Carlos Villa’s exuberant universe on display in San Francisco

Carlos Villa’s exuberant universe on display in San Francisco

From 17 June to 24 October 2022, the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco presents “Carlos Villa: Worlds in Collision”, an exhibition of the work of artist Carlos Villa (1936–2013), who is also the subject of an exhibition at the San Francisco Arts Commission Galleries.

Source: Asian Art Museum · Image: Carlos Villa, “Painted Cloak” (straight), 1971. Airbrushed acrylic on unstretched canvas with lining of feathers and taffeta. San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Photography © Estate of Carlos Villa. Photograph by Joe McDonald.

The title of the exhibition at the Asian Art Museum, “Worlds in Collision”, is taken from a book published in 1995 in which the artist advocates a more inclusive and multicultural approach to the study and practice of art, moving away from the Eurocentric perspective. The book is mainly excerpts from courses Villa taught at the San Francisco Art Institute between 1989 and 1991.

“Worlds in Collision” includes 14 works by Carlos Villa, created during the 1970s and 1980s. According to the Asian Art Museum, “these eye-catching, highly textured works freely reference non-Western sources as well as Villa’s own personal history. Villa drew on African, Asian, and Oceanic art and tradition, and he incorporated unexpected materials ranging from hair, spit, and sperm to shells, feathers, mirrors, and silk. He even used his own body and face as a “brush” to impart a kind of signature.”

“Many of Villa’s works from the 1970s on view at the Asian Art Museum take the form of capes and cloaks, referencing human adornment and ritual objects drawn from traditions of the Philippines and other non-Western cultures,” says one of the exhibition’s curators, Mark Dean Johnson. “These boldly original works reflect Villa’s interest in the idea of the artist as shaman, as well as his study of ethnographic objects from the Philippines, Papua New Guinea, Hawaii, New Zealand, and elsewhere. They’re visually arresting — often richly decorated with feathers — but most significantly they helped bring Villa’s work to national attention then, and now again today.”

Coinciding with “Worlds in Collision,” the San Francisco Arts Commission Galleries presents from June 24 to August 20, 2022 “Carlos Villa: Roots and Reinvention,” an exhibition featuring works created by Villa in the 1980s and 1990s, in which the main theme is the history of Filipinos in the United States. From 21 September 2022 to 11 February 2023, the San Francisco Art Institute will host “Carlos Villa: Worlds Reimagined”, a retrospective that includes works from all stages of the artist’s career. #2022 #AsianArtMuseum #theartwolf

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ART & the Art World (theartwolf)

ART & the Art World (theartwolf)

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