Ann Schnake is a social practice and visual artist who builds installations and sculptural works, investigating the physical activation of objects and mobility of spaces, in the context of failing economic and ecologic systems. She is also a nurse and often collaborates with other body workers, including performance artists, cooks, and hairdressers. Her visual and performative works are exhibited locally nationally and internationally in art venues and in unexpected locations, from gallery to hospital to dinner table to tent.
Ann Schnake received BA and MS in Nursing from University of California at San Francisco, and a Masters in Fine Arts from California College of the Arts in 2012. MobileInTent is an ongoing creative production of Ann Schnake and other artists who push boundaries between art and ideas. The Mexican, German and American group of artists have recently returned form travel to Mexico and the Southwest creating installations, performances, meals and discourse at the Santa Fe Art Institute, Aggregate Space, Oakland, California,, a riverbed barrio and ten other locations in late 2014.
Schnake was also the founder of ArtsChange, directing exhibitions, performances and social dialogue in public sites in Richmond, CA, one of the most violent cities in the U.S. (1996-2011); She continues to curate exhibitions for county hospitals and clinics now. She was director of the Bosnian Youth Art Workshop in East Oakland (2005-8), a founder of Mudwomen Ceramics (1994-1997); Director Odd Sunday Dinners, a series of curated meals and conversations (2010-14). Recent works include a Traveling Medicine Show and Empanada Stand at dOCUMENTA(13) in Kassel Germany 2012; Wooden Possibility Belgrade, Serbia, (2014-15); Poetics of Potatoes Berkeley Art Center (2014).Domesticity UnHinged at Play Space and Million Fishes San Francisco, and solo exhibitions at Aggregate Space, MacArthur B Arthur and Sacred Wheel Galleries in Oakland.
I am an artist who builds sculpture, installations and social engagements in both galleries and unexpected venues. In this process, I cull supplies from the animal, vegetable and mineral sources of daily life: wood, sugar, cabbage, wool, meat, glass, light. I also cull for artmaking venues: The domestic and forms of work are reframed and invited to the table,or to travel in a tent, as visual sources, and sites for installation, conversation and discourse.. And at the end of the day , it all comes back to the body– wooden limbs, food, sutures, glass, tools…..The overarching theme of this collection of works (and really, of all my work) is fragile bodies in failing economic and ecological systems. I work with performance artists, chefs, hairdressers, nurses and other artists to investigate the economy, and poetics of the body, and the disruptive and creative possibilities of imagination.