Sharon Grace

Sharon Grace is an American artist, currently a Professor Emeritus at the San Francisco Art Institute (SFAI), who is known for initiating the use of many forms of electronic media based in audiovisual technology. Since 1970, Grace has worked with telecommunications as art, embedding interactive video and speech recognition in her work including video installation, electronic synthesis, interactive digital systems, and sculpture in stone and steel. Grace mentored Jenn Karson when she was a graduate student and SFAI and when Grace was the chair or the New Genres Department.  During that time Grace gave Karson a printed copy of a glossary of art terms that later inspired the creation of this online glossary.

Grace speaks of her work with Nam June Paik in this interview.

Grace’s working philosophy is informed by her concept that “content flies on the wings of form”. Her landmark works have been realized in various media, including telecommunications, video installation, interactive digital systems; and sculpture in stone and steel. Grace began her early work apprenticing with video/installation artist Nam June Paik and video engineer Shuya Abe. Working at WGBH and WNET with Paik and Abe, she assisted in building Video Synthesizers, including one of her own.

At NASA, in 1977, she was the west-coast artist/project leader forSEND/RECEIVE, the first interactive coast-to-coast satellite artist network. This was the inaugural event for artists to have a presence on the emerging Internet. She is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Award of Honor for Outstanding Achievement in Video Art from the City of San Francisco. Grace has been awarded grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. Her works have been exhibited both nationally and internationally in venues including the Metro Opera in Madrid, Spain, Informatique at the Venice Biennale, and the Museum of Modern Art, New York.