Artists Go Lightly
This exhibition and community event took place in the Noe Valley/Castro flat of two artists who have faced significant housing rights issues in the past and left San Francisco for other opportunities. The event occured during the open-ended, limbo period after the home was emptied, but before the keys were turned in to the landlord.
The day-long exhibition functioned in multiple ways:
• As an exhibit in which the walls were completely covered with “light” work by scores of emerging, mid-career, and established Bay Area, and former Bay Area, artists. Artwork was rotated throughout the course of the day.
• As a fundraiser for the San Francisco Tenants Union. As the work was rotated, it was available for purchase, resulting in the largest fundraiser in SFTU history.
• As a communal event for artists, activists, and other members of the San Francisco community. Food was shared, and art materials gifted or exchanged on the hour every hour for the day. TAM is taking a cue from the wildly popular Slideluck Potshow, a Brooklyn based community project for artists.
The San Francisco Tenants Union is a volunteer-based, membership-supported non-profit that has accomplished significant victories for housing rights in a city where the high stakes real estate game has homogenized the city by driving out other varied demographics, including artists. In 2006, among other achievments, the SFTU pushed the passage of Proposition H (relocation benefits to no-fault evictions) and the Passage of Proposition B in June (requiring realtors to disclose to potential buyers whenever tenants have been evicted from units being sold empty).
(Disclosure: in this first project supported by the Temporary Autonomous Museum, the two artists whose home it is happen to be the co-founders of the Museum).