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Arts & Culture

Visual Arts: San Diego Artists Selected For 2010 California Biennial

"Born Again," 2008, by David Adey. 
digital print, pins, Styrofoam
48 x 48 inches
"Born Again," 2008, by David Adey. digital print, pins, Styrofoam 48 x 48 inches

UPDATE: The California Biennial at the Orange County Museum of Art opens this Sunday, October 24th and runs through March 13th. I talked with OMA's curator when the artists were selected (nine San Diego artists are included). I also added selected artist Andy Ralph to the post below.

An unusually large number of San Diego artists have been selected to participate in the California Biennial art exhibit at the Orange County Museum of Art. Since it's inception in 2002, the California Biennial has always included San Diego artists in its attempt to represent the best and most interesting contemporary art throughout the state. However, this year, San Diego got a lot of love from OCMA curator, Sarah Bancroft. Nine out of the 45 artists are from San Diego.

Some of those selected have shown recently in San Diego and most are participating in the upcoming "Here Not There: San Diego Art Now" at the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego (opening June 6th).


David Adey is one of them. Fresh from a solo show at the Athenaeum in La Jolla, Adey's sculptural work will now be in both the Biennial and "Here Not There."

Other crossovers with the "Here Not There" show are Glenna Jennings, Agitprop, Brian Dick, Andy Ralph, and b.a.n.g. lab (CORRECTION: b.a.n.g. lab is an artist collective that includes Amy Sara Carroll, Brett Stalbaum, Elle Mehrmand, Micha Cárdenas and Ricardo Dominiguez). Dominguez has spent a fair bit of time in the media recently while under investigation by University of California officials for his electronic civil disobedience art.

OCMA curator Bancroft, who moved here from New York two years ago, says one of the things she's noticed about California versus New York is the tradition of artists who teach here. "I think a lot of them come here to go to school and just stay. They start teaching and create these great communities."

When asked if she identified any distinctive characteristics of San Diego's art scene, Bancroft said she thinks people forget about San Diego, but the reality is there's a lot of interesting work being done here. She also said "there's a lot of really compelling work in sculpture right now in San Diego. Maybe it has to do with the teaching programs there."

More than 200 artists were considered for the 2010 California Biennial and Bancroft visited a total of 130 studios, 35 of which were in San Diego. A large portion of the artists are considered emerging artists, though some are well established nationally and internationally. The Biennial opens at the Orange County Museum of Art in late October.