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FALL ARTS PREVIEW: 10 strong currents within Bay Area fall visual arts
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Beatriz Milhazes, Mega Box

7, 2010; Berkeley Art Museum, www.bampfa.org) Charles Gatewood's raw and candid portraits of celebrities — no, he doesn't only aim his camera at naked bodies with piercings — are gathered to form a countercultural scrapbook. (Sept. 3-Oct. 31, Robert Tat Gallery, www.roberttat.com) Johan Hagemeyer turns now-endangered California nature into a subject of eternal awe. (Sept. 9-Nov. 3, Scott Nichols Gallery, www.scottnicholsgallery.com) Hiroshi Sugimoto captures the surreal beauty of lightning in a manner Jean Painlevé might admire. (Sept. 10-Oct. 31, Fraenkel Gallery, www.fraenkelgallery.com) And San Francisco itself is the subject of the first entry in the vast retrospective "An Autobiography of the San Francisco Bay Area." Sept. 10-Oct. 31, SF Camerawork, www.sfcamerawork.org

7. "There's a Mystery There: Sendak on Sendak" Where are the wild things this fall? On the movie screen — thanks to Spike Jonze's adaptation of a children's classic by Maurice Sendak — and in the museum, where this show presents watercolors, sketches, drawings and dummy books. Sept. 8-Jan. 19, 2010; Contemporary Jewish Museum, www.thecjm.org

8. "Bellwether" As New Langton Arts goes down amid dissent and criticism, the vibrant but at times diffuse Southern Exposure introduces a new Mission District home space with a 10-artist show that includes contributions by Renee Gertler and Lordy Rodriguez. Oct. 17-Dec. 12, Southern Exposure, www.soex.org

9. "The Art of Richard Mayhew" The Museum of the African Diaspora plays host to one-third of a three-part retrospective of the artist and activist's career. The show includes work from the late 1950s through the 1970s, a time span that includes his beginnings as an artist and his work with Spiral, a group of black artists including Romare Bearden. Oct. 9-Jan. 10, 2010; Museum of the African Diaspora, www.moadsf.org.

10. Solo and duo shows a go go Ara Peterson proves once again that few people chart — and bring dimension to — color with such power. (Nov. 6-Dec. 18, Ratio 3, www.ratio3.org) David Hevel gathers hideously pretty sculptures of Bernie Madoff, Michael Jackson, Farrah Fawcett, and Brangelina. (Sept. 10-Oct. 17, Marx & Zavattero, ww.marxzav.com) The late illustrator Charley Harper — beloved by Todd Oldham — gets a tribute. (Sept. 24-Oct. 31, Altman Siegel Gallery, www.altmansiegel.com) Local minimalist Todd Bura presents another open puzzle. (Sept. 18-Oct. 25, Triple Base, www.basebasebase.com) Pop goes berserk in the works of John De Fazio, and Daniel Minnick reinvents the American photo booth (fall, [2nd floor projects], www.projects2ndfloor.blogspot.com) Katya Bonnenfont proves — with a light and lovely touch, and against most evidence in galleries — that design can be art. (Oct. 22-Dec. 24, Haines Gallery, www.hainesgallery.com) And last, Luke Butler brings hotness and comedy together through razor-sharp collage. Sept. 11-Oct.

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