Archive for October, 2008

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.

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.