The year in Bay Area visual arts closes out with some ambitious highs, including new spaces, American debuts, reactivated landmarks and a notable museum homecoming.

Film, installation and mixed media as well as painting, sculpture and textile are all represented this season, with issues including environmental sustainability, social justice and religion being explored. The offerings on view should be a nice respite for anyone ready for a break from the holiday-themed entertainments elsewhere:

After eight years in San Francisco, Aimee Friberg is expanding her Cult Exhibitions to a second space in Oakland’s Temescal Alley, a grouping of former horse stables that has become a trendy East Bay destination. The new Cult Bureau will specialize in conceptual and experimental work by emerging and established artists and designers. The first exhibition, “Sapiens/Stories,” will explore art engaged with personal mythologies around the environment, history and magic. Among the artists included in the inaugural show are Amy Lincoln, Chris Fallon, Marcel Pardo Ariza, Masako Miki, Rebekah Goldstein, Sahana Ramakrishnan and Terri Friedman.

Noon-4 p.m. Saturday-Sunday and by appointment. Through Jan. 29. Free. Cult Bureau, 482 D 49th St., Oakland. 415-238-7385.

Deborah Oropallo and Andy Rappaport, still from “Uprising,” 2021. Photo: Deborah Oropallo and Andy Rappaport / Catharine Clark Gallery, San Francisco.


As public monuments continue to be a rallying point in discussions of history and social justice, Deborah Oropallo and Andy Rappaport explore issues surrounding the topic in a series of collaborative video and photomontage works. The exhibition’s centerpiece, “Uprising,” is an immersive three-channel video installation set against stormy skies depicting more than 200 toppled and defaced monuments to the Confederacy. The exhibition also includes “Rebellion,” a five-channel video focusing on protesters in Hong Kong, Myanmar, Venezuela and Turkey; and “One World,” a 35-channel video on postcard-size monitors depicting the construction of One World Trade Center and its destruction on 9/11. Katherine Vetne’s “All This Could Be Yours,” an exploration of heirlooms, womanhood and consumerism through sculpture and metal-point works, will be on view in the solo viewing room.

10:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Tuesday-Friday; 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday. Through Dec. 23. Free. Catharine Clark Gallery, 248 Utah St., S.F. 415-399-1439.

Leila Weefur, “Play Prey: A Gospel,” 2021. Photo: Jenna Garrett / Minnesota Street Project Foundation

‘Play Prey: A Gospel’

The multichannel film experience by artist Leila Weefur is presented at both the Minnesota Street Project and Telematic Media Arts in San Francisco. “Play Prey: A Gospel” is the third exhibition by the Minnesota Street Project Foundation’s California Black Voices Project and explores the relationship among God, the church and a queer Black child, taking inspiration from four lyrical sermons in James Weldon’s “God’s Trombones: Seven Negro Sermons in Verse.” The Minnesota Street Project installation is presented as three separate films playing simultaneously, Telematic Media Arts features the single-channel installation “Play Prey: The Old Testament” as well as the sculpture “Wax Monument VII (The Cross),” which consists of 506 palm-sized wax crosses.

11 a.m.-6 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday. Through Dec. 4. Free. Minnesota Street Project, 1275 Minnesota St. S.F. 415-243-0825

11 a.m.- 4 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday or by appointment. Through Dec. 11. Free. Telematic Media Arts, 323 10th St. S.F. 415-336-2349

The former Cliff House, San Francisco. Photo: Terrance Emerson /

‘Lands End’

In the iconic former Cliff House, the For-Site Foundation, in partnership with the National Park Service, present an exhibition exploring the fragility of the natural world and issues like climate change, human rights and forced migration. Curated by For-Site Foundation Executive Director Cheryl Haines, the show features new commissions in sculpture, painting, textile, installation and video by 26 artists, including Chester Arnold, Ana Teresa Fernández, Andy Goldsworthy, Iris van Herpen and William T. Wiley. The landmark space, closed since December, will feature work throughout the public rooms as well as behind-the-scenes areas like kitchens, prep areas and trash rooms.

11 a.m.- 5 p.m. Thursday-Sunday. Through March 27. Free, timed entry. The former Cliff House, 1090 Point Lobos Ave., S.F.

Sadie Barnette, “Together 3,” 2021. Photo: Phillip Maisel / Sady Barnette and Jessica Silverman, San Francisco

‘Sadie Barnette: Inheritance’

Barnette’s first solo exhibition at Jessica Silverman will highlight the artist’s work reclaiming her family’s history within the Bay Area and the Black Liberation movement. Engaging with materials in the FBI dossier of her father, Compton Black Panther Party chapter founder Rodney Barnette, the artist created “The FBI Drawings”: a five-part work encompassing 4-by-5-foot panels of powdered graphite on stark white paper. The work uses whole pages from the dossier and overlays it with sweet emblems like Hello Kitty heads and bouquets, juxtapositions that allow the artist to insert herself into her family history, while serving as a reminder of issues of racial and social inequality. Elements from “The New Eagle Creek Saloon” will also be on view, a project to interpret aspects of the real New Eagle Creek Saloon, which was the first Black-owned gay bar in San Francisco and was owned by her father from 1990 to 1993.

10 a.m.-6 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday. Nov. 20- Jan. 8. Free. Jessica Silverman, 621 Grant Ave., S.F. 415-255-9508.

“Flag Wall” by Banksy is seen at “The Art of Banksy” in Toronto. Photo: The Art of Banksy / Zuma Press

‘The Art of Banksy’

This controversial traveling exhibition of work by the famed street artist Banksy (which is not authorized by the artist) is generating a lot of attention. Presented by Starvox and Non Plus Ultra, the same team that brought “Immersive Van Gogh” to the city, the exhibition at the Palace of Fine Arts will include more than 80 works from private collections, including recognizable images like “Flower Thrower,” “Rude Copper” and “Girl With Balloon.” Whether the works will be as resonant in a commercialized setting is the big question.

9 a.m.-10 p.m. Monday-Sunday. Opens Nov. 22., tickets on sale through Jan. 3. $29.99-$39.99. Palace of Fine Arts, 3601 Lyon St., S.F.

Woman’s blouse, Philippines, Luzon Island. Photo: Asian Art Museum

‘Weaving Stories’

The Asian Art Museum’s new textile exhibition will bring together more than 40 examples of fabric and garments from Indonesia, the Philippines and Malaysia that show the rich history and influence of Southeast Asian weaving traditions. The show will investigate how these fabrics, like ikats and batiks, produced primarily by women, have gone on to inspire fashion globally and become emotionally endowed cultural art forms in Southeast Asian communities. Many of the 19th and 20th century textiles have never been exhibited before, and they will be paired with archival photographs that show the fabrics in their original, everyday contexts as well as offering insight into how the pieces are made.

1-8 p.m. Thursdays; 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Fridays-Mondays. Closed Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Dec. 17-May 2. $15 general admission. $20 weekdays with teamLab admission, $25 weekends with teamLab  admission. Asian Art Museum, 200 Larkin St., S.F.

Tauba Auerbach in collaboration with Cameron Mesirow a.k.a. Glasser, “Auerglass Organ,” 2009. Photo: Max Farago / © Tauba Auerbach

‘Tauba Auerbach — S v Z’

In San Francisco native Tauba Auerbach’s first museum survey exhibition, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art will explore the 2008 SECA Art Award recipient’s multidimensional practice, which is often grounded in the artist’s studies of math, physics and ideas of craft and construction. “S v Z” will include work from the past 17 years of Auerbach’s career, focusing on matters of duality, connectedness, rhythm, form and reason. Among the mediums in the show are trompe l’oeil illusion paintings that manipulate surface and dimension, infrared photography, weavings, glass sculptures and video works that interpret theories of quantum physics.

1-8 p.m. Thursday; 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday-Monday. Dec. 18 – May 1. $19-$25. San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, 151 Third St., S.F. 415-357-4000.

By Indana