Artists in the Archive
Exhibition Dates: March 3-June 8, 2023
Location: San Francisco History Center, San Francisco Public Library Main Branch,100 Larkin Street, 6th Floor
Hours: Please check SFPL website for public hours.
The San Francisco History Center in partnership with the San Francisco Arts Commission's Artist in Residence program presents Artists in the Archive, a two-person exhibition featuring photo collage by Xandra Ibarra and oil paintings by Penelope Houston. Using the mug books in the San Francisco Police Department Records to create original artwork, Ibarra and Houston bring their own perspectives to this body of archival work and its representations of identity within the historical record.
Ibarra is one of four Bay Area Artists in Residence at the San Francisco Public Library and their body of work, Of Ill Fame (2022), was created directly from their time in residence. From Ibarra, "Of Ill Fame is a constellation of photographic works that draw from the ephemera and accoutrement associated with police and court records located in San Francisco Public Library. This work examines the late 19th and early 20th century judicial records of those working in the underground economies like sex work. I situate these historical subjects to further consider the racial and sexual dimensions of contemporary capitalism, incarceration, and the gig economy. My hope is to foster dialogue about stigma, criminalization, and iconography of sex workers."
Artist Reception and Talk
Saturday, March 18, 2023 | 1:00-3:00 p.m.
San Francisco History Center @ the SFPL
100 Larkin Street, 6th Floor, San Francisco, CA 94102
Image: Xandra Ibarra, Sweep the Morality Squad, Archival pigment print, 2022.
About the Artist
Xandra Ibarra is an Oakland-based interdisciplinary artist that uses both visual and performance practices to open up sites of pleasure. She is intrigued by racialized and gendered boundaries of decency and what is seen as proper or improper. She aims to understand what these troubled categories can reveal about social expectation, identification, and difference. She recently completed a commission with the ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives at the University of Southern California Libraries responding to the Sheree and Bob Flanagan archive and is currently a lecturer at the Department of Art and Art History at Stanford University.
About the SFAC Artist in Residence Program
Launched in 2015, the San Francisco Arts Commission Artist in Residence Program builds partnerships with City Departments in order to provide unique artist residencies that result in strengthening the value of artists participating in and responding to the advancement of civic dialogue. The RFQ for the next round of Artists in Residence at the SFPL is now open. Learn more here.