March 29–April 24, 2014
SOMArts, 934 Brannan St.
Dance, drag and contemporary art collide in the gallery at the opening night party and interactive drag show for Work MORE! #6, Friday, March 28, 2014, 7–10pm, free admission. The exhibition is the third Spring 2014 Commons Curatorial Residency exhibition at SOMArts, organized by residency recipient and Work MORE! creator and artistic director Mica Sigourney (VivvyAnne ForeverMORE!). By pairing San Francisco drag performers with non-drag fine artists for an exhibition of collaborative installations and performances, Work MORE! #6 situates San Francisco’s avant-garde and traditional drag practices within a gallery space, re-contextualizing the artistry, aesthetics and forms that are ever-present and continually evolving in San Francisco’s nightlife venues.
“Like folk art, drag carries within it traditions, techniques, perspectives and stories that are passed down from generation to generation or mentor to mentee via chosen ‘drag families’. Through this exhibition we hope to reveal both the the unique individual and collective legacies of the performers themselves.” —Work MORE! artistic director, Mica Sigourney
The organizers of Work MORE! #6 devised a platform for collaborative art-making that utilizes drag to disturb traditional notions of beauty and gender while promoting interdisciplinary collaborations among artists who co-create rather than compete.
22 avant-garde and traditional drag performers and artists are divided into six production teams that include at least one artist working in each discipline: painting, photography, music and video. Drag artists naturally cross mediums working freely in painting and design (make-up), soft sculpture (hair design and costume design) as well as sculpture (set and prop making). These new encounters and partnerships illustrate the multidisciplinary artistry embedded in drag making as well as strengthen and diversify drag families and traditions.
The largest of the collaborating artist teams, a group of 10 spearheaded by Kolmel WithLove, offers “Womenhouse,” offers a new work that draws attention and inspiration from feminist artists and collectives from the 1970’s and other historically rich moments. Special attention will be paid to—as well as inspiration drawn from— “Womanhouse” organized by Judy Chicago and Miriam Schapiro in 1972. “Womenhouse” will make eight pieces in break-off pairs that re-imagine and re-mix groundbreaking works that touch on nostalgia, sisterhood, race, money, access, radical politics and the art world.
“The art of doing drag is most often rooted in interpreting and re-interpreting female artists and feminist ideas, so the coming together of these two elements makes perfect sense. The idealism, optimism, raw sharing of emotion and focus on collective action in the past might look hopelessly naive to most, but I love the focus on trying and creating instead of all this post-modern obsession with failure.” — Kolmel WithLove, Exhibiting Artist
EXHIBITING ARTIST TEAMS INCLUDE
Dean Disaster and DiegoDiegoDiego.com
Dorian Katz and Kevin Seaman
Robbie Sweeny and VAINHEIN
Ryan Crowder and Seven Mitchell
Lark Buckinghan, Alice Cunt and Constance Hockaday
Sugah Betes, Lydia Brunch (Kolmel WithLove), Sue Casa, Mutha Chucka, Dam Dyke, Fauxnique (Monique Jenkinson), U-PHORIA Glitter (Peter Griggs), Mona G. Hawd (Maryam Rostami), Lil Miss Hot Mess (Harris David Harris), Coco Kahlo
Sarah (sass) Biscarra-Dilley
Cara Rose DeFabio
Their biographies can be found online at www.work-more.org.
SOMArts’ exhibition programs are generously supported by the Community Arts and Education Program of the San Francisco Arts Commission, The San Francisco Foundation and individual donors. Work MORE! #6 is made possible with the generous support of the San Francisco Arts Commission and the Zellerbach Family Foundation. CounterPULSE is a community partner.
Photo by Cabure Bonugli, Robbie Sweeny and VAINHEIN pictured