Sonya Rapoport

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Sonya Rapoport
Sonya Rapoport
Born(1923-10-06)October 6, 1923
DiedJune 1, 2015(2015-06-01) (aged 91)
EducationMassachusetts College of Art, Columbia University, Boston University, University of California, Berkeley
Known fordigital artist
Henry Rapoport (m. 1944–2002)

Sonya Rapoport (October 6, 1923 – June 1, 2015) was an American conceptual/digital artist and New media artist who created computer-assisted interactive installations and participatory web-based artworks.

Early life[edit]

Sonya (née Goldberg) was born on October 6, 1923 in Boston, Massachusetts and grew up in Brookline, Massachusetts. There, she regularly attended Saturday classes at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts where she studied with Karl Zerbe. She spent her childhood summers at the art colony in Ogunquit, Maine.[1]


She attended MassArt (Massachusetts College of Art) for two years from 1941 to 1942 and during this period she met Henry Rapoport while he was a Ph.D. Candidate at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In 1942 she was enrolled in a summer philosophy program taught by John Dewey in New York at Columbia University. She then returned to Massachusetts and studied at Boston University from 1943 to 1944, majoring in biology.

She married Henry Rapoport in 1944 and the couple moved to New York. Sonya Rapoport enrolled at New York University and, in 1946, received her B.A. in Labor Economics. She then attended the Art Students League of New York where she studied with Reginald Marsh. In September 1946 the couple moved again, this time to Washington, D.C., where Rapoport entered the Corcoran School of Art to study figurative art and oil painting.

In late September 1947, Henry Rapoport accepted a position as professor of organic chemistry at the University of California, Berkeley. There Sonya Rapoport studied with Erle Loran, receiving her master's degree in art practice in 1949. The Berkeley art practice curriculum at that time was heavily influenced by the aesthetic philosophy of Hans Hofmann, although the school produced artists as divergent in their practices as, Rapoport, Jay DeFeo and Sam Francis.[2]

Artistic evolution[edit]

Rapoport's work in the late 1940s explored the human figure in abstracted form. In the 1950s her painting practice shifted, displaying Abstract expressionist influences while abandoning figuration. While developing her ABEX style, she experimented in watercolors. These joint practices culminated in two solo exhibitions; one at the East West Gallery in San Francisco in 1958,[3] and the other at the California Palace of the Legion of Honor in 1963.[4] In the mid-1960s, inspired by reading her husband's scientific journals, she began to assemble different canvases into unified works. In these artworks, she incorporated scientific illustrations, graphic forms, and three-dimensional abstract expressionist constructions. These canvases were juxtaposed according to Rapoport's personal aesthetic.[5] About these works, Dean Wallace wrote, "Sonya Rapoport [is] now tacking together canvases of different expressionist tendencies into a single unit; a work like "Psyche Trio" gives a strange almost schizophrenic feeling. Odd that no one has thought of using this device before.[6]

In the late 1960s, Rapoport helped to found the New York "Pattern painting" movement which she defined as, "buying kinky fabrics and painting out shapes."[7]


The 1970s saw a sea change in Rapoport's artistic vision. In 1971 she purchased an antique architect's desk, inside of which she discovered a series of geological survey charts on linen paper from 1905. She used these charts as a background for her "pictorial language of shapes". This language consisted of shapes that represented gender symbols, for instance the uterus, a mandarin orange (fetus), cue holder (udders), fleur-de-lis (fetus), the Moon, etc. and which she collected in a "Pandora's Box". These symbols were used again and again in Rapoport's work during this period.

Digital Mudra (1988 – 1989) featured people making hand signs, here the lower two images feature the sculptor Kati Casida and her husband John E. Casida.

In 1976, after concentrating for many years on painting and drawing, Rapoport turned her attention to electronic media, with the focus of her work oriented towards interdisciplinary and cultural studies. Computer printouts took the place of the "Survey Charts". In 1977 she exhibited mixed-media works on computer printouts at the Union Gallery at San Jose State University. In these years Rapoport's artworks focused on the representation of overlap between language, symbols, stories from the newspaper, the Bible, and cultural anthropology. She worked with C. Michael Lederer at the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory, on a project entitled "The Table of Isotopes" in 1977 which dealt with the transformation of cCobalt and mercury into gold. Working with the anthropologist Dorothy Washburn in 1978 Rapoport completed "A Shoe-In" held at Berkeley Computer Systems; "Shoe-Field[8] at Media Gallery in San Francisco, "Interaction: Art and Science" at the Truman Gallery in New York,[9] and "Aesthetic Response" at the Peabody Museum at Harvard University.


From 1979 to 1984 Rapoport worked on her largest project to date, entitled Objects On My Dresser.[10] This project unfolded in eleven successive phases. Rapoport began by making personal, visually based, free-associative connections in which images of the twenty-nine objects on her dresser were correlated with twenty-nine other random images. Her associations varied from formal to cultural to psychological. Later, she developed interactive installations and magazine polls which required that each of the fifty-eight objects be grouped into one of six themes: (Hand], Chest, Eye, Masking, Threading, and Moving) by people working in three respective fields: artists, scientists, and attorneys. Rapoport plotted the subsequent data to find that the three separate groups made significantly different choices when they categorized the visual objects into the six themes. Lawyers tended to classify the objects similarly to their peers, choosing the same categories for similar objects, while the artists and scientists both displayed broader associative connections when placing the objects into categories.[11][12]

In 1983 she created a large-scale interactive installation entitled "Biorhythm: How Do You Feel?" at WORKS gallery in San Jose. In this work, Rapoport connected participants to bio-feedback equipment, and asked them to relate their feelings on that particular day. Participants described their emotions both in words and by creating hand gestures that expressed those feelings. Participants then compared their self-assessments with the biofeedback readings. Rapoport then evaluated this information and created an installation as part of the 1984 show "SF/SF San Francisco/ Science Fiction" at the Clocktower in New York.

Four years later, in a 1987 interactive installation at the Kala Institute entitled "Digital Mudrā" Rapoport returned to the data acquired from "Biorhythm: How Do You Feel?". She associated each participant's gesture with one of 52 hand gestures known as Mudrās. In doing so, Rapoport suggested the cross-cultural correlations of hand gestures and their trans-cultural meanings. Mudrās and their word meanings were juxtaposed within a western context and transcribed onto a computer printout and also, into a Kathakali dance. Rapoport discovered that the words people chose to describe their gestures in western culture, and the words given to the gestures in the Mudrā vocabulary were surprisingly similar. Finally, Rapoport created a slide presentation showing current political leaders making similar gestures having similar verbal contexts.[13]

In 1988 she received a grant from the California Arts Council for the production of "Digital Mudrā"[14] online via Carl Loeffler and Fred Truck's Art Com Electronic Network (ACEN).[15] In 1989, a simplified version of "Digital Mudrā"[16] was uploaded to the Internet as a web-based interactive artwork.


The Animated Soul: Gateway to Your Ka was a site-specific interactive installation exhibited at the Ghia Gallery, a casket showroom in South San Francisco in 1991, the Takada Gallery in San Francisco, and the Kuopio Museum in Finland, in 1992. The Animated Soul, in book format, traveled from 1992-1993 throughout the United States under an NEA grant. In this show, set in a tomb environment, viewer-participants interacted with a HyperCard computer program which prompted them to make a series of choices represented by icons. By going through this process, users reenacted the ritual sequence laid out in the Egyptian Book of the Dead in order to discover their double, who in turn would lead them to everlasting life.[17][18][19][20][21][22][23][24][25][26]

In 1993 Sonya Rapoport produced Sexual Jealousy: The Shadow of Love as an interactive installation at the Fourth International Symposium on Electronic Art in Minneapolis. In this participatory artwork she combined a Gamelan-inspired algorithmic multi-channel musical composition by Michael McNabb, with images from Aubrey Beardsley, Indonesian shadow puppets, and Jungian mythological symbols in a computer assisted interactive installation wherein participants explored their feelings of sexual jealousy and methods of coming to terms with these feelings. Rapoport designed a "Self-help" HyperCard software package in which the user became a protagonist in a shadow play. The user's choices generated lessons in coping, using clips from the soap opera, The Young and the Restless. The personal emotional subjective states of individual users were linked to symbolic psychological representations. These in turn became the components of a narrative of self-discovery and revelation which subsequently controlled the generation of music.[27][28]

The Garden of Brutal Myth (1996)

From 1993 to 1996 Rapoport produced, in several phases, The Transgenic Bagel,[29] an interactive computer-assisted artwork, with a gene splicing theme. Participants were invited to gamble for the "splice of life" in the "Bagel Casino". Traits were extracted from mythological animals residing in Noah's "Virtual Ark". The "winning" trait gene was processed and injected into a section of a bagel (bagel fragment DNA). Participants could accept the gene by eating the recombinant transgenic bagel, or they could trade the trait.[30][31][32]

1995 saw the production of "Smell Your Destiny",[33] another parodic interactive web art project much in the same vein as "The Transgenic Bagel". In this artwork, Rapoport posited that traits historically considered undesirable are now considered more desirable. For example, aggressiveness and competitiveness were once considered negative traits when displayed by women, but now such traits are seen as a key to success in the corporate environment. Rapoport proposed that these new values and traits might be administered to a population by means of aromatherapy. She introduced the idea that pharmaceutical pills that carried specific favorable traits could be fed to fish living near or within a given society. After consuming the pills, the fish would give off a "stink" that would permeate the air and be inhaled by the inhabitants of the surrounding community, thus transmitting the desired traits / societal values to its citizens. This process was historically specific, in that pills fed to fish in the Qumran region in 150 BCE would have been different from those fed to fish today. This piece displayed Rapoport's characteristic love of word play...for instance, the names of the pills given to the fish were all puns of common over-the-counter products, e.g. "Anvil" (for Advil), All-to-rest (for Allerest), Chums (for Tums), My-Thrill (for NyQuil), Contract (for Contac), No-mor-fussin (for Robitussin), and Re-lax (for Ex-Lax), etc.[34][35][36]

From 1996 onward, Rapoport created artworks specifically as websites in which she exhibited an interest in liberal feminist issues. In 1996 she created "Brutal Myths"[37] with collaborator Marie-Jose Sat. "Brutal Myths" was inspired by the sadistic male fantasies about women as found in the Malleus Maleficarum (The Hammer of Witches), a manual for witch-hunting written by Heinrich Kramer and Jacob Sprenger in the 15th century. Because women were traditionally the lay healers of their societies and used ancient herbs in their medicinal practices, Rapoport used representations of herbs as the metaphoric interface of the web artwork. The first section of "Brutal Myths" describes the "evil" herbs that contaminated the minds of men and made them believe in the dictums laid forth in the Malleus Malificarum. In the second section, the participant "plants" a "blissful" herbal garden of “blessed” herbs. By participating in interactive rituals with the herbs the viewer destroys the prejudicial myths about women and assuages the fears of the men.[38]

"Make Me A Man"[39] (1997) marked a change in Rapoport's voice as an artist wherein she adopted the theoretical standpoint of a man, a voice which she carried through works of the next few years. The artwork reflected on what Rapoport saw as "the stereotype of modern manhood" and reflected on the way that stereotype has been sustained by cultures as diverse as those of Western Europe and the New Guinea Highlands. Both of these cultures acknowledge the superiority of the physiological woman, said to be born with all the vital organs and fluids necessary for giving birth and nurturing an infant. This is contrasted to men who must be molded by the society to conform to an "Ideal" masculinity. Both cultures have a similar gender dogma. Comparative examples of how tribal or technological societies achieve their objective of "growing a man" provide the structure of the work.[40][41]

"Arbor Erecta: A Botanical Concept For Masculinity"[42] (1998) continued Rapoport's exploration of narrative from the male perspective. This artwork centered around the ethos of the 159 CE. Greek physician Galen who declared "God created plants as a provision for the health of human beings, and left a sign on them – some feature of their shape, color, habitat or behavior–for human beings to decipher." For example, Galen pointed to a plant shaped like an ear that was used as a cure for ear-aches. The artwork fancifully interweaves a news story about "James" (a transsexual person who underwent surgery to change from female to male) with representations of the New Guinea initiation rite of "tree bonding". In the artwork, as James grows from his female body into that of a male, he re-enacts certain New Guinean tribal rituals that purported to purge the female pollutants acquired from the mother from the body of the initiated man.[43]

In 1998-99, strongly influenced by the book "Unheroic Conduct: The Rise of Heterosexuality and the Invention of the Jewish Man" by Daniel Boyarin,[44] Rapoport created "Make Me A Jewish Man: An Alternative Masculinity",[45] which she described as exploring the paradox of rabbinic masculinity. In this, the rabbinic male seeks to usurp for himself the female's characteristics, while at the same time, coupling these acquired feminine aspects with his dominant role as a male. This practice is what leads to the marginalization and exclusion of women. Although appropriations of "femaleness" are necessary in the production of the Jewish male "Ideal", strong gender biases are associated with both the blood of circumcision (which is associated with power) and the blood of childbirth (associated with impurity). Rapoport's project addressed the question of a reversal of female penis envy, that is, how do men cope with the envy of birthing and nurturing? Her main goal was to provide an explanation for male "coping mechanisms" as related to male appropriations of "femaleness," under Talmudic Law in the year 400 CE. A secondary theme was the developing metaphor of the morphology of the Olive Tree for which the Lord named Israel. During interactive interruptions in the narrative, Olive Oyl, wife of macho Popeye, provided the feminist voice which objected to the gender imbalance of the material. For her research on the cultivation of olives, Rapoport used material from her daughter Hava Rapoport's chapter in the book "El Cultivo del Olivo".[46][47]


This work was followed by "Redeeming the Gene, Molding the Golem, Folding the Protein"[48] in 2002. Returning to the feminist voice Rapoport created a mythic parody designed to be viewed on the Internet. In it, she wanted to challenge the current genetic engineering technology by creating an artificial anthropoid, the Golem, according to the ancient Hebraic ritual directions given in the Kabbalah. In the story, Lilith and Eve, maligned sources of female evil for many years reinvented themselves by creating an ethical gene that they used to mold the Golem. The "Kabbalah gene", displaced the "artist's gene" that Eduardo Kac invented in his artwork, "Genesis."[49][50]

In 2004, Rapoport produced "Kabbalah/Kabul: Sending Emanations to the Aliens".[51] This work, another interactive web artwork concerned with the transmission of traits, opened with an image of a US helicopter carrying the Kabbalah’s major icon, the Tree of Life, whose branches are marked with altruistic "emanations". This time, Rapoport proposed that encoded altruistic traits could be transmitted across interstellar space by radio or laser signals. When the participant selects an emanation by clicking on its icon, an associated image of a stem cell within a cell cluster differentiates (lights up and changes into) a body part. The selected cell is eventually enhanced with a DNA altruistic trait in preparation for delivery to the extraterrestrials. Participants absorb the altruism(s) into their psyches as the messages are catapulted from earth into outer space. "Kabbalah/Kabul" endeavors to integrate the infinite outer universe with the altruistic universe that resides within each person on Earth.[52]

"(in)AUTHENTIC: Woman, War, Jew" (2007) was created as a "Memory Theatre" in collaboration with Robert Edgar. The work exists as an interactive website that builds itself while the viewer watches. Memory Theatres were first formulated in the 16th century by Giulio Camillo as a way to sense the structure of the cosmos through painting, text and architecture. in the artwork, Rapoport reflects upon her own cosmos of gender, race, science, and mythology in the artwork. Images used include those of various military tanks, African hairstyles mitochondria and Jungian mythological images. These were accompanied by audio recordings consisting of an imaginary contentious dialogue between Luce Irigaray, Sigmund Freud and Jean-Paul Sartre. In the "play" these voices trigger an invasion of robotic tank warfare into the cosmology of Rapoport’s persona. The concept of theatre in this work takes on two meanings: in once sense it refers to a theatre of memory; in another sense it refers to a theatre of war. Within these co-extensive theatres, an army tank, a phallic metaphor, moves between what Rapoport considers authentic and what is inauthentic as found in the aggressive environments of gender, war and religion.[53]


A retrospective exhibition of Rapoport's work, "Sonya Rapoport: Pairings and Polarities" was held at the Kala Institute from 4 March to 9 April 2011.[54][55] Another retrospective of her work is planned for the Mills College Art Museum in January 2012.[56]

In 2013 the collage, video, and interactive installation "ImPOSSIBLE CONVERSATIONS?" was shown at the Fresno Museum of Art alongside Rapoport's early "Pattern and Design" paintings from the 1960s. In 2014 the archives of her life's work were accepted at the Bancroft Library of Western Americana at UC Berkeley.


The Sonya Rapoport Legacy Trust was established and endowed during Rapoport's lifetime to preserve her work and to broaden its critical and historical recognition. The trust supports her legacy through a variety of initiatives including exhibitions, loans of artworks, research, publications, conservation, and educational programs for the public and the scholarly community. It also maintains a collection of Rapoport's artwork in a variety of media and encourages collaborative projects with artists, writers, and scientists in recognition of Rapoport’s unique methodology. Study of the Sonya Rapoport Papers at the Bancroft Library, UC Berkeley is also encouraged.

Exhibition history[edit]

People Shapers (1978 - 2008)
Solo Exhibitions
  • Yes or No?. Krowswork, Oakland, California, November, 2015.
  • ImPOSSIBLE CONVERSATIONS?. Fresno Art Museum, Fresno, California, 17 May - 5 January 2014.
  • Spaces of Life: The Art of Sonya Rapoport. Mills College Art Museum, Oakland, California, 18 January - 11 March 2012 (Future).
  • Sonya Rapoport: Pairings of Polarities. KALA Institute Art Gallery, Berkeley, California, 4 March—9 April 2011.
  • Vuorovaekutus (Interaction). Kuopio Art Museum, Kuopio, Finlande, 1992. The Animated Soul.
  • Exhibition at Takada Fine Art. San Francisco, California, 1992. The Animated Soul—Gateway to Your Ka (1992).
  • “The Animated Soul” Exhibition at the Ghia Gallery. San Francisco, California, 22 March—30 April 1991. The Animated Soul—Gateway to Your Ka (Computer: Kathryn Woods; Sound: Andrew Smolle).
  • Interactive Shoe-Field. Cadence Design Systems, San Jose, California, April 1990.
  • Exhibition at Hearst Art Gallery. Saint Mary’s College of California, Moraga, California, 8 January—21 February 1988. Digital Mudra.
  • Exhibition at MEDIA Gallery. San Francisco, California, 7 October—4 November 1986. Kiva-Studio, A Shoe-In Shoe-Field I, Shoe-Field II.
  • Shared Dynamics. Sarah Lawrence College, Bronxville, New York, 1984.
  • “Coping with Sexual Jealousy” with the Heller Gallery in the Pauley Ballroom. Berkeley, California, 30 October 1984. Performance of Coping with Sexual Jealousy.
  • Back to Nature/ Recycling the Objects: A Retrospective. Humboldt State University, Arcata, California, 1983.
  • Biorhythm: How Do You Feel? WORKS, San Jose, California, 1983.
  • Biorhythm. Graduate School of Business Administration, New York University, New York City, New York. 1982.
  • A Shoe-In / Objects On My Dresser. Installation at Berkeley Computer Systems. Berkeley, California, 31 March—7 April 1982. Objects On My Dresser and A Shoe-In.
  • Shared Dynamics. Artist Space, New School for Social Research, New York, 1981.
  • Psycho-Aesthetic Dynamics. 80 Langton Street, San Francisco, California, 3–14 June 1980. Objects on My Dresser—Psycho-Aesthetic Dynamics, Phase 2.
  • Bonito-Rapoport Shoes. Donnell Library Center: New York Public Library. New York, New York, 10 October 1979. Bonito-Rapoport Shoes.
  • Pictorial Linguistics. Franklin Furnace, New York City, New York, 9—27 October 1979.
  • Interaction: Art and Science: Jack Bergamini / Sonya Rapoport at Truman Gallery. New York, New York, 12 January—3 February 1979. Kiva-Studio.
  • Sonya Rapoport: An Overview (An Exhibition of Drawings). Union Gallery, San Jose State University, San Jose, California, 9 October—3 November 1978. Drawings. Hovenweep (1977), color pencil on computer print-out; Anasazi (1977) color pencil on computer print-out; Kiva-Studio Series (1978) color pencil on computer print-out; Upper Gila (1977) color pencil on computer print-out.
  • An Aesthetic Response. Tozzer Library of the Peabody Museum. Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1–31 May 1978. Works in collaboration with Dorothy Washburn.
  • Exhibition at E.B. Crocker Gallery in Sacramento. Sacramento, California, 19 November—15 December 1974. Sylvan, Basta, Budding, Untitled, all acrylic on canvas.
  • Exhibition at San Jose Museum of Art
  • Sonya Rapoport. Berkeley Art Center, Berkeley, California, 1973.
  • Sonya Rapoport at John Bolles Gallery. San Francisco, __—20 May 1972. Survey Charts, Medley, No. 15, acrylic and pencil on old geological survey sheet.
  • Sonya Rapoport at John Bolles Gallery. San Francisco, January—February 1970. Dusk, Blue Jay Wing, paintings.
  • Drawings and Paintings by Sonya Rapoport. Valley Art Gallery, Walnut Creek, California, 6—31 October 1969.
  • Sonya Rapoport: A Selection of Paintings and Drawings. Richmond Art Center, Richmond, California, 13 April—5 May 1968. Rapoport’s seventh one-man show. Reflections, commercial flower-printed linen.
  • Sonya Rapoport at John Bolles Gallery. San Francisco, California, 1–30 August 1967. Winged Double Image, acrylic on commercial flower-printed linen, Enlightenment, acrylic on fabric, and other “pattern paintings” with floral / genital themes.
  • Exhibition at the College of the Holy Names’ James D. Kennedy Memorial Art Center. Oakland, California, April 1965. Paincil Series (“contrast painting”).
  • Sonya Rapoport at John Bolles Gallery. San Francisco, California, 3 November—4 December 1964. Rf, Circle 2, Auror, I Love You (all “contrast paintings”); Plazmazoid, Spallation, Sonata in Orange, Auro, Psyche Trio (all “conglomerate canvases”); Red Graze, Flora Bat, Enlightenment (all fabric / pattern paintings).
  • Sonya Rapoport: Paintings and Drawings at the California Palace of the Legion of Honor. San Francisco, California, 23 March—21 April 1963.
  • Exhibition at East West Gallery. San Francisco, California, January 1958. Watercolors and oil paintings. [Rapoport’s first solo show. Abstract expressionist watercolors].
Selected Group Shows
Selected Lectures
Interactive Installations
  • ImPOSSIBLE CONVERSATIONS? Data Gathering Event. Martina }{ Johnston Gallery, Berkeley, California, 10 February 2013
  • Generations: Lineage of Influence-Bay Area Art, Richmond Art Center, California, 1996
  • Capp Street Project, 1996
  • Artist Resident Arts Wire, 1995
  • Vuorovaekutus, Kuopio Museum, Kuopio, Finland, 1992
  • The Animated Soul, Takada Arts 1992; Ghia Gallery 1991, San Francisco, California
  • Digital Mudra, KALA Institute, Berkeley, California, 1987
  • Shoe-Field, MEDIA, San Francisco, California, 1986
  • Coping with Sexual Jealousy, Pauley Ballroom University of Calif. Berkeley, 1984
  • Sarah Lawrence College, Bronxville, New York, 1984
  • Biorhythm: How do you feel? WORKS/San Jose, California, 1983
  • Back to Nature (Retrospective) Humboldt State University, Arcata, California, 1983
  • Shared Dynamics, Artists Space, New York, New York, 1981
  • Shared Dynamics, New School for Social Research, New York, New York, 1981
Selected Solo Installations / Exhibitions
  • Psycho-Aesthetic Dynamics, 80 Langton Street, San Francisco, California, 1980
  • Pictorial Linguistics, Franklin Furnace, New York City, New York, 1979
  • Bonito-Rapoport Shoes, Donnell Center, New York Public Library, 1979
  • Interaction Art and Science, Truman Gallery, New York City, New York, 1979
  • Peabody Museum, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1978
  • California (Crocker) Art Museum, Sacramento, California, 1974
  • San Jose Museum of Art, San Jose, California, 1974
  • John Bolles Gallery, San Francisco, California, 1964, 1967, 1970, 1972
  • California Palace of the Legion of Honor, San Francisco, California, 1963
Selected Book-Arts Exhibitions
Chinese Connections, (Artist's Book, 1982) Chinese Word/Picture cards, laminate, yarn, Chinese proverbs, business computer forms
  • Center for Book Arts, 30 Years of Innovation, New York City, New York 2005
  • Northern Calif. Book Artists, Ctr For Book Arts, New York City, 1998-99 (cat)
  • BOUNDLESS: Liberating the Book Form, San Francisco Ctr for the Book, CA, 1998
  • 1st Columbia Biennal Exhibition of the Book, Columbia College, Chicago, IL
  • WOMEN OF THE BOOK: Jewish Artists, Jewish Themes (traveling), 1997–2000
  • Photographic Book Art in the U. S.(traveling USA), 1992–95
  • Off the Shelf/On Line, Minn.Ctr (traveling NEA) (cat. pub.), 1992–1993
  • Book Arts, USA; U.S. Information Agency (traveling) (cat. pub.), 1992-90
  • Anchorage Museum of Art, Anchorage, Alaska (cat. pub.), 1991-1990
  • National Museum of Women, Washington DC, 1990
  • National Library, Madrid, Spain (cat. pub.), 1982
Painting and Drawing Exhibitions


  1. ^ "Digitizing the Golem: From Earth to Outer Space", Leonardo Journal, Vol. 39, No. 2, (MIT, 2006),17.
  2. ^ PDF of "The Eightieth Year, The Berkeley School of Painting: 1930s - 1950", ArtLetter, Berkeley Art Alumni Group, (Summer 2003), 1. Archived January 5, 2009, at the Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ James McCray, "Sonya Rapoport at the East West Gallery", The Argonaut, January 31, 1958
  4. ^ Dean Wallace, "Five One-Man Shows at Legion", San Francisco Chronicle, April 3, 1963
  5. ^ "Sonya Rapoport", John Bolles Gallery pamphlet, November 3 - December 4, 1964
  6. ^ Dean Wallace, "A Survey of Bay Area Styles", San Francisco Sunday Chronicle, July 19, 1964, p. 25
  7. ^ Miriam Dungan Cross, "Berkeley Artist Shows Unique Works", Oakland Tribune, August 6, 1967
  8. ^ "Shoe-Field". Retrieved 2013-08-14.
  9. ^ "Interaction: Art and Science", Truman Gallery Pamphlet, 38 E. 57 NYC January 12 - February 3, 1979.
  10. ^ "A Conversation with Sonya Rapoport". Retrieved 2013-08-14.
  11. ^ Judy Malloy and Sonya Rapoport, Objective Connections
  12. ^ Terri Cohn, Tansu, Text, and Technology: Sonya Rapoport’s ‘Objects on My Dresser’, Lecture given at the Mid-Atlantic Popular/American Culture Association Conference, October 2007
  13. ^ Archana Horsting, Seeing Time 87, (Kala Institute Publication, September 3, 1987), 2.
  14. ^ Sonya Rapoport, "Digital Mudra - Sonya Rapoport". Retrieved 2013-08-14.
  15. ^ "Media Art Net | Loeffler, Carl; Truck, Fred: Art Com Electronic Network (ACEN)". Retrieved 2013-08-14.
  16. ^ "parallels". Retrieved 2013-08-14.
  17. ^ Katherine Cook. "Is Art At Death's Door?: Blurring the Line between Illusion and Reality", VOX Magazine: Contemporary Art and Culture (San Francisco, 1991), 10-11.
  18. ^ Meredith Tromble. "60s Redux" West Coast Weekend (segment Roving Painterly Eye) (March 23, 1991).
  19. ^ David Skarjune. "Off the Shelf and On-Line (at the Minnesota Center for Book Arts, September 12-November 21)" Artpaper, (November 1992), 20.
  20. ^ Nancy Princenthal. (Regular Column), The Print Collector's Newsletter (Vol. XXIII, No. 2, May–June 1992
  21. ^ "The Animated Soul: Gateway to Your Ka" Words on Works, ed. Judy Malloy, Leonardo, Vol. 22, No. 2, 1992) 218-219.
  22. ^ Judy Malloy. "Some Artware for Macintosh Computers: Computers are Helping to Create New Ways of Telling Stories and Making Art", Microtimes (May 31, 1993), 298.
  23. ^ Jaime Robles. "Sonya Rapoport at Takada Fine Art", Visions Art Quarterly, (Winter 1992), 43.
  24. ^ Harry Roche. "Critic's Choice / Art: Sonya Rapoport", The San Francisco Bay Guardian, (April 10, 1991).
  25. ^ Sonya Rapoport. "From Osiris to Sinai", Words on Works, ed. Judy Malloy, Leonardo, (Vol. 24, No. 1, 1991), 87.
  26. ^ "animated soul". Retrieved 2013-08-14.
  27. ^ Greg Garvey: Leonardo Electronic Almanac December (1993)
  28. ^ "Sexual Jealously: The Shadow of Love" Words on Works, ed. Judy Malloy, Leonardo, Vol. 27, No. 1, 1994) 16-17.
  29. ^ Sonya Rapoport's Art Blog (2008-12-11). "Sonya Rapoport's ArtBlog: higgledy-piggledy: The Transgenic Bagel Redux". Retrieved 2013-08-14.
  30. ^ "Transgenic bagels and neurotic genes", Nature Biotechnology, Vol. 15, January (1997), 1.
  31. ^ Stephen Wilson, Information Arts: Intersections of Art, Science, and Technology (Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 2002), 107.
  32. ^ Frank Popper, From Technological to Virtual Art (Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 2007), 69-75.
  33. ^ Sonya Rapoport, "Smell Your Destiny - Sonya Rapoport". Retrieved 2013-08-14.
  34. ^ Sonya Rapoport. "Smell Your Destiny",Leonardo, Vol. 37, No. 3, (2004) 182-186.
  35. ^ Dena Elisabeth Eber. "Smell Your Destiny" (Review), Intelligent Agent, Vol. 1, No. 4, July/August 1996.
  36. ^ "Smell Your Destiny" (Review), Leonardo, Vol. 28, No. 5, (1995), 480.
  37. ^ Sonya Rapoport, "Brutal Myths - Sonya Rapoport". Retrieved 2013-08-14.
  38. ^ Anne de Haanby. "The Vagina is the Boss on the Internet: New Female Media Artists Inspired by Erotics, Identity and Social Interaction", (1997), Rhizome Raw, June, (1997).
  39. ^ Sonya Rapoport, "Make Me a Man - Sonya Rapoport". Retrieved 2013-08-14.
  40. ^ Dena Elisabeth Eber. "Make Me A Man" (Review), Intelligent Agent, Vol. 2, No. 4, July/August 1997.
  41. ^ "Net Works", Leonardo, Vol. 31, No. 5. (1998), 467.
  42. ^ Sonya Rapoport, "Arbor Erecta - Sonya Rapoport". Retrieved 2013-08-14.
  43. ^ David Stairs. "ART+BIO", Leonardo, Vol. 31, No. 4, (1998), 267.
  44. ^ Daniel Boyarin. Unheroic Conduct: The Rise of Heterosexuality and the Invention of the Jewish Man (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1997)
  45. ^ Sonya Rapoport, "MAKE ME A JEWISH MAN: An Alternative Masculinity". Retrieved 2013-08-14.
  46. ^ D. Barranco. "Botanica y Morfologia", El Cultivo del Olivo, (Madrid: Ediciones Mundi-Prensa, 1998), 37-60.
  47. ^ "Laura Tortosa Nieto. ''Analysis of Make me a Jewish Man'', Universitat de València Press Online (accessed 24 December, 2008)". Retrieved 2013-08-14.
  48. ^ Sonya Rapoport, "Redeeming the Gene - Sonya Rapoport". Retrieved 2013-08-14.
  49. ^ Ernestine Daubner, "Manipulating Genetic Identities: The Creation of Chimeras, Cyborgs and (Cyber Golems), Eduardo Kac and Sonya Rapoport", Parachute 105: Autofictions (National Museum of Canada, 2002), 84-91.
  50. ^ Sonya Rapoport. "Reencontrando, redimindo o gene, moldando o golem, dobrando a proteína", In Vitro, in vivo, in silicio: ensaios sobre a relação entre arte, ciência, tecnologia e o sagrado, Trans. Adauto Villela, (São Paulo: cnpq/pronex, 2007), 321-336.
  51. ^ "KABBALAH KABUL: Sending Emanations to the Aliens". Retrieved 2013-08-14.
  52. ^ Sonya Rapoport. "Kabbalah/Kabul", 4th International Symposium of Interactive Media Design (Yeditepe University Visual Communications Design Department), (Istanbul: Yeditepe University Press, April 28–30, 2006), 211.
  53. ^ Sonya Rapoport, "(in)Authentic: Woman, War, Jew", In Transition Russia 2008, Ed. Helene Black, (2008), 122-133, 196.
  54. ^ "Jeremiah Barber, "Parodies: 'Pairings of Polarities' by Sonya Rapoport", KQED Arts, 21 March 2011". Retrieved 2013-08-14.
  55. ^ "Dan Godston and Joni Spigler, "Sonya Rapoport - Conceptual Art, Make Me a Jewish Man, & Pairings of Polarities", ''Experimental Arts Examiner'', 5 February 2011". Retrieved 2013-08-14.
  56. ^ "Judy Malloy, "Travels with Contemporary New Media Art", ''GIA Reader'', Vol 21, No 2 (Summer 2010)". Retrieved 2013-08-14.


  • "Review of 'Make Me a Man'", artnetweb and Intelligent Agent, Vol. 2.07, (November 3, 1997).
  • Drawings: Barbara Foster, Brian Goble, Anne Hawkins, John Lanzone, Dan O'neill, Sonya Rapoport, (San Jose: California State University Press and Union Gallery, 1978).
  • Anonymous, "Sonya Rapoport: Works", Rhizome, (New York: New Museum Online Resource, January 1997).
  • Anonymous, "Sonya Rapoport: Works", Rhizome, (New York: New Museum Online Resource, July 1998).
  • Ernestine Daubner, "De l'alchimie au bioweb: Les métaphores de la transmutation et de la rédemption" (Interview with Sonya Rpoport), Art et Biotechnologies, Ed. Louise Poissant and Ernestine Daubner (Quebec: Presses de l’Universite du Quebec, 2005), 228-245
  • Ernestine Daubner, "Manipulating Genetic Identities: The Creation of Chimeras, Cyborgs and (Cyber Golems), Eduardo Kac and Sonya Rapoport", Parachute 105: Autofictions (National Museum of Canada, 2002), 84-91.
  • Anne de Haan, "Cyberfemale", Lover Magazine, (Netherlands, May 1997).
  • Dominic Gates, Microsoft Review of Art on the Web, (24 February 1997).
  • Judy Malloy, "Multi Media & Beyond: Interactive Installation Art: Blurring the Lines Between Artist and Audience", Microtimes, No. 101. (April 4, 1994), 308.
  • Frank Popper, From Technological to Virtual Art, (Cambridge, Mass.: MIT University Press, 2007), 69-75. ISBN 0-262-16230-X and ISBN 978-0-262-16230-2
  • Sonya Rapoport and Marie-José Sat, "Brutal Myths", Leonardo, (Fifth Annual New York Digital Salon), Vol. 30, No. 5 (1997), 455. (Image)
  • Sonya Rapoport, "Digging Into the Jewish Roots of Shoe-Field", Jews and Shoes, Ed.Edna Nahshon (Oxford, N.Y.: Berg Publishers: 2008). ISBN 1-84788-050-9 and ISBN 978-1-84788-050-5
  • Sonya Rapoport: An Aesthetic Response (San Jose: California State University Press and Union Gallery, 1978).
  • Sonya Rapoport, "(in)Authentic: Woman, War, Jew", In Transition Russia 2008, (Catalogue of NeMe / Independent Museum of Contemporary Art (IMCA) / National Centre for Contemporary Art (NCCA) Ekaterinburg and Moscow branches Russian Federation exhibition), Ed. Helene Black, (2008), 122-133, 196. ISBN 978-9963-8932-3-2 or Download
  • Sonya Rapoport, "Make Me a Man", Leonardo, (Sixth Annual New York Digital Salon), Vol. 31, No. 5 (1998), 467. (Image)
  • Sonya Rapoport, "Process(ing) Interactive Art: Using People as Paint, Computer as Brush, and Installation Site as Canvas",Women and Technology Art, Ed. Judy Malloy (Cambridge, Mass.: MIT University Press, 2003), 180-191. ISBN 0-262-13424-1 and ISBN 978-0-262-13424-8 JSTOR link
  • Sonya Rapoport, "Reencontrando, redimindo o gene, moldando o golem, dobrando a proteína", In Vitro, in vivo, in silicio: ensaios sobre a relação entre arte, ciência, tecnologia e o sagrado, Trans. Adauto Villela, (São Paulo: cnpq/pronex, 2007), 321-336.
  • Sonya Rapoport, "Smell Your Destiny", Leonardo, (Third Annual New York Digital Salon), Vol. 28, No. 5 (1995), 480. (Image)
  • Sonya Rapoport, "The Transgenic Bagel", Leonardo, (Fourth Annual New York Digital Salon), Vol. 29, No. 5 (1996), 410. (Image)
  • Therese Tierney, "Formulating Abstraction: Conceptual Art and the Architectural Object", Leonardo, Vol. 40, No. 1 (2007), 51-57 (cited on p. 56)
  • Stephen Wilson, Information Arts: Intersections of Art, Science, and Technology, (Cambridge, Mass.: MIT University Press, 2002), 105-107. ISBN 0-262-73158-4 and ISBN 978-0-262-73158-4
  • Debora Wood, Imagining by Numbers: A Historical View of the Computer Print, (Evanston: Northwestern University Press with Mary and Leigh Block Museum of Art, 2008). ISBN 0-8101-2505-6
  • Remedios Zafra, "Sinopsis de Violencia sin cuerpos", Cárcel de Amor: Relatos culturales sobre la violencia de género (Madrid: Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, 2006), 328-341.

External links[edit]