Headlands Center for the Arts

Headlands at Home

Amidst the new realities of the COVID-19 landscape, Headlands’ Mission—rooted in the belief that art and artists are integral to a healthy and just society—feels more urgent than ever. Artists ask the tough questions. They envision new possibilities. They create community, beauty, and understanding. As we continue to navigate these challenging times, Headlands will be working to connect artists with audiences through digital platforms and internet-based programming. This page serves to archive such events, initiatives, and programming, providing a space for reflecting on this moment in time now, and in the future.

For a full list of upcoming programming and events, visit Upcoming Public Programs.

COVID-19 Resources

A collated list of resources for artists and community members, including grants, toolkits, emergency funds, and more.

COVID Keywords Conversations

The COVID-19 pandemic and its associated policies, guidelines, and practices have laid bare fundamental, systemic inequities, tensions, and sites of struggle and power coursing through our cultural and social frameworks. As an extension of Headlands’ Thematic Residencies—our cross-sectorial convening and residency program—the Keywords Conversations take their name from both a “keyword” project that resulted from a Headlands Thematic Residency on climate equity, and from Raymond Williams’ essential work, Keywords, a collection of cultural histories of words as sites of struggle. We’re archiving the conversations here.

Artists in Conversation

Erica Deeman: Familiar Stranger

On the occasion of her 2020 exhibition, “Familiar Stranger,” with Anthony Meier Fine Arts in San Francisco, Erica Deeman (AIR ’19) joined Headlands for a conversation about the work and her practice.

Thao Nguyen in Conversation with Amanda Petrusich

Bay Area based musician Thao Nguyen (AIR ’18, Thao and the Get Down Stay Down) and New York based music critic Amanda Petrusich (AIR ‘19, staff writer for The New Yorker) discuss the essentiality of artistic and critical practices in a time of social and cultural upheaval. Artists and writers have long made peace with their practices and work being positioned as indulgences, and now amidst a pandemic and social reckoning, how do creative workers respond? What can be learned from artists’ and writers’ longstanding practices, their unique relationships to patience and discomfort, to their perceptions and grit? And, what about creative and critical work needs to change?

Headlands & A Little Culture

We’re partnering with Lucie Charkin of A Little Culture to bring you a series of fun, accessible, art-filled activities for you to do at home with the kids. We’re sharing projects weekly on our Instagram, and archiving them here.

Cooking at Home with Damon & Cathy

While sheltering-in-place, Headlands Chef Damon Little and Sous Chef Cathy Kossack have been adapting some classic recipes from the Headlands Kitchen for making at home, and putting together some demos to share their techniques in action. Get cooking!

Mindfulness Meditation with Ramekon O’Arwisters

Weekly Wednesday afternoon sessions held via Zoom, beginning April 22.

Ramekon O’Arwisters’ (AIR ’20) Mindfulness Meditation sessions are designed for participants at all levels. The session will consist of a brief introduction, a history of mindfulness, the benefits of mindfulness, principles, and techniques, culminating in a meditation session of approximately twenty minutes.

Mindfulness is a state of being present, using breath to calm the mind. Some of the benefits of meditation are increased focus, creativity, memory, compassion, and productivity—along with reduced anxiety, stress, pain, depression, and emotional balance.

Ramekon has been practicing Vipassanā meditation, as taught by S. N. Goenka, for fourteen years. His spiritual training started in 1984 at Duke University, where he earned a Master of Divinity degree. Ramekon was curator of fine-art photography at SFO Museum until his retirement in 2016, after twenty years of service. Currently, he is the airport-wide meditation instructor at San Francisco International Airport.

Reading at a Distance

Thursday, May 21: Mary O’Brien & Vincent Chu

This installment of Reading at a Distance features Mary O’Brien (AFF ’17–’20) and Vincent Chu (AFF ’20), and is co-presented with Booksmith and curated by Emily Wolahan (AFF ’16–’19).

About the writers:
Mary O’Brien works as an environmental artist and writes essays that reflect the histories of the lands on which she works. These are stories about public domain lands that take place over several years, and where the events documented, and the places they occur, become indistinguishable from each other. Rooted in the research she develops as an environmental artist, her essays track both historic and current day events, and bridge science, art, and culture. Mapping through geologic time and human history, and with focus on the connectedness of land, water, and human pathways, Mary’s writing is intended to become a catalyst for positive ecological thinking.

O’Brien’s essays have been published in The Solutions Journal, Stanford University’s Millennium Alliance for Humanity and the Biosphere Journal and WEAD Online. Her installation work archived at the Nevada Museum of Art’s Center for Art + Environment. and is featured in the upcoming 2021 Environmental Art Calendar.

Vincent Chu is a Bay Area writer and author of the debut story collection Like a Champion (7.13 Books). His fiction has appeared in STILL Magazine, Fjords Review, Pithead Chapel, PANK Magazine, East Bay Review, The Collapsar, Stockholm Review and elsewhere. He is a Headlands Center for the Arts Affiliate Artist, 2019 Hambidge Center Fellow and member of The Writers Grotto. He has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net. He earned his Bachelor of Arts from UCLA. Vincent lives in San Francisco and can be found online at @herrchu. He is working on his first novel.

Wednesday May 6: tanea lunsford lynx and Mmkagosi Anita Tau

Our second Reading at a Distance, co-presented with Booksmith and curated by Emily Wolahan (AFF ’16–’19), features Headlands Artists tanea lunsford lynx (AIR ’20) and Mmakgosi Anita Tau (AIR ’20). The event originally streamed on Zoom and Facebook Live on Wednesday, May 6, 2020 at 7PM PST.

About the writers:
tanea lunsford lynx (AIR ’20) is a fourth-generation Black San Franciscan on both sides. tanea is a proud alum of Voices of Our Nation (VONA) and the Lambda Literary Retreat. In 2018 she co-curated ‘Still Here VI: Existence as Resistance,’ a performance featuring queer Black San Franciscans as a part of the National Queer Arts Festival. tanea has been awarded an individual artist grant from the San Francisco Arts Commission as well as residencies at the Headlands Center for the Arts, The San Francisco Public Library (in collaboration with RADAR), Mesa Refuge, the Vermont Studio Center, Squaw Valley, and Under the Volcano. She has more than 10 years of experience as a performing artist, curator, activist, and educator in San Francisco. You can find her work online at tanealunsfordlynx.com.

Mmakgosi Anita Tau (AIR ’20) is a poet and an award-winning filmmaker with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Motion Picture Medium. She created and directs Mmakgosi Live, a show/campaign devoted to mental health awareness and activism in Botswana. She recently wrote and directed Section 82, a 24-minute short film about gender-based violence and modern-day slavery. Mmakgosi participates in the International Writing Program (IWP) Women’s Creative Mentorship Project for the University of Iowa, and she is a recipient of the 2019 British Council and Prince Claus Mobility Fund. Mmakgosi is a 2020 Yaddo Fellow (New York), and a 2020 Headlands Center for the Arts AIR Fellow (California). Mmakgosi has given speeches and performed Spoken Word pieces for programs in Botswana, Zambia, Ghana, and South Africa. She has been published in Drum Magazine, South Africa, Kalahari ReviewBadilisha PoetryPraxis Magazine, the University of Iowa’s Women’s Creative Mentorship Anthology, and the Association of Writers and Writing Programs in the United States of America. Her short stories and poems were also published in the Botswana Tourism Organization’s Share Botswana Tourism Fiction Award Anthology in 2018 and 2019.

Wednesday, April 22: Ploi Pirapokin and Laura Mullen

We’ve partnered with Booksmith to bring you a series of distanced literary readings with Headlands Artists, curated by Emily Wolahan (AFF ’16–’19). Join Laura Mullen (AIR ’20) and Ploi Pirapokin (AFF ’17–’20) for the kickoff event of the series on Wednesday, April 22 at 7PM PST, streaming on Facebook Live.

About the writers:
The author of eight books, Laura Mullen (AIR ’20) is McElveen Professor of English at LSU. Recognitions for her poetry include Ironwood’s Stanford Prize, a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, and the Rona Jaffe Award. Her work has been widely anthologized, and she is the librettist for Nathan Davis’ a Sound Uttered, a Silence crossed, commissioned by the La Jolla Symphony and Chorus. Recent poems have appeared in The Nation1111Conjunctions, and Lana Turner. She was the Arons poet at Tulane and affiliate faculty at Stetson University for 2018. Her translation of Veronique Pittolo’s Hero was published in 2019.

Ploi Pirapokin’s (AFF ’17–’20) work is featured and forthcoming in Tor.comThe OffingApogee JournalBellingham ReviewCleaver Magazine, and more. She has received grants and fellowships from the San Francisco Arts Commission, the Creative Capacity Fund, Headlands Center for the Arts, the Ragdale Foundation, Kundiman, and others. She holds an MFA in Fiction from San Francisco State University and is based in San Francisco.

About Booksmith:
Booksmith is an an off-center general interest independent bookstore and legacy business, a flagship of San Francisco’s Haight Street since 1976. Booksmith is the force behind The Bindery, a multi-purpose events parlor established in 2017 that features The Arcana Project: a deep, highly inclusive array of books—fiction and nonfiction, from all over the world—presented in chronological order by the date they were written. Booksmith also organizes Berkeley Arts & Letters, an East Bay speaker series since 2009 that features exceptional authors with new books. Between the three programs, Booksmith produces over 250 events per year.