The Possible (January 29 - May 25, 2014)

“(The exhibition) will invite an interdisciplinary bunch of local makers and doers-artists, performers, craftsmen, teachers-to pool their talents and desires and create an exhibition organically, day by day, keeping the emphasis on process rather than on achievement, and leaving the definition of achievement loose in the air. The show is called The Possible, which is my watchword for the season ahead.”
Holland Cotter, New York Times

Download a PDF version of this press release

Berkeley, CA, December 2, 2013 - The University of California, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (BAM/PFA) presents The Possible, an experimental exhibition that puts the process of artistic creation and collaboration on display in the galleries. This ambitious project led by Oakland-based artist David Wilson brings nearly one hundred artists, artisans, and makers from the Bay Area and abroad together to help transform the BAM/PFA galleries into an open platform for shared creativity and exploration.

Extending throughout five galleries and spilling into the museum's sculpture garden, the exhibition includes a ceramics studio, dye lab and garden, print shop, recording studio, library, and art-making area for children. The Possible will evolve over time, as finished works created onsite are displayed in the galleries, and recordings and other media are made available for to visitors to enjoy in the gallery space.

For The Possible, Wilson, an artist whose own practice often involves organizing events and installations that bring artists into unique situations for collaborative encounters, invited a large group of individuals with diverse and complementary skills to activate the museum as their cultural meeting ground. A specially designed package was mailed to each artist to invite them into the mix, and opened up an elaborate mail-art correspondence amongst the artists, orchestrated by Wilson in collaboration with participating artist Alexander Kori Girard. With BAM/PFA scheduled to move from its current building in 2015, this project also celebrates this inspiring space by offering artists a chance to work within it. Contributors to The Possible engage in overlapping residencies, fostering collaboration between artists and between artists and patrons. Gallery visitors are invited to work directly with the guest artists in a series of weekly Sunday afternoon hands-on workshops, be inspired by a library focused on collaborative artistic practice, and participate in various performances and outings.

A Continually Active Space for Making and Learning
Many of the collaborative activities and performances occur in BAM/PFA's main atrium space Gallery B, which includes the exhibition's print shop, a textile/fabric studio, and a ceramic studio. The space's cozy centerpiece is Fritz Haeg's Domestic Integrities, an enormous crocheted rug assembled from discarded clothes and fabric that grows larger and larger each time it is exhibited. A multisensory library space (designed and built by Anzfer Farms) in Gallery 2 features research materials from natural perfumist Mandy Aftel, sound archivist Alan Lomax, art historian Gwen Allen, as well as a collection of readings and reference material collected from all the participating artists and a listening library featuring record labels Mississippi Records, Sublime Frequencies, and RVNG Intl, among many others. A continuously curated of selection of artworks produced as part of The Possible are displayed on and around a shelving sculpture designed by Girard in Gallery 3. A sound recording studio housed in Gallery 4 provides musicians and artists an area to experiment, rehearse, and record new compositions, some of which inform performances as part of The Possible. And, just outside the museum walls in the sculpture garden, dyes for the textile lab will be grown, while a physical activities studio (complete with a pair of outdoor showers) designed by Drew Bennett provides visitors with opportunities to engage bodily with the exhibition.

Kids Club
Young visitors to the exhibition are able to satisfy their creative energy in Kids Club. Here children can help create a felted rug with fiber artist Ashley Helvey, mold and display art made with Charles Long's interactive artwork 100 Pounds of Clay, climb into an art-viewing clubhouse designed by sculptor Jay Nelson, and witness an ever-growing series of drawings and sculptures created by fellow visitors. This space will remain part of the BAM/PFA gallery experience beyond the close of The Possible, extending through the end of 2014.

Programs Allow Visitors to Become Part of The Possible
BAM/PFA visitors may contribute to the development of The Possible by participating in our weekly The Possible Workshops. Every Sunday through the end of May between the hours of 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., patrons can drop into an artist-led activity and learn and participate in one of the many creative practices explored in The Possible. Much of this audience-created work will contribute to finished works displayed in the exhibition space.

The Possible informs a series of nine L@TE: Friday Nights @ BAM/PFA events programmed between Wilson and regular guest programmer Sarah Cahill. Wilson's happenings feature elements of music, art, performance, fashion, and ceremony-often all at the same time. Cahill's programs focus on experimental music and composition. The Possible–themed L@TE series will be bookended by an Opening Ceremony (Feb. 28) and Closing Ceremony (May 13). A fashion show (April 4) to celebrate the fortieth anniversary of the Creative Growth Art Center will provide another series highlight.

Finally, children young and old are invited to help craft a drawing rug for Kids Club by stopping in during a weekend-long Rug Felting Workshop with Ashley Helvey (Jan. 31 – Feb 2).

The Possible public programs for January and February are listed below. A more comprehensive The Possible public programs press release will follow in January, as details for the March through May events continue to develop.

January/February Public Program Schedule:
Friday, January 31, 2014 to Sunday, February 2, 2014; 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Drop-In Rug Felting Workshop with Ashley Helvey
Stop by BAM/PFA and join artist Ashley Helvey for a three-day workshop to make a big felted drawing rug for The Possible: Kids Club.
Included with gallery admission

Sunday, February 2, 2014; 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The Possible Workshop
At this workshop, artists will be working in each studio (ceramics, dye, print, and sound): drop in for the first stroke of wildness! Bring old clothes, fabrics, or textiles and join artist Fritz Haeg in braiding his giant Domestic Integrities Rag Rug. Also, help fiber artist Ashley Helvey finish her large-scale felted rug.
Included with gallery admission

Sunday, February 9, 2014; 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The Possible Workshop
Sit around Fritz Haeg's rug and braid additional rings for Bhajana, a Carnatic song session organized by Sangati Center founder and musician Gautam Tejas Ganeshan. Explore South Indian song literature and expect participatory singing. Plus, work with the ceramics studio team on a handbuilding project.
Included with gallery admission

Sunday, February 16, 2014; 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The Possible Workshop
Join The Something in creating new electronic instruments for sound and video synthesis. Work with the print shop team to create prints and street flyers on the Risograph machine. Drew Bennett leads the first in a series of "art-gym" classes called Sweat Sessions. Following the workout, try out his custom-built outdoor shower in the sculpture garden: bring a towel!
Included with gallery admission

Sunday, February 23, 2014; 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The Possible Workshop
Help us prepare for The Possible Opening Ceremony: create adornments and masks, dye garments (bring your own) in the dye lab team's indigo vat, and make beeswax candles with Amy Franceschini and a team of beekeepers.
Included with gallery admission

Friday, February 28, 2014; 7:30 p.m.
The Possible Opening Ceremony
L@TE: Friday Nights @ BAM/PFA
As both a culmination of the first wave of Possible actions and a moment to draw together the potential for what's to come, the artists of The Possible orchestrate a ceremony that incorporates studio production, sound, and movement. Then join us as we head off on a night parade.
$7 general admission

Participating Artists and Contributors
Mandy Aftel, Gwen Allen, Anzfer Farms, David Arora, Atelier Dion, Binta Ayofemi, Devon Bella, Drew Bennett, Kelly Best, Elisheva Biernoff, Jana Blankenship, Kevin Blanquies, Book / Shop, Zoe Brezsny/KALX, Todd Bura, Rebecca Burgess, Ajit Chauhan, Colpa Press, Creative Growth, N. Dash, Roy Denim, Matt Dick, Paul Discoe, Sasha Duerr, Jamie Dutcher, Liam Everett, Kyle Field/Little Wings, Luke Fischbeck/Lucky Dragons, Sam Fleischer, Flint Outdoors, Lucas Ford, Amy Franceschini, Gautam Tejas Ganeshan, Linda Geary, Aleishall Girard, Max Goldberg, Julia Goodman, Akiko Graham, Fritz Haeg, Anna Halprin, Liz Harris/Grouper, Ryan Heffington, Ashely Helvey, Cliff Hengst, Michael Hurley, Justin Hurty, IATA, Iko Iko, In The Make, Chris Johanson, Rachel Kaye, Alexander Kori Girard, Land and Sea, Zachary Leener, Terri Loewenthal, Charles Long, Marriage Recs, Travis McFlynn, Lauren McIntosh, Mekanix, Jim Melchert, Mississippi Records, Deepa Natarajan, Jay Nelson, Ruby Neri, Jessica Niello, NguzuNguzu, Raphael Noz, Shaun O'Dell, Meara O'Reilly, Julia Parker, Kamau Patton, Public Fiction, Sarah Rara/Sumi Ink Club, Laurie Reid, Clare Rojas, Brion Nuda Rosch, Jesse Schlesinger, The Something, Sublime Frequencies, Karamo Susso, Hadi Tabatabi, John Toki, Ken Ueno, Benjamin Vilmain, Jerome Waag, Yoshiko Wada, Tessa Watson, Matt Werth/RVNG INTL, Daren Wilson, John Zurier.

The Possible is organized by guest curator David Wilson, with Director Lawrence Rinder. The project is supported in part by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts; Carla and David Crane; National Endowment for the Arts; a Craft Research Fund grant from The Center for Craft, Creativity & Design, Inc; and Joachim and Nancy Hellman Bechtle. Kids Club, part of The Possible, is organized by Director of Engagement Aimee Chang and supported by Donna and Gary Freedman.

Related Publications
A catalog/artist's book will be created onsite during the exhibition and will be available for purchase in fall 2014.

Founded in 1963, the UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (BAM/PFA) is UC Berkeley's primary visual arts venue and among the largest university art museums in terms of size and audience in the United States. Internationally recognized for its art and film programming, BAM/PFA is a platform for cultural experiences that transform individuals, engage communities, and advance the local, national and global discourse on art and ideas. BAM/PFA's mission is “to inspire the imagination and ignite critical dialogue through art and film.”

BAM/PFA presents approximately fifteen art exhibitions and 380 film programs each year. The museum's collection of over 16,000 works of art includes important holdings of Neolithic Chinese ceramics, Ming and Qing Dynasty Chinese painting, Old Master works on paper, Italian Baroque painting, early American painting, Abstract Expressionist painting, contemporary photography, and video art. Its film archive of over 14,000 films and videos includes the largest collection of Japanese cinema outside of Japan, Hollywood classics, and silent film, as well hundreds of thousands of articles, reviews, posters, and other ephemera related to the history of film, many of which are digitally scanned and accessible online.

Visitor Information
BAM/PFA Galleries: 2626 Bancroft Way, just below College Avenue near the UC Berkeley campus.

Gallery and Museum Store Hours: Wednesday through Sunday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Open L@TE Fridays until 9 p.m. Closed Monday and Tuesday.

Gallery Admission: General admission is $10; admission for seniors (65+), disabled persons, non–UC Berkeley students, and ages 13–17 is $7; admission for BAM/PFA members, UC Berkeley students, staff, and faculty, and children under 12 is free. Reservations are required for group visits; for information, rates, and schedule, please e-mail Admission is free on the first Thursday of each month.

L@TE Admission: On L@TE Fridays, general admission to the BAM/PFA galleries is $7 after 5 p.m. Admission is always free for BAM/PFA members and UC Berkeley students, faculty, and staff. For updates on L@TE programs and to purchase tickets, visit

Information: 24-hour recorded message (510) 642-0808; fax (510) 642-4889; TDD (510) 642-8734.


For more information about The Possible please contact Peter Cavagnaro at (510) 642-0365 or


Posted by admin on December 02, 2013