Timken Lecture Hall, California College of the Arts, 1111 Eighth St., San Francisco, CA 94107
Although the physical subjects that John Divola photographs range from buildings to landscapes to objects in the studio, his concerns are conceptual: they challenge the boundaries between fiction and reality, as well as the limitations of art to describe life. Over the past four decades, he has evolved a wide-ranging and rigorous body of work merging photography, painting, sculpture, performance, and conceptual art. Raised in the San Fernando Valley—which he credits as having an impact on his development as an artist—Divola’s imagery often examines the Southern California landscape including urban Los Angeles or the nearby ocean, mountains, and desert.
Divola earned a BA from California State University, Northridge in 1971 and an MA from University of California, Los Angeles, where he studied under Robert Heinecken. In college, the new art movements that inspired him—Minimalism, Conceptualism, and Earthworks—were often not easily accessible, but encountered through photographic documentation. “I came to the conclusion that [photography] was the primary arena of contemporary art,” Divola has said, “and that all painting and sculpture and performance was, from a practical point of view, made to be photographed, to be re-contextualized, and talked or written about.”
In 2014, Divola was the subject of a major museum solo exhibition, As Far As I Could Get, a collaborative project between the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and Pomona College. Divola has taught photography and art at numerous institutions including California Institute of the Arts (1978-1988), and since 1988, he has been a Professor of Art at the University of California, Riverside.
Larry Sultan Visiting Artist Program
Pier 24 Photography is pleased to present the Larry Sultan Visiting Artist Program in collaboration with California College of the Arts and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Each year, the Larry Sultan Visiting Artist Program brings six photographers, writers, and curators to San Francisco to offer free and open lectures, and to work one-on-one with students at California College of the Arts.
Larry Sultan Photography Award
Fall 2019 Residency
Headlands Center for the Arts, Sausalito, CA
Click HERE for more information on the Larry Sultan Photography Award
Jonathan Calm is a visual artist who works in photography, video, installation, and performance. A central theme of his work is the relationship between photography and urban architecture, and the powerful role of images in the way architectural constructs shape the lives of individuals and communities.
In his most recent work, Calm explores the complex representation of African-American automobility from a historical and contemporary perspective, focusing and drawing on the importance and resonance of the Negro Motorist Green Book. Of this project, he explains, “the image of the infinite highway and the unbridled freedom to roam the land has always been considered a quintessential expression of the modern American spirit, but the black American experience of travel, which involves heightened subjectivity and exposure, has to this day proven a precarious privilege rather than an inalienable right.”
Calm’s art practice is international in scope and has been featured in numerous solo and group exhibitions, including Frequency at the Studio Museum in Harlem (2005); Role Play at the Tate Britain (2006); Black Is, Black Ain’t at the University of Chicago’s Renaissance Society (2008); Streetwise at the Reina Sophia Museum in Madrid (2008) and the Chelsea Art Museum (2011); deCordova Biennial at the deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum (2013); and Rooted Movements at LMAKprojects in New York City (2014). Calm currently lives in Palo Alto, CA where he is a faculty member in the Department of Art and Art History at Stanford University.