Book release event for ravel, Bonnie Kwong's new book. September 26th, 2015 from 2-6pm

Book cover of  ravel , by poet Bonnie Kwong

Book cover of ravel, by poet Bonnie Kwong

Sept 26, 2015 from 2-6 pm

Come celebrate the release of ravel, Bonnie Kwong's first book of poetry. The event will include live performances by: Contraband, Oliver Mok, Sriba Kwadjovie and Melanie Evans.

From the kundiman Nandito Ako, the children's song usagi, to my daughter Talise drawing eggs, ravel begins in the pause after everyday moments--it could not have come to life in a vacuum.  So please join us in welcoming ravel in its bound[less] form.   

Warning: There will be hacked passports, counterfeit Customs Declaration forms, and other contraband items.

Reception starts at 2 pm with drinks and snacks, including some citrus delights from the poem The Taste of Each, which you can also explore in the form of a 3-D, scrolling digital globe.  

Performances begin at 3 pm with Contraband, a multilingual musical collaboration with musician and guitarist Oliver Mok, dancer Sriba Kwadjovie, and vocalist Melanie Evans, followed by the premier of Half a Duet, a musical poem based on the Mandarin song Bu Liao Qing 不了情/Love Without End. 

Poetry from ravel has garnered two Pushcart nominations.  The collection was a finalist for the White Pine Press Poetry Prize and the Many Voices Project by New Rivers Press.   

Bonnie Wai-Lee Kwong is a poet who “traffics in songs unsung”. There is a musicality to her lines and a pervasive intelligence behind each piece. Sometimes she permits the rational, scientific part of her mind to dominate but more often her poems are sensual, delicate yet fierce, dynamic, and probing. Read this book and savor its flame!

Susan Terris, author, Ghost of Yesterday, New & Selected Poems


In ravel, Bonnie Kwong weaves from the disparate--from the quiet intimacies of love to the cruel depredations of history—an elegant fabric. Kwong’s poems are spare, restrained, yet at the same time made rich by her knowledge of multiple languages and cultures. “How much sweetness do we need to swallow the bitter?” asks one speaker. 

Leslie McGrath, author, Out From the Pleiades

In this multilingual collection of poems, Bonnie Wai-Lee Kwong writes of the subtext in every civilized good. Hidden histories, suffering, and injustice are calmly dissected by this poet with clear eyes and straight diction -- words that at once enlighten, empower, and untangle.

Koon Woon, author, Water Chasing Water, 2014 American Book Award winner.


Random Parts Gallery, 1206 13th Ave, Oakland (between East 12 St and International)

EAST BAY EXPRESS write up by Sarah Burke


Data and Displacement

In a two-part show on gentrification, Random Parts in Oakland and Incline Gallery in San Francisco team up to bring awareness to the act of crossing the bay.

by Sarah Burke

May 27, 2015


Tom Loughlin's neon signage speaks to aspects of the economy that are often ignored.

Tom Loughlin's neon signage speaks to aspects of the economy that are often ignored.


The Dissidents, the Displaced, and the Outliers will show through June 5 at Random Parts and through June 19 at Incline Gallery. Closing Panel Discussion on June 14, 4-6 p.m. at Incline.

The current show inside Random Parts gallery (1206 13th Ave., Oakland) is like tangible poetry, articulated through mysterious objects and imagery. In it, Leslie Dreyer has immersed an iPhone in a jar of water and placed it near to an old, analog phone — the kind where you crank the number pad — with letters instead of numbers. It's next to a series of photographs of San Francisco taken through Google Street View by the artist COLL.EO. Hanging over the window is Elizabeth Travelslight's quilted "safety blanket," which is made of Mylar and other materials used in surveillance technology. Digital tablets mounted on the wall display Eliza Barrios' videos of Oakland streets superimposed with QR codes that lead to informational online resources. Adjacent, a neon sign by Tom Loughlin blares a cryptic critique: "Bitcoin Payday / IPO ADVANCE / 300 Changemaker / Lo Rate Mortgage / FPGA Rent2Own."

The element that most legibly focuses the collection of works is a series of interactive data visualizations that are presented on an iPad and projected onto the wall. Created by the Anti-Eviction Mapping Project, an activist research group that tracks gentrification in the Bay Area, the visualizations show sites of development and displacement as glowing dots on familiar maps. With that, the pieces cohere into the Oakland half of The Dissidents, the Displaced, and the Outliers, a show about the intersection of gentrification and privacy concerns.

Curator Dorothy Santos, aside from being a critical new media whiz, serves as an executive staff member for the Bay Area Society for Art & Activism, through which she curates shows, this time in collaboration with The Electronic Frontier Foundation. Without ignoring the obvious connection between tech and gentrification — that of tech employees displacing San Francisco residents — Santos' selections collectively go beyond that, speaking to the tangle of ways in which the loss of housing security corresponds with the loss of data security. While online privacy has become a troubling concern, maintaining physical privacy is also a struggle under the looming threat of homelessness and surveillance.

The other half of the show is housed at Incline Gallery in San Francisco, and features related works by the same artists. Presented this way, the conversation literally spans the bay. Incline is located at 766 Valencia Street, a portion of the Mission District that, in an interview, Santos suggested you could arguably refer to as "post-gentrification." Random Parts, on the other hand, is tucked away in a residential neighborhood on a short block between International Boulevard and East 12th Avenue, still relatively untouched by the incoming migration to Oakland. Traveling between the two sites could be thought of as a grim journey through time, and anyone willing to fulfill the journey might ultimately find it to be the most thought-provoking aspect of the show.

Show Details

The Dissidents, the Displaced, and the Outliers will show through June 5 at Random Parts and through June 19 at Incline Gallery. Closing Panel Discussion on June 14, 4-6 p.m. at Incline.


full article here.

Random Parts in SF GATE

'The Dissidents, the Displaced and the Outliers’: Left out in S.F.

By Kimberly Chun  

Published 6:34 pm, Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Photo: Courtesy Of The Artist

Local duo COLL.EO shows “A New American Dream,” a 2014 set of framed digital prints of images from Google Street View.

How do you solve a puzzle like San Francisco — a city in flux, planted in a bedrock of Left Coast values and a shifting landfill of artisanal comestibles and messenger-bag boutiques?

Bay Area artists Colleen Flaherty and Matteo Bittanti — working, and playing, under the collaborative moniker of COLL.EO — are game to try. For “A New American Dream” and “City Blocks,” the collaborators turned images sourced from Google Street View of the homeless on San Francisco streets into picture-postcard-like prints and a child’s toy while reframing and pointing to the oft-seen-but-seldom-foregrounded sights of the city.

The views are further complicated as the pair turn the lens around with a self-mocking “artist statement,” stating, in persona, “I am giving visibility to invisible individuals and that makes me feel good. Look! These people camp on the sidewalk. They have tents and carts. They are a new metropolitan tribe. … All these images truly resonate with me and with my upbringing.”

“A New American Dream” and “City Blocks” appear alongside pieces by Bay Area artists such as Eliza BarriosLeslie Dreyer and Tom Loughlin in “The Dissidents, the Displaced and the Outliers,” a transbay group show curated by Dorothy Santos. The San Francisco-born critic organized the exhibit around ideas of privacy, surveillance and gentrification by her cohort at the Bay Area Society For Art & Activism: artist Elizabeth Travelsight. The latter’s “security blankets” quilted of materials like bulletproof fabric also appear in the show.

When Travelsight first proposed the concept, Santos, 36, confesses, “My gut reaction was, that’s a challenging thing.

“I think when people think of privacy, surveillance and gentrification, a lot of them will have an understanding that this show is about x, y and z,” she continues. “I had to think creatively around this, to find artists that pair well and provoke a conversation among viewers.”

Santos says she attempted to push boundaries and kick off conversation by selecting pieces like the Anti-Eviction Mapping Project, an online data visualization, data analysis and digital storytelling documentation of Bay Area gentrification.

“It’s at the nexus of art, design and technology,” says Santos of the site, known for its crowd-sourced maps of displacement and a dramatic time-lapse visualization of Ellis Act evictions. “I think there’s something deep and provocative if you’re using technology to create something sensitive that a lot of people don’t like talking about? It creates talk about what do art and activism look like?”

Apparently, it looks a lot like the viewers—and the makers, as onetime California College of the Arts adjunct professor Bittanti relates his own experiences with displacement. “Aren’t we all outliers,” he says by e-mail, “in an age of neoliberalism and technological determinism?”

Kimberly Chun crisscrosses the East Bay. E-mail: Twitter: @kimberlychun

If you go

The Dissidents, the Displaced and the Outliers: Random Parts opening reception: 4-8 p.m. Saturday, May 2. Through June 5. By appointment only. Random Parts, 1206 13th Ave., Oakland. (510) 415-8791. Incline Gallery opening reception: 5-9 p.m. May 16. Through June 19. Gallery hours 6-9 p.m. Wednesday-Friday, 1-6 p.m. Saturday-Sunday. Incline Gallery, 766 Valencia St., S.F.



The Dissidents, the Displaced, and the Outliers, show opening this Saturday, May 2nd, 2015 from 4-8

This Saturday is the first in a series of events opening for In The Dissidents, the Displaced, and the Outliers.

The opening reception is at Random Parts May 2nd, 2015 from 4-8 pm.


Anti-Eviction Mapping Project

Eliza Barrios


Leslie Dreyer

Tom Loughlin

Elizabeth Travelslight.


From Saturday May 2nd to Friday, June 19th the Bay Area Society for Art & Activism in partnership with the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Random Parts, and Incline Gallery will present The Dissidents, the Displaced, and the Outliers, a transbay visual art exhibition about housing security and digital privacy at Random Parts in Oakland and Incline Gallery in San Francisco. Curated by Dorothy R. Santos, the exhibition will feature work in both venues by Anti-Eviction Mapping ProjectEliza Barrios,COLL.EOLeslie DreyerTom Loughlin, and Elizabeth Travelslight.

In The Dissidents, the Displaced, and the Outliers, Bay Area artists offer a collection of work about the convergence of privacy and gentrification unique to the Bay Area, in particular the impact of surveillance technology and the digital economy on housing security and how affluence secures both privacy and housing.

Exhibitions Dates and Locations

May 2 – June 5, 2015
Random Parts
1206 13th Avenue, Oakland, CA
Opening reception: Saturday, May 2 • 4-8pm

May 16 – June 19, 2015
Incline Gallery
766 Valencia Street, San Francisco, CA
Opening reception: Saturday, May 16 • 5-9pm


Public Events and Programs

Outdoor Film Salon
Saturday, May 9
7-9pm @ Random Parts
1206 13th Avenue, Oakland, CA

EFF Digital Privacy Workshop
Saturday, May 23
2-4pm @ Random Parts
1206 13th Avenue, Oakland, CA

Closing Panel Discussion
Sunday, June 14
4-6pm @ Incline Gallery
766 Valencia Street, San Francisco, CA

 All events are free, all ages, and open to the public.

Historically, the artist has served as a figure who illuminates what is emblematic of the times serving as a luminary that provides the necessary historical, political, and cultural contexts that explains the significant shifts and changes within an environment. Since the emergence of dotcom businesses of the late 1990s, Bay Area residents have witnessed the rise and fall of the initial technology driven economy. The resurgence of online businesses and explosion of start-ups have resulted in exponential growth of the tech workforce across industry-leading companies such as Google, Facebook, and Twitter.

This two-city parallel exhibition aims to open conversation about these topics on both sides of the Bay and is supported by free, public programming, including an outdoor film salon, a panel discussion with organizational partners and artists, and a workshop on digital privacy. These free community events enable visitors to delve further into the exhibition themes and be in dialogue with artists and community leaders.

For more information: