Archive for October, 2008

Kip Fulbeck at USF Nov 3

Thursday, October 30th, 2008

Good timing on this one:

Kip Fulbeck: “What Are You: The Changing Face of America”

Monday, November 3, 2008
5:30 ”“ 7:30pm
University of San Francisco
Maier Hall (Fromm)
Golden Gate Ave at Parker
map link here

The Louise M. Davies Forum at the University of San Francisco is a challenging intellectual program that focuses on values in public life. The continuing theme of the Davies Forum “The Search for values in Contemporary America,” promises a refreshing examination of the turbulent state of American Society in the Last half of the 20th century and the present. But perhaps more importantly, it fosters an analysis of the country’s current struggle to define its purpose and direction. By bringing distinguished visitors to campus to work with selected USF students and faculty in seminars and discussions, the Forum provides opportunity for informed consideration of timely national and international issues.

This Fall 2008 the Davies Forum is titled “Mixed Race and the Legacy of Loving.”Â  This forum will explore the histories, issues, and implications of racial mixing and racial mixture, especially since the 1967 Supreme Court decision, Loving vs. State of Virginia, which declared that it is unconstitutional “to prevent marriages between persons solely on the basis of racial classifications.” While the course, “People of Mixed Descent” offers a broad introduction to major issues concerning the historical and contemporary experiences of multiracial people, this seminar is a more in-depth and demanding interdisciplinary venture aimed at deeply exploring new scholarship on mixed race and intimate relationships, marriages, adoptions, and the social movements that advocate for interracial families and mixed race identities.kip1.jpg

Kip Fulbeck is an award-winning artist, slam poet and filmmaker. He is the author of Permanence: Tattoo Portraits; Part Asian, 100% Hapa; and Paper Bullets: A Fictional Autobiography, as well as the director of a dozen short films including Banana Split and Lilo & Me.

Mr. Fulbeck’s Davies Talk will discuss his experiences with “The Hapa Project,” which began as a forum for mixed descent Asian and Pacific Islanders to address the question “What are you?” in their own words, and later evolved into his book, Part Asian, 100% Hapa.  Part Asian is filled with over 100 individual, handwritten response to “What are you?,” is accompanied by portraits of each respondent, is meant to present the individuals and their growing community to the world, “a reality that will no longer be ignored.”

Flor in SF Weekly!

Thursday, October 30th, 2008

Flor got a little shout-out in the SF Weekly!
It’s in the “events” section, but hey, press is press…
This is one of the images from the “Flor 1978″ poster.
(BTW, lest anyone get confused, the project I call “Flor 1973-78” is the project that SFAC publicizes as “Flor de Manila y San Francisco“. The latter was its original working title on my proposal, which I later decided was a little long, and a little colonial. It’s still more poetic, though, so I figured, hey, there’s enough room in the world for 2 titles for 1 project…)

“Flor de Manila y San Francisco”
Flower Power
By Hiya Swanhuyser
SF Weekly
Jennifer K. Wofford’s drawings adorn streetside kiosks up and down Market Street; they are taken from her new graphic novel. “Flor de Manila y San Francisco” charts the progress and thoughts of a young woman, Flor Villanueva, as she moves from the Phillipines to the U.S. The pictures are deeply accessible and very beautiful, portraying Flor as an observant newcomer in the years between 1973 and 1978. She stands in familiar spaces (on Market Street, for example) but remembers her home as she considers the events of her time.The block-color and line-drawing images lend themselves extremely well to the poster format, reminding us, schematically, of the previous Art on Market Street series, Packard Jennings and Steve Lambert’s utopian funnies. But Wofford’s work is calmer and more personal, while still incorporating a little kitsch: one of the posters finds Flor scanning the sky, thinking about Skylab.

couple of thoughts, couple of props

Wednesday, October 29th, 2008

Well, no real point about talking about the Presidential election (at least, not in California, where it’s pretty much a fait accompli for the Dems). There are a couple of propositions on the California ballot that are in very tight races, and it’s bugging me to the extent that I need to post about it.

Prop 4. If you can, please vote No.

I understand that this law is well-meaning in terms of wanting parents to be informed of their under-age daughter’s abortion, but it’s fundamentally flawed: it doesn’t protect girls or families at all, it truly puts them in more danger, if anything.

Having worked with teens for years, I can attest to how dangerous a law like this could be for a girl who’s living in an abusive family situation, where communication is already unsafe. And I’ve known friends and students whose own relatives molested/abused them: this law would force a girl like this into the worst possible situation imaginable, by requiring that she ask permission for an abortion from the very person who is abusing her. It really sickens me to think about this possibility.

Prop 8. If you can, please vote No.
I’ve never been all that enthusiastic about marriage for anyone, but quite frankly, one of my biggest objections  has been that it’s been a privilege for straight couples only. I might even consider marriage myself, were it more inclusive, but I’m sick of my gay friends being discriminated against. Banning same-sex couples from having the full rights of marriage is truly sad, and offering only the limited protections of domestic partnerships as a substitute is half-assed, at best.

Conservatives and religious groups have been funding the Yes on Prop. 8 campaign, using the same backwards, hateful, prejudicial rhetoric that was used before inter-racial marriage was nationally legalized in 1967 (hello: 1967!!!): “it’s unnatural”, “it’s not what God intended,” “it will tear this country apart”. I think that many different branches of my own family did a pretty good job of proving those attitudes about inter-racial marriage wrong: I’d love my gay friends to have the same opportunity to do that in my generation, as well.

no Weiwei? yes Weiwei!

Tuesday, October 28th, 2008

Dang. I took quite a little blog-vacation there. I thought that I’d be posting more, given that things have slowed down, but as it turns out, I apparently needed a blog-break, too.

There’s some catching up to do, some new stuff to report about. I’ve been enjoying teaching this semester, although the “3 different classes at 3 different campuses” thing is starting to wear me down a bit. Still, my students are fantastic and fun, and I’m really excited about a great deal of the work that they’ve been doing.

My UC Berkeley course, “Multicultural and Global Perspectives”, has been going well. It’s both studio and seminar: last week, they presented projects they’d created after reading and discussing Edward Said’s essay on exile. Now, we’re about to go into a project on borders. Whew. It’s challenging working with big old themes like these, but it’s been pretty amazing what how students have managed to make meaning of this in their work…

Through sheer dumb luck (actually, the gracious offer from the Berkeley Art Museum), we got to have internationally acclaimed artist Ai Weiwei come to our class for an hour last month, and have an informal rap session with us.

He had originally missed the date he supposed to visit us, so we assumed that we wouldn’t get to meet him. We were all set to make a sock-puppet video of all the questions we would have asked him, when he ended up re-scheduling and coming to class, after all, which was a big treat (and of course, which scuttled our sock-puppet video):

Weiwei talking a bit about his Documenta project

Papa Smurf, breaking it down

Weiwei woffwoff
Kool and the Gang

Turns out Weiwei’s a blogger, too, so a few days after his visit, he posted pics of US on HIS blog, which was pretty funny. I can’t seem to find them now, for some reason. Maybe we’re strictly confidential. Or the Chinese government had a problem with us being on his blog.

Sooo, what else: Galleon Trade BAN 5 is now down, my Market Street posters are still up. I’ve got a couple of prints in the new Kearny Street Workshop “Shifted Focus” exhibition. I’m working on a couple of residency applications, and I’m preparing to go down to Riverside for a conference. And I’ve spent the past month rebuilding and updating my website, which is why I haven’t been blogging, come to think of it! It’s been a lot of work: not hard, really, just time-consuming. Re-sizing photos, editing text, building new sections, yada yada yada.

The new site’s not too dissimilar to the original Wofflehouse, actually: the main significant difference is that Max and I rebuilt it in WordPress, so that I can now manage the content myself (before, I had to pester Max for every minor update, since I couldn’t do any of it on my own). There are still a few kinks to work out, but overall, I’m just delighted to be able to mess around with it myself, at long last! Let me know what you think of it.

New/significantly updated sections:

The Franklin Party
Motel Cucaracha


And I’m still updating the TEACHING and ALSO sections, so they’re chock-a-block with changes and new content soon, too.
OK. Enough with the woffling about wofflehouse.
Got to go get ready for school now.
Hope this stuff keeps you entertained for a few minutes.