Do Ho Suh’s current art installation at Arthouse of the Contemporary Austin running through January 11, 2014, is easy to like, to photograph. His embroidered sketches, videos and installations replay and rephrase an inescapable memory of home. It’s depicted in paper and thread as carried on one’s shoulders, or trailed after like clouds of dust, or in video hauled across country on a semi-trailer. One recalls Atlas’s bearing the weight of the world, Peanuts’ Pigpen trailing the dust of ancient civilizations, and the percussive heartbeat of truck driving songs.
Last summer’s trip to Berlin, City of Graffiti, has us thinking about the lively yet criminal place of graffiti in the community. The Berkeley Arts Museum visits the subject in Barry McGee’s exhibit of constructions, sketches and graffiti art closing December 9th, 2012. The museum building itself is not to be missed, as it too is subject to closure as an art museum in 2015 as a result of ever-stiffening seismic requirements anxiously awaiting the arrival of the Big One. Meanwhile, the building’s impending loss as a dramatic and now-unrepeatable gallery space is a tragic and crushing blow.