Requiem 14 (from the Bay Bridge Project), 2013
Hughen/Starkweather is the collaboration of San Francisco artists Jennifer Starkweather and Amanda Hughen, who have worked as a team since 2006. Together they create abstract artworks about specific topics or locations. Each project begins with extensive research, including maps, photographs, data, and interviews with specialists and community members. The resulting abstract drawings and paintings reinterpret complex narratives, creating new and unexpected forms. The artworks are not didactic but aim to prompt questions and new perspectives in the viewer.
This work is from their Bay Bridge Project (2009-2013) in which they investigated the San Francisco/Oakland Bay Bridge through commute patterns, environmental data, topographic maps and diagrams, architecture and engineering drawings, and historic and current photographs. This work references the previous East Span of the bridge, which was damaged in the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake -- after 25 years of political wrangling, it was replaced with a new bridge in 2014.
Hughen/Starkweather has had solo exhibitions at the Asian Art Museum (SF), the Public Policy Institute of California (SF), and the University of San Francisco, among other places. They have been artists-in-residence at Oxbow (CA) and Recology (CA). Hughen received an MFA from UC Berkeley and has been artist-in-residence at the DeYoung Museum of Art (CA), the Headlands Center for the Arts (CA), and Yaddo (NY). Starkweather received an MFA from Tyler School of Art (PA) and has been artist-in-residence at Ucross (WY), Skowhegan (ME), and Ragdale (IL). Their large-scale, permanent public artwork will open in Union Square in downtown San Francisco in 2020.