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YERBA BUENA CENTER FOR THE ARTS - BAY AREA NOW 8
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Yerba Buena Center for the Arts: Bay Area Now 8
Artists: Sadie Barnette, David Bayus, Sita Kuratomi Bhaumik, Sofía Córdova, Caleb Duarte, Josh Faught, Darell W. Fields, Nicki Green, Porpentine Charity Heartscape, Jamil Hellu, Constance Hockaday, Rhonda Holberton, Carrie Hott, Hyphae Design Laboratory, Sahar Khoury, Charlie Leese, NEMESTUDIO, Woody De Othello, Marcela Pardo Ariza, Stamen Design, Taravat Talepasand, Urban Works Agency (UWA), Cate White, Andrew Wilson.
Comment by AB: Bay Area Now 8 aka BAN8 is billed as a showcase of the Bay Area's most innovative creatives "featuring 25 Bay Area emerging and mid-career artists, architects, and designers from a broad range of media." The art and installations point up a number of the more pressing social, political and environmental issues we face today, encouraging us to think about where we stand, how little or how much we're aware of, and hopefully to get motivated about how to proceed from here.
Unfortunately, as is often the case with art these days (not only here), the texts accompanying these works are pockmarked with complex run-on sentences, arduous argot, obscure references, and nebulous generalities. Hacking through it all is demanding at best and impossible at worst, except perhaps for those steeped in formal art school academia. Not exactly an open invitation for those unfamiliar with artspeak (aka most of us) to engage with such universally relevant, perceptive, genuine and sensitively presented assessments. The upshot? An exhibition that deserves to be accessible to everyone is not.
Now I wouldn't bring this up if not for the continuing cavalcade of artists in search of fame, fortune or just getting noticed. In spite of their wish lists, they seldom speak or write for broader audiences (refusing to "dumb down" their art, as they like to say). Instead, they blame others for their problems, citing today's epidemic of short attention spans, the lack of art education in the schools, and so on. But since change in those areas does not appear to be coming any time soon, why not take the initiative and do what you can to tilt the odds more in your favor?
For instance, jettison the jargon and try introducing your art in everyday language that ordinary people can understand. Give them a chance; you might like the results. Intrigue them enough and they'll want to know more. I love artists, curators and gallery owners who take that approach. Why? Because I love art and I really dearly truly want to appreciate, understand and connect with it even more than I do already.
The show runs through March, 24 2019. My verdict on the overall experience? Certainly worth a visit. And now for the visuals...
Captivating end-of-the-world video by David Bayus. Like it.
One more from David Bayus video at YBCA, Bay Area Now 8.
Essays on interpersonal relations by Marcela Pardo Ariza.
Marcela Pardo Ariza photography. Always good.
Substantive ceramic art with a story by Nicki Green.
Glaze on the inside of Nicki Green ceramic in above image.
Installation & performance by Andrew Wilson focused on slave trade and labor.
View "the theater of Mission Street" c/o Sadie Barnette.
Intriguing industrial sculpture by Charlie Leese.
Detail of sculpture in above image - no idea what it is but I like it.
View of Charlie Leese sculpture closer at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts.
Mixed-media textile art by Josh Faught.
Pinkie can detail of art in above image.
Another exemplary textile by Josh Faught.
Nemestudio uses digital means to focus on junk, waste, and the future.
Gender identity portraiture by Jamil Hellu. Like it.
Photograph in above image closer.
Taravat Talepasand gets us thinking about traditions and influence of Iran.
Cate White and Woody De Othello speak about their work.
Ceramic installation by Woody De Othello about body, form and spirit.
Urban-inspired art by Cate White at YBCA BAN8.
Urban Works Agency uses the table as metaphor for how we come together.
"Black architecture" via flattened images c/o Darell W Fields.
FDR Fireside chats meet the sea in an attempt at healing by Constance Hockaday.
Interactive throwback video game by Porpentine Charity Heartscape.
Autobiographical introspective photography installation by Sita Bhaumik.
Installation view - Bay Area Now 8 at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts.