Field Trip 02: POPOS, Mona Caron, and Flipping a Switch

Photo courtesy of Tony Foster.

Photo via Kenneth Rainin Foundation.

Yesterday, we experienced three different modes of public engagement. We started our meeting at one of the POPOS (Privately Owned Private Open Spaces) at the 1 Kearny building. We then headed to meet with Mona Caron, a visual artist, muralist, and illustrator residing in San Francisco. After hearing talk about her process, we headed to the event “Flipping the Switch to Light Up Central Market.”

More Info:

POPOS: The Secrets of San Francisco
Weeds by Mona Caron
A Brush With the Tenderloin
SF Chronicle article about the “Light Up Central Market” event

Initial Thoughts Fall 2015

These are some recommended texts:


The Burnout Society by BYUNG-CHUL HAN.

Chapter 1 is entitled “The Neuronal Power” and sets out with the claim that frames the entire essay: “Every age has its main maladies.” Han differentiates the bacterial age that ended (at the latest) with the discovery of antibiotics, the viral age that ended with the advance of immunology, and finally the present age: the neuronal age. Its dominant maladies are neurological illnesses like depression, ADHD, borderline personality syndrome and burnout syndrome. The crucial difference between maladies of the viral age and the neuronal age is that between infection and infarction. An infection is caused by the negativity of the immunological other, whereas an infarct is the result of an excess of positivity. Unlike a virus, neuronal illnesses cannot simply be warded off like an outside attacker. Text Via axylus


Ubiquitous Photography by Martin Hand. 1st Edition.

Ubiquitous Photography provides a critical examination of the technologies, practices, and cultural significance of digital photography, placing the phenomenon in historical, social, and political-economic context. It examines shifts in image-making, storage, commodification, and interpretation as highly significant processes of digitally mediated communication in an increasingly image-rich culture. It covers debates in social and cultural theory, the history and politics of image-making and manipulation, the current explosion in amateur photography, tagging and sharing via social networking, and citizen journalism. The book engages with key contemporary theoretical issues about memory and mobility, authorship and authenticity, immediacy and preservation, and the increased visibility of ordinary social life.


The Anthrobscene by Jussi Parikka.

Smartphones, laptops, tablets, and e-readers all at one time held the promise of a more environmentally healthy world not dependent on paper and deforestation. The result of our ubiquitous digital lives is, as we see in The Anthrobscene, actually quite the opposite: not ecological health but an environmental wasteland, where media never die. Jussi Parikka critiques corporate and human desires as a geophysical force, analyzing the material side of the earth as essential for the existence of media and introducing the notion of an alternative deep time in which media live on in the layer of toxic waste we will leave behind as our geological legacy.

Read THE GEOLOGY OF MEDIA, an article by Jussi Parikka.

Watch “Erased Landscape” HERE.
HERE 5: Erased Landscape – the making of flat land in central San Francisco.

Watch the episodes of Saving the Bay

Optional Reading:
The Really Big One. An earthquake will destroy a sizable portion of the coastal Northwest. The question is when.

Field Trip 03: The Cranium Corporation, The Red Poppy Art House


Inaccurate Walking Time and Map by Google

Today we started our walk at the 16th and Mission BART Station, and headed to The Cranium Corporation to meet Angel Rafael “Ralph” Vázquez-Concepción. He is an independent curator from Puerto Rico based in San Francisco, California. His work oscillates between the rigor and structure of writing and architecture and the controlled chaos of scientific experiments and multimedia art installation. His projects range from exhibition design to community based work and generative art, and is a strong believer in art as a radical tool for education and innovation. We then moved to The Red Poppy Art House to meet with it founder Todd Brown. Todd is an interdisciplinary artist engaged in performative inquiry and visual arts. As a visual artist, Brown has 25 years combined experience in oil painting and mixed media, with 11 years professional teaching experience. The Red Poppy is a neighborhood center for the intersection of cultural and inter-generational artistic engagement located in the heart of San Francisco’s Mission District. The Poppy is an artist-driven organization that seeks to empower and transform society by addressing current social issues that impact our community and society at large through creative processes.

Special Thanks to “Ralph” Vázquez-Concepción, Todd Brown, and Arezoo Islami.

Field Trip 02: LIZ, Center for New Music, The Body Appropiate


Inaccurate Walking Time and Map by Google

Today we started our walk at Yerba Buena Lane to meet Paul Chasan from Living Innovation Zones (LIZ). Paul is an Urban Designer/Planner for the San Francisco Planning Department. Among many of the project he is involved in, he spoke about Better Market Street SF, Pavement to Parks, and the Urban Prototyping Festival. Then, we walked towards the Center for New Music to meet Adam Fong. Adam is a Composer, Performer, Arts Administrator, Executive Director at the CNM, and co-founder of Emerging Arts Professionals/San Francisco Bay Area, a network dedicated to the development and growth of next generation arts and culture workers. Finally, we migrated to The Body Appropriate to talk to Stephanie Bailey, its founder. Stephanie is an Artist, Performer, Curator, and Museologist currently working at The Exploratorium. Among many of her practices, she works as an eye recovery technician, specimen preparer and taxidermist.

Special Thanks to Paul Chasan, Adam Fong, and Stephanie Bailey.

Fade to 1906 by Shawn Clover

In 2010, San Francisco native Shawn Clover began compositing photos of the San Francisco’s 1906 earthquake aftermath with his own, and created a series entitled “Fade to 1906.” After completing over 150 all-new high-resolution photoblends, writing the text, and finishing the layout, he was not allowed to get permissions for some of the historical photos after repeated requests, and pleas.

To see more of his work CLICK HERE

Restore Mission Lake Project 2005

A project led by artist Ledia Carroll. She wrote:

“On Jan 20 2005 began mixing blue pigment into a white dolomite field chalk and applying it to a piece of the shore of the former lake with a baseball field line chalker. Through a grant I was able to complete drawing the line around the entire lake perimeter. On Oct 22, 2007 I completed a line around the former lake and hosted an alley cat bike race and bbq. Press release information about the events at the bottom of the page. Mission Lake Project was sponsored by SoEx Off-Site, a yearlong series of public art projects investigating diverse strategies for exploring and mapping public space, www.soex.org”

More about the project HERE

HERE 5: Erased Landscape – the making of flat land in central San Francisco

HERE, a project by Glenn Robert Lym Architect AIA/PhD, is a series of video films that look at architecture from the perspective of the San Francisco Bay Area. Most episodes examine Bay Area buildings and landscapes. Some venture to other parts of America and beyond.

This is the story of how a massive erasure of landscape occurred in early San Francisco, motivated by explosive population growth and fueled by an influx of mining and industrial wealth. Without second thought, San Francisco transformed sand dunes, hollows, creeks, marshes and bay waters into the flat lands now known as Market Street, South of Market, the Mission District, South Beach, the Financial District, Union Square and the Tenderloin.

Images and Text via Glenn Robert Lym’s website HERE

Watch “Erased Landscape” HERE

Emotional Cartography

Emotional Cartography is a collection of essays from artists, designers, psychogeographers, cultural researchers, futurologists and neuroscientists, brought together by Christian Nold, to explore the political, social and cultural implications of visualizing intimate biometric data and emotional experiences using technology.

Essays by Raqs Media Collective, Marcel van de Drift, Dr Stephen Boyd Davis, Rob van Kranenburg, Sophie Hope and Dr Tom Stafford.

Download the full and complete book HERE

Another project by Christian Nold: http://www.sf.biomapping.net/

The Ellis Act by the Anti-Eviction Mapping Project

The Ellis Act is a state law which says that landlords have the right to evict tenants in order to “go out of business”. All units in the building must be cleared of all tenants- no one can be singled out. Most often it is used to convert to condos or group-owned tenancy-in-common flats. Once a building becomes a condo it is exempt from Rent Control, regardless of the age of the building, and even if a unit owner subsequently rents to a long-term tenant.

See this project by the Anti-Eviction Mapping Project HERE