Studio Grand is pleased to present POW! Women in Comics & Illustration curated by Breena Nuñez. The Exhibition brings nine womxn of color comics and illustrators together centering their stories, thoughts, spells, and magic.
Comics and illustrations have long been a popular art form, intended to reach the masses. They easily engage audiences by the use of humor, cliffhanging narratives, relatable stories, all through captivating visual narratives. Comics and illustrations have often portrayed womxn in a hyper-sexualized manner and have not shown more developed female characters. Much of this is due to the comic book industry which has historically profiled work written and created by men. POW! seeks to center womxn comics and illustrators who hold the pen and the narrative.
This Exhibition centers stories that concern womxn comics and illustrators offering transformative narratives, one where women characters—speaking of mental health struggles, struggles of poverty and survival, isolation, resiliency, sisterhood—are at the forefront. The POW! Exhibition and accompanying events offer a nurturing space of solidarity and healing, letting womxn know that they are not alone in their struggles and resiliency.
We are grateful for the support and fiscal sponsorship of Galeria de la Raza and for the generous support of the Akonadi Foundation's Beloved Community Fund.
Opening Reception: Friday, December 2, 7:00pm-9:00pm
Public Reading, Panel, & Pop Up Comics Market: Saturday, December 3, 3:00pm-6:00pm
Art Therapy Workshop with Valerie Perez Ordoñez*: Saturday, December 17, 1:00pm-3:00pm
*Space is limited; RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org. We will send an email confirmation letting you know if we can accommodate you.
Minnie Phan is an illustrator, cartoonist, and all around busy bee. She specializes in children’s book illustration, and comics related to personal experiences. She happily makes work that is colorful, thoughtful, and charming. Clients include NPR, Live Nation, The Bold Italic, Colorlines, and The Asian American Literary Review. She graduated from California College of the Arts in Illustration, with distinction.
Thi Bui was born in Vietnam three months before the end of the Vietnam War,and immigrated to the U.S. with her family in 1978. She has just completed her graphic memoir, The Best We Could Do, which will be published by Abrams and in bookstores March 2017. She is currently illustrating a children's book, A Different Pond, written by Bao Phi, to be published next fall by Capstone. Thi was a founding teacher of Oakland International High School, the first public high school in California for recent immigrants and English learners. She now teaches in the MFA in Comics program at the California College of the Arts. She lives in Berkeley with her son, her husband and her mother.
Francis Mead is a visual artist, dreamer, Goddess mama rooted in Oakland, Ca. Ever since she can remember she made art to connect with herself, her ancestors and the spirits that guide her. The intention behind her work is to reflect those creations back to the world as a way to inspire and liberate her peoples.
Tumblr @girasoulll | Instagram @girasoulll | Facebook
Valerie Perez Ordonez
Valerie Perez Ordoñez is a Salvi/Xicana illustrator & mixed media artist. She find inspiration in the privacy of chaos, the flux of being, dreams worlds, iridescent identities, cosmic pluralities, dark ambiguity, self-preservation, art as healing & the natural order–la tierra, la luna, y la magia.
Breena Nuñez is a Bay Area child of Central American descent who lives off of the love of creating music and visual art. She has been a longtime reader of comics, watcher of animation, listener of music and has recently encouraged herself to channel her artistic energy by writing stories about feminism and personal experiences of understanding the Central American diaspora.
Rachel Ann Millar
Rachel Ann Millar is a San Francisco native now residing in the Concord, California. She spends her time drawing fanart of her favorite video games. Her favorite genre of entertainment is horror and she fills the silence of drawing with youtube videos of grown men screaming in terror. Her bookshelves are an artbook and comic library that she happily shares with anyone who would care. She loves drawing (and eating) animals, incorporating them whenever she can into her comics and illustrations, doing her best to use her humor and art to educate as well as entertain.
A lifelong artist, Ajuan Mance works in acrylic on paper and canvas, ink on paper and, for her zines and illustrations, ink on paper and digital media. Her zines and comics address the complexities of race and gender in the U.S. Ajuan has participated in group and solo exhibitions throughout the Bay Area as well as at the University of Oregon, the Woman Made Gallery in Chicago, IL, and the Reinhardt-Fisher Gallery in Trenton, NJ. She has also participated in The Art of Living Black Exhibition an Art Tour, SF Zinefest, the Alternative Press Expo, the LA Zine Fest, the San Diego Zine Fest, the Brooklyn Zine Fest, and the East Bay Alternative Book and Zine Fest. A professor of English at Mills College in Oakland, Ajuan is partly inspired by her teaching and research in the related fields of U.S. Black literature and history.
Tanna’s work combines interests in folklore, African diaspora and representation in storytelling. In terms of genres, her influences are varied, but the common thread is a desire to depict full and complex characters that were absent in the stories she encountered growing up. She is currently collaborating with Mark Turner and Orpheus Forge Studios on a seven part fantasy comic entitled Sea Wulfe, due out in 2017. You can follow along on the team’s journey to publishing at seawulfe.com.
Tanna’s work was recently featured in the GWAN comics anthology, the June issue of Light Speed Magazine and will be included in the forthcoming Black Comix Returns Anthology. Her work has shown at the San Francisco Cartoon Art Museum, Mission Comics & Art, and Light Grey Art Lab.
Caroline Ghani is a San Francisco native who has spent the past 4 years living and loving life in Paris, France. C'est une belle vie!! While in France photography and art history were the main focus however in general Caroline is inspired by the ocean and nature. She also likes to incorporate her Indonesian background into her art. A juxtaposition of East meets West is a recurring theme in a lot of her work and artistic vision. Currently back in San Francisco but preparing for the next adventure in Asia. Passport and watercolors are always ready to go!
DJ Dreams (Opening Reception DJ)
DREAMS is a DJ/producer based in Oakland. They are the co-producer and resident DJ of Oakland's sexiest queer dance party- Body Party (@bodypartyoakland on IG)
Their style is a whimsically lit mix of hip hop, future r&b, and sensual bass. Catch them at Body Party @ Era Art Bar on November 17 with DJ DEITY and special guest DJ MUJIE