Crossing Borders: The Arts at CIIS presents Viva Paredes and Omar Pimienta


Art does not have to speak to a particular philosophical movement nor does it have to serve as the subtext to an overly complex idea. Often times, it's rather easy to get caught in the form, technicalities, and whatever we consider pleasing to the eyes versus being present with the work before us. Art can easily be therapeutic and reflective engagement of the world around you. It serves as a conduit for cross cultural narratives as well. At the California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS), this month is rife with works looking at issues of displacement, spirituality, and the intersections of culture through the art works of Omar Pimienta and Viva Paredes.

Pimienta’s exhibition, Translation, is a photographic essay of his commute between Tijuana, Mexico (where he resides) to San Diego, California (where he works). It shows striking images of everyday life that commit themselves to the memory of the viewer. Coupled with poetry, the photography becomes the rich story meshed with the viewer’s imagination. On the opposite end of the spectrum, the work of Viva Paredes includes sculptures and installation work conjuring up images of spirituality and our collective relationship with the earth and nature. Exhibition, Ceremonias Nocturnas, is the perfect complement to Pimienta’s work in that Paredes derives her inspiration from the works of poet, Maria Sabina. The pieces symbolize the translation between word and image and transcending physical form to become a part of the viewer’s consciousness.

Translation is on view at the CIIS Minna Street Center through March 17, 2012 and Ceremonias Nocturnas is on view through March 31, 2012.

1453 Mission St San Francisco, CA 94103
CIIS Main Building, 3rd floor

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