Formed from Indian heritage, an American identity, and spiritualized visions of personal story and memory, Vora's paintings become visual experiences as a result of a repetitive excavatory process, seeking meaning, truth and an eventual acceptance with our mortality. Born in New Jersey into a musical Indian family, he began playing instruments around the house, learning by ear and watching his parents perform at concerts. His urge to compose music early in life paralleled his desire to create visual environments. Producing drawings and paintings was a way to manifest and inhabit his visions to which music had played as an ongoing soundtrack. Both Vora's music and art have been strongly influenced by his bicultural upbringing as well as the surrounding rural American landscapes of his childhood. His paintings have been presented in numerous national and international exhibitions including, most notably, Personal Structures, at the 2019 Venice Biennale. He is a 2019 recipient of a Sustainable Arts Foundation Grant, and was recently commissioned by Facebook’s Artist in Residence Program as well as Square, Inc. for large-scale public installations. His paintings are in many collections including the public collections of Kaiser Permanente and the Rainin Foundation, and he have recently been awarded the Herz Recreation Center Public Art Project through the San Francisco Arts Commission.
As an educator, Vora has taught Advanced Painting Studio in the Department of Art Practice at UC Berkeley as well as Visual Arts in a K-8 independent school in Oakland, California. He holds a BS in Architecture from the University of Virginia, and an MFA in Painting from the San Francisco Art Institute.
Sanjay Vora | Be/Coming1 - 30 Apr 2023Born of reflection, Sanjay Vora’s pieces become visual experiences, coming to terms with the command and inevitability of time. Brought up in a suburban American home seeped in East Indian heritage and repetitive modal music, he now attempts to resolve his own sense of meaning and truth, endlessly searching to...Read more
MFA in Painting, San Francisco Art Institute, May 2005 BS in Architecture, University of Virginia, May 2002
2022 Path to Paradise, Seager Gray Gallery, Mill Valley, CA 2018 Together and Apart, Vessel Gallery, Oakland, CA 2015 Lost Love, Vessel Gallery, Oakland, CA
2014 Memories of Dreams, Gallery Bergelli, Larkspur CA 2013 Re/Surfaces, Vessel Gallery, Oakland, CA
2010 Rhythmic Sequences, Vessel Gallery, Oakland, CA Recurring Vision, Gallery Bergelli, Larkspur, CA
2008 Imprint, Vessel, Berkeley, CA
Reflection, Gallery Bergelli, Larkspur, CA
2006 House|Home, Gallery Bergelli, Larkspur, CA
The Surrounding Landscape, Gallery Bergelli, Larkspur, CA
2005 Love, Memory and Nostalgia, Gallery Bergelli, Larkspur, CA 2004 Three Paintings, Diego Rivera Gallery, San Francisco
Field, Memory, and In Between, Mudhouse, Charlottesville, VA 2003 Love and a Video Store, Sneak Reviews, Charlottesville
Mindscape Paintings and Drawings, Gallery Neo, Charlottesville 2001 The Ghost in the Garden, Newcomb Hall Gallery, Charlottesville
Selected Group Exhibitions
2020 Carried Places,, Harrington Gallery, Pleasanton, CA
2019 Personal Structures, Palazzo Mora, Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy
Stillness Within, Arkitektura Assembly, San Francisco, CA
Material Matters, Seager Gray Gallery, Mill Valley, CA
2018 Material Matters, Seager Gray Gallery, Mill Valley, CA
2017 Excuse Me, Can I See Your ID? Vessel Gallery, Oakland, CA
Powder and Smoke, Seager Gray Gallery, Mill Valley, CA
Motive, Vessel Gallery, Oakland, CA
2015 Notions of Romance, Vessel Gallery, Oakland 2014 Material and Meditation, Vessel Gallery, Oakland
Shades of Summer, Vessel Gallery, Oakland
2013 Vessel as the Human Form, Vessel Gallery, Oakland Landscapes: Near and Afar, Vessel Gallery, Oakland
2012 Horizons of Promise, Vessel Gallery, Oakland, CA
Vessel 8: Charting the Waters, Vessel Gallery, Oakland, CA
Faculty Show, Department of Art Practice, Worth Ryder Gallery, University of California at Berkeley
2011 Portraits, Vessel Gallery, Oakland, CA
Fall Faculty Show, Worth Ryder Gallery, University of California at Berkeley Winter Group Show, Gallery Bergelli, Larkspur, CA
2010 San Francisco International Art Fair, Herbst Pavilion, SF, CA 2007 Square Foot Show, Art Gotham Gallery, New York, NY
Home, Root Division, San Francisco 2006 Choice Art, The Garage, San Francisco
Artwallah, Bamboo Lane Gallery, Los Angeles, CA Artwallah, South Asian Arts Festival, Los Angeles, CA Arts On Fire X, Sanchez Art Center, Pacifica, CA
2005 2nd Biennial International Juried Exhibition, the Presidio, San Francisco New California Masters, Works San Jose, San Jose, CA
Prevue, Starpin Gallery, Shelton, CT
SFAI MFA Exhibition, Herbst Pavilion, Fort Mason, San Francisco Haunted, Crucible Steel Gallery, San Francisco
2004 2aBiennaleInternazionaled’ArtediFerrara,CastelloEstense,Ferrara,Italy Ad-Hoc, Crucible Steel Gallery, San Francisco
Bay Area Emerging Artist Exhibition, 710 Market St., San Francisco
Bay Area Eight, Artist Television Access , San Francisco
Visual Arts Teacher, Fall 2005 – Present, St. Paul’s Episcopal School, Oakland, CA
VIsual Arts and Design teacher in the 3rd through 8th grade curriculum-based school day program. Students build upon a foundation of fundamentals and history to explore more personal and community oriented projects.
Visiting Lecturer in Painting, Fall 2011 + Fall 2012, University of California at Berkeley, Department of Art Practice. Taught two Advanced Painting Studio courses to Upper Level Undergraduate students.
Master Artist, Summer 2010, Public Works
Commissioned by Roundtree Visuals and Kaiser Permanente to design and implement two 6’ x 14’ murals in two Trauma Center quiet rooms. It was also a collaboration with Art Start of Santa Rosa in which I was given two college level artists to work under me as apprentices.
Graduate Teaching Assistant, Spring 2005, San Francisco Art Institute, CA
Facilitated critiques and reviews, and gave multiple one on one tutorials to undergraduate students in an Advanced Painting Studio. Faculty: John Zurier
Graduate Teaching Assistant, Fall 2004, San Francisco Art Institute, CA
Facilitated critiques and reviews, and gave multiple one on one tutorials to undergraduate students in a studio-based Interdisciplinary class focused on the idea of Self-Portrait through the media of collage, container, installation, and sound. Faculty: Carlos Villa
Morris, Barbara. “Critic's picks: San Francisco”, Art Ltd. Magazine, February 2017
Frank, Priscilla, “Dismantling Stereotypes About Asian-American Identity Through Art”, Huffington Post, April 2017.
Burke, Sarah. “An Expanded Approach to Asian Americaness at Vessel Gallery.” KQED.org. April 13th, 2017.
Nelson, Lauren. “What Lies Beneath: Uncovering Artwork, One Layer At A Time.” SF Chronicle, Sunday March 30th, 2014 Burke, Sarah. “Notions of Romance.” East Bay Express, January, 2015.
Art Pick, “Lost Love.” East Bay Express, December 15th, 2015.
Bigman, Alex. “Landscapes: Near and Afar.” East Bay Express, May 2013.
Morris, Barabara. “Portraits.” Art Limited Magazine, September/October 2011
Cheng, DeWitt. “Face Time at Vessel Gallery.” East Bay Express, July 2011 Cheng, DeWitt. “Rhythmic Sequences.” Picks, East Bay Express, December 2010
Ray, Anne Crump. “Fall Gallery Preview.” Marin Magazine, September 2006, pp.145-6.
2a Biennale Internazionale d’ Arte di Ferrara, exhibition catalogue, Associazone Culturale Ferrara Pro Art, Ferrara, Italy, December 2004, pp.34 –35.
Parsons, Luara. “Abstract Memories: Vora Scratches the Surface.” The Hook, August 19th, 2004, art feature.
Smith, Emily. “Love and a Video Store.” The C-Ville Weekly, July 8th, 2003, art feature, p. 33. Smith, Emily. “Taking Inventory.” The C-Ville Weekly, March 18th, 2003, p36.
Awards and Residencies
Selected Artist, Hertz Recreation Center Public Art project, San Francisco Arts Commission, 2022 - Facebook Artist in Residence, Fremont, CA 2019/2020
Sustainable Arts Foundation Grant, 2019
Best In Show, 2nd Biennial International Juried Exhibition, 2005, Juror: Marian Parmenter
Merit Scholarship, San Francisco Art Institute, 2004 – 2005
Graduate Teaching Assistantships, San Francisco Art Institute, Spring 2005 and Fall 2004 San Francisco Art Institute Grant, San Francisco Art Institute, 2003 - 2005
Square Oakland, Facebook, Kaiser Permanente, Rainin Foundation