16 July 2005

Bay Area Now IV

One of the bigger art happenings in this town is the triennial exhibition Bay Area Now, at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. Last night the fourth iteration of that show opened and it was such a to-do that even people with prepaid tickets were given refunds due to the high turnout. It's an interesting show which happens to include many of my more talented pals (including my good friend Marisa Jahn--people are always confusing us with each other outside of the Bay Area) and the curators included some unusual collectives, like Hamburger Eyes and Stretcher, with whom I am an occasional collaborator. I previewed the show in my column on San Francisco for Art Review (July 2005) and I'll be reviewing it for Artweek. Three years ago, in my review of Bay Area Now 3, for Artweek, I said that the show either indulged-- or at least confirmed--a tendency of many Bay Area artists to privilege context over content. Little did I imagine that such a small review would spark such controversy! (Ironically, my Artweek editor at the time was Berin Golonu, who is now an Assistant Curator at Yerba Buena and who helped organize the show.) I usually try not to read reviews of shows before I write about them, but I happened to catch some tidbits, this morning, over breakfast. It seems some of the curatorial decisions made in the show were done to make it more "real" and "street level." Now I've got to mull that over...


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