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Tonight: ¡Oye, Mira! at SFAI Goes Out With A Bang

Future Twin, courtesy of SFAI

From standard white-walled exhibit space to underground tropical nightclub—the San Francisco Art Institute's Walter and McBean Galleries make a sultry transformation at tonight's free closing reception for “¡Oye, Mira!, Reflective Approaches in Contemporary Latin American Video Art.”

Tonight's party brings three Bay Area bands who, like the artists in the exhibit, utilize multimedia and video to frame their work. The show's curator Tony Labat and his ties to SF's early punk scene (he had a band called The A-holes) served as the basis for this idea of transforming the galleries into a pop-up music venue, following in the tradition of pop-up nightclubs of yore: à la North Beach's Mabuhay Gardens, a restaurant by day that moonlighted as a nightclub hosting such acts at Devo, The Ramones, Dead Kennedys, and Blondie.

Live performances include Shalo P, a local audio/visual artist who blends dense layers of sight and sound centered around hatred, love, longing, and sorrow. Gold Wood, the brainchild of my favorite local multimedia artist Mauricio Ancalmo, explores the boundaries of both analog and digital sound with band members C.I.A., $$$, and Urban Yetti. And Future Twin—resembling the likes of St. Vincent, Kathleen Hannah, and Grace Slick—was born out of the first all-girl moped gang in SF called The Lockits and fuses raw beauty with rock grit.

But don't forget why you're there. The exhibit, a selection of Latin American artists using video as a tool of reflection, takes a serious turn in its exploration of place-specific issues of social justice and political oppression. These artists—from Cuba, Mexico, Argentina, Peru, and Bolivia—take various approaches to the video medium, from looping narratives to dialogues created for complementary two-dimensional works. And audience participation is paramount. So, have your al fresco Friday happy hour and then head over to SFAI.

¡Oye, Mira! closing reception, Friday, 6/28 from 7 - 10 p.m. at SFAI's Walter and McBean Galleries, 800 Chestnut St., sfai.edu