"Fig.41 - ethnic artist", 2009, pencil drawing on coffee-stained paper, velvet, glass, antique frame, hand-typed label

ABOUT FACE: Deconstructing Diversity in the Institution

About Face: Deconstructing Diversity in the Institution was my Community Arts BFA thesis exhibition shown at the Center Gallery at California College of the Arts (CCA) in 2009. Using graphite on coffee-stained paper (a technique traditionally used to forge antique documents), I drew my peers at CCA in the style of early western ethnographic field studies as seen in  19th century anthropology museum displays in Europe and the United States. The exhibition was aimed at critiquing CCA's diversity shortfalls, as well as the college's emphasis on a Eurocentric art history curriculum. While wearing white archival gloves, viewers were asked to place descriptive museum labels under the portraits they believed correlated. The labels were based on contemporary interviews from a previous project entitled Future of Culture,  a campaign which engaged hundreds of students, faculty and staff in a college-wide conversation around CCA's centennial slogan "CCA 100: The Future of Culture". Labels from real quotes included "Fig. 5- Teacher thought he was a gang banger" and "Fig. 6- Go- to person when diversity issues come up in class". The exhibition consisted 96 portraits total.