Kara Q. Smith

Profile  |  Exhibitions  |  Network  |  Reviews  |  Comments
Dissecting Urbanisms   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Carlos Villa at Mission Cultural Center For Latino Arts August 13th, 2011 - October 5th, 2011
Posted 8/30/11
It was my first time visiting the Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts when I went to visit the current exhibition: a survey of recent work by the Bay Area artist, Carlos Villa. Upon entering the gallery, I had no expectations and limited knowledge of the historical background and importance – not to mention the oeuvre – that encapsulates Villa’s career. The exhibition houses an overwhelming collection of large works on wooden panels and doors. The doors leaned against the walls, while some... [more]
Close Cut   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Ray Beldner, Adam Feibelman, Matt Gonzalez, Greg Lamarche, Joey Piziali, Boris Tellegen, Leigh Wells at Guerrero Gallery August 30th, 2011 - August 30th, 2011
Posted 8/30/11
I have a shelf full of paper-based ephemera from exhibitions: price lists, post cards, business cards, curatorial statements, artists' take-aways. My graph-paper notebook is filled with notes from exhibitions, quotes by artists, titles and dates of pieces, and eventually, when the last page is full, I will add it to that shelf where I keep these treasures, swearing I might need them someday though I have yet to pull one thing from the depths. That’s just it; things on paper are usually... [more]
Divine Midsummer's Night Comedy   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Alexander Chen, Adriane Colburn, Amanda Hughen, Ehren Elizabeth Reed, Lordy Rodriguez at Montalvo Arts Center July 29th, 2011 - October 16th, 2011
Posted 8/1/11
Driving in our Zipcar down Montalvo Road toward our destination, we peered through the gated entrances of the houses along the way and I wondered if this set up made trick-or-treating really difficult in this neighborhood. Perhaps that is the point. Hoping to be treated ourselves by the events of the evening, we arrived at the Montalvo Arts Center, a beautiful historical villa that unfolds behind its own wrought iron entrance, naturally. The scene: pastoral attendees occupying picnic blankets... [more]
Otherworldly Production   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Jo Babcock, Marco Breuer, John Chiara, Pierre Cordier, Binh Danh, Susan Derges, Shi Guorui, Michelle Kloehn, MarieAnge, Klea McKenna, Abelardo Morell, Bettina Samson, Wendy Small at Haines Gallery June 9th, 2011 - July 16th, 2011
Posted 6/27/11
Certainly science is central to the methodical processes witnessed in Science of Sight: Alternative Photography at Haines Gallery. This is a science of chemicals, of alchemy, of an Otherworld. Light reacts: transgressing the limits of minuscule holes, meeting new levels of exposure. More than the fundamental techniques needed to produce a photographic image, Science of Sight seeks to expose something less literal:  the mental faculties of sight, a vision evocative of memories and dreams. And... [more]
I first saw James Chronister’s work at Eleanor Harwood’s booth at artMRKT San Francisco. Defiantly visceral and elevated, Chronister’s paintings stood out in the acute environment of persevering gallerists and the onslaught of visual engagement. A week later, I stopped by the opening of his current exhibition, Now We Lustre where I innately conjured associations with his work such as Roy Lichtenstein’s appropriation and Robert Ryman’s surfaces. To breakdown these bygone associations of mine,... [more]
Dinner is Served   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Richard Beaven, Christin Boggs, Nolan Calisch, Thea Maria Carlson, Kim Carr, Tierney Creech, Mckenzie Ditter, Makenna Goodman, Erin Harvey, Michele Ledoux, Ellie Lobovits, Genevieve Luikart, Esther Margolis, Connie Migliazzo, Aaron Price, Ethan Rafal, Trace Ramsey, Georgia Ranney, Ben Scott-Killian, Cecily Upton, Sara Worden at 18 Reasons Gallery February 3rd, 2011 - March 31st, 2011
Posted 3/15/11
This is really about how a lot of complex stuff around Art and Community intersect in a specific place, a foodie-focused space, 18 Reasons, nestled in the hip, critically-acclaimed (food-wise and otherwise) Mission District becomes a site of these two, and how great/problematic those intersections can be. Firstly, here is what I was thinking... I’m wondering if I am overstepping my boundaries as some sort of Community Critic.  I don't exactly see myself as a constituent of 18 Reasons; I... [more]
The Old Boys’ Club Wants You To Dance   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
The Old Boys' Club at Haines Gallery January 6th, 2011 - April 2nd, 2011
Posted 2/7/11
Amidst the polished concrete and the overwhelming strip-mall-blasé that permeates the floors of galleries at 49 Geary Street, Haines Gallery offers some spare reprieve in their back room space with this latest exhibition. Boasting grey walls (a welcomed contrast to the impeccable white dominating all other viewing experiences), I found the colorful works of Le Destitution de la Jeune Fille, the most recent installation by The Old Boys’ Club ( the recently coined moniker of multi-media artist... [more]
“When I began my career, the categorical imperative of every young writer was to represent his own time. Full of good intentions, I tried to identify myself with the ruthless energies propelling the events of our century, both collective and individual. I tried to find harmony between the adventurous picaresque inner rhythm that prompted me to write and the frantic spectacle of the world, sometimes dramatic and sometimes grotesque. Soon I became aware that between the facts of life that should... [more]
The Corporeal Qualities of the Yarn   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Jaime Cortez, Ken Lo, Ginger Wolfe-Suarez at Southern Exposure January 7th, 2011 - February 19th, 2011
Posted 1/18/11
Because a faded Polaroid photograph of a Western American mountainous desert skyline could epitomize my distant memories and dreams…because I like Derrida, because of my grandmother’s tea…these might be the reasons I have always enjoyed the experience of Ginger Wolfe-Suarez’s work. “Both Are True” is a constructed landscape of memory and experience where viewers must step around rocks or walk under a structure, forcing a sort of indirect interaction with the works in the space. In the case of... [more]
Radical Empathy   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Posted 12/13/10
        David Wojnarowicz’s piece, entitled was removed by museum staff from its exhibition, “Hide/Seek: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture,” in the National Portrait Gallery in Washington DC on December 1, 2010 after members of Congress and the Catholic League expressed objections to the video. The world lost David Wojnarowicz in 1992 to AIDS. December 1st was World AIDS Day. In response to this censorship, a panel of curators, researchers, activists and art historians... [more]
Transcending Alterity   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Guillermo Gómez-Peña, Dale Hoyt, Tony Labat at SOMArts Cultural Center December 9th, 2010 - January 28th, 2011
Posted 12/13/10
          In the corner of the gallery, there are cats. I personally don’t think you can go wrong with cat art. Sold! But the sketches of cats by Dale Hoyt and Steve Thurston, upon closer inspection, are disturbing (albeit pleasantly). Inspired by CC, the world’s first cloned cat, these felines have unrecognizable configurations, sutured heads and incomplete anatomies. On a nearby monitor, Hoyt is in the middle of his performance piece, , 2001, making a shirt of hair for a hairless... [more]
Perhaps   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Glen Friedman at 941Geary November 6th, 2010 - December 31st, 2010
Posted 11/15/10
    Glen Friedman’s favorite word is Fuck. My favorite word is Perhaps.I knew Glen Friedman’s touring photography show, , was in town because I saw the wheatpasted posters all over my Mission neighborhood.Punk subcultures and its ephemera have been resurfacing in artistic and cultural venues for years now. The first show I saw was Bruce Conner’s Mabuhay Gardens photography exhibition at the Berkeley Art Museum. I thought it was revolutionary. My primary interest in this emergence is the... [more]
Showcased   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Zarouhie Abdalian, Bill Albertini,, Emanuele Becheri, Taha Belal, Carlos Bevilacqua, Elisheva Biernoff, David Buuck, Gintaras Didžiapetris, Brandon Walls Olsen, Nicolas  Boulard, Malak  Helmy, Jason  Kalogiros,   Cameron  Kelly,   Juozas  Laivys,   Michelle  Lopez,   George  Maciunas,   Benoît  Maire,   Lauren  Marsden,   Joshua  Martinez,   Nicolas  Matranga,   Giovanni  Oberti,   Mauro  Vignando at SC13 at the San Francisco Antique & Design Mall August 1st, 2010 - December 31st, 2010
Posted 11/15/10
      Entering San Francisco Antique & Design Mall is like stepping out of the wardrobe into a land full of haphazardly placed objects and wares, trinkets, tchotchkes, and worlds upon worlds of aged interiors, all of which manage to simultaneously disorient and excite the savvy adventurer. Located a little past Industrial Street and the just-built Lowe’s that is sure to threaten the extant home-building depots and emporiums en route, SFADM is (at best) unconsidered by devotees... [more]
From a Sub-Sub   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Carrie Hott at Adobe Books Backroom Gallery September 30th, 2010 - November 6th, 2010
Posted 10/25/10
        So fare thee well, poor devil of a Sub-Sub, whose commentator I am. - Herman Melville, “EXTRACTS (Supplied by a Sub-Sub-Librarian),” Moby DickAnyone walking by Adobe Books is beckoned into the shop by a handwritten sign in the window, inviting all fellow adventurers and explorers to journey in and participate in the discoveries of Carrie Hott’s current exhibition, Understanding a Whale Fall/Whale Watch. Upon stepping into the store one finds Hott’s two-component... [more]