Eccentric Conversations 2019-01-22T22:25:12+00:00

QCC’s Emerging Scholars Program (ESP) and KADIST Present:
Eccentric Conversations

Sienna Freeman, Elena Gross, and Anthea Black in conversation with the work of Ad Minoliti. Moderated by Kim Anno.
October 17, 2018
Doors open at 6pm
Panel starts at 7pm
Free and Open to the Public
KADIST, 3295 20th Street, San Francisco

Art History often fails to acknowledge—and at times actively erases—the relationships, networks, and eccentric circles of influence that form the background of feminist and queer artists’ lives. Social exchanges, affiliations, alliances, amorous bonds, and even chance encounters that hold great meaning remain invisible in the face of “finished” artworks, exhibitions, and the history books. While developing The Feminist School of Painting at KADIST, artist Ad Minoliti embarked on a dialogue with many Bay Area artists and writers, including Sienna Freeman, Elena Gross, Anthea Black, and Kim Anno. Eccentric Conversations opens their exchange through a series of short, commissioned presentations, an open forum, and the presentation of a new zine to mark the occasion.

Emerging Scholars Program (ESP) brings together artists, scholars and recent graduates in the disciplines of fine arts, humanities, social sciences, and environmental design whose work explores gender identity and issues relevant to queer and trans people of color. In collaboration with Bay Area nonprofit, community-based arts, and social service organizations, the program hosts conversations that bring local perspective and develop a network of queer scholars and like-minded partners.

Co-presented by KADIST and the San Francisco Queer Cultural Center.

Ad Minoliti, The Feminist School of Painting
For more information about Ad Minoliti and Kadist:

The Feminist School of Painting is a solo exhibition by Ad Minoliti. Culminating her residency at KADIST, the project will transform the galleries into an active classroom with new murals of vibrant silhouettes of animals, landscapes, and geometrical forms.

Reimagining the structure of an art school, Minoliti will collaborate with a group of Bay Area artists, scholars, writers, and teachers to lead weekly workshops open to intergenerational artists and non-artists alike. Each workshop is centered around a traditional painting genre—landscape, portraiture, still life—and will combine discussion and studio painting instruction to reimagine historical narratives related to that week’s subject. By incorporating her collaborators’ diverse backgrounds in biology, science fiction, gender studies, technology, and more, the free workshops aim to promote accessibility and curiosity over any art-specific expertise. Rooted in Minoliti’s practice, The School will employ feminist queer theory and experimentation as a foundation for learning and critical thought.

The newly commissioned murals not only animate the classroom but also converse with a long-established history of mural paintings making culture accessible through images in outdoor public spaces—especially in the Mission District where KADIST is located. By engaging with and bringing this tradition inside the gallery, The School works to overturn expectations often associated with experiencing contemporary art today by promoting visual literacy and personal connection. In addition, a fanzine library, videos related to the workshop’s themes, and a coloring station for kids and adults are provided to offer moments for individual creative production.

Eccentric Panel includes:

Elena Gross is an independent writer and cultural critic living in Oakland, CA. She received an MA in Visual & Critical Studies from the California College of the Arts in 2016, and her BA in Art History and Women, Gender & Sexuality Studies from St. Mary’s College of Maryland in 2012. She specializes in representations of identity through fine art, photography, and popular media. Elena is the host of the arts & visual culture podcast, what are you looking at, published by Art Practical. Her most recent research has been centered around the work of artist Lorna Simpson and conceptual and material abstractions of the body in photography.

Anthea Black is a Canadian artist, writer, and cultural worker based in San Francisco and Toronto. Her studio work addresses feminist and queer history, collaboration, materiality, and labour and has been exhibited in Canada, the US, France, Germany, The Netherlands, and Norway, most recently with the publication of The HIV Howler: Transmitting Art and Activism, an artist newspaper in collaboration with Jessica Whitbread. Black is co-editor of Handbook: Supporting Queer and Trans Students in Art and Design Education with Shamina Chherawala and Craft on Demand: The New Politics of the Handmade with Nicole Burisch, and curator of SUPERSTRING, and the ongoing exhibition platform NO PLACE: Queer Geographies on Screen. She is an Assistant Professor in Printmedia and Graduate Fine Arts at California College of the Arts.

Sienna Freeman

My work draws upon significant personal experiences that illuminate the extremities of human consciousness: altered or heightened states of physical, psychological, or emotional condition. In these cumulative moments, which are characterized by their intense, transgressive, revelatory, and often dream-like nature, I find terrain for contemplation and investigation. Seeming to exist simultaneously in dichotomous spaces, perhaps pulled inside out through opposing forces, these dialectical moments expose the complexity of territories between the intellect and the senses, places where the logical mind and subconscious interface with a deeper sense of being.

Through the fragmented, layered, and surgical process of collage, I seek to investigate surreal areas of radical juxtaposition. Symbolic cultural imagery related to the body, birth, death, marriage, sexuality, and “right of passage” rituals is often employed to discuss fears, desires, and anxieties concerning the transitory nature of life and the contemporary human condition. I am particularly interested in paradoxical symbolism associated with ceremonies that both celebrate and mourn beginnings, endings, and the idea of forever, as these traditions often hold a mirror to the fact that we exist concurrently in both fixed and in-between spaces. Exploring tensions between beauty and the grotesque, constraint vs. comfort, and dominance vs. submission, I intend to create a visual language of archetypal imagery that can trigger an introspective psychological experience for the viewer, transpired by coinciding feelings of intrigue and aversion.

Kim Anno

Director, Producer. Anno is a painter, photographer, book artist and filmmaker/video artist whose work has been exhibited by museums nationally and internationally. SFMOMA, Brooklyn Museum, Honolulu Museum, Berkeley Art Museum, Crocker Museum, Oakland Museum, Getty Research Institute, Library of Congress, Columbia University, University of Texas, Austin, Walker Museum, Koopman Collection, The Hague, and Newberry Library have collected her work among others. Anno has been at work on an epic social practice filmmaking project: Men and Women In Water Cities, which is a longer term work made with local actors, citizens in coastal communities who are grappling with sea level rise.