December 2020 Design & Art Event Hotlist

INVT’s curated list of “must do” creative events is designed to inspire.

Happy Holiday Season!

As we get ready to shop for our friends and family members, we’d like to remind you that YOU have been nice and deserve some treats too. One of the best gifts we can give our creative selves is time to enjoy and get inspired by great works of art, and we’re going to do just that this month by writing, listening, watching, and experiencing.

In/Visible Talks’ co-founders and practicing designers Arianna Orland and Dava Guthmiller have once again sorted through their many invitations and curated their list of “must-do” Design & Art events. Take a look, and take advantage of any or all that will nurture your soul.

Stay inspired!

CreativeMornings: Biophilia.

CreativeMornings/San Francisco is cooking up a special event for the creative community, but they can’t do it alone. They’re partnering with CreativeMornings/Oakland and looking to get a little weird for the last event of the year: Biophilia. Attendees are being asked to record snippets of natural sounds, which CM will then use to build a unique experience for their December 11th virtual event. You can participate by recording audio snippets from wherever you are and sending it to them at by December 1st.
More details of the submission can be found here

Bonus: They’ll be giving away an #INVT21 ticket to a participant that submits a special sound recorded in the Bay Area!  


In Elizabeth Bishop’s poem “The Monument,” the narrator describes a specific but unseen monument in detail, noting, temporal nature of its construction, while revealing its aspirational qualities in more human terms. This epic exhibition, taking inspiration from the poem, explores how works of art and metaphorical concepts of monuments are interconnected. Free. Now through December 12. Minnesota Street Project & Online, 1275 Minnesota Street, San Francisco.


Step into a whimsical wonderland! In honor of Golden Gate Park’s 150th anniversary, San Francisco artist Charles Gadeken is turning Peacock Meadow into an enchanted forest of otherworldly shapes and ever-changing light. Free. December 10 through February 29, sundown. Golden Gate Park Peacock Meadow, John F. Kennedy Drive, San Francisco.

Virtual Writing Hour with the National Portrait Gallery.

Create, connect, and draw inspiration from the Portrait Gallery’s online exhibitions. Writing prompts will be provided, or bring your own project-in-progress. (For a little advance inspiration, check out Her Story: A Century of Women Writers and Every Eye is Upon Me: First Ladies of the United States.) Free. December 1 at 2:00 pm. (Check website for other dates.) Online.

No Time to Rest!: Kelly Gallagher films.

View a selection of four films by experimental animator, activist, and educator Kelly Gallagher. Within the No Time to Rest! exhibition (which runs through December 22), Gallagher’s work is presented as part of a program of films by women that discuss resistance, activism through a critique of power structures and historical narratives. Stream for free. December 2 through 8. SFMOMA. Online.

City Arts and Lectures Ashley Ford in Conversation with Jenna Worthham and Kimberly Drew.

What does it mean to be Black and alive right now? Three incredible women discuss the cultural impact of Black creators, using Drew and Wortham’s new book (Black Futures) of images, photos, essays, memes, dialogues, recipes, tweets, and poetry as a guide. $29. December 9 at 6:00 pm PST. Online.

SAVE THE DATE: 01.14.2021.

We’re counting down the days till INVT 2021. Join us and other creatives from around the world as we explore the theme of Re:Design. For conference updates, sign up for the INVT newsletter. Thursday, January 14, 2021. Online.

Five Questions with Fri Forjindam: Mycotoo’s Chief Development Officer

Pioneering women and her own “fearless” daughter inspire INVT21 Speaker Fri Forjindam to live an uncompromising creative life.

A trailblazing themed entertainment executive. A change agent. A recipient of the “Top 50 Theme Park Influencer” distinction by Blooloop. INVT21 speaker Fri Forjindam has forged an impressive career path with experience that spans multiple industries including theater, fashion, publishing, and experiential storytelling.

Currently she serves as chief development officer at Mycotoo, Inc., a leader in themed entertainment, live events, and immersive brand experiences. Through their offices in Pasadena and Barcelona, Fri focuses on driving business development, branding, and communications across Mycotoo’s growing global network. 

Below, Fri answered some of our questions about boldly living a creative life. We’re looking forward to hearing more of her insights on January 14, when she’ll talk with us about “#AuthenticAF: The New Design Hashtag in a Post-COVID World.”

What did 2020 bring into focus for you that you want to Re:Make, Re:Think, Re:Imagine, or Re:Design for 2021?

I want to re-imagine how we represent our stories in 2021. As designers, we are mirror storytellers to the worlds around us. We need to be aspirational in our design while staying true to the full picture, not just the one that suits the bottom line.

What is your relationship to the creative process?

Scary, because every new venture is a clean slate, and there’s nothing more invigorating and crippling than a blank page. I wasted so much time in my 20s trying to direct experiences to fit others’ expectations, which would sometimes feel like a compromise. In my 30s, I realized how much more fulfilling it is to approach each blank page by speaking, drawing, and envisioning/manifesting from a place of truth, and then allowing the influences and adjustments you can’t control to come as they come.

How or where do you find inspiration?

In my kids, in my fearless daughter who’s 10 and not afraid to be “too much.” 

What was one of your biggest creative challenges?

Learning to get out of my own way on my first role as a creative director in a theme park. Danger is real, but Imposter Syndrome is a choice.

When did you first realize you needed to be in a creative field?

As far back as I can remember, I’ve always found ways to heighten reality. I was so conflicted about whether I was “creative” or not, that in high school—feeling like I had to choose between the school play and AP course activities—I actually took an online assessment. I passed that assessment overwhelmingly, and would still go on to pursue pre-medicine in college. The truth is, we’re all creative. We are all born with an abstract and unconventional filter. Over time that filter gets sculpted, shut down, narrowed, and distilled to fit what’s considered a normal career path. I was just fortunate enough that the theater not only found me, but made such a lasting and intoxicating impression that, no matter how much I denied it, I always found my way back a more heightened and story-driven filter in which I chose to cope with and experience the world.

Bonus Round: Who are some of your heroes and why?

Oprah Winfrey, Christiane Amanpour, and my mother. All three of them, in their own ways, decided that rather than wait for an invitation to the big boys’ table, to instead build, own, and copyright their own tables.

November 2020 Design & Art Event Hotlist

INVT’s curated list of “must do” creative events is designed to inspire.

We’re trying to wean ourselves off the comfort foods that have sustained us these past several months and instead feed our creative spirits with some inspiring Design & Art Events.

With that in mind, In/Visible Talks’ co-founders and practicing designers Arianna Orland and Dava Guthmiller have reviewed invitations to dozens of events and curated a “Hotlist” of those they “must do”. COVID-19 has pushed us all to be more creative with our activities, and this month we’ve included a few Bay Area events that take full advantage of the need for social distancing + fresh air.

We hope to see you out there.

Stay inspired!

See the City from New Heights.

COVID-19 delayed the planned opening of the 15-story-high SkyStar Observation Wheel, which was installed in Golden Gate Park’s Music Concourse as part of the park’s 150th birthday celebration. We’re so happy the organizers persevered! They’ve brought us a new way to experience the city we know and love—with breathtaking views from downtown to the Pacific Ocean—and we’re eager to enjoy this whimsical and welcoming distraction. Adults $18; seniors (65+) and children $12. Reservations are required. Weekdays noon to 10:00 pm; weekends 10:00 am to 10:00 pm. Golden Gate Park, Bowl Drive and Music Concourse Drive, San Francisco.

Living Legacies: Día de Los Muertos 2020.

Discover a blend of traditional and contemporary art from multiple generations of artists at SOMArts’ annual Día de Los Muertos exhibition, long one of the most internationally diverse Day of the Dead celebrations in the US. We applaud curators Rio Yanez and Carolina Quintanilla for recognizing art as a call to action in our challenging times and lighting our path forward. Free, or reserved with donation. Now through November 6. SOMArts, 934 Brannan Street, San Francisco.

AV: Artist Videos at the Drive-In.

Long live the drive-in! Pull up for a one-night, artist-driven extravaganza presented by The Exploratorium, KADIST, the Institute of Contemporary Art San José, and the San José Museum of Art. The program features a line-up of unpredictable, unconventional, and transportive short videos by international artists reframing cinematic conventions. $10 per vehicle; $9 per vehicle for Exploratorium members. November 1, 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm. Westwind Capitol Drive-In, 3630 Hillcap Ave, San José.


If you haven’t already dropped off or mailed in your ballot, do whatever it takes to get yourself to your polling place to cast your vote in person. Tuesday, November 3. Check locally for hours. 

SF Neon+Matchbook Tour of the Tenderloin.

Shake up a classic cocktail and experience (from your living room) San Francisco’s fantastic mid-century night-life culture. Guided by neon signs and matchbooks, we’ll follow a virtual historic trail to revisit the iconic small businesses, nightclubs, hotels, and late-night “greasy spoons” once popular in the Tenderloin. Free (suggested donation of $10). November 10, 6:30 to 7:45 pm. Online via Zoom link.

Earthscape Beach Art Experience.

Outdoor art—yes please! Twelve lucky participants will join teachers for an amazing art experience that is part meditation, part collaboration, and wholly co-creation. Using rakes in the sand and drawing inspiration from Nature, we’ll make a large-scale work of art, then observe as the Pacific Beach claims it. $50 to $100. November 15. San Francisco’s Ocean Beach, at Balboa and Great Highway. (Specific location will be emailed upon registration.)

SAVE THE DATE: 01.14.2021.

We’re counting down the days till INVT 2021. Join us and other creatives from around the world as we explore the theme of Re:Design. For conference updates, sign up for the INVT newsletter. Thursday, January 14, 2021. Online.

October 2020 Design & Art Event Hotlist

INVT’s curated list of “must do” creative events is designed to inspire.

Fall, for us, feels like a season of new beginnings. We open our minds and hearts to new ways of learning, thinking, creating, doing, and collaborating. It’s within this framework that we present our picks for events we feel will reignite our creative flames.

For those of you not already familiar with our Design & Art Event Hotlist, each month, In/Visible Talks’ co-founders and practicing designers Arianna Orland and Dava Guthmiller review invitations to dozens of design and art events and curate a list of those they “must do”. In keeping with the times, their standards of criteria this year have included programs that are accessible online, events that support the worldwide movement for equality, and systems that encourage sustainable practices.

We hope you’ll join us at some or all of these.

Stay inspired!

Design by Distance at MCD.

Designers around the world are responding to the COVID pandemic by developing new objects, garments, accessories, and space planning. Explore their creations through this virtual exhibition, curated by Ginger Gregg Duggan and Judith Hoos Fox, at San Francisco’s Museum of Craft and Design. Free. Available for online viewing through December 31.

Restorative Design Conference.

Join like-minded people at the intersection of design and the social sector. At this virtual gathering, we’ll explore how the design process can be just, empowering, and healing through panel discussions on “Trauma-Informed Design”, “Social Justice and the Built Environment”, and “Decentering Whiteness in Design.” $10 donation. Online. October 2, 11:00 am to 3:00 pm PDT.

Between the Lines.

Examine how artists—including Icy & Sot, Kelly Ording, and Mary Iverson—create narratives. Some will explore levels of abstraction and minimalism, while others employ specific, precise mediums. Pieces range from representational to completely abstract. Be sure to check out the site-specific installation by Tahiti Pehrson. Free opening exhibition on October 17, noon to 6:00 pm PDT. (Exhibition, by appointment only, runs through November 28.) Heron Arts, 7 Heron Street, San Francisco.

Adobe MAX—The Creativity Conference.

Ignite your inspiration at this immersive and engaging digital experience with three full days of luminary speakers, celebrity appearances, musical performances, global collaborative art projects, and 350+ sessions. Ava DuVernay, Annie Leibovitz, Common, and Wendy MacNaughton are among the featured headliners. Free. October 20 to 22. Online.

A Practice of Radical Making.

As an object and image maker, Folayemi Wilson positions the Black imagination as an essential element in Black survival and self-determination through an afrofuturist framework. In this conversation, hosted by The Design Division at California College of the Arts, discover how she uses design to seat black and brown communities at tables of power to influence urban and social design. Free. October 22, 6:00 to 7:00 pm. (CCA’s Fall 2020 Design Lecture Series runs through November 12.) Online.

SAVE THE DATE: 01.14.2021.

Momentum is building for INVT 2021! Join us and other creatives from around the world in exploring the theme of Re:Design. To get all conference updates, sign up for the INVT newsletter. Thursday, January 14, 2021. Online. Get your tickets now!

Virtual Creative Flow Workshop with ReDesign Business

How can we get into a creative mindset when so much of our work and life takes place on a screen? Stepping away from the computer and putting your hands on a tactile medium is a great start.

Save those coffee grounds, don’t throw out those tea bags and join In/Visible Talks for a hands-on event designed to reconnect you with the tactile nature of the creative process. In this hour-long “Creative Flow” session we’ll explore caffeine as a versatile and creative artistic medium before “pinning up” our work and sharing the ideas that sparked during the flow.

All skill levels are welcome – just bring yourself, a piece of paper, something to draw or paint with, the caffeine medium of your choice (things like coffee beans, coffee grounds, loose teas, tea bags and even the leftover sips sitting in the cup on your desk), and a willingness to let your ideas wander.

Wednesday 16th September
8:00 am PST / 11:00 am EST // 4:00 pm BST


We are proud to host this workshop in collaboration with the ReDesign Business festival, a new talks program launching alongside London Design Festival 2020.

The program is aimed at both designers and business leaders by bringing together a varied roster of leading creative and business thinkers to explore the future of design and business.

Get your all access tickets to the entire ReDesign Business festival (Sept 14-19), which will give you access to the INVT Creative Flow HERE.