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Sadie Barnette

SPACE/TIME, 2022

Bay Area Walls commission
October 15, 2022–June 2023
Floor 5

Sadie Barnette, SPACE/TIME, 2022 (detail); San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; © Sadie Barnette. SPACE/TIME was commissioned and executed by Sadie Barnette as a part of Bay Area Walls, a series of commissions initiated in 2020.

Sadie Barnette, SPACE/TIME, 2022 (detail); San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; © Sadie Barnette. SPACE/TIME was commissioned and executed by Sadie Barnette as a part of Bay Area Walls, a series of commissions initiated in 2020.
Sadie Barnette, SPACE/TIME, 2022 (detail); San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; © Sadie Barnette. SPACE/TIME was commissioned and executed by Sadie Barnette as a part of Bay Area Walls, a series of commissions initiated in 2020.

About

Oakland-based artist Sadie Barnette uncovers and reanimates stories of resistance, resilience, and love through an ongoing retelling of her family’s history. SPACE/TIME, a site-specific commission developed in dialogue with Afterimages: Echoes of the 1960s from the Fisher and SFMOMA Collections, celebrates life against the backdrop of political turmoil and everyday moments from the 1960s to today, highlighting intergenerational legacies and collective possibilities.

Just as personal and political events collide and coexist in life, Barnette’s mural juxtaposes cellphone snapshots of birthday parties and weddings with large-scale images of her father in his army uniform in 1966, before he left for Vietnam, and in 1968, as a Black Panther after he returned. Barnette also revisits her own visual language, reusing images that recur in her work, such as pictures of a Martin Luther King Jr. Drive street sign, her aunt’s living room, and sparkly musical equipment. These references appear alongside self-portraits, items from her studio—including a jewel-encrusted calculator and a Hello Kitty Fizzy Pop—and her frequently used adornments: spray paint, glitter, and rhinestones. Drawings with the phrases “Right Here,” “Right Now,” “Everything,” and “Forever” consider the elasticity of time, while the tinted window featuring the words “Space” and “Time” envelops the surrounding architecture with Barnette’s signature pink. By bringing together cosmic imagery and a picture of her father in a swirling pink void, Barnette collapses the expansive arc of time that connects generations and dimensions.

 

—Jenny Gheith, Associate Curator of Painting and Sculpture
—Marin Sarvé-Tarr, Assistant Curator of Painting and Sculpture

 

SPACE/TIME was commissioned and executed by Sadie Barnette as a part of Bay Area Walls, a series of commissions initiated in 2020.

The presenting sponsor for Bay Area Walls is Gap Inc.

Major support is provided by the Roberta and Steve Denning Commissioning Endowed Fund.

Generous support is provided by the Patricia W. Fitzpatrick Commissioning Endowed Fund, Diana Nelson and John Atwater Commissioning Fund, and the Denise Littlefield Sobel Commissioning Endowed Fund.