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Cutting-Edge Concepts Mingle with Traditional Mediums at SFSU's 14th Annual Stillwell Show


College of Creative Arts


Ariane Bicho, Publicist
College of Creative Arts
San Francisco State University
(415) 338-1442
(415) 338-0520 fax

Press Release published by the Office of Public Affairs


Juried exhibition runs from November 11 through December 4; Artists' reception on Tuesday, November 11, 4-6 p.m.

San Francisco -- Explore offbeat and trend-setting artwork with penetrating social insights at SFSU's 14th Annual Stillwell Student Art Show from November 11 through December 4 at the Fine Arts Gallery on the SFSU campus. Featuring media ranging from textiles and ceramics to video and new media, the show presents the work of eight graduate students in the second year of SFSU's three-year MFA program, and student-juried works by more than 50 undergraduate artists. The exhibit kicks off with a reception at the gallery Tuesday, November 11 from 4:00 to 6:00 pm.

One highlight is a quirky 1950s living room which becomes the backdrop for a video interview with a victim of McCarthyism. Creator Casondra Sobieralski, one of eight MFA students displaying at this year's show, says "Patricia Silver's Story" has one eye to the past and one to the present. The installation's protagonist, Bay Area activist Patricia Silver, was harassed and detained for weeks in the 1950s on suspicion of subversive activities. Her story presents a jarring contrast to the placid surroundings in Sobieralski's mythical living room. "The way the tape is constructed it's very much about memory," she says. "It's like going into a memory space, going back in time."

Other graduate pieces on exhibit include Mark Leavitt's intriguing dress made from a long, narrow span of cloth -- previously a reusable public-restroom hand towel -- with accompanying necklace of "Made in..." garment tags; Karen Schwartz's meticulous collection of velvet-lined TV trays containing an array of items; and a poignant shelf filled with rainbow-colored pillows by Ulla de Larios.

Past Stillwell exhibitors have gone on to be selected for juried statewide exhibitions and have displayed works at a number of regional galleries, including the San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art.

The show is named after Leo D. Stillwell, Jr., a prolific oil and watercolor painter who died in 1948 at the age of 22. His path-breaking work, some appearing in this show, incorporates homoerotic themes in provocative landscapes, allegorical studies and portraits.

Gallery Information and Parking
Admission is free. The gallery is open from noon to 4:00 p.m., Tuesday-Saturday; open late Wednesdays until 7:00 pm. The Fine Arts Gallery is located in Room 238 of the Fine Arts Building on the SFSU campus, 19th and Holloway avenues, San Francisco. Public parking is available in Lot 20 on the SFSU campus, accessed from Lake Merced Boulevard between Winston Drive and Font Boulevard. Parking is $1 per hour with a $5 daily maximum. Nearby on-street parking is readily available on weekends. For more information, please visit

The student works "rejected" from the juried undergraduate portion of the Stillwell Show will be on view in the annual Rejection Show on Tuesday, November 11 from 4-6pm, the same hours as the Stillwell Opening Reception. While the Rejection Show is not a formal event, it inhabits the entire second floor of the Fine Arts Building and is quite the happening, sometimes even bordering on performance art.

The SFSU College of Creative Arts
With nearly 40 faculty members including internationally celebrated artists and art historians Whitney Chadwick, Lewis DeSoto and David Kuraoka, the San Francisco State University Art Department fosters the development of specialized skills, encourages personal creative direction, and promotes understanding of the history and cultural practices shaping artistic expression. More than 100 courses in traditional art media, innovative and multi-disciplinary techno-media, and art history provide training for a variety of related careers. Three degree programs are offered: the bachelor of arts, the master of arts with an emphasis in art history, and the master of fine arts with an emphasis in studio. Undergraduate students may emphasize art education, art history, ceramics, conceptual and information arts (including experimental digital media), painting, photography, printmaking, sculpture or textiles. The department is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design.

Art is a department of the College of Creative Arts, which has the only academic program primarily devoted to the creative arts in northern California. Under the direction of Dean Keith Morrison, an internationally acclaimed faculty directs more than 3,000 undergraduate and graduate students in eight disciplines: art, cinema, radio, TV, music, dance, theatre arts, and design. The College of Creative Arts is part of San Francisco State University, one of the 23 member universities comprising the California State University, the largest system of higher education in the nation. SFSU is a highly diverse, comprehensive, public and urban university. For more information about the College of Creative Arts, visit For an application, please call SFSU Admissions at (415) 338-1113.


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Last modified November 5, 2003, by the Office of Public Affairs