The Annual Murphy & Cadogan Contemporary Art Awards Exhibition, September 7–29, 2017

Sherwin Rio's SEREMONYA

SOMArts is proud to partner with The San Francisco Foundation to present The Annual Murphy and Cadogan Contemporary Art Awards Exhibition, a focused look at the future of the Bay Area visual arts, September 7–29, 2017. The exhibition, made possible by The San Francisco Foundation and its donors, showcases 18 promising visual artists working across disciplines and identifies young artists from Master of Fine Arts programs throughout the Bay Area whose work intersects with emerging trends.

The competitive Jack and Gertrude Murphy Award and the Edwin Anthony and Adalaine Boudreaux Cadogan Scholarships are administered by The San Francisco Foundation. The awards are designed to further the development of Bay Area MFA students and foster the exploration of their artistic potential in hybrid practice, installation, mixed media, painting, photography and sculpture.

The Jack and Gertrude Murphy Award of $40,000 is given to an MFA student of unusual caliber with great artistic promise. Edwin Anthony and Adalaine Boudreaux Cadogan both experienced financial challenges as art students and understood the great difference scholarships can make in the early phase of an artist’s career. The winners of the Cadogan Scholarships receive $6,500 each to support their MFA studies. All the students benefit from participation in a professionally curated exhibition at SOMArts Cultural Center.

Award recipients were selected by a panel of three judges including artist and independent curator Kevin B. Chen; Dr. Lizzetta LeFalle-Collins, Faculty, University of San Francisco; and Maria Ester Fernandez, Curator of Art & Education, Triton Museum of Art, San Jose.

For the first time this year, SOMArts will host a day-long summit focused on advancing equity in arts education in conjunction with the Murphy and Cadogan Contemporary Art Awards Exhibition. Featuring interactive panel discussions and live performances, the summit will bring together emerging artists, students, educators and arts administrators to discuss how arts education can better prepare and equip all students for future careers in the arts.

Click here for more information on the 2017 Murphy & Cadogan award winners, including artist statements and bios.

Murphy Award winner Sherwin Rio describes himself as “the tension hanging on a clothesline between two countries.” Often utilizing domestic items, clothing and construction materials to create immersive sculptures and installations, Rio’s work explores heritage and memory in the Filipino diaspora.

Kira Dominguez Hultgren's  CAPTCHA Are You A RobotKira Dominguez Hultgren’s weaving illuminates the complexity of hybrid identities through striking combinations and contrasting patterns. Integrating the virtual test to tell humans and robots apart (CAPTCHA) into the traditional form of weaving, Dominguez Hultgren’s work explores the liminal space between fixed identities or homelands.

Rafael BustillosRafael Bustillos uses the language of multiple materials in order to explore the human condition, seeking to answer the question, “Do we exist to experience pain and suffering in order to gain the pleasure of existence?” Immersive paintings, sculptures and installations encourage viewers to take a closer look in order to learn the language of each material.

Nancy Sayavong's Sand MafiaExploring gentrification through materials often found in “urban renewal” projects, Nancy Sayavong’s sculpture engages the language of her working class roots alongside status symbols of material wealth.


Cadogan Scholarships
Emily Budd, California College of the Arts
Rafael Bustillos, San Francisco Art Institute
Amy Cella, San Francisco State University
Troy Chew, California College of the Arts
Kira Dominguez Hultgren, California College of the Arts
Abigail Gregg, San Francisco Art Institute
Keyvan Heydari Shovir, California College of the Arts
Amber Imrie-Situnayake, Stanford University
Christopher Marin, California College of the Arts
Nick Mittelstead, San Francisco Art Institute
Natani Notah, Stanford University
Gianna Paniagua, California College of the Arts
Hannah Perrine Mode, Mills College
Nancy Sayavong, UC Berkeley
Keith Secola, California College of the Arts
Lauren Szabo, San Francisco Art Institute
Victor Yañez-Lazcano, Stanford University

Murphy Award
Sherwin Rio, San Francisco Art Institute

Curated by Kevin B. Chen

The exhibition and all accompanying events are free to attend and take place at SOMArts Cultural Center, 934 Brannan St. (between 8th and 9th) in San Francisco, CA.

The Annual Murphy and Cadogan Contemporary Art Awards Exhibition
September 7–29, 2017
Gallery hours: Tuesday–Friday, 12–7pm & Saturday, 12–5pm

Opening Reception & Awards Ceremony
Thursday, September 7, 6:30–9pm, ceremony at 7pm

Advancing Equity in Arts Education Summit
An afternoon of artist-led creative workshops, panel presentations and performances to advance equity in arts education.
Saturday, September 16, 1–4pm
Free with RSVP:

The San Francisco Foundation focuses on expanding opportunity and ensuring a more equitable future for all in the Bay Area. With more than $1.3 billion in assets, The San Francisco Foundation is one of the largest community foundations in the country, and working with its donors, distributed nearly $100 million to nonprofit organizations in the last year. The foundation brings together donors and builds on community assets through grantmaking, public policy, advocacy, and leadership development to make a greater impact in our community. The San Francisco Foundation serves San Francisco, Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, and San Mateo Counties.

The San Francisco Foundation logoImage credits (from top to bottom): Courtesy artist Sherwin Rio; courtesy artist Kira Dominguez Hultgren; courtesy artist Rafael Bustillos; courtesy artist Nancy Sayavong.