On Thursday, it was an Academy of Art University tour of Berkeley! The San Francisco Bay Area has distinct regional artistic institutions. The day included visits to Kala Art Institute, David Brower Center, UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, and UC Berkeley’s Department of Art Practice. Information is power!
First visit was the Kala Art Institute’s 8,000 square foot printmaking facility. Since 1974, Kala Art Institute has been providing thoughtful exhibitions and valuable artist resources. Artist Residency Manager Meg Pohlod provided an incredible tour highlighting diverse equipment resources to an Electronic Media Center. Kala offers numerous artist opportunities from artist-in-residence to fellowship programs.
Gallery & Communications Director Mayumi Hamanaka provided invaluable context to Kala’s current exhibit. From the venue’s website: “Exinclusivity -Space of Inclusion is a site-specific multi-media installation about migration experiences translated through music, video, storytelling and performance. Working with several refugee support organizations in the Bay Area (ARTogether, Asian Refugee United, Burma Refugee Family Network (BRFN), the Center for Empowering Refugees and Immigrants (CERI), and East Bay Refugee and Immigrant Forum), the project explores how cultural expressions such as singing and writing can support the process of psychological and physical survival throughout experiences of displacement.”
The next stop was the David Brower Center located in downtown Berkeley. The organization supports advocacy for the environment through the arts, education, housing resident organizations, and providing a conference center for green industries. Currently on view in the Hazel Wolf Gallery is the Art/Act: Award – Photo Ark, Joel Sartore exhibition. Sartore is the 2018 National Geographic Explorer of the Year and his photographs document endangered species and landscapes.
Students experienced firsthand the amazing artworks of Kader Attia at UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive. From the website: “For over a decade, the French-Algerian artist Kader Attia has been deeply invested in researching and documenting the concept of repair as it relates to healing from the trauma of war. This interest stems from his abiding study of postcolonial histories, and from thinking through possible futures for formerly colonized societies. In effect, Attia’s work asks, How do individuals and social bodies enact a process of healing after having suffered both physically and psychologically during major political conflicts?…”
The class walked through the redwood maze of UC Berkeley to the Department of Art Practice located in Kroeber Hall. On view at the Worth Ryder Art Gallery was the Hyperobjects: The 2019 Art Practice Department Exhibition highlighting faculty, staff, and University of Bergen artists. An impressive selection of artworks explored the relationship between humans in space and time.
We were fortunate for the opportunity! The day provided affirmation and inspiration for the students. Clarity is a virtue worth exploration…