Message from the Director

Hello Summer!

We are delighted to have reopened the Museum on March 12. Up to 250 visitors a day came to see Barring Freedom and South East North West and to enjoy an al fresco lunch at el cafecito by Mezcal. We are so happy to be able to welcome you safely! The galleries are open and ready for your visit, and we are open late on First Fridays until 8pm or later.

Break + Bleed opened in June, and its rich colors and broad canvases will remain on view until April 3, 2022. This group of paintings explores what the art critic Clement Greenberg called “post-painterly abstraction.” Adam Gopnik recently wrote in the New Yorker that “Greenberg’s organizing idea was surprisingly simple; modern painting, having ceased to be illustrative, ought to be decorative…. What was left to painting was what painting still did well, and that was to be paint.”* Come see how these artists exploited the materiality of paint and the medium’s boundaries.

June and July will bring the second virtual edition of our Kids Art Camp Summer 2021. We are proud to present a stellar lineup of artists to work with our staff and campers, including Diana Al-Hadid, Kathy Aoki, Kathryn Otoshi, Hayal Pozanti, Jason Sturgill, and Imin Yeh.

We can’t wait for the August 6 opening and Bay Area premiere of Hito Steyerl’s landmark installation Factory of the Sun. Since its debut at the 2015 Venice Biennale, this immersive work probes the pleasures and perils of image circulation in a world defined by the global flow of data. This is SJMA’s first major co-acquisition with the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, and the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, and we are thrilled to bring this profound new media work by a world-renowned artist to Silicon Valley.

The 2021 Gala + Auction on September 18 will astound you—please join co-chairs Hung Liu and Tammy A. Kiely as we celebrate dedicated patrons Mary Mocas and Marv Tseu and internationally acclaimed artist Rina Banerjee! Join us virtually from the comfort of your own watch party—we will present performances and a new digital commission along with a fast-paced contemporary art auction led by auctioneer Robbie Gordy—providing critical support for the Museum’s programs in these uncertain times.

Finally, we are proud to announce exciting new acquisitions to the permanent collection, including new works by Laura Aguilar, Sadie Barnette, Uta Barth, Judy Chicago, Jean Conner, Russell Crotty, Tony Feher, Vanessa German, Ramiro Gomez, Tim Hawkinson, Kenyatta A.C. Hinkle, Steffani Jemison, Hayv Kahraman, Maia Cruz Palileo, Jorge Pardo, Sonya Rapoport, Lordy Rodriguez, Arlene Shechet, Stephanie Syjuco, Jiro Takamatsu, Leo Valledor, Carrie Mae Weems, Brett Weston, Pae White, and Bruce and Norman Yonemoto. Supporting artists in this challenging year was at the heart of SJMA’s mission, and we are grateful for your steadfast support of this vision and the Museum.

Thank you, and see you in the Factory of the Sun. 

S. Sayre Batton, Oshman Executive Director

*Adam Gopnik, “Helen Frankenthaler and the Messy Art of Life,” The New Yorker, April 12, 2021.