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Richmond Art Center Receives CAC 2019-2020 Grants

The California Arts Council voted to award the Richmond Art Center an Arts Education Artists in Schools program grant for 2019-2020!

We are pleased to announce the Richmond Art Center was recently awarded three program grants from the California Arts Council totaling $47,000. This fall, we will provide free field trips to 1500 Richmond elementary students, guided tours of current exhibitions and art-creation workshops at the Richmond Art Center.

In addition, we will expand our in-school and after-school art programs in Richmond schools this upcoming school year. The awards are an indication of the quality of Richmond Art Center community programs and value of arts as an essential component in youth education.

Congratulations to the Arts in the Community team for their dedicated work! 

Artist’s Talk: Richard-Jonathan Nelson

Join us for an artist’s talk and gallery walkthrough with Richard-Jonathan Nelson in conjunction with his solo show, Discontent with Brute Force Uploading.

About the Artist: Richard-Jonathan Nelson is a multi-disciplinary artist who uses textiles, video, and digital manipulation to create alternative worlds of speculative identity. His work is multi-layered, chromatically intense and mixes images of the natural world with reference to hoodoo, queer culture, and Afro-Futurism. Born in Savannah, Georgia (1987) and working in Oakland, CA, Nelson received his MFA from California College of the Arts in 2017. His work has been exhibited at Southern Exposure, Embark Gallery, Root Division in San Francisco, and Aggregate Space in Oakland.

Image: Richard-Jonathan Nelson, Untitled, 2019. Courtesy of the Artist

Artographies: Voices, Sounds & Poetry from the Bay Area on Refugees & Borders

Please join us at the Richmond Art Center on World Refugee Day for an evening of poetry, music, and conversations with local writers, musicians, and activists for Artographies: Voices, Sounds & Poetry from the Bay Area on Refugees & Borders. Food and beverages will be served. This event is free.

Participants include Veronica Aguilar, Rachel Qúy Collier, Yang Huang, Laleh Khadivi, Oliver Mok, Bonnie Wai-Lee Kwong, Nwe Oo, Sakhone, Audrey T. Williams, Maw Shein Win, Kenneth Wong, and Julie Zhu.

Special thanks to Dr. Penny Edwards, The Critical Refugee Studies Collective, and the Department of South and Southeast Asian Studies at the University of California, Berkeley.

Much gratitude to the Human Rights Center at the UC Berkeley School of Law for their generous sponsorship.

This event is organized by Bonnie Wai-Lee Kwong and Maw Shein Win.

About the participants:

Veronica Aguilar is an activist who works for Pueblo Sin Fronteras.

Rachel Qúy Collier is a writer, teacher, and translator who lives in the Bay Area with her family.

Yang Huang is a Chinese-American fiction writer and computer engineer. Her collection of linked family stories My Old Faithful won the Juniper Prize for Fiction. Her debut novel Living Treasures won the Nautilus Book Award silver medal in fiction. Her essays and stories have appeared in Poets & Writers, TASTE, Literary Hub, The Margins, Asian Pacific American Journal, and others. Yang lives in the San Francisco Bay Area and works for the University of California at Berkeley.

Laleh Khadivi was born in Esfahan, Iran. Her debut novel, The Age of Orphans, received the Whiting Award for Fiction, the Barnes and Nobles Discover New Writers Award and an Emory Fiction Fellowship. Her debut documentary film 900 WOMEN aired on A&E and premiered at the Human Rights Watch Film Festival. She has worked as director, producer and cinematographer of documentary films since 1999. Her fiction and non-fiction can be found in The Los Angeles Times, The San Francisco Chronicle, VQR, The Sun and other publications. She is the recipient of a 2016 National Endowment for the Arts Grant and a 2016 Pushcart Prize for her story Wanderlust. She lives in Northern California.

Oliver Mok is a guitarist interested in the continued exploration of sound, improvisation and composition.

Bonnie Wai-Lee Kwong is a multi-disciplinary artist and software developer in the San Francisco Bay Area. She has lived in nine states and two continents. Art is a way for her to traverse seen and unseen geographies. Her first poetry collection is ravel, a finalist for the many voices project by New Rivers Press, and the White Pine Poetry Prize. Bonnie is Lead Artist in the Critical Refugee Studies Project artographies: in other words/worlds. Bonnie’s first play Liriope was staged as a work in progress at Jasper Ridge Biological Preserve to culminate her artist’s residency at Stanford University.

Nwe Oo is a Bay Area activist for the Rahkine people in Burma.

Sakhone from the Asian Prisoner Support Committee will speak about his lived experience.

Audrey T. Williams is a Poet and Storyteller who is either creating, curating, or dreaming. She writes from the intersection of her African and “South by Southeast Asian” ancestry. She earned her MFA in Creative Writing at CCA in 2018 and is on the Board of Directors at the Oakland Asian Cultural Center. She is working on her first book, Of Chutneys and Chitlins: Stories from a Multi-cultural American Girl.

Maw Shein Win is a poet, writer and educator whose poetry collections include Score and Bone (2016), Invisible Gifts: Poems (2018) and a forthcoming collection on Omidawn in Fall (2020). The first poet laureate of El Cerrito (2016 – 2018), Maw is currently a Visiting Scholar in the Department of English, UC Berkeley and Lead Artist in the Critical Refugee Studies Project artographies: in other words/worlds.

Kenneth Wong is a Burmese-American writer, blogger, artist, and translator. His short stories, essays, articles, and poetry translations have appeared in the San Francisco Chronicle, Boston University’s AGNI magazine, Irrawaddy, Myanmar Times, California College of the Arts’ Eleven Eleven magazine, and other publications. He currently teaches a course on Beginning Burmese at UC Berkeley.

Julie Zhu is a composer, artist, and carillonneur pursuing a doctorate in music composition at Stanford University who strives towards expressive synchronicities between disparate fields.






Photo by Bonnie Wai-Lee Kwong

Member Artists’ Talk

Join us for a lively talk with artists participating in our annual Members’ Show and Parts Unseen. This event is an experiment in letting artists have the floor. The mood will be informal, the pace will be quick, the goal is for artists to use their own words to reveal new dimensions about their work.

Images of artists participating in the 2018 Member Artist Talk (l-r, top-bottom): Shamy Noily, Jessica Jordao, Jayma Brown, Peter Baczek, Jennie Braman, Bertrell Smith, Hilda Robinson, Robbin Henderson, Rachel Padilla. Photos by Bill Johnston Jr.

Annual Members’ Meeting

Richmond Art Center members are cordially invited to attend our annual members meeting. The purpose of the meeting is for members of the Richmond Art Center is to approve the changes to the organization’s Bylaws. Richmond Art Center’s Members must be present to vote.

After the meeting, we’ll kick off the reception for our summer exhibitions!


3:30-5:00pm Members voting for acceptance of 2019 revision of Bylaws

4:00-4:45pm Presentation of Art Center’s achievement’s over the past and looking ahead

5:00-7:00pm Opening Reception for Summer Exhibitions, including the Annual Members Show

Image: Artwork by Jennie Braman (Mientras II, 2018) whose work will be featured in the members’ spotlight exhibition, Parts Unseen, opening on June 8. 

Richmond Art Center Announces Summer 2019 Exhibitions

Image: Top: Richard-Jonathan Nelson, Untitled, 2019. Courtesy of the Artist, Bottom: Ruth Tabancay, What’s In You and On You: Normal Flora and Pathogens (detail), 2018 Mary Jeys, Waving Hand, 2018, Dennis A. Giacovelli, Untitled (Self-Portrait), 2018. Second Class (E5) Engineman: Navy 1969- 71, Vietnam 1970.  

RICHMOND, CA – June 11, 2019 – The Richmond Art Center presents exhibitions opening June 11: Discontent with Brute Force Uploading, ABOUTFACE, Parts Unseen and the 2019 Members’ Show

Discontent with Brute Force Uploading
South Gallery
Exhibition Dates: June 11 – August 16, 2019

Richard-Jonathan Nelson’s solo exhibition examines how craft can be used to depict Black bodies in an imagined future. Through hybridizing traditional craft practices – like embroidery, weaving, and quilting – with digital art, Nelson’s work challenges the history of the mass media’s “uploading” of Black Diaspora as a monolithic culture, and reimagines the Black body as a place for futuristic progress. Nelson’s work draws reference from African-American low country herbalism, cybernetic Afrofuturism and his family’s history working with fabric.

About the ArtistRichard-Jonathan Nelson is a multi-disciplinary artist who uses textiles, video, and digital manipulation to create alternative worlds of speculative identity. His work is multi-layered, chromatically intense, and mixes images of the natural world with reference to hoodoo, queer culture, and Afrofuturism. Born in Savannah, GA (1987) and working in Oakland, CA, Nelson received his MFA from California College of the Arts in 2017. His work has been exhibited at Southern Exposure, Embark Gallery, Root Division in San Francisco and Aggregate Space in Oakland.

Community Gallery
Exhibition Dates: June 11 – August 16, 2019

This large-group exhibition brings together Veteran self-portraits from the Arts and Culture Commission of Contra Costa County’s ABOUTFACEprogram. Over 100 self-portraits will be presented, for the first time bringing together the numerous ABOUTFACE works created over multiple years of the program. Collectively the pieces form a ‘unit’ that represents the varied stories of Veterans transitioning from military to civilian life.

About the program: In 2015 the Arts and Culture Commission and the Physical Rehabilitation Service at Veterans Affairs Health Care in Martinez developed ABOUTFACE to improve the lives of California’s Veterans through arts programming. Based on the belief that individuals have the capacity to heal themselves, ABOUTFACE engages Veterans through painting workshops focused on artistic skill development and self-expression. The two-day workshops are team-taught by a teaching artist and a qualified therapist, with a Veteran coordinator present. Workshop activities include meditation, peer discussion, sketching each other, and painting a final self-portrait.

Parts Unseen
West Gallery
Exhibition Dates: June 11 – August 16, 2019
Reception: Saturday, June 8, 5-7pm

This exhibition brings together recent works by three artists who received the Spotlight Award for their work in the 2018 Members’ Show: Bill AbrightJennie Braman, and Ruth Tabancay. While working in disparate media, these artists share an interest in transfiguring and deconstructing the human form.

About the Artists: Bill Abright was introduced to clay by Bruce Duke at San Joaquin Delta College in Stockton in the late 60’s. He completed his graduate degree at San Francisco State in 1974 working with Bud McKee, Stephen De Staebler, Joe Hawley, and David Kuraoka. Abright recently retired after 40 years teaching ceramics at the College of Marin. Jennie Braman is an artist and educator based in the San Francisco Bay Area. She is full-time faculty in Studio Art and Art History at Berkeley City College in Berkeley, CA, and served as Chair of the Art Program for the last decade. Braman’s current drawings investigate the nature of representation and the creative language of the body. Ruth Tabancay‘s passion for science led her to study bacteriology in college, and after a stint as a hospital laboratory technologist, she went on to medical school. After 11 years in private practice, she left medicine to study art. Her works refer largely to her previous studies in microbiology, anatomy, and geometry. She is a graduate of UC Berkeley; UC School of Medicine, San Francisco; and California College of the Arts.

2019 Members’ Show
Main Gallery
Exhibition Dates: June 11 – August 16, 2019

Each year, the Richmond Art Center invites our members to participate in our annual Members’ Show, which is showcased in the Main Gallery. One of the oldest and largest non-juried member exhibitions in the Bay Area, this tradition presents a wide variety of media, styles, and subject matter by aspiring, emerging, and established artists, many of whom are colleagues, teachers, and students of the Richmond Art Center.

Spring Family Day

Spring Family Day is our free community event for all ages. Join us in the courtyard for an afternoon of eco-conscious artmaking, music and food. This event is free and family friendly!

Reception for Siempre Estaré A Tu Lado

Jennifer Lugris‘ paintings explore identity in terms of fault lines, fissures and pressure points. Lugris grew up in a house where asado was eaten with kimchi, and where dinner conversations seamlessly shifted from English to Spanish to Korean. As a first-generation American, born of immigrants with roots in North Korea, South Korea, Argentina, Spain and Uruguay, Lugris has a tremendous appreciation for the opportunities she has seized. She expresses this through paintings that capture moments, people and things from her life she does not want to take for granted.

Lugris‘ solo exhibition, Siempre Estaré A Tu Lado (I’ll always be by your side), will include a new series of portraits of herself, her husband and a placeholder work for her soon to-be-born daughter. These intensely fractured multi-panel portraits represent personal reflections on her growing family, the challenges of establishing new identities, and the possibilities for interconnectedness.

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2540 Barrett Avenue
Richmond, California 94804

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