Archive for March, 2009

light flurry

Tuesday, March 31st, 2009

And I’m back! As predicted, things got a little hectic in the time since my last post, but all went swimmingly and smoothly: busy, yes, but not completely nutso as in the past. I could get used to this kind of low-stress efficiency! Who knew?

Barrio Fiesta is now over and done with, my show at SFMOMA Artist Gallery Loft opened, I finished my project for Deadpan Exchange IV, and completed my temporary teaching gig at DVC. And last week was Spring Break at USF, so I had less prep to do than usual, so I’m feeling pretty relaxed and pleased with how it’s all been coming together.

DVC:

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Finishing up crits for Advanced/Abstract Painting at DVC

Barrio Fiesta:

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Barrio rehearsals (Niners jacket optional for Singkil)

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Pandanggo Sa Ilaw: x-treme votive daredevils!

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Kasamahan ka-selebrating after the final performance

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Woohoo!

Opening Reception at SFMOMA Artist Gallery:

Renee de Cossio at the Artist Gallery is some kind of magical angelic being. She really pulled the Villanueva Vignettes together beautifully for the gallery’s loft space! Renee and Maria Medua are truly fabulous creatures.

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Woff and the Mack Daddy himself in front of Juan Carlos’ painting downstairs at SFMOMA Artist Gallery

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With Fran Brown, one of my much-loved DVC professors (I was a student there way before I ever taught there!)

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Searching for Skylab in front of the Flor 1973 poster with Nicole Maxali (my model) and the Kasamahan-ers who came to my opening

Deadpan Exchange:

My project for Deadpan is already up on Wofflehouse now, since most of you won’t be popping over to Izmir for the opening, I suspect. It was a really fun project, intersecting my favorite pastimes (political shoe-throwing) and places (Philippines, Mexico, China, Spain, US). And I got done early, for a change! Will wonders never cease? I wish I could be at the opening so bad, but time and finances are their own reality these days.

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I’m officially addicted to Electric Works. Since I’d never made fine art prints of any sort prior to the Flor/Villanueva projects, the thrill of a new art medium is in full bloom! I feel utterly grateful to have had an excuse to get to know and to work with Maizie, Richard, Noah and all the other fine folks there.

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Worlds in collision! I needed reference photos of folks hurling shoes, so during Barrio, I took shoe-hurling reference photos of my USF student Hazel B. in full costume , and then drew her into my project as a representative of precolonial Philippines.

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Woff and Hazel, Barrio 2K9

Barrio Fiesta 2009

Monday, March 9th, 2009

Wow…I can’t believe it’s already that time of year again. Truly crazy how soon it’s all come round! The fabulous students of USF’s Kasamahan are already putting on their annual Pilipino Cultural Night (PCN), Barrio Fiesta, this coming weekend! (A little ominous perhaps that it opens on Friday the 13th, but let’s all cross our fingers, avoiding stepping on any cracks,  and not be too superstitious about all that.) While there has been no official Barrio Fiesta class like the one I taught last year, I’m still peripherally attached to the production as an advisor, of sorts. The usual pre-show pandemonium is in full-effect, but I’m confident that these guys will pull it off beautifully, as always.

The theme underpinning the show this year is Pinayism in the face of adversity, and the students are taking on some very charged subject matter–sexual trafficking– in the skits that are interspersed with the traditional dance numbers. I’m really proud of them for being willing to address such a dark subject while weaving in a message of strength and resilience. Can’t wait to see how it turns out.

So. If you’ve never been to a PCN, or it’s been a while since your last one, or hell, even if was only last year that you saw one, come support Kasamahan and come to one of their performances this coming weekend! The students really sacrifice a ton to put this thing on, and your support of all their talent and energy is much appreciated.

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USF’s 36th Annual Pilipino Cultural Night – BARRIO FIESTA 2K9

USF Presentation Theater, 2350 Turk Blvd, San Francisco

Shows are Friday 3/13 and Saturday 3/14
Doors open @ 6:30PM, Show STARTS @ 7:00PM

Ticket Prices:
Student – $12
General – $20
Group – $10/tix for a group of 8 or more students.

If you would like to purchase tickets, or have any questions, contact us at USFKasamahan (at) gmail.com.

Mindanao

Monday, March 9th, 2009

Always interesting to see a little smidge of international focus on the Philippines, if not more. A few pics, courtesy of the BBC Online’s popular Day In Pictures feature. (And I don’t want to diminish the seriousness of the painful conditions in the south, but really, it might be time for the guerrilla fighters to, er, reconsider their acronym.)

BBC Day In Pictures: Mindanao Conflict (9 pictures)

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Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) guerrilla fighters want a separate Muslim homeland in the southern Philippines.
Since a peace deal with the government collapsed, some have abandoned the ceasefire.

Amanda Ross-Ho

Sunday, March 8th, 2009

Another good lecture coming up at Cal this Monday night:

UC Berkeley Department of Art Practice
Lecture Series Presents

Amanda Ross-Ho

Monday, March 9th at 7:30 pm
Kroeber Hall, Room 160
Admission is free

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Amanda Ross-Ho‘s work examines economies of presentation, the mutability and materiality of context, and direct negotiations between image and object in an attempt to diagram the simultaneities embedded at the foundation of experience. Her paintings, photographs, sculpture and large-scale installation works illuminate connections between disparate elements, transparency within boundaries, and balance within the uneven terrain of hierarchy. Through an expansive and interdisciplinary approach, Ross-Ho tackles the impossible project of deconstructing local and universal totalities by endlessly sifting through their constituent fragments.

Amanda Ross-Ho was born in Chicago, IL in 1975. She received her BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1998 and her  MFA from the  University of Southern California in 2006. She has presented solo exhibitions at Western Exhibitions, Chicago, Cherry and Martin, Los Angeles, Hoet Bekaert, Belgium, and has a forthcoming solo exhibition at Mitchell-Innes and Nash, New York, in Fall 2009. Selected group exhibitions include Artist’s Space, New York, Francesca Pia, Zurich, The Approach, London, Mitchell-Innes and Nash, New York, Guild and Greyshkul, New York, John Connelley Presents, New York, Bellwether, New York, Cherry and Martin, Los Angeles, Marc Foxx, Los Angeles, Pacific Asia Museum, Pasadena, The Atlanta Contemporary Art Center, The California Biennial at the Orange County Museum of Art, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, and the 2008 Whitney Biennial at The Whitney Museum of American Art.  Her work has been reviewed in Artforum, The New York Times, ArtReview, Modern Painters, The LA Times, LA Weekly, The Village Voice, Conde Nast Portfolio, Time Out New York, Art Ltd, Mousse, and NY Arts Magazine. Amanda Ross-Ho lives and works in Los Angeles.

For directions, future events, and more information please visit:

http://studio.berkeley.edu/lecture/

http://art.berkeley.edu/

vindication!

Saturday, March 7th, 2009

Hah!
Doodling should be encouraged in boring meetings, claims psychologist

Ian Sample, Science correspondent
guardian.co.uk, Friday 27 February, 2009

Dedicated doodlers may be more likely to remember what was said at a dull meeting.

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The next time you are caught doodling in a meeting, declare that you are simply trying to boost your concentration.

Rather than being frowned upon, doodling should be actively encouraged in meetings because it improves our ability to pay attention, a British psychologist claims.

A study that compared how well people remembered details of a dull monologue found that those who doodled throughout retained more information than those who tried to sit and listen.

Jackie Andrade, a cognitive psychologist at the University of Plymouth, UK, believes that when people are stuck in a boring meeting or listening to a tedious conversation, their minds naturally begin to wander.

“A simple task like doodling may be sufficient to stop daydreaming without affecting performance on the main task,” she said. “In everyday life, doodling may be something we do because it helps to keep us on track with a boring task, rather than being an unnecessary distraction that we should try to resist doing.”

Andrade asked 40 volunteers to listen to a monotonous two-and-a-half minute telephone message and jot down the names of people who had been invited to a party. Half of the participants were asked to shade in shapes on a piece of paper while they listened to relieve the boredom. The shading task was chosen instead of more creative doodling because it was less likely to make people feel self-conscious.

After hearing the recorded message, the volunteers were given a surprise memory test to see how much of it they could remember. The script of the message mentioned eight names of people who could make the party, three who could not and eight place names.

Writing in the journal Applied Cognitive Psychology, Andrade describes how doodlers scored better on writing down the names of people attending the party, and were also able to recall the names more accurately afterwards.

On average, the doodlers recalled 7.5 names and places ”“ 29% more than the average of 5.8 remembered by the control group.

“If you are in a boring meeting, the best thing you can do is try to make it more interesting, but if that’s not going to happen, your best bet is to doodle,” she said..

“It’s not so much that doodling is good for your concentration, but that daydreaming is bad. If you are thinking about where you are going to go on holiday, that is probably going to be more cognitively demanding than a doodle.”

guardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2009

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Coffee Drawings
, 2000-2004

Kearny St from Capp St to Howard St

Friday, March 6th, 2009

I know. Confusing. But somehow diasporically appropriate. Or appropriately diasporic. And this doesn’t even address KSW’s numerous prior moves! Tonight, I’m off to Kearny Street Workshop‘s new digs south of Market. They just moved (again. sigh) to a great new space at PariSoma, on Howard at 10th. I haven’t seen it yet, so I’m excited to check it out!

SPACE WARMING:
Art auction and welcome home party at KSW’s new space

Kearny Street Workshop welcomes you to our new home at PariSoMa. Please join us for a housewarming party and art auction, featuring artwork by: Sita Bhaumik, Kevin B. Chen, Derek Chung, Amy Ho, Bob Hsiang, Rajkamal Kahlon, Susanna Kwan, Niana Liu, Choppy Oshiro, Kana Tanaka, Weston Teruya, Truong Tran, Lauren M. Wong, Rebecca Szeto, Christina Mazza, J. Lin-Hsien Kung, and others. There will also be beverages, tasty eats, and performances by singer-songwriter Goh Nakamura and vocalist Yumi Thomas in our cozy new space.

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Event: SPACE WARMING: ksw’s art auction and welcome home party
Date: Friday, March 6, 2009
Time: 6.30 – 9.30pm
Location: PariSoMa, 1436 Howard Street, @ 10th Street, San Francisco
Cost: Free & open to the public

(On a side note, can people out there try to spell “Kearny” correctly from now on? I know I’m a nit-picky spelling stickler, but seriously, folks. It’s not hard. Only 6 letters.)

Examined Life, starting tonight!

Friday, March 6th, 2009

The indomitable Astra Taylor‘s new documentary Examined Life is opening in the Bay Area!  Astra is my dear friend Sunny (Sunaura) Taylor‘s sister, and a major  documentary film-maker. The Taylor women are an unbelievably fierce, brilliant, high-achieving sister act (way fiercer, dare I say, than the Wofford sisters, who tend to sit around eating paint, mostly).

Anyway, Sunny is also featured (in conversation with Judith Butler!) in Examined Life:

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In her film, Astra accompanies some of today’s most influential thinkers on a series of unique excursions through places and spaces that hold particular resonance for them and their ideas, riffing off Socrates’ (you know, So-crates?) statement, “The unexamined life is not worth living”.

Peter Singer’s thoughts on the ethics of consumption are amplified against the backdrop of Fifth Avenue’s posh boutiques. Sifting through a London garbage dump Slavoj Zizek turns the common view of ecology upside down. Surrounded by symbols of wealth and leisure Michael Hardt ponders the nature of revolution. Judith Butler and a friend stroll through San Francisco’s Mission District questioning our culture’s fixation and individualism. And while driving through Manhattan, Cornel West””perhaps America’s best-known public intellectual””compares philosophy to jazz and blues, reminding us how intense and invigorating a life of the mind can be. Offering privileged moments with great thinkers from fields ranging from moral philosophy to cultural theory, Examined Life reveals philosophy’s power to transform the way we see the world around us and imagine our place in it.

I haven’t seen it yet, but I will definitely catch it sometime in the next week. Shoot, anyone who gets Cornel West to go on a nice long ramble in the back of her Volvo while driving around, and gets Slavoj Zizek in a sassy orange vest has got my vote, so that’s gotta be worth the price of admission right there. Examined Life got a major shout-out in the NY Times recently, so if my cheerleading isn’t enough to convince you, you can take it from one of their experts.

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Mr Pointy, backseat driver

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Mr Sassy, jazz hands

Examined Life showtimes below, at:

Landmark Shattuck Cinemas
Shattuck Ave, Berkeley
*Astra and Sunaura in person this Saturday 3/7 at the 5 and 715 pm screenings!

Sundance Kabuki Cinemas
Post Street at Fillmore, San Francisco
*Astra and Sunaura in person this Friday 3/6 and Sunday 3/8 at the 5 and 7 pm screenings!

other places in California and the rest of the US
on the film’s website

Astra is also giving a talk about the film at the Berkeley Art Museum on Monday March 9th at 4pm.
The film has a limited run here in the Bay Area, so catch it sooner rather than later!

nerds and tables

Wednesday, March 4th, 2009

What a weekend! Friday night was the artworld nerdfest that is/was Southern Exposure’s Monster Drawing Rally at the Verdi Club, and Saturday day I helped out my friend Favianna by manning her booth at the comics/gaming/fantasy nerdfest that is WonderCon. And I mean “nerd” in the most affectionate way possible, seeing as I lump myself in with this terminology, too.

Both events were a blast, but for whatever reasons, I found myself ruminating on what it means to be on either side of a desk. Maybe desks are just like metal detectors for me in terms of being similarly transferential, but there’s something funny about the divide and purpose that they suggest.

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Durian on the brain at Monster Drawing Rally

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Durian on the table at Monster Drawing Rally

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Azn Boyzz! Lordy and K.Lo, being cute

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avoiding temptation (lovely original comic-book cover ink drawings) from behind the booth at WonderCon

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Sigh. A girl after my own heart at WonderCon! I’ve actually done drawings of bandaged nurses, but this attendee really brought it.

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Yupyupyupyupyup nopenopenope yupyupyupyupyup

For some reason, these 3 guys made sense of it all for me. Having been a big old Sesame Street/Muppet Show fan growing up, I think that there’s something that still tickles me about the staging of many of the Muppets behind tables, ledges, and low walls. I suspect that many people behind desks are just some species of propped-up puppet, I guess. Also, I think I prefer not knowing what’s going on from the waist down with most folks, muppets or no. No, don’t read too much into that. Really.

Archiving Roberto Chabet

Monday, March 2nd, 2009

For those of you who don’t know about Roberto Chabet, he’s something of an icon in the Manila artist community: in terms of both his creative production, commitment to mentoring younger artists, and his place in Philippine art, I can only parallel his work and impact in the community to that of the Bay Area’s own Carlos Villa. (Carlos and Roberto are of the same generation, and in fact even met each other when Carlos visited the Philippines a long while back).

Ringo Bunoan is an extraordinary artist and mentor in her own right: she co-founded the legendary art space Big Sky Mind, and will be exhibiting her own work in San Francisco later this year. When she and I met up in Makati in January, she was fully immersed in the Chabet archives, and has been working tirelessly to put together this massive project, which I’m sad not to get to see:

ARCHIVING ROBERTO CHABET
Ringo Bunoan

The Cellar Gallery and Basement B
UP Vargas Museum
3 March – 4 April 2009

The UP Vargas Museum will open the exhibition entitled, Archiving Roberto Chabet on 3 March 2009 (Tuesday), 6:00 PM at the Cellar Gallery.

In Archiving Roberto Chabet, artist and researcher Ringo Bunoan focuses on the work of the pioneering Filipino conceptual artist Roberto Chabet, beginning with his early drawings and collages in the 1960s to his current installations and objects. For nearly a year now, she has been sourcing clippings, researching dates and titles, scanning photographs, conducting interviews, and cataloguing every single item that bears his name, for a special research project by the Asia Art Archive (AAA) with the support of the Lopez Memorial Museum.

For this exhibition however, the aim is not to present a thorough survey of Chabet’s work, nor even a sampling. Instead, Bunoan has decided to work within the cracks in the narrative, by re-constructing and presenting some of Chabet’s works, which have never been realized or those that have escaped documentation.

Drawing on the idea of surveillance and the desire for knowledge, the exhibition invites reflection on how we can represent the fractured and ephemeral nature of conceptual art. It is a fitting homage to Chabet, who, despite his strong influence, has maintained a strategic distance from the operations of the art world. With this ordering of scavenged data, Bunoan underscores Chabet’s immense contribution to Philippine art while performing a critical statement on the systems and politics that govern our culture, memory and history.

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Artist’s Talk by Ringo Bunoan is scheduled on 06 March 2009 (Friday), 3:00 PM at the UP Vargas Museum.

Archiving Roberto Chabet will run until 4 April 2009. For more information, please contact the UP Vargas Museum at 928-19-27 (direct line), 929-19-25 (telefax), 981-85-00 local 4024, 0929-8567909 (mobile), or send an e-mail at vargasmuseum@gmail.com. The Museum’s official website may be viewed at www.vargasmuseum.org

The UP Vargas Museum is located at Roxas Avenue, UP Diliman QC. The Museum is open from Tuesday to Sunday, 9AM-4PM. Entrance fee is PhP 20 for UP students, faculty, alumni and students (free day for UP students on Wednesdays); PhP 30 for non-UP guests.