Bending Towards the Light of the Sun

Screenprinted flyer distributed by National Land for People. Courtesy of Special Collections Research Center, Henry Madden Library, California State University, Fresno.
Nancy Youdelman, Bound feet, 1973, plaster, fabric, late Photograph, 10 x 8 inches. Courtesy of the artist.
Installation view, Bending towards the Light of the Sun, 2019
Maia Ballis, NO!, 1974. Courtesy of the artist.
Installation view, Bending Towards the Light of the Sun.
Carissa Garcia, still from In the Valleys: Las Mujeres Muralistas del Valle, 2018. Color video with sound. Courtesy of the artist.
R.L. Muas, Untitled, 2018, Hmong motifs, acrylic on plywood.
food by Adrianna Alejo Sorondo
Screening of “California Trilogy,” James Benning.
Performance by Xolito Sound System

August 21 – October 11, 2018

Bending towards the Light of the Sun begins in two local archives – the National Land for People archive at California State University, Fresno, home to an extensive collection of the group’s land activist printed matter and ephemera, and artist Nancy Youdelman’s personal archive, consisting of early performance documentation, collaborations with other artists in Judy Chicago’s Feminist Art Program at Fresno State, and Youdelman’s cathartic experiments with casting and using her body as material in her work.

From there, it expands. Like the city itself, it sprawls outward, with installations by an intergenerational group of artists  connected to the history of land, activism, and art in the region; film screenings, artist publications, public workshops and talks.


Maia Ballis, Caleb Duarte, Carissa Garcia, Laguna CollectiveR.L. Muas, Sylvia Savala, Christian VargasNancy Youdelman.

Bending towards the Light of the Sun is anchored by archival materials relating to Fresno’s history of activism and art making, in the form of  printed matter by Fresno-based radical land activist group National Land for People (NLP).


  • Claiming Open Spaces (1995) / Austin Allen’s critical documentary about African American communities and public spaces.
  • California Trilogy (1998) / Experimental filmmaker James Benning’s long slow look at the landscapes of California
  • In the Valleys: Las Mujeres Muralistas del Valle (2018) / Carissa Garcia’s film about a group of Chicana muralists working in Fresno in the 1970’s.


  • Lecture: “American Indian Women: Revolutionary Art as an Act of Love,” Dr. Leece Lee-Oliver (Blackfeet/Wyandot/Cherokee/Choctaw), Assistant Professor and Director of American Indian Studies, California State University, Fresno.
  • Performance: Xolito Sound System
  • Artist talks: Caleb Duarte, Nancy Youdelman, Christian Vargas.
  • Offsite Riso printing Zine and Poster workshop, Laguna Collective x Beginning Printmaking