Michelle Handelman: Hustlers & Empires

Tue Nov 7
San Francisco Art Institute (SFAI)
07:00 PM
Claim this listing


Michelle Handelman: Hustlers & EmpiresGraduate Lecture Series co-presentation with SFMOMA
Michelle Handelman’s phantasmagoric video installations create hypnotic and complex spaces of ever-shifting queer identities. Blurring the line between performance and reality, she re-contextualizing historical figures in cinema and literature by casting subcultural icons who play versions of themselves within a cinematic framework. Exploring philosophical questions of existence, she confronts the things we collectively fear and deny-- sexuality, death, chaos. Handelman will introduce her project Hustlers & Empires, a SFMOMA co-commission and her project Irma Vep, The Last Breath (2013/15) starring Zackary Drucker and Flawless Sabrina.
Michelle Handelman is a Guggenheim Fellow who has exhibited at Broad Art Museum; MIT List Visual Arts Center; Participant, Inc, NYC; PERFORMA Biennial; The Henry Art Gallery; Guangzhou 53 Art Museum; and REDCAT. During the 1990s, Handelman was based in SF where she collaborated with Monte Cazazza, a pioneer of the Industrial music scene; directed the feature doc BloodSisters (1996), and performed in several films by Lynn Hershman-Leeson. Her work is in many collections including Kadist Art Foundation; di Rosa Foundation and Preserve; Zabludowicz Art Trust. She’s an Associate Professor in the Film, Media and Performing Arts department at Fashion Institute of Technology, NYC.

Image credit: Hustlers & Empires, 2018; 3-channel video installation, production still; 69 minutesCourtesy of Michelle Handelman.


  1. San Francisco Art Institute (SFAI)
    800 Chestnut St., San Francisco, CA