Creative (Un)Makings, 2020
Creative (Un)Makings was a project developed in conjunction with San Francisco State University's Anthropology Department and the Museum of Contemporary Sculpture in San Tirso, Portugal. For this project artists were invited to reimagine history and re-contextualize anthropology by repurposing artifacts unearthed during the SF Trans bay terminal dig. Participating artists were invited to choose, take and use the recovered artifacts, renamed “artefacts,” as raw material for new creative work.
For her "creative unmaking", Vanessa Woods selected and scanned bones, teeth, coins, buttons, pottery fragments and various other objects. She printed and combined these “artefacts,” with other collage elements to create fictional idols/totems from an imagined civilization that lived where the SF Trans-Bay Terminal is today.
Of the show, curator Álvaro Moreira writes: “Seen from the standard perspective of traditional academic and cultural subjects, art and archaeology have comfortable relationships: collaboration, co-inspiration, shared aims to advance knowledge of human behavior and thought. Art/archaeology, a new transdisciplinary practice has fractured that perspective, and the exhibition Creative (Un)making brings that disruption to the museum world for the first time. Art/archaeology argues that writing and thinking about the past should move beyond existing boundaries of both disciplines, and that creative work should replace written texts and lectures. Art/archaeology opens a new space where creative work, thought, and debate expand in unexpected directions, and where we find innovative potentials for objects from the past.”