Martabel Wasserman

Martabel Wasserman

A.B. '10
Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality and Visual and Environmental Studies
photo of Martabel Wasserman

As Robin Bernstein said in the first meeting of our sophomore tutorial, WGS helps students establish an intellectual community.  The political, intellectual, and personal networks I formed in WGS have been central in my post-graduate life. 

After taking a course cross-listed in VES and WGS about queer visuality my junior year with visiting professor Catherine Lord, I became interested in combining my academic and artistic work.  For my thesis I produced an exhibition catalog for a show at the university gallery, “ACT UP New York: Art, Activism and the AIDS Crisis 1987-1993.”  My thesis, which was both a conceptual art project and a traditional essay, is available online

After graduating with a joint-concentration in WGS and VES in 2010, I went on to an MFA program at the University of California, Irvine. I pursued a Graduate Feminist Emphasis certificate -- a very nourishing supplement to my studio practice. While a graduate student, I started an online magazine (Reclaim Culture Art Politics Sexuality), which featured many fellow WGS alums. After two years of producing regular issues, the project organically morphed into an online archive. My graduate thesis was an installation exploring the multiple meanings of May Day, weaving together histories of women's colleges, radical fairies, International Workers Day and activism around migration. The gallery ultimately became as a space for organizing around specific campus issues.

After finishing my MFA, I became increasingly involved in curatorial projects. I curated an exhibition about censorship and gender during the AIDS crisis entitled "Fire in Her Belly" at Maloney Fine Art in Culver City, co-curated a monthly film series, "Queer/Art/Film LA" and three-day happening in Chinatown "Rethink Environment." I worked as an adjunct professor at CalState Long Beach, teaching a graduate seminar on Feminist Art as well as undergraduate writing courses.

I am currently the Curator of Community Engagement at Angels Gate Cultural Center in San Pedro, California. I am able to bridge my interests in art and organizing in this role, focusing on local issues effecting the surrounding Port community. I am currently working on a side project about Warlocks and live in LA with my chihuahua and girlfriend. 

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