Justin Charles Hoover (胡智騰) is a Bay Area based time-based artist and a curator.  As an artist, his work deals with language, cultural relocation and translocation through performance, video, and installation. He has performed, curated, and exhibited at numerous venues around the world including the 2012 Venice Architecture Biennale; the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Apex Art, New York; the 2011 Art Life Festival in Guangzhou, China; Werkstattkino, München, Germany; the Time-Based Art Festival at the Portland Institute of Contemporary Art, Portland, OR; the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco; the Berkeley Art Museum, and many other venues. He is currently Curator of Exhibitions at the Santa Cruz Museum of Art and History and holds bachelor degrees in Peace Studies and French Literature and master degrees in New Genres Fine Arts and Public Administration of International Management.
Hoover compiled his selection for Over View during his tenure as curator and gallery director at SOMArts Cultural Center.

SOMArts (South of Market Arts, Resources, Technology, and Services) is an independent nonprofit that operates the South of Market Cultural Center, part of a network of six cultural centers in San Francisco which includes Bayview Opera House, the African American Arts & Culture Complex, Asian Pacific Islander Cultural Center, Queer Cultural Center and Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts. SOMArts is beloved in San Francisco as a cross-cultural, community-built space where cutting-edge events and counterculture commingle with traditional art forms in a way that is open, engaging and inspiring. It is an incubator for ideas that lie outside the mainstream of contemporary art funding and consumption. The mission of the organization is to promote and nurture art on the community level and foster an appreciation of and respect for all cultures.









Curatorial Statement

"This body of work comes mostly from across the West Coast of the USA but includes one artist from New York.  The United States, and especially the West Coast is a uniquely diverse place having a confluence of immigrants from China, Mexico, Latin and South America and all over the world.  This grouping consists of artists from Portland, Oregon (Fernanda D’Agostino), San Francisco/Bay Area (Paul Clipson, Sergio De La Torre and Laura Hyunjhee Kim), Los Angeles (Heather Cassils) and NY based Kate Gilmore. The work includes digital animation/performance (Kim), traditional 8mm film (Clipson), and performance documents (Cassils and Gilmore).  

The work ranges, as would any survey of a genre, but each holds something unique and excellent.  Clipson is a formalist, a master of captured light and cinematic montage.  His works reflect a modernist perspective and specifically link to philosophies of an abstract experessionism rooteded in the United State’s sense of individualism.  Cassils, De La Torre and Kim all describe minority rights issues and cultural hybridity with their bodies, set design, camera work and actions. Kim’s work is an absurd situation in which the artist embodies multiple similar comic personae and loses herself in the process while searching for some stolen or lost password. Gilmore utilizes physically laborious structures that are conscious of the frame and lens of the camera, designed to position the action within the picture plane and reframe the role of gender and labor.

Kim and De La Torre, U.S. investigate ways of reframing how the immigrant is perceived or rather, in the case of De La Torre, not perceived (through the silence of the games and languishing of the characters behind opaque glass).  Cassils investigates the trans-body but also layers in a metaphoric portrait of California as a state of economic crisis. The blond veneer of her character stands in for the state, while she engages in the slow flexing of a bodybuilder.  According to Cassils, bodybuilding is a sport with no other purpose than to present a “perfected” surface and the artist sees the construction of this unsustainable body as a stand in for America’s insatiable appetite to consume and the drive of capital regardless of consequence. Hard Times is a portrait of a social body that rots from the inside out.

D’Agostino investigates memory and fluidity in her work as well. coming from a place of personal memory and allegory and while her work usually manifests as reactive video installations, in this case we have reformatted it for single channel video presentation.  In this particular film she layers the contradictory images of fire and burning with underwater movements, books of memories and specific Ovid’s Metamorphosis to discuss the construction of the self through memory and opposites.  All in all, these artists are some of the most exciting players in contemporary west coast video and range from emerging to established and cover a diverse selection of topics shared by many throughout the United States."

- Justin Hoover