FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Dara Katrina Del Rosario
Communications & Partnerships Manager
415-863-1414 x103, [email protected]
SOMArts Cultural Center presents
Dedicated to all the lives we should not have lost
Saturday, October 10–Friday, November 6, 2020
September 29, 2020, San Francisco, CA–Now in its 21st year, SOMArts’ annual Día de Los Muertos exhibition is one of the most internationally diverse Day of the Dead celebrations in the United States. Founded by beloved San Francisco artist and curator René Yañez, Día de Los Muertos at SOMArts merges traditional altars with contemporary installations, continuing to be a multigenerational gathering of remembrance while asserting the role of art as a platform for collective action.
Living Legacies: Día de Los Muertos 2020 is a call to action for our responsibility to future generations. It is a call to use the strengths and lessons of our ancestors in this history we’re currently living through. This exhibition recognizes that the status quo has continued to fail communities of color, while holding space for collective grief, mourning, and resilience in the face of systemic oppression. Featuring a specially curated roster of artists for an exhibit of monumental space and imagination, curators Rio Yañez and Carolina Quintanilla encapsulate the urgency of our moment and light our path forward. In the midst of the global civil rights movement seeking to dismantle institutions of power built upon white supremacy, capitalism, and colonialism, Living Legacies is dedicated to all the lives we should not have lost. From the police violence toward Black communities, to the COVID–19 pandemic that has illuminated the ongoing need for housing rights, Medicare for all, and worker protections, we’re witnessing an uprising unlike anything we have seen before. In a time of incredible struggle, we turn to one another through art to remember and dream.
Gathering from the artistic family that has nurtured the exhibit for over two decades, the show features altars reflecting on the collective challenges of our present moment. Muralist 2AM and artist Adrian Arias confront institutional, anti-Black violence by highlighting the commodification of Black suffering and death. Collaborators Malaya Tuyay and Samantha Maria Espinoza seek to honor and commemorate BIPOC + QTPOC folks who we have lost at the hands of oppressive, racist systems. As we turn to community for comfort and healing, Tricia Rainwater-Tutwiler’s video installation centers Native elders and kin in their response to questions of resiliency and survival. Candi Farlice looks directly into the eye of the pandemic as a former medical field worker with decades of experience, and Victor Mario Zaballa’s papel picado structure anchors the exhibition to its cultural tradition.
Living Legacies: Día de Los Muertos 2020 runs Saturday, October 10–Friday, November 6, 2020 with timed ticketing entry. In lieu of onsite public programs, SOMArts will be presenting a digital drag show hosted by beloved San Francisco icon Per Sia on Thursday, October 22, 7–9pm, $10 suggested donation.
LIVING LEGACIES: DÍA DE LOS MUERTOS 2020
Malaya Tuyay & Samantha Maria Espinoza
Paola de la Calle
Victor-Mario Zaballa in collaboration with Milena Moser, Dean & Juliet MacCannell & Todd Hanson
Living Legacies: Día de Los Muertos 2020
Saturday, October 10–Friday, November 6, 2020
Free, timed ticketing coming soon
For more information visit: somarts.org/events/livinglegacies/
Amor Eterno: Día de Los Muertos Drag Show
Thursday, October 22, 7–9pm
$10 suggested donation
Curated by Persia, Amor Eterno is an evening of Día de Los inspired performances with the scene’s most cutting edge artists
To stream, visit: twitch.tv/somarts
ABOUT THE CURATORS
From the moment he was conceived in an artist’s studio, Rio Yañez’ fate as an artist and curator was sealed. Born and raised in San Francisco’s Mission District, Yañez is a curator, photographer, and graphic artist. As an artist he has exhibited his work from San Francisco to Tokyo and created artwork installations for Jean Paul Gaultier’s touring exhibit The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier: From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk. As a curator of over 20 exhibits he was a frequent collaborator with his late father, Rene Yañez, and the pair developed exhibits and programming together for 13 years. Yañez’ carries on his father’s tradition of curating the annual Dia de los Muertos exhibit at SOMArts alongside his collaborator Carolina Quintanilla. Yañez is also a founding member of The Great Tortilla Conspiracy, the world’s first and most dangerous tortilla art collective.
Born and raised in Southern California, Carolina Quintanilla is an artist, curator and arts administrator based in San Francisco, CA. She is a graduate of San Francisco State University where she received her MA in Ethnic Studies. As SOMArts’ Curatorial Partnerships and Residency Director, Carolina has honed a critical curatorial practice that empowers artists to position themselves as the authors of their own stories. A believer in the power of the arts for collective liberation, Carolina’s curatorial practice weaves together personal narrative with social commentary.
ABOUT SOMARTS CULTURAL CENTER
SOMArts Cultural Center, founded in 1979, cultivates access to the arts within the Bay Area by collaborating with community-focused artists and organizations. Together, we engage the power of the arts to provoke just and fair inclusion, cultural respect and civic participation.
SOMArts plays a vital role in the arts ecosystem by helping activate the arts citywide. We do this by providing space and production support for non-profit events, as well as fairs and festivals throughout the Bay Area, and offering a robust program of art exhibitions, classes, events and performances that are affordable and accessible to all. SOMArts’ exhibition programs receive critical support from the San Francisco Arts Commission and The San Francisco Foundation, and are sponsored in part by a grant from Grants for the Arts.
SOMArts is located at 934 Brannan Street—between 8th and 9th—within 2 blocks of 101, I-80, Muni lines and bike paths. For public information call 415-863-1414 or visit somarts.org. Stay connected by following us on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
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