Featured Artist: Sydney "Sage" Cain



The Art of Sydney Cain

By Christine Joy Ferrer

The other night, I visited the African American Arts and Culture Complex in San Francisco for the first time (I am not proud of that, especially since I'm from this city). Nonetheless, it was an opening reception for the work of visual creator Sydney "Sage" Cain who was born and raised in San Francisco's Fillmore district.

With the use of chalk and graphite, Sage resurfaces buried myths and lives of the ancients and futurists. Her work is a tool of remembrance and healing for the people of the African diaspora.

Transitions is an exhibition to help raise scholarship funds for her studies. This will be the first show in a program at the African American Arts and Culture Complex to help fund the art education of Black artists in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Sage is moving to Philly in June to finish her undergrad studies in Art. So go see this exhibition! If one of her pieces inspires you, just BUY IT! Support local artists and their work. I personally know this phenomenal creative who is one of my favorite artists. I have also had the privilege of working with her on a couple of art exhibitions that she's collaborated with my partner on (Cloud of Witnesses and I Am San Francisco: Black Past and Presence). In our house, we have two piece's by Sage hanging on our walls.

*SAGE, if you are reading this, I love you, mama - Keep filling up that negative space. Thanks for being my #designinspo ev'ryday when I walk into my living room. And please come over for dinner again soon!*

Visit: sydneycain.com
Follow: @sagestargate (Instagram)
Connect: sydneycainart@gmail.com

Event Info
March 3rd - May 25th
Transitions: The Art of Sydney Cain
African American Arts and Culture Complex
Sargent Johnson Gallery
762 Fulton St.
San Francisco, CA 94102

There's always a story behind something, and we don't always know all the stories, but there are many stories, and that's what I wish to invoke... People ask me, 'Why do you draw with chalk?' It allows one to transition and to let go. Most chalk is made from calcium carbonate; egg shells, bone, sea shells, etc. in other mythologies, it's made from our ancestors as well. It's a pure substance, that comes from oceans and oceans.

Thinking about my own spirituality. I use to ask the question, what were we practicing as black people before Christianity? When I asked that question, I believe the answers started coming - and coming through my work. A lot of our elders are Christian, Jehovah Witnesses, Catholic... they found their spirituality through something that wasn't originally theirs. I couldn't even imagine to have something taken from you, and you having to mask your beliefs just to hold on to them and also honor another spirituality that's been used to dehumanize you. It takes so much compassion, so much wisdom, faith, courage and strength.

Using our gifts are our spiritual role to connect to our higher selves.

- Sydney "Sage" Cain, Mar. 29, 2018 // Transitions Opening Reception


Artist Statement
I am Sydney Cain, a visual artist born and raised in San Francisco, Ca. My work has been a reflection of an unseen reality we experience. As a descendant of the African diaspora growing up in the Information Age I am focused on how “Images create our realities”.

My work on paper resurfaces buried myths and lives of the ancients and futurists. The use of graphite and chalk confronts one with the fact of impermancy and transformation. Just as graphite and diamonds are both the element carbon, the environment shapes them into different physical forms. Chalk, is also another carbon based material, commonly formed from the shells of ancient deep marine organisms. Though time and earth assures that all changes through stages of death and rebirth, the existence of that essential matter, is everlasting. READ MORE...