See Something, Say Something: David Huffman, Evri Kwong, Linda Vallejo
Museum of Sonoma County
Santa Rosa, CA
February 9-April 20, 2019
The warning, “See Something, Say Something,” on posters and in announcements at bus depots, train stations and airports, encourages citizens to stay alert and speak up if they notice something amiss. Individuals, vested with a sense of obligation towards their fellow citizens, can work together to spot potential threats to safety, in the event that police, government, parents and teachers fail to do so.
While the phrase originated to convey the threat posed by terrorism after the 9/11 attacks, in this exhibition the meaning of the phrase “see something, say something,” is expanded to encourage individuals to call out additional threats to society such racism, sexism, economic disparity, and climate change.
The three artists in See Something, Say Something, David Huffman, Evri Kwong, and Linda Vallejo, are observant and they are vocal. Through their work, they identify and name dangers, approaching social issues with intelligence, sincerity, and wit. In this, they provide a community service, identifying important issues that affect us all.
About the Artists
Linda Vallejo, an artist who lives and works in Los Angeles, is most recently known for painting and sculpture that discusses the politics of color and class. Her work often addresses her Mexican-American identity within the context of American art and popular culture. The founder of A to Z Grantwriting, a non-profit consulting firm, she has also been involved in traditional Native American and ChicanX rituals and ceremonies for many years. Vallejo traveled and studied internationally, receiving her MFA from California State University, Long Beach. Her work was included in multiple 2018 exhibitions organized as part of the Getty Foundation-sponsored “Pacific Standard Time: LA LA” including “Imagen Angeleno,” Museum of Art and History 2017, Lancaster, CA, “A Universal History of Infamy: Those of This America,” LACMA Charles White Gallery, Los Angeles, CA, “Deconstructing Liberty: A Destiny Manifested,” initiated by Building Bridges Art Exchange and exhibited at Muzeo Museum & Cultural Center, Anaheim, CA, and “Keepin’ It Brown,” bG Gallery, Santa Monica, CA.
David Huffman is a painter and installation artist with a studio in Oakland, CA. He is known for works that combine science fiction aesthetics with a critical focus on the political exploration of identity. Huffman received his M.F.A. from California College of Arts and Crafts (CCAC) and is now a faculty member at the California College of the Arts (formerly CCAC). He is the recipient of several awards including the Barclay Simpson Award, the ARTADIA Foundation Award and a Fleishhacker Foundation Eureka Fellowship. His work is represented in numerous private and museum collections including the Berkeley Art Museum and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.
Evri Kwong is a San Francisco based artist who turns national issues such as consumerism, racism, and religious intolerance, into bold narrative paintings. His grid-like compositions combine blocks of Sharpie sketches with blocks of bright, cartoonish paintings, juxtaposing our idealized vision of America and the darker reality beneath. Kwong received both his B.F.A and M.F.A from the San Francisco Art Institute and received a fellowship to study at Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in Maine. A recipient of the Pollock-Krasner Grant, Kwong’s work has been featured in solo exhibitions across the country, including the Robert Berman Gallery in Santa Monica, Dwight Hackett Projects in Santa Fe, the deSaisset Museum at Santa Clara University, San Jose Museum of Art, Alternative Museum in New York, Heidi Cho Gallery in New York, Gallery Godo in South Korea, Gerald Peters Gallery in San Francisco and New Mexico, and the Catherine Clark Gallery in San Francisco. Kwong currently teaches at Napa Valley College.
Artists tackle social ills in Museum of Sonoma County exhibit ‘See Something, Say Something,’ The Press Democrat, by Dan Taylor, February 7, 2019