Artists bring work ‘here not there’ in exhibition


By Jenna Jay


San Diego’s many diverse communities have yielded a booming local art scene, and the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego in La Jolla will soon capture it with an exhibition celebrating the work of local up-and-coming artists.

“Here Not There: San Diego Art Now” is a multi-medium show, offering emerging artists the opportunity to present their work through a smorgasbord of contemporary artistic expression.

The “Here Not There” exhibition, which runs June 6-Sept. 19, includes artwork by 45 San Diego-based artists and collectives, and features paintings, drawings, sculptures, installations, videos and new media as well as conceptual and performance art.

The collection, according to curators, is reflective of the city’s vivid art scene, uncovering a side of the city not often depicted in San Diego art museums.

The exhibition has been almost a year in the making and includes artwork carefully selected and dwindled down from more than 230 submissions. In choosing work for the exhibition, MCASD Associate Curator Lucía Sanromán explored artwork from galleries, universities and studios across the county in order to find the perfect additions to the collection.

The final result is much more than just a glimpse into San Diego’s vibrant art scene. It is also an outlet for city residents to, according to Sanromán, see the city through artistic expression as a cohesive whole instead of as separate hamlets.

Stating that MCASD La Jolla hasn’t hosted an exhibition of this caliber for more than 25 years, Sanromán said, “It’s a really exciting show. I think it brings a lot of what is going on in studios and in lab spaces and in universities and in schools across San Diego.”

Collecting work from under-recognized artists across the county, the “Here Not There: San Diego Art Now” exhibition places a focus on contemporary art in San Diego in a concentrated effort to celebrate the local community.

“When we focus on our communities we, by default, are sort of adding to the times that we are showing that we are valuing what is produced locally,” Sanromán said. “We want to find out what it is, present it to the general public to look at it, to bring it for everyone to see.”

Artists and collectives featured in “Here Not There: San Diego Art Now” include: David Adey, Agitprop, Adam Belt, Susannah Bielak, Brian Black and Ryan Bulis, Kelsey Brookes, Sheldon Brown, Micha Cárdenas and Elle Mehrmand, Brian Dick, Tom Driscoll, Kelly Eginton, Electronic Disturbance Theater/

b.a.n.g. lab, James Enos, Steve Gibson, Brian Goeltzenleuchter, Matthew Hebert, John Brinton Hogan, Jeff Irwin, Glenna Jennings, Wendell Kling, John Oliver Lewis, Lev Manovich and William Huber, Heather Gwen Martin, May-Ling Martinez, Jessica McCambly, Gretchen Mercedes, Patricia Montoya, Ingram Ober, Christopher Puzio, Andy Ralph, Marisol Rendon, Allison Renshaw, Jason Sherry and Matt Hoyt, Tristan Shone, The Border Corps (Armando de la Torre, Anthony Vasquez, Endy, Perry Vasquez and Shondra Dawson), Stephen Tompkins, Michael Trigllio, Robert Twomey, Zlatan Vukosavljevic, Vicki Walsh and Allison Wiese.

If you go

  • What: “Here Not There”
  • When: June 6-Sept. 19
  • Where: Museum of Contemporary Art, 700 Prospect St.
  • Cost: $5-$10; free for ages 25 and under
  • Contact: (858) 454-3541,

  • Special night: 7 to 10 p.m. June 19; a range of performances will unfold simultaneously throughout the evening; free to members, $7-$5 others