The Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, one of San Francisco’s premiere cultural art venues, is currently exhibiting Wallworks featuring artists Makoto Aida, Edgar Arceneaux, Chris Finley, Tillman Kaiser, Odili Donald Odita, Amanda Ross-Ho, Yehudit Sasportas, and Leslie Shows. The exhibition is the curatorial debut of Betti-Sue Hertz, YBCA’s new Director of Visual Arts, and brings together artists to produce new site-specific wall pieces. Working in response to Fumihiko Maki‘s acclaimed architectural design of the YBCA, which was built in 1993, each artist has responded to the space, either directly or indirectly to create massive new works. The works on view range from formal to conceptual, and reference elements of art and architectural history, cultural trends, and personal relations with the natural world.
Philadelphia-based artist Odili Donald Odita created a series of hard-edged brightly colored wall paintings, titled Post-Perfect, which rely heavily on modernist ideals. The works push the viewer through an imaginary space, causing the eyes to climb walls and then dissolve again onto the base of the floor. Japanese artist Makoto Aida created a massive printed / painted collage titled Monument For Nothing III, which represents an amalgamation of contemporary cultural sources from Japan. The cultural references seem to boil over and explode onto the gallery wall in a twenty-five foot high by nearly fifty foot wide display. Also on view is the massive wall installation titled Display of Properties by Alaska-born, San Francisco-based artist Leslie Shows. The work includes dozens of color drained flags, of all sizes, which protrude from the gallery walls. The bold colors and family crests which once adorned the flags now drip down the walls and mix as they run, creating a beautiful fusion of color while stripping the flags of their nationalism.
Wallworks brings together a mix of artists, all of which employ a monumentally graphic aesthetic however each investigate the Yerba Buena Center’s space in a unique and dynamic way.