Visitors enjoy the 2011 MFA Graduate Exhibition at the Winery SF on Treasure Island.

Public Special Events


MA Thesis Symposium 2013
Monday, May 13 - Tuesday, May 14, 2013
Lecture Hall
Free and open to the public
San Francisco Art Institute
800 Chestnut Street
San Francisco,

Graduating scholars in SFAI’s Master of Arts programs in Exhibition and Museum Studies, History and Theory of Contemporary Art, Urban Studies, and the Dual Degree MA/MFA will present selections of their completed Master’s theses in a two-day-long public event. Engaging a diverse and interdisciplinary range of topics across global contemporary art practices, the MA Thesis Symposium represents the capstone of a two-year process of research, critical inquiry, and writing.


Monday, May 13

9:45–10:00 am             Welcome; Coffee/Light Breakfast

10:00–10:15 am           Opening Remarks and Introductions – Claire Daigle, Faculty Director of MA Programs

10:15 am–12:00 pm     Presentations

  • Joël Frudden, The Grounds of War
  • Zach Mitlas, Performative Pictures: Experience in Still Life Painting as a Product of Bedeviled Temporality
  • Orlando Lacro, Structurally American, Foreign in Detail: The Context of Contemporary Filipino-American Art
  • Saher Sohail, Chorr Dau Jidhwal: Permeating the Boundaries of Pakistan through the Neo Miniature

12:00–1:00 pm              Lunch

1:00–2:15 pm                Presentations

  • Christina Elliott, Cracked Aura: The Delegation of Relics
  • Suzanne Minatra, The Articulated Book: Discovering a New Book Medium Based on the Interplay between Page- and Screen-Based Reading
  • Sarah Nantais, Thomas Kinkade and “The Village” in Vallejo, CA: Revitalizing Contemporary Suburbs through Branding Strategies and the Visual Arts

2:15–2:30 pm                Break

2:30–4:00 pm                Presentations

  • Malic Amalya, Divine Abjection: Queer Bodily Tactics in Experimental Film, John Waters, George Kuchar, Jennifer Reeder, & Zackary Drucker
  • Ariel Zaccheo, In the Temple of the Screen: Religiosity and Ritual in Cult Cinema
  • Aimee B. Harlib, Incendiary Images: A Reading of Radical AIDS Activism through Punk Aesthetics, San Francisco, 1979-Present
  • Angelica Jardini, The Rhetorical Slut: Politics of Sexuality and Gender in Feminist Performance

Tuesday, May 14

9:45–10:00 am              Welcome; Coffee/Light Breakfast

10:00 am–12:00 pm      Presentations

  • Regina Velasco Gómez, Mobile Mexico: Street-Level Citizenship
  • Martin Jay Strickland, The Conversation Continues: Dialogue Created through Digital Technology and Media within Museums
  • Stephanie Tran, The Ubiquitous Apple Product: Negotiating Curatorial Strategies in Exhibitions of Architecture and Design
  • Carolyn Jean Martin, Negro Expositions: Portrait Photography in the Nineteenth and Twenty-First Centuries

12:00–1:00 pm              Lunch

1:00–2:30 pm                Presentations

  • Zoë Martell, Brass Monkey-Wrench in the Gears: Steampunk’s Trickster
  • Danielle Gravon, Playing with Text: Tactility and Wonder in The Cabinet of Jan Švankmajer
  • Amy Mutza, Unruly Threads, Queer Handicrafts

2:30–3:00 pm                Break

3:00–4:00 pm                Presentations

  • Carlos Garcia-Montero, The Myth/The Ghost: The Spectral Presence of Tino Sehgal
  • Manuela Ochoa Ronderos, The Uninhabited Stages/Los Escenarios Inhabitados: Stepping into Feliza Bursztyn’s House
  • Kira A. Dralle, My Body Knows Unheard-of Songs: The Sexed Body in New Music Performance Practice

4:00–5:00 pm               Reception in the Café Courtyard


Image: From the thesis of Regina Velasco Gómez, Mobile Mexico: Street-Level Citizenship
Condesa Lifestyle
Photographed by Fernando Velasco
Image courtesy of Fernando Velasco