City College Art Gallery

and Other Venues 

City College Art Gallery presents:

Michael Arcega

False Falls

February 13th to March 15th 2017

Reception: Thursday February 16th 5:30- 7:30pm

False Falls: a meditation on truth utilizes the image of the waterfall as a metaphor for truth. The slippage in our language allows for poetics, but it also allows for deceit. The installation at the CCSF gallery evokes wonder and awe through an installation of an artificial indoor waterfall. Essentially, a grand lie, a work of fiction, and a reflection on how we perceive information as facts or, more recently, “alternative facts.”

Michael Arcega works across media to create art that is informed by language, history, and geography. In his most recent work he has adopted methodologies used in the anthropological study of world cultures that often emphasize “otherness,” but Arcega turns the tables, positioning North America as ‘the other” whose symbols and rituals must be studied and understood. Though a socio-political critique, Arcega’s work also has a playful element, providing familiar entry points to alternative ways of thinking about the people who colonize the landscape. Recently, Arcega has been exploring the cultural residue of the Nacirema people of North America. Applying strategies of the late anthropologist, Horace Miner, Arcega attempts to better understand these people’s lives and their daily practices.

Arcega is an Assistant Professor of Art at San Francisco State University. He received an MFA from Stanford University and a BFA from the San Francisco Art Institute. In 2012, he was the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship. His work has been exhibited at the Asian Art Museum, Museum of Contemporary Art in San Diego, the de Young Museum, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, the Orange County Museum of Art, The Contemporary Museum in Honolulu, the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston, Cue Arts Foundation, and the Asia Society in NY among many others. Arcega’s work has been discussed in publications including Art Forum, the New York Times, Art Practical, Art News, X-TRA, SF Chronicle, Art Papers, and Flash Art among others. He has been an Artist in Residence at the 18th Street Art Center, Montalvo Arts Center, Headlands Center for the Arts, the Fountainhead Residency, Artadia Residency at ISCP, Bemis Center for Contemporary Art, Al Riwak Art Space in Bahrain, and the Recology Artist Residency Program.

The City College Art Gallery is located in the Visual Art Building, v119, on the Ocean Campus of City College of San Francisco. The gallery is wheelchair accessible, free to the public, and just a few blocks from the Balboa BART station. 

Gallery Hours: Mon 9:30-12 and 1-4, Tues 11-2 and 3:30-5:30, Wed 9:30-12 and 1-4, Thur 11-2 and 3:30-5:30

The City College Art Gallery’s Mission:

  • Establish City College Art Gallery as an important arts destination for citizens of San Francisco and the Greater Bay Area, thereby stimulating active public awareness, support, and participation in the arts.
  • Provide a free, publicly accessible venue for art made by regional and national artists as well as the distinguished faculty, staff, students and alumni of City College.
  • Provide meaningful cultural and learning experiences for City College students by hosting contemporary art exhibitions in a critical context, which ultimately improves visual literacy and analytical thinking.
  • Introduce City College art students to art professionalism through juried exhibitions and visiting artist-led workshops.
  • Offer City College art students hands-on training in all aspects of gallery management, providing them practical job skills in order to gain employment in the art field.



Throughout the year, artwork by students and faculty are showcased at City College of San Francisco's Administrative Offices on the Ocean Campus and at 33 Gough Street.

These exhibitions give students and faculty the opportunity to have their work viewed by City College staff, administrators, and board members. Students and faculty also display their work at our Fort Mason Center.