Where Local Artists can make a Name for Themselves


Lauren Locquiao

Couple looks at the artwork in ICA’s extended hours: Art after Dark

Lauren Locquiao, Staff Reporter

It appears first as a hole in the wall, but what looks small on the outside is actually spacious on the inside. When you first walk in, you are greeted with both a friendly and helpful smile.

“Art After Dark”, sponsored by the San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art, offers a place for local and emerging artists to present their artworks for the public.

“We’re a contemporary art gallery and we try to focus on mid-career kind of artists who are sort of up and coming,” membership manager Lisa Cavigliano said. “We do anything from a real traditional comp show to a site-specific show.”

When you first enter, the room wraps around itself, you can enter clockwise or counterclockwise. To the left, is a dark room filled with light by a projector casting a timelapse of various paintings. On the right, are pictures of people and various photographers. Depictions of expressions include pieces covering topics like race, queer identity, gender expression, and cultural lineage.

Christopher A. Burkett, a professor at SJSU, first explored this exhibit with his class after not having enough time at the San Jose Museum of Modern Art. 

“We ended up walking the street and stumbled upon an abstract show here,” he said.

Ever since then, he decided to come back to see what they have to offer. On Thursday, Burkett was seen sitting as the projector plays a timelapse of the art, “Clive McCarthy: Electric Paintings.” 

He said he recalls how he rarely would see his mother in photographs, as he said it was a superstition of hers that a photograph takes a piece of the soul away.

As an artist, I felt like it was more of a challenge to kind of describe the environment without the individual person being there,” Burkett said.

Abstract art is something that he enjoys to provide a narrative to tell people’s stories. Aaron Tumbaga, 20, an attendee visiting family in San Jose enjoyed the piece “On Becoming” by Tammy Rae Carland.

“At first glance, I didn’t realize she was portraying both roles of her mother and father,” said Tumbaga. “I think it’s a really cool way of expressing the traits you pick up from both parents.”

In addition to the art, Kurt Salinas, gallery attendant said that the event offers drinks and free chocolate while viewing the exhibit. 

“Art After Dark” could offer a new addition to your nightlife after school or work, as its time accommodate those who cannot make it during the day, but want to see the exhibit in their free time.

Each month, the ICA holds the “Art After Dark” every second Thursday of the month. Whether you think you understand art or not, you are welcome to swing by for a quick hangout or a long look at local art.