Art Practice undergraduate student Ramon De Santiago has been selected as a Haas Scholar for the 2016-2017 academic year. They had the largest number of applicants ever in the history of the program this year, so the department if very proud of Ramon’s accomplishment.
What makes a Haas Scholar? Well, they are:
*Academically Talented: value learning both for its own sake and to make a difference in the world
*Community-Oriented: desire to be part of an interdisciplinary academic community by learning from one’s peers
*Future Leaders: ready to take on the challenge of conducting an independent research or creative project that will culminate in a senior/honors thesis
What does a Haas Scholar receive? Well:
*One-on-one mentoring from members of the UC-Berkeley faculty
*A seminar in the Fall (1 units, P/NP) and a writing workshop in the Spring to assist with the research and writing process
*An opportunity to present the results of your work at a professional academic conference in January
*Assistance with graduate school and fellowship applications, career counseling, connections with almost 400 Haas Scholars alumni, and other support to help you realize your individual post-graduation plans
*Membership in an alumni community (nearly 400 strong and growing each year!) that provides ongoing professional development and support
*Financial support during their fellowship year which includes a summer living stipend, a semester/academic year living stipend, research expenses, and a completion stipend
This is a huge accomplishment, and so a big shout-out to Ramon!
RYAN LEE is pleased to announce Stephanie Syjuco: Ornament + Crime (Redux), featuring a video from the artist’s “Dazzle Camouflage” series in RLWindow and an accompanying sculptural object in RLProject. This project positions the WWI military tactic of wrapping battleships in a graphic black-and-white pattern in a contemporary framework to consider globalization, migration, historical trauma and colonialism.
On view in RLWindow is a 22-minute HD video from 2013, which takes as its starting point architect Le Corbusier’s 1931 iconic building, Villa Savoye, located outside of Paris. Borrowing the digital model from SketchUp’s open-source network, Syjuco creates a haunting, animated walk-through of the Modernist structure overtaken with disruptive black-and-white graphics of folk patterns culled from France’s prior colonial era: Moroccan, Algerian and Vietnamese textiles. As a historical mash-up of publicly sourced files, this new version of Villa Savoye attempts to transcribe the colonial and cultural history of a Western icon back upon itself as if it were a body to be read and re-read. By infecting the visual cues of its colonies onto itself, a closer view of the society that birthed the building can be made.
During World War II, some of the most important work connected with UC Berkeley was done not in a library, lecture hall, or lab—but from within the barbed-wire confines of internment camps.
When President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066 in 1942 mandating the removal of all persons of Japanese ancestry from the western United States, one of the lives he upended was that of Cal art professor Chiura Obata. An artist trained in traditional Japanese techniques but enamored of the American landscape, Obata’s paintings, woodblocks, and sketches serve as a powerful visual diary not only of how the experiences looked, but more importantly, how they felt.
The Worth Ryder Art Gallery Publicity Interns regularly review exhibitions, interview undergrads, and write about artwork for our News page.
Gordon Hall – “Speculative Lecture”
Reviewed by Katie Revilla
Gordon Hall, a performance artist, writer, and founder of the Center for Experimental Lectures recently came to give a propositional and improvisational lecture at UC Berkeley. For me the lecture redefined and expanded what can be considered an artist’s talk. Two figures were positioned within the space, completely still and motionless. Hall, who was in the corner of the room perched upon a pedestal, began gestures and movement, slowly moving themselves in different variations. As they announced act 1, scene 1, phase 1, they got up from the pedestal and began to move and interact with two large wooden parentheses. As both Gordon and the other performer moved throughout the space with the large wooden parentheses, the conversation began.
Hall read aloud twice in the performance, as well as from their phone, with imagery that to me felt like recalling a memory. The words were colors, objects, items, and feelings all of which in sighted something in me that created certain feelings of nostalgia. Although I don’t completely understand the relationship between the performance and the recalling of these writings, after Hall repeated it, I tried to imagine and feel what they were describing for the rest of the piece. Parts of the performance were also with the lights off, which I found to be a really sensory experience. One could see shadows occasionally, you could hear them moving, and as a performer moved close to where you were sitting, you felt their bodily presence.
Overall, this piece has so many different layers and complexities within itself. I loved how this piece confronted language and challenged how we perceive it. It made me think a lot more about the body and how we can transmit such an array of information. Also, coming from a background and understanding that artist’s lectures are where the artist talks at the audience and then might do a question and answer period at the end of the talk, this piece was able to challenge and shift the ways that artists can provide information through creating a new conversation. Artists don’t necessarily have to do a report on their work but instead convey the meaning of their work through a performance such as this. I found Gordon inspiring, and I’m excited to follow their work as it progresses in the future.
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Video Interview with Shari Paladino from MFA First Year Exhibition
by Shannon Kim
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Artist Erin Kim
Interviewed by Sae Bom Choi
Tell me about yourself.
My name is Erin Kim and I am a junior majoring in Landscape Architecture. I have been interested in art and design since I was in elementary school. Ever since I became passionate about art, I enjoyed going to art galleries and museums to get inspirations, and explore new ideas to motivate myself.
What work do you most enjoying doing?
I enjoy working with a variety of medium including acrylic, oil paint, ink, colored pencils, graphite, and more. I like to combine different types of medium to create more interesting effects.
What themes do you pursue?
I don’t really have a theme that I want to pursue through my works but I try to create works that are meaningful to me. The process that I go through before starting an art piece is that I go over all the photo albums and try to choose a moment or subject that I want to make special by adding aesthetic view to the specific subject.
What inspired you to major in landscape and minor in art?
I was undeclared in College of Letters and Science until the second semester of my sophomore year. The major factor that motivated me to transfer to College of Environmental Design was taking an Environmental Design (ED) class second semester of freshman year. Although I knew that I was interested in art and design, I was uncertain about what I wanted to major in. I had a lot of fun in ED class; the class was about problem solving projects using art and design knowledge. Then I looked more into the Landscape Architecture department and took some Landscape classes then declared as Landscape architecture major. I also wanted to pursue my artistic view by minoring in art.
How much drawing do you have to go through to prepare for a piece?
I spend a lot of time coming up with an idea for an art piece. I do some quick sketches of all the ideas I have and narrow down to what I want specifically.
What is your dream project? What’s your goal?
My goal is to continue creating art works that are meaningful to me. I always feel that photography is a temporary snapshot of memories. But creating an artwork of the special moment can last longer and remain more valuable to me. My dream project is to create a series of special moments of four years in college.
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Critic’s Perspective: Rediscovering Yoko Ono
by Michele Meltzer
Professor Scott Saul from our neighboring English Department at UC Berkeley has a new podcast show, Chapter & Verse, which features discursive conversations between himself and other academics/critics of media culture. In this episode, Professor Saul brings on Professor Julia Bryan-Wilson of the UC Berkeley History of Art Department to discuss the art of Yoko Ono.
Critical attention to Ono’s work and its centrality within a number of artistic movements, especially her creative output through the 1960s, was for many years lost to an amnesiac cultural narrative which has long held Ono merely as the collaborator, muse, and widow of pop legend John Lennon. Her work—ranging widely from performance art, to instructional pieces, to video and beyond—and its importance to the history of contemporary art have recently regained recognition through exhibitions such as MoMa’s “Yoko Ono: One Woman Show, 1960-1971”. Here, Professor Saul along with Professor Bryan-Wilson honor this story which regards Ono as an artist first and foremost, helping audiences recall why Ono’s work stands on its own. The talk involves a rich examination of Ono’s personal story, its influence on her ever-evolving creative process, and the formal risks present in Ono’s art which warrant its acclaim.
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First Friday and Community
by Hannah Laher
We all choose to be an art major, and an art major specifically in Berkeley. As a soon to be graduate of this program, and a local of the Bay Area since I was a child- the thoughts of what can this community do for me has come to mind more often than once. With the tech-industry boom, San Francisco and Oakland have been in the spotlight a lot these days, but do people on a creative career have a place within this spotlight?
Through my research I have found that artist are this community here in the Bay Area, which is why I want to remind everyone about Oaklands First Fridays, starting up again on March 4th. With their vision statement of “striv[ing] to be the premier Oakland First Fridays Event as the epicenter for the community to come together to celebrate, sustain & support the arts,” this event has brought everyone together within the Oakland and the arts community. This tradition started in 2006, with the Art Murmur events, which has now transformed in the this esteemed event for all to enjoy.
According to a report written by Victoria Swift, “Economics Impact of the Oakland First Fridays”, this event is supporting more than just the arts communities. The influx of people coming in has had an amazing impact on the local businesses, some owners stating a 100 to 250 percent increase in profits on event nights.
We are in a great place for our art. We just need to help support the community we are going to a part of because the horizon of graduation comes quicker than you expect.
With your free AC bus transit card, take the 1 route and walk a few blocks for the First Friday event starting this month.
Romer Young Gallery is pleased to present its third solo exhibition with artist ERIK SCOLLON. and/both presents a new series of larger ceramic objects that suggest attitudes of engagement and embodied aesthetics. There will be an opening reception for the artist on Friday, February 26th, 6-9pm.
Conceptually the works are a continuation of his ideas about queerness and functional ceramics; materially they expand his indulgent love of glaze and color; but formally they mark a departure from his earlier representational forms. In A Moment Lasts Forever Until It’s Gone, Scollon presented a series of objects that were a physical manifestation of himself and his mid-life look at the body, hope, love, beauty, heartbreak and their insistent impermanence. (click for more)
Show runs February 26th through April 2nd.
Stacy Jo Scott: Rise Out of the Scattered Deep
Show Dates: February 3 – 29
Having thus poured forth my prayer and given an account of my bitter sufferings, I drowsed and fell asleep on the same sand-couch as before. But scarcely had I closed my eyes before a god-like face emerged from the midst of the sea with lineaments that gods themselves would revere. Then gradually I saw the whole body, resplendent image that it was, rise out of the scattered deep and stand beside me.
-Apuleius of Madaurus, The Golden Ass (Metamorphoses), Book 11, Late 2nd Century AD
Rise Out of the Scattered Deep, borrows its’ title from The Golden Ass (Metamorphoses) by Apuleius of Madauras. It is the story of Lucius, who longs to know the secrets of the universe, especially magic. One night he witnesses a witch turning herself into a bird. He tries to imitate her but his attempt falters and turns him into a golden ass. Near the end of the tale he surrenders, wracked with sorrow at his hubris. This is the moment the god-like face appears to him.
The objects in this exhibition emerged from a similar longing, the wish to understand my own experiences, both tangible and intangible. In times of transition I have felt my life unfolding along multiple paths at once. Making objects is one way I can tap into both the seen and unseen aspects of this journey, something akin to the insight accessible through the dream world, trance, or myths. Like Lucius, I have learned something about surrender, and these objects are records of what I’ve seen in the process. (more)
The exhibition addresses the origins of Tool’s investigation of war iconography through the exhibition of the artist’s ceramics, video work, graphic prints, ephemera, as well as works done in collaboration with photographer Ian Martin. Aiming to foster public conversation about the relationship between mainstream culture and military culture in the United States, Meditation on the Impacts of War invites public exchange on a subject which affects contemporary global society and which pervades modern culture. From toys and video games to multimillion dollar movie productions and advertising, the grim reality of war has been adopted for entertainment. For more information, please go to Cranium Corporation.
Robert Hartman, “The Ordered World”, 2011. Colored Infrared Aerial Photography. Courtesy Gallery Anglim Gilbert.
Artist, teacher, pilot. Husband, father, grandfather, friend.
Always “incurably nuts about airplanes,” he first soloed after only 3 1/4 hours of instruction, and earned his license at the age of 21. A consummate pilot, and aerial photographer, his passengers were always in capable hands even as the horizon tilted towards vertical and Bob, controlling the plane with his feet and knees, pointed his camera straight down, through the open side window, capturing exquisite and perplexing images of the ground below.
For thirty years, Bob was a perceptive and inspiring professor of art at UC Berkeley. He retired in 1991, but remained close friends with many students and colleagues, and delighted in viewing latest works, discussing art or simply sharing one of his carefully crafted martinis.
Although he was trained in academic realist painting, Bob became excited by the dynamic energy of abstract expressionism, and the realization that a painting could be an ongoing event instead of a static tableau of things. However, his continuing desire to get back to flying soon led him to painting “skyscapes.” In 1970 he bought a plane and his painting shifted from looking up with longing, to looking down with wonder. Bob found that photography was the best medium for him to share that sense of wonder and discovery.
He had a painter’s eyes, a musician’s ears and a poet’s heart. All were active until the uncelebrated lungs finally failed. Left behind are beautiful images exploring the enigmatic and mysterious, and expressing the ineffable.
Bob felt he had lived an inordinately lucky life: lucky in surviving early and continuing lung problems, lucky in his escape from living and teaching in the racially segregated Texas of the 1950s, lucky in his career at UC Berkeley, and particularly lucky in wife, family, and friends.
Bob gives his friends and family a full life to celebrate, and a generous spirit to miss.
Bob’s “one and only love” and wife for 61 years, Charlotte, died in 2012. He is survived by his brother, Jim, two sons, Mark and Jim, their wives, four grandchildren, and many friends. We happy few count ourselves lucky to have known Bob.
A memorial celebration will coincide with a retrospective of his work planned for late February or early March.
In lieu of flowers, go to a symphony concert, or donate to Creative Growth.
On final flight into the wild blue yonder, flight plan not filed.
Published in San Francisco Chronicle from Dec. 11 to Dec. 13, 2015
Concept video by Jillian Meyers and Damian (by Julia Borrebaeck)
Please introduce yourself and tell me what you enjoy most about your art?
I am a California based sculptor and installation artist. I enjoy exploring new, recycled, and industrial materials for my textile sculptures and installations. I search for formable materials that I experiment with to determine their characteristics. These materials in part give me inspiration for my concepts. I discovery whole new concepts, when I collaborate with my materials.
What were the strongest inspirations for the ideas and materials of your most recent work on your senior thesis exhibition?
The theme for my project is a memorial monumental sculpture, to honor the victims of ‘The May 18, 1980 Gwangju Democratic Movement’ in South Korea. Most victims of the massacre were young students and workers. A memorial idea came to me when I heard the news about the global action for the massacre in Ayotzinapa, Mexico.
On September 26, 2014, 43 male students from the Ayotzinapa Rural Teachers’ College held a protest about the discriminatory hiring and funding practices of the Mexican government. The student-teachers also had plans to solicit transportation costs, for their trip to Mexico City for the anniversary march of the 1968 student massacre in Tlatelolco. However, on their way there, the students were intercepted by the municipal police force and all protesters went missing and all were presumed dead. The massacre sparked protests worldwide. When I heard the news, it broke my heart. The students were around 20 years’ old. They were young visionary activists who could have helped change Mexico’s future. By memorializing this sadly similar Korean incident, I wanted young people to remember, yet still believe that they have the power to change their countries future. I also want to tell them, do not be afraid of telling the truth because if we do not fight the false, it becomes true.
The material for this project is commercial PVC black mesh. The unified upward forms and black obscured mesh represents the courageous spirits of the victims that follows their inner faith.
What were some of the best learning experiences during the Senior Thesis Project class?Some of the best moments of the Senior Project Class were during the critique of my senior project, by my classmates and our teacher. This great feedback persuaded me to challenge myself to see my work from their varying perspectives. These challenges improved my work, making my structure stronger which allowed me to deliver my ideas more effectively. And additionally when I participated in my peers’ presentations which helped me develop a more critical view towards my own work.
Interview with Sosun Park (by Hyesun Kim)
Re-Collection, Sosun Park
Mixed Media (Asian papers, twigs) with acrylic on wood panel. 4’x4’, 2015.
What initiated the thought process and overall idea behind this particular work? What does the concept of ‘identity’ mean to you?
I’ve reached my identity since studying abroad in the U.S. One day, I met friends who were members of EGO( UC Berkeley Korean Traditional Percussion Group) and I went to their performance. When I saw their performance, I had really weird complex emotions that I felt happiness, sadness, anger at the same time because many young Korean people don’t appreciate their own culture of art. And I was the one who didn’t appreciate Korean traditional culture before. Since then, I started the series of Korean traditional colors wanted to represent Korean cultural spirit as I felt from Korean traditional music. For the last semester, I wanted to challenge myself and develop my ideas of Korean traditional colors. So, I decided to find new media that I have never used such as Asian rice paper and twigs. I am still figuring out my identity… but I would say that the concept of identity means awareness of appreciating the beauty of my traditional culture.
I know that you performed with traditional Korean instruments during the opening reception of “Prototype”. What is the significance of the performance with your work?
As I said above, my work, Re-collection, is inspired by Korean traditional colors. But the first inspiration of my Korean traditional colors series is Korean traditional music, Pungmul. I believe that performing Korean drumming in front of my work could depict my theme perfectly. I hope audiences felt the the strong Korean cultural spirit that I have felt while playing Korean traditional music.
Does the choice of medium have any significance? What about the colors used?
The works in my recent series combine Korean traditional colors and modern media to represent the beauty of the Korean cultural spirit. The traditional Korean colors are Blue, Red, Yellow, White, Black. Each of these five colors represent the different seasons of the year and also the different cardinal directions on the compass. My style uses complex patterns with abstract lines on the canvas. I tried to create abstract works with painted materials. The combination of traditional Korean acrylic colors and new media such as Asian papers and twigs depict Korean pride and the traditional Korean cultural spirit against the struggle of globalization. This contrast of the traditional with the new represents the important and at times impossible struggle to preserve traditional culture.