On view: December 14, 2020—January 14, 2021
Online at SFAI.edu
Here is where we greet our audience, talk about how excited we are to see you, and ask if you want a beer or glass of wine while walking you over to look at the artwork. The moment and place where we recall the incredible dedication and hours and love that went into making this show happen. But, would it hurt to mention the “almost” moments we’ve had? Almost being the last class to graduate, almost being the first class of the reimagined SFAI, or that this show itself almost didn't happen. Instead, through sheer willpower, we (the students) showed up (on zoom) in search of stable ground. We pushed past declining capacity, and created a new space deep within the digital ether to collectively activate our work on what often felt like an 8% battery.
We are here through these devices because that is all we’ve got—an online exhibition. Because we want this ritual and maintaining one is a way to tell ourselves, everything is the same! The ground is still there, so we turn on our devices, activate the celebration rituals, and be witness to each other’s existence and in this case our final culminating work of our time at SFAI. So, we require our pats on the back, and gold stars on our foreheads. We’ve earned it.
Among all the things the internet contains (funny chihuahua memes, oddly satisfying goo, and conspiracy theories), it is weird how this celebration will remain forever frozen as a descriptive document of our graduation in cyberspace—instead of being an embodied moment etched into our unreliable memory. A rectangular shape that contains a controlled experience, and a fleeting image for the spectator, that ironically lasts forever. So in no small feat, the 2020 Summer and Fall BFA class found the energy to present 8% an exhibition of works by Alise Anderson, Ashlyn Forbes, AMI SIOUX, Anguo Ping, Christina Aguilera, Gregory Blanche, jonn., Jusun Seo, Katerina Camejo, Lorena Ciccia, Mabel Meza, and Michael Martinez.
About San Francisco Art Institute
Founded in 1871, SFAI is one of the country's oldest and most prestigious institutions of higher education committed to the practice and study of contemporary art. SFAI fosters creativity and original thinking in an open, experimental, and interdisciplinary context, and has played a central role in many contemporary art movements including Abstract Expressionism, Bay Area Figuration, Color Field, California Funk, and the Mission School. Celebrated artists and thinkers who have studied or taught at SFAI include Angela Davis, Bruce Conner, Carlos Villa, Ansel Adams, Mark Rothko, David Park, Lynn Hershman Leeson, Mildred Howard, George Kuchar, Richard Diebenkorn, Jay DeFeo, Catherine Opie, Joan Brown, Cristobal Martinez, Toba Khedoori, Mike Henderson, Barry McGee, Alicia McCarthy, and Kehinde Wiley. Other notable alumni include the photographer Annie Liebovitz and Academy Award-winning director Kathryn Bigelow.
Image Caption: 8% 2020 BFA Exhibition Page. Courtesy of San Francisco Art Institute.