of the debate. But we ask visitors to consider the work that resonates with them may have the same or different effect on another viewer. The American Gun Show is not anti-gun or pro-gun. Rather, the show seeks to drive more of a census on what can bring opposing viewpoints stemming from the existence of this object as a point of departure for effective legislation while respecting the rights of American citizens.

Asterisk SF Magazine Music Issue + Art Opening for David Molina

Hello Family and Friends!

I am curating a solo exhibition for musician, composer, and artist David Molina. He is featured in the upcoming issue of Asterisk SF Magazine. The show will be wonderful and it is his first gallery exhibition in San Francisco. With over 17 years of composing, music and instrument making, sound installation work, and theatrical production work, we are extremely happy and excited about his upcoming show. Please read the curatorial statement below and join us on January 17, 2013 from 7-10 pm!!

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musicissue

Join us for our first event of 2013 in celebration of the Music Issue and the opening of Transience: The Work of David Molina. An exhibit on the art of sound.

CURATORIAL STATEMENT
Transience provides a retrospective look at David Molina’s theatrical scores and music compositions as well as his collaborative works with Bay Area artists including Garrett La Fever, Mickey Tachibana, Cause Collective, Susie Valdez, Victor Cartagena, Violeta Luna, Roberto Varea, and Anna Geyer. The exhibition presents existing and new interactive works such as Memory Web, which showcased at the 2012 San Francisco Fine Art Fair. For this particular exhibition, Molina will be presenting his latest interactive work, Rusting Souls, which entailed a deconstructing and reconstructing of the Cimbalom, an instrument originally from eastern Europe.

Spanning Molina’s installation works to a comprehensive discography, Transience assembles a collection of intricately re-imagined instruments, such as Homage to Musee Mecanique: A Game Of Time, The Chimes of Seven Spells, The Broken Heart Sings, a plethora of parts pieced together to create a multifaceted and unique experience of sound.

Hearing has the capacity to command our being by forcing us to listen and understand the world. The imagination works in conjunction with sound allowing us to envision our environment or awaken a long obscured tale. The works in Transience seek to envelop the listener into narratives and a tactile experience of music. With no specific starting point other than the listener, the exhibition emerges as a study of contemporary music making and how stories can be told through beautifully and meticulously strung notes by the artist-musician’s hand. Transience is an examination of how music affects our understanding of personal histories and interactions as well as our perceptions of sound.

– Dorothy Santos, Arts Editor + Curator

Imagine 2049 Time Capsule

Click on the image above to visit Imagine 2049 and submit your invention for inclusion in the Time Capsule!

I recently submitted an Invention for the Imagine 2049 time capsule, which is part of Scott Kildall’s series, 2049.

You can submit your invention for the future at www.imagine2049.com.

All “future inventions” submitted before Thursday, January 10th will be placed in the time capsule and opened in the year 2049. Please consider being a part of this project. Here is my entry for the time capsule:

“A five senses book that would enable people to see, hear, taste, smell, and touch objects and things from any time in history. Warning text would be placed on whatever entry the reader wishes to learn more about and experience. It would be a comprehensive inventory with help text on understand the historical, cultural, and societal context of the item the reader wishes to examine. Although there would be an option to experience the object or thing, the reader is unable to bring it into the future. If they wish to live with that object or thing, they would need to make the decision and sacrifice to give up living in the future and live in the past. They would not be able to return. This would be the Book of the Five Senses.”

Opening for Solo Exhibition at Asterisk SF for Sita Bhaumik ~ Querida Calle 24 | Dear 24th Street

Curatorial Statement 

Art serves as reflection. It mirrors what has come before, what exists, and gives inspiration to what may follow. Art is also a conduit to introspection. It raises questions about the relationship between culture, tradition, and location. In the exhibition, Querida Calle 24 | Dear 24th Street, installation artist Sita Kuratomi Bhaumik takes memories and experience to pay homage and gratitude to the well known 24th Street in San Francisco. With the increasing traffic and popularization of the Mission District, Bhaumik seizes the opportunity to form of a visual and a multisensory love letter to the stretch of urban landscape.

The sweet smell of cinnamon leads the viewer to a patterned wall that will please even the most obvious retinal sense. Yet, the longer one stands and observes the walls dusted in the familiar spice and platters enrobed in gold candy wrappers, the senses will subtly shift back and forth to engage in something that can only be experienced. Observation will become delectable and crisp sensations will tickle the nose upon a deep inhale. Impressions will go beyond the gallery walls and storefront. The viewer will be greeted by a Twenty Fourth Street that refuses to be forgotten and remains ever present through its distinct scents and visuals. As a show made with a myriad of parts, it intricately meshes culture, tradition, and history into sensorial consumption. Bhaumik provides an exhibition of the past, present, and future. Our collective recollections and thoughts made into the tangible and the tasty, this artwork will waft and flirt and begs the senses to devour, digest, and reflect.

~ Yours Truly

Artist Bio

Sita Kuratomi Bhaumik is an interdisciplinary artist, educator, and writer born and raised in the suburbs of Los Angeles to Indian and Japanese Colombian parents. After receiving her B.A., Cum Laude, in Studio Art from Scripps College, Sita moved to the Bay Area where she holds an M.F.A. in Fine Art and an M.A. in Visual and Critical Studies from California College of the Arts. She currently teaches photography and portfolio development at RayKo Photo Center. Sita has collaborated with organizations such as Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, The Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, SOMArts, 18 Reasons, 826 Valencia, Whitman College, and Cal-State Fullerton. She has been the art features editor for Hyphen magazine, a writer for Art Practical, and Kearny Street Workshop board member. She also spends as much time as possible in the kitchen.

The Annual Murphy & Cadogan Contemporary Art Awards Exhibition, Group Show ~ Review by Erica Gomez

Kate Lee Short. Oculus, 2012; salvaged speakers, speaker wire, Motu audio interface, Mac mini, Lepai Amplifiers, wood, 17 x14 x10 ft. Courtesey of SOMArts photo by J. Astra Brinkmann.

You know what is awesome about grad school? Being around talented and brilliant artists and writers. Check out fellow classmate Erica Gomez’s guest blog post on the SOMArts Cultural Center blog regarding the Annual Murphy & Cadogan Contemporary Art Awards Group show. It’s a great write-up! Click here to view on SOMArts!

Tristan Cai. Physical Realities of Death-A Memoir of Toivo Laukkannen, 2012; archival giclée prints on wood, 216 x120 in. Photo: Erica Gomez.

The Annual Murphy & Cadogan Contemporary Art Awards Exhibition is on view at SOMArts through October 2, 2012.

 

Meridian Gallery, Gallery Profile published to Asterisk SF Magazine’s Throwback Issue

Meridian Gallery Profile

On a clear, breezy evening on any given opening exhibition night, glowing lights emanate into the street from Meridian Gallery, revealing an exquisite exterior as well as an equally timeless and beautiful interior on the 500 block of Powell Street. The 100-year-old Victorian building certainly perseveres through the city’s constant evolution. Architect C.A. Meussdorffer designed the structure in 1911, and it remains the only single-family home left in such a bustling and highly trafficked area of San Francisco.

Even though the original design and construction was not of a gallery, the space is not too dissimilar to a home. Although, in a different context, Meridian is a home—to artists, educators, writers and young, budding art professionals, as a place to nurture existing skills and learn new ones. Based on the function and architecture, it’s probable that Meussdorffer didn’t intend for the space to become one of San Francisco’s beacons for art and cultural awareness. Yet the staff of Meridian Gallery makes it a home for the San Francisco arts community. The gallery is an exemplary reflection of the city’s diversity and rich, growing culture. As Imin Yeh, assistant director, states, “The space becomes this beautiful analogy for the architectural, political and critical history of San Francisco, and the home is a container for Meridian Center for the Arts’ numerous contributions and relationship to San Francisco’s Past and Future.” But the Financial District is not necessarily known for its alternative art spaces. With its beautiful hardwood floors and three levels of visual arts, Meridian remains one the most unique art spaces in the city. From its location to its architecture, it proves itself as a perfect place for cultivating ideas and serves as fertile ground for artists.

Meridian is widely known for helping break down racial and cultural barriers by showcasing artists with the same goal, in both their works and their art practices. From poetry readings to performing arts, many of the artists work with San Francisco youth to help bridge gaps and bring awareness through the arts. The Meridian Interns Program (MIP) assists high school students in learning more about the business of art, the community and art’s relationship to culture. Yeh reflects on the program’s objective: “It provides San Francisco low-income teens a safe space to work after school that combines real-world arts and administrative job skills with studio practice led by amazing teachers who are also working artists. Participating youths are often faced with complex challenges, including the need to provide financial support for their families. With MIP, they are not only getting the space to engage in artistic projects and job skills, but getting paid wages for their participation.” The program facilitates disciplined practice for students interested in pursuing a career in the arts as well as practical skills for those wanting to learn more about the administrative and curatorial side of running a gallery. MIP enables students to foster a sense of responsibility and to learn valuable business skills.

Although Meridian Gallery was established in the 1980s, the physical space seems to have been made especially for this gallery and community. In looking back, it’s also important to ponder the future, and between the wide array of diverse artists, scholars, curators, volunteers and students, Meridian will certainly see another 100 years in San Francisco.

Upcoming exhibitions include The Painted Word: Paintings, Drawings and Collages by Poets From the Beat Generation Era. To learn more about this exhibition, please visit meridiangallery.org.

On June 16, Zina Al-Shukri and Maja Ruznic will be on exhibition in To Draw, to Transpose.

Originally posted to Asterisk SF Magazine. Please view here.