Elemental Exposures

Revisions of the American Landscape

Nov. 30, 2021-Feb. 20, 2022

Located in the Gleeson Library-Geschke Center, the Thacher Gallery at USF is free and open to the public from 12-6 p.m. Monday through Saturday. The gallery will be closed on Sundays through 1/23. USF pandemic protocols are required for all gallery visitors. If the library doors are locked during these hours, please buzz the front desk for access.

Artists Kristiana Chan, Binh Danh, Bessma Khalaf, and Dionne Lee help expand the canon of American landscape imagery by bringing diverse technical and conceptual approaches to envision the subject. From historic photographic processes such as daguerreotypes and cyanotypes to contemporary processes including collage and the burned image, these artists ask what perspectives and histories have been erased from the American landscape?

Presented by USF’s MA in Museum Studies Curatorial Practicum class led by Professor Karen Fraser.

About the artists

Kristiana ChanKristiana Chan is a first generation Malaysian-Chinese artist who incorporates environmental and elemental properties (such as ocean water) into her processes.

Binh DanhBinh Danh’s series of daguerreotypes documents the United States National Park system and invites viewers to reflect on their relationship to these sites.

Bessma KhalafBessma Khalaf is an interdisciplinary artist employing processes of degradation, such as burning, into her photography.

Dionne LeeDionne Lee works in photography, collage, and video to explore power, survival, and personal history in relation to the American landscape.



"Elemental Exposure" exhibition object list

Kristiana Chan
Intertidal IV, lumen print positive, 20” x 24”, 2020
Intertidal III, lumen print positive, 20” x 24”, 2020
Bodies of Water, seawater developed cyanotypes (49 individual pieces), ~8’x7’, 2019
Bodies of Water, video, 2019


Binh Danh
Yosemite Falls, daguerreotype, 16.5” x 14.75”, 2014
Sentinel Rock, Yosemite, daguerreotype, 16.5” x 14.75”, 2016
Tunnel view parking lot, Yosemite CA, daguerreotype, 9” x 11”, 2017
Canyonland National Park, daguerreotype, 12.75” x 14.5”, 2018
Canyonland National Park, daguerreotype, 12.75” x 14.5”, 2018
Petroglyphs on the way to Delicate Arch, Arches National Park, daguerreotype, 12.75” x 14.5”, 2018
Newspaper Rock, Utah, daguerreotype, 12.75” x 14.5”, 2016
Yellowstone Fall, Yellowstone National Park, daguerreotype, 12.75” x 14.5”, 2016
Old Faithful, Yellowstone National Park, daguerreotype, 12.75” x 14.5”, 2016
Death Valley National Park (Rock), daguerreotype, 12.75” x 14.5”, 2016


Bessma Khalaf
Burnout (Bridal Veil Falls), archival pigment print, 11” x 14”, 2018
Burnout (Crystal Spring), archival pigment print, 11” x 14”, 2018
Burnout (Grand Tetons), archival pigment print, 11” x 14”, 2018
Burnout (Cathedral Rock), archival pigment print, 50” x 33”, 2018
Burnout (Creek), archival pigment print, 33” x 50”, 2018
Burnout (Forest Stream), archival pigment print, 50” x 33”, 2018
Burnout (Hoodoos), archival pigment print, 20” x 26”, 2018
Standing on a Beach, video, 2 minutes 9 seconds, 2014


Dionne Lee
Fleet, gelatin silver prints, 6 prints, 8” x 10” each, 2019
Netting, collage of gelatin silver prints with graphite, 11” x 14”, 2019
Warnings (1), collage of gelatin silver prints with graphite, 11” x 14”, 2019
Warnings (2), collage of gelatin silver prints with graphite, 11” x 14”, 2019
Drafts, single channel video, 7 minutes 9 seconds, 2016

Next Up

Asya Abdrahman, MunjiMar. 7-Apr. 10, 2022

To be named with the guidance of the Bureau of Linguistical Reality, this exhibition will present artists whose works directly inform us about our natural resources, consumption, climate crisis, and ways we can work toward environmental justice. Featuring Asya Abdrahman, Alicia Escott, Orlando Smith, Edward Willie, Connie Zheng, and the Bureau of Linguistical Reality.


Image: Asya Abdrahman, Munji, mixed media on wood, 2018

Contact Info

Thacher Gallery

Thacher Gallery is open to the public from 12-6 p.m. Monday through Saturday (closed Sundays) through Jan. 23. Masks required.

The Thacher Gallery is located on the campus of the University of San Francisco in the Gleeson Library | Geschke Center. (415) 422-5178