March 3 – April 1, 2017

Exhibition Opening: Friday, March 3
Members’ Preview: 11AM – 2PM
Main Event: 5PM – 9PM
Live Music by Devon McClive and Alicia Greenleaf
Bar + Snacks

The ability to communicate or contest an idea is both universal and unique to each human being. Talk to Me presents an in-depth view into how artists at Creative Growth Art Center find their voice and express themselves through their idiosyncratic use of language and visual cues.

Some artists work directly with text as an expression of their inner world, like Dan Miller, whose work transforms the content of his obsessions with “lumber” or “light bulbs” into dense visual abstractions. Similarly, Rosa Giron transforms her own name and names of favorite TV characters into dynamic graffiti-like transcriptions. Others prefer to use written language as a tool to define their own realities: William Tyler’s text-laden compositions blend information from the news and almanacs with his own encyclopedic recollection of dates, people, and places, and William Scott’s “Inner Limits” drawings describe alternative and more peaceful realities through utopian plans and earnest letters to higher authorities.

In other works, artists speak through imagery alone, like Carlos Fernandez whose neatly arranged shapes suggest alternative associations to traditional symbols. Delving further into the private iconography of each artist, Susan Janow and her repetition of triangles resemble a hieroglyph of sorts, reminding us that language – whether standardized or based in personal mythology – can have infinite subtleties.

Viewing Room: Paulino Martin
Upstairs in the viewing room, discover Paulino Martin, an artist who takes sentences from various sources and appropriates them, writing them atop soft washes of colors and expressive portraits.

On the Ramp: Signs: The Collection of Margaret Robson
Creative Growth Art Center showcases a selection of signs from the collection of Margaret Robson, inspired by our immediate environment and the challenging circumstances faced in light of rapid urban development. These signs are an example of how artistic expression comes to life in unexpected ways.

“Throughout her life, my mother Margaret Robson was attuned to the injustices or invisibility that affected the artists in her collecting, from Henry Darger to Bill Traylor to Judith Scott. It was not surprising that she saw it in her own environment when she and her husband moved to the dot-com boomtown of San Francisco in the years leading up to the millennial. Her interest in the crudely fashioned street art was organic. It was an offshoot of her awareness of creativity in all forms. It also resonated with her curiosity in fringe and ephemera — in this case the most utilitarian of artistic endeavors: to catch the eye or elicit an ironic smile of a passerby…” –Douglas O. Robson

Talk to Me Workshop: Saturday, March 18, 2017, 11am-2pm
Express your voice at our sticker-making and lettering workshop. Learn how “slap” vinyl stickers – which can be customized and “slapped” on any surface in an instant – have become an integral part of the graffiti scene today. The artist-led workshop will take you through the basics of letter-spacing for signage and the process of creating your own custom sticker to “slap” anywhere.

Rosa Giron, Untitled, 2016, Acrylic on paper, 22.5 x 17.25 inches

Susan Janow, Untitled, 2016, collage and pen on paper, 11 x 10 inches

Jane Kassner, Untitled, 2016, Acrylic on found image, 17.25 x 12.25 inches

William Scott, Inner Limits of the World Science Fiction Exists the Skyline People Who Brings People’s Lives Back Who Lost Their Lives is Real, 2010, pen on paper, 12 x 18.25 inches

Paulino Martin, Untitled, 2017, Watercolor and pen on paper, 22 x 15 inches

Sign from the collection of Margaret Robson