In my curation and arts programming, I am committed to broadening access and deepening public engagement.
As a curator, I work in two primary spaces: graphic narrative and new media art. My exhibitions and programming in new media art are rooted in the same questions that motivate my scholarship in art and technology. How can aesthetic experiences help us to understand the nuances of our relationships with technology? And how might artists envision different possibilities for that relationship? My curatorial work in graphic narrative, which ranges comics and animation, arrives from a long-held interest in how we tell stories.
Recoding CripTech, SOMArts Cultural Center, San Francisco (23 January 2019 - 25 February 2020)
Space, Github, San Francisco (25-27 October 2019)
Intersections, San Francisco Art Institute, Fort Mason Center for the Arts (3 November 2018)
Artobots, The Midway, San Francisco (4-7 June 2018)
New Media Art
As a curator at CODAME Art + Tech, I work with an inspiring crew of artists, engineers, writers, musicians - dreamers all - to build innovative exhibitions and events at the cutting edge of art and technology. Spanning web, screen-based, installation, and performance art, our projects emphasize play and possibility.
Held in October 2019, Space explored the manifold ways that
virtual space intersects with lived space. The installations mapped
the fluid and responsive terrain of human activity in the
Anthropocene. From melting glaciers to dreamlike buildings, space
rendered in architectural maps or in virtual reality, in the exhibition
urban space, environmental space, outer space, and domestic
AI machine hallucination data paintings by media
artist Refik Anadol envisioned the collective memory of a future
life of Mars to come, while in Ice-Time, Clea White made an
ambitious appeal to experience the deep time of ancient ice.
Austrian media artist Virgil Widrich swapped the axes of time
and space in his tx-mirror, inviting reflection on where and when
we conduct ourselves in relation to the dilated temporality of
Intersections, a collaboration with Leonardo/ISAST, was held at San Francisco Art Institute at Fort Mason Center for the Arts in November 2019. I was invited to curate this exhibition, film, and performance program in celebration of the Leonardo Convening, in commemoration of their 50th anniversary. Animated by their 50-year commitment to building bridges across the "two cultures" of art and science, in this show I traced several overlapping themes that emerged over these decades of artistic and scientific collaboration.
Though commonly thought to inhabit distinct worlds, these two cultures have long collaborated for common purpose. Motivated by deep curiosity, imagination, and a shared sense of wonder, artists and scientists ask questions of the material world: How does it work? Why does it matter? What happens if...? In light od the environmental and technological crises in our world, these questions take on a renewed urgency.
Bearing the lessons of the Anthropocene in mind - or the concept that we are in an era uniquely defined by human activity - this exhibition explored the interrelationship of humans and our environments, whether organic or algorithmic. Intersections showcased works that explore the entanglements of human and nonhuman actors.
From the microscopic to the gigantic, the tangible to the ephemeral, we share our world with a thriving universe of atoms, data, bacteria, and code. Intersections engaged with scientific and technological developments that have shaped the past 50 years - including the camera lens, the data cloud, the waterway, the algal bloom, and the social network.
Held in June 2018, the CODAME Art + Tech Festival, "Artobots," explored the many intersections of art and automation. Including a diverse representation of this theme, such as robotics and dance, A.I. and image style transfer, generative art, glitch and Butoh, to name a few, this four-day festival was a multidisciplinary celebration of automation in art.
Ahead of the festival, the podcast "State of the Art" interviewed me to talk about my work, the festival, and the centrality of play to what we do.
Comics and Graphic Narratives
I love comics. Beyond my research and teaching, I have also dedicated much of my time to highlighting artists and fostering conversation about this extraordinary medium.
With my colleague and co-conspirator, Angela Becerra Vidergar, at "Draw 'Til You Crawl," a comics reading we curated at Litcrawl San Francisco, 2014.
As a special correspondent for The Human Angle, a web-series and humanities outreach project based at Stanford, I interviewed Ricardo Padilla, founder and director of the Latino Comics Expo, for this episode, "The Rise of Latino Comics in America."
Graphic Narrative Project
Graphic narratives, in the form of comics, graphic novels, animation, and other popular incarnations, are a quickly emerging field of study, whose terms are still in the making.
As part of our event series, we have hosted a slew of talented graphic narrative artists, authors and scholars, such as Scott McCloud, Joe Sacco, Gene Luen Yang, Hillary Chute and myriad others. Our annual symposia have included Moving Pictures: Latino/a Comics, From Sunshine State to Fog City: Asian American Comics in California, Secret Identity Politics: Superhero Studies and Comics Scholarship and Alternative Comics: Through the Eyes of the Hernandez Brothers.
Alternative Comics: Through the Eyes of the Hernandez Brothers
In 2014, I organized a symposium at Stanford celebrating the decades-long careers of alternative comics legends Los Bros Hernandez. Renowned for their comics series Love and Rockets, which has spanned some thirty years, Jaime, Gilberto and Mario Hernandez came to Stanford to discuss their life, work, inspirations and craft over two days.
Read some media coverage of the event here.
Moderating a discussion of comics and craft with the Hernandez Brothers and aspiring student artists. Photo by Veronica Marian.
Video of the entire panel discussion from "Alternative Comics: Through the Eyes of the Hernandez Brothers," featuring Professors Scott Bukatman and Ramon Saldivar, as well as moderator Angela Becerra Vidergar.