Global Art

root - Posted on 17 June 2002

PNN reporter reviews the Co-Lab show on Globalization at SF ARTS Commission Gallery

by Ace Tafoya/PNN media intern

During the summer of 1972, I heard the dreadful sound of slippers… Feet walking slowly, almost sliding to the bathroom to start yet another monotonous day. These house shoes belonged to my sister. She was getting ready to go to work in the tomato fields in the valley. It was 3.00 a.m. She was 14 years old.

Walking into the San Francisco Arts Commission Gallery on March 2, 2002 to see five local bay area artworks responding to War and Globalization reminded me of my older sister.

The War mural from Rigo 2002, Michael, Asim Butt, Rene Muslin in
collaboration with LYRIC (Lavender Youth Recreation and Information Center), represented how Americans feel about the war. The imagery of the gray colors of the mural, along with the model airplanes flying overhead, and the tape machine belting out youth voices commenting on how they are living during this time of war were very powerful.

On Target by John Leanos working with The Mexican Museum, Horace Mann Middle School and School of the Arts High School, is a powerful response to anti-youth discrimination, and it sent me back to my childhood days when my sister and older brothers were required to work in the fields like some sort of family tradition. "I don’t want you to have to work out there, ever," she said with sad and tired eyes.
I heard of all the horror stories about working out in the fields: the bugs, the mice and rats, dead and/or alive, the fainting spells
of both men and women, the grueling heat and the terrible working conditions.

"possible SIDE EFFECTS may include..." by Rene Garcia of Los Cybrids is a TILT (Teaching Intermedia Literacy Tools) project presented in partnership with Youth Arts collaborative of the San Francisco Art Institute and commissioned by Co-Lab:New Generations Collaborative Art and Learning and conceived in partnership by San Francisco State University and the San Francisco Arts Commission showcasing television
sets exhibiting endless commercials, war references, amazing sounds and lighting effects is an intergenerational, multidisciplinary installation exploring globalizations effects on the relationship between government, multinationals and media conglomerates. They all took me back to that summer when my sister had to wake up so early and face her bleak future.
I couldn’t help to think that she was being used as some sort of symbol.

Visit the San Francisco Arts Commission Gallery at 401 Van Ness during the month of March 2002 and with great imagination, it could take you back to a time when life seemed less stressful. Unless you were a bubbling teenager on the brink of working in the demanding fields, or a third world child whose nation has collapsed due to globalization.


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