SOMArts Cultural Center presents Speak Your Peace, a group exhibition now through January 24, 2013 curated by SOMArts’ Curator & Gallery Director Justin Hoover. The exhibition brings together Bay Area-based painters, digital, video and installation artists ranging in age, ethnicity and nationality to explore intercultural communication and social justice and propose new iconographies of peace through visual art.
Included works by more than 20 artists and organizations present cycles of destruction and reconstruction and discuss the manifold ways popular media informs the way we envision and discuss peace.
“Seeing Peace,” an ongoing project by featured artist, activist and San Francisco native Richard Kamler, inspires the curatorial concept as well as satellite and gallery components for the exhibition. For Speak Your Peace, Hoover builds upon Kamler’s practice of pairing established contemporary artists with highly visible public space in an effort to collectively, publicly and imaginatively define peace.
In the gallery Kamler’s “Last Supper” and “Waiting Room,” a sculptural table made of lead and gold leaf and a large-scale led and acrylic sculptural installation with projected video, investigate capital punishment in the United States prison-industrial complex and communication failures both personal and societal.
Additionally, Speak Your Peace includes photography and text-based installations from local arts education organizations including The Institute on Aging’s Center for Elders and Youth in the Arts, led by Jessica McKracken and Silvi Alcivar, as well as The Victorian Manor Poets in collaboration with Creative Arts Charter School, Coronet Center Philosopher Poets and 30th Street Poetas, led by Alcivar.
The closing reception, Thursday, January 24, 2013, 6–9pm, free admission, includes a gallery walkthrough at 6:30pm led by Hoover, who also moderates a 7pm discussion featuring Tressa Berman, founder of the Institute for Inter-Cultural Practice, and Kamler. The discussion focuses on Kamler’s project “Seeing Peace” and Kamler’s legacy as a Bay Area artist and activist.