Installation view, Genre-Nonconforming: The DIS Edutainment Network (detail), de Young, San Francisco, 2017

Genre-Nonconforming: The DIS Edutainment Network

DIS with Korakrit Arunanondchai, Darren Bader, Will Benedict and Steffen Jørgensen, CUSS Group, Aria Dean, Casey Jane Ellison, Ilana Harris-Babou, Daniel Keller and Jacob Hurwitz Goodman, Christopher Kulendran Thomas, Amalia Ulman, McKenzie Wark, and Women’s History Museum

DIS is a New York–based collective formed of Lauren Boyle, Solomon Chase, Marco Roso, and David Toro. DIS works across a wide range of media, most recently transitioning platforms from an online magazine to a video-streaming edutainment channel. The group has become the central nucleus of an ever-growing international community of artists, musicians, photographers, writers, and designers; functioning as artists and curators, DIS weaves together the content of collaborators with their own to propose discourse around chosen topics.

Genre-Nonconforming: The DIS Edutainment Network, a newly commissioned project for the de Young, reveals a “DIS-topian” take on the future of education — decentralized and open access, yet communal and physically connected. Composed of a multitude of films, documentaries, cartoons, and talk shows, authored by DIS and its artistic collaborators, and broadcast across thirty-six LED screens in Wilsey Court, Genre-Nonconforming proposes “a counter strategy to our incomprehensible moment of post-truth, a clickbait cultural landscape that has generated misinformation and overexposure as a general condition.” A wry hybrid of entertainment and education, the video installation is built to parse meaning from a constant flux of information and unmask the hidden structures of power and information that shape our lives.

Genre-Nonconforming features new works from a prominent group of cultural producers who regularly collaborate with DIS. The viewer will be guided through the “program” by “The Host,” an avatar developed with Chus Martínez (director of the Institute of Art at the FHNW Academy of Art and Design in Basel), Culturesport, and Ian Isiah. The program includes a variety of formats, including a cooking show by Will Benedict and Steffen Jørgensen; a show on human-animal relations in Africa and Thailand by Korakrit Arunanondchai; a “general intellects” video with McKenzie Wark; a visual essay by Aria Dean; a docu-short on “seasteading” in Tahiti by Daniel Keller and Jacob Hurwitz Goodman; a report on “reparation hardware” by Ilana Harris-Babou; a cartoon by Amalia Ulman; a docu-short on “economic utopias” by Christopher Kulendran Thomas; a fictional drama by the South African collective CUSS Group exploring the influence of technology and digital culture in South Africa; and a contribution by the Women’s History Museum. The different elements will be connected and disrupted by interstitial “ads” and interviews conceived by Darren Bader and DIS.

In the news

  • Videos blur the line between educational material, sketch comedy, and freestanding artwork.

    Ben Davis of artnet,
  • A “DIS-topian” take on the future of education — decentralized and open-access, yet communal and physically connected, inviting visitors to experience a twisted hybrid of entertainment and education.

    San Francisco Bay Times,


This exhibition is organized by the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Sound Sponsor: Meyer Sound

Seating provided by Room & Board

The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco’s Contemporary Arts Program is made possible by Presenting Sponsor the Lisa & Douglas Goldman Fund.

Major support is provided by Nion McEvoy and Leslie Berriman and The Paul L. Wattis Foundation. Significant support is provided by Frances F. Bowes. Additional support is provided by Kate Harbin Clammer and Adam Clammer, Jessica and Jason Moment, Katie Schwab Paige and Matt Paige, David and Roxanne Soward, Joachim and Nancy Hellman Bechtle, Jeffrey N. Dauber and Marc A. Levin, Shaari Ergas, Laurent Fischer and Jason Joseph Anthony, Kaitlyn and Mike Krieger, Lore Harp McGovern, Rotasa Fund, Mr. and Mrs. Charles R. Schwab, Gwynned Vitello, Vance Wall Foundation, Anonymous, and the Contemporary Support Council of the Fine Arts Museums.

Currently on view