Office Work

Carrie Sinclair Katz, Jon Gourley, and The Big Conversation Space (Niki Korth and Clemence de Montgolfier)

The vast rift apparent between San Francisco’s technology and art worlds is marked by misunderstanding and a lack of communication that threatens to rob the city of its opportunity to be the epicenter of new paradigms of cultural production. However tempting it may be to choose sides, this is a false dichotomy. By seeking ways to mend the fractures between camps and finding common ground, we can leverage the innovative and creative expertise unique to the Bay Area in service of transformative art.
— Barry Threw, "Re-engineering: Venture Culture," Art Practical, March 14, 2015

Did we put an office in the gallery, or a gallery in the office? Come see for yourself. Through events, interactive departments, and participatory archives, Office Work repurposes the vocabulary and technology of the office and contemporary art in order to facilitate encounters with the human side of work, the absurd side of labor, and the creative side of knowledge. 

Office Work is a social practice project by Carrie Sinclair KatzJon Gourley, and The Big Conversation Space (Niki Korth and Clemence de Montgolfier) that recognizes the so-called Kulturkampf ongoing in the San Francisco Bay Area and aims to use the jargon of “work spaces” to forge a common understanding.


Journal of Bureaucratic Stories - The Big Conversation Space (Niki Korth and Clémence de Montgolfier)

Every workplace has a legend, and no story is too mundane. The Journal of Bureaucratic Stories (JOBS) is an interactive archive and production platform that is collecting and growing narratives involving bureaucracy, offices, studios, libraries, and other places of work for archival purposes and eventual publication in the peer-reviewed Journal of Bureaucratic Stories. Following written or verbal donation to JOBS in the gallery space, narratives are then filed and made available for review or annotation by visitors.

Department of Lost and Found - Jon Gourley

Department of Lost and Found (DLF) was established to facilitate the return of lost items through the creation of a centralized space dedicated to their finding. At DLF, visitors are invited to both create and post their own lost/found posters, and peruse those that have been posted, both digitally and around San Francisco.

Archive of Marks - Carrie Katz

The Archive of Marks accrues its contents through meetings with the Archivist (Katz) to explore the marks incurred thus far in ones' lifetime. These will be collaboratively indexed, cross-referenced, catalogued, and preserved within the Archive. Tactics will be employed to secure or displace memory. Confidentiality, and the complexities therein, will be considered.

Images contain icons from Lance Hancock, Michael Loupos, Saman Bemel-Benrud, Dan Lowenstein, Edward Boatman, iconoci, Tuktuk Design, Chris Thoburn, Chiara Rossi, Krisada, Marco Galtarossa, and Ainsley Wagoner for The Noun Project

Plants provided by San Francisco Plant Company