February 6, 2017 - Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (YBCA) - Lynn Hershman Leeson: Civic Radar
February 6, 2017

Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (YBCA)

Lynn Hershman Leeson, Roberta’s Construction Chart, 1975. Courtesy the artist and Anglim Gilbert Gallery, San Francisco; Waldburger Wouters Gallery, Brussels; Bridget Donahue Gallery, New York; and Vilma Gold Gallery, London.

Lynn Hershman Leeson
Civic Radar
February 10–May 21, 2017

Opening night party: February 10, 7–10pm

Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (YBCA)
701 Mission Street
San Francisco, CA 94103
United States
Hours: Tuesday–Sunday 11am–6pm,
Thursday 11am–8pm

T +1 415 978 2787

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Lynn Hershman Leeson: Civic Radar spans the length of the San Francisco-based artist’s career, from the early 1960s to the present. Originally curated by Peter Weibel and Andreas Beitin and organized by ZKM | Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe, Germany, the survey exhibition has been reconfigured at YBCA by Director of Visual Arts Lucía Sanromán. Civic Radar focuses on Hershman Leeson’s feminist investigations of identity and viewers’ relationships to various modes of surveillance, as well as her contributions to the fields of social performance and engaged practice.

A fearless pioneer whose performances were fueled by indignation of the vulnerable position of women in American society, her work has been a harbinger of experiments in social practice, new media, and interactive and net-based art decades before technology and digital culture would reshape our experience of reality.

Presenting nearly 250 works, Civic Radar begins with Hershman Leeson’s early drawings, paintings, and sculptures, then explores her shift toward performance, installation, and conceptual work, displaying her enthusiastic embrace of evolving media. The exhibition covers photography, film, video, and digital media, including sound, interactive, and social media exploring the effects of modern technology on the self—particularly the female self.

In her recent works the artist addresses the influence of digital culture on our most intimate selves, along with the latest scientific developments in the field of regenerative medicine and genetics research, for instance 3D bioprinters that re-create human body parts. These are featured in a new version of the immersive installation The Infinity Engine (2014–ongoing)—a replica of a genetics lab that was first prototyped at YBCA in the 2013 exhibition Dissident Futures—that generates infinite narratives about the future of the human species in the post–human age.

Exhibition programs:

Techno Reveries and Alter Egos: The Films of Lynn Hershman Leeson
Saturdays, March 4–25, 2pm, Screening Room

Saturday, March 4, 2pm, !WOMEN ART REVOLUTION (2010, 83 minutes, digital)
Saturday, March 11, 2pm, TEKNOLUST (2002, 82 minutes, digital)
Saturday, March 18, 2pm, CONCEIVING ADA (1997, 85 minutes, digital)
Saturday, March 25, 2pm, STRANGE CULTURE (2007, 75 minutes, digital)

YBCA conversation: Lynn Hershman Leeson with Eleanor Coppola, moderated by Amelia Jones
Wednesday, March 15, 7pm, Screening Room

Civic Radar book discussion with B. Ruby Rich and Peggy Phelan, moderated by Elizabeth Thomas
Wednesday, April 19, 7pm, Screening Room

Tania Libre screening
Please check ybca.org for screening dates and times

This new film on the Cuban artist Tania Bruguera documents the personal and emotional fallout of Bruguera’s unjust detentions through sessions with psychiatrist Dr. Frank Ochberg, one of the founding fathers of modern psycho-traumatology.


Lynn Hershman Leeson: Civic Radar is curated by Peter Weibel and Andreas Beitin, and organized by ZKM | Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe. The presentation at YBCA is organized by Lucía Sanromán, Director of Visual Arts, YBCA.

YBCA Exhibitions 2016–2017 are made possible, in part, by Mike Wilkins and Sheila Duignan, Meridee Moore and Kevin King, and the Creative Ventures Council. YBCA Programs 2016–2017 are made possible, in part, by The James Irvine Foundation. Additional funding for YBCA Programs 2016–2017: National Endowment for the Arts, Adobe, Abundance Foundation, Gaia Fund, Grosvenor, and members of Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. Free First Tuesdays underwritten by Directors Forum Members. Yerba Buena Center for the Arts is grateful to the City of San Francisco for its ongoing support.  

Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (YBCA)
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Civic Radar
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