Guggenheim Gallery
Wilkinson College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences

» Guggenheim Gallery: Currently on View


August 28 – October 13, 2023

Chapman University’s Guggenheim Gallery on occasion of Wilkinson College’s Engaging the World is thrilled to announce @fakingprofessionalism, a solo presentation by Los Angeles based artist Cedric Tai. 

I’d like to propose that ADHD/Autism just means ‘being bad at capitalism’ (being on time, accepting authority, etc.), which… isn’t the worst thing to be allergic to. 

- Cedric Tai

Artist Tai@fakingprofessionalism is an evolving mis en scène that brings together artworks, a modular minigolf course, the artist’s temporary and improvised studio space, as well as references to keeping up appearances on social media. The installation blends three distinct social spaces: the workplace (the office and studio), a locus of negotiation and production; the exhibition space where finished products are displayed and discussed; and the sites of recreational activities, which are often haunted by the specter of professional networking. The merging of these spaces in the gallery provokes questions around the purposes, similarities, and differences of these sites. The fragmentary and ephemeral nature of @fakingprofessionalism mirrors not only diverse approaches to problem solving and the adaptable nature of the creative process, but also becomes a model of neurodivergent thinking. This is represented in how elements within the exhibition undergo transformations, unite with other segments, disappear, and subsequently resurface over the course of its duration.

In the realm of work-life, professionalism stands as a valuable standard that upholds quality, expertise, and ethical conduct. It sets a benchmark for proficiency and ensures that individuals are adequately trained and qualified to carry out their responsibilities. However, our rigid understanding of this concept often creates a culture of exclusivity, perpetuating a narrow definition of what constitutes legitimate expertise, while marginalizing individuals who do not conform to these standards. This rigidity frequently acts as a gatekeeping mechanism, stifling individuality and inhibiting the full realization of diverse talents and perspectives. In stark contrast, some neurodivergent individuals perceive intricate patterns and connections, especially valuable in fields that require complex problem-solving, data analysis, and innovative thinking. Furthermore, viewing all minds as existing within a neurospectrum challenges the idea of a singular ‘center’ from which all others diverge. 

The exhibition raises compelling questions: What if we were to embrace a broader spectrum of behaviors, bodies, and minds that don't conform to traditional societal norms, rather than labeling some human actions as pathological? How can we further support the ways in which marginalized people live, work, and play, on their terms? In what ways can we redefine the usual rules of engagement, and what might this look like?

In conjunction with Chapman University’s new Health Humanities Minor, Tai invites gallery visitors to observe the ways in which they navigate mental health resources and systems in place for the public today. The artist also shares their perspectives through printed brochures such as ‘How to Advocate for Yourself at the Doctors Office’ and ‘An ADHD Zine for/by Artists’. In @fakingprofessionalism Tai gives experimental, provisional, and non-clinically proven answers that provide a middle ground between social media hot takes and inaccessible scientific discourse. Tai shares their personal journey through the American healthcare system, professional sphere, and art world.

Find out more about the artist and past exhibitions on the Gallery Programming page!

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Contact & Gallery Information

Gallery Coordinator: Marcus Herse
Contact: Tel: 714.997.6800 or
Admission is free into the Gallery
Hours: Monday – Friday, noon – 5:00pm, Saturday, 11:00am – 4:00pm

Neurospectrum Conference

Join us for a causual lunchtime chat with Cedric Tai, 12 - 1 p.m. and/or an evening Neurospectrum walk, 5 -  6:15 p.m. on Sept. 26, Oct. 11, and Oct. 24. Make sure to click on the QR code below and RSVP for the tour.

Cedric Tai Flyer