Sunday Read No. 8: Bay Area Writers and Artists

Sunday Read No. 8: Bay Area Writers and Artists
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    Today's Sunday Read focuses on bay area writers and artists. We'll explore the works of Soleil Ho, Liz Hernández, and Taylor Smalls this week.

    ✍️ Soleil Ho, Restaurant Critic and Writer

    Soleil Ho by SF Chronicle

    Since 2019, Soleil Ho (they/them) has been The Chronicle’s Restaurant Critic, spearheading Bay Area restaurant recommendations through the flagship Top Restaurants series. In 2022, they won a Craig Claiborne Distinguished Restaurant Review Award from the James Beard Foundation.

    Ho also writes features and cultural commentary, specializing in how our food reflects our lives.

    Soleil Ho's Writing on the San Francisco Chronicle

    Soleil Ho frequently writes in the SF Chronicle about people, food, and the latest restaurants to try in San Francisco.

    You can access their reviews below:

    Soleil Ho, Restaurant Critic - San Francisco Chronicle

    Soleil Ho's Extra Spicy Podcast

    If you prefer podcasts, Soleil Ho hosts a weekly podcast by the San Francisco Chronicle called Extra Spicy. They dismantle diet culture and angry chefs, cover the restaurant apocalypse and pandemic pivots, and dish out advice you didn't know you needed. Extra Spicy will stimulate your mind and your appetite.

    Apple Podcasts

    Apple Podcast Extra Spicy


    Soleil Ho Profile on San Francisco Edible

    San Francisco Edible Profile of Soleil Ho

    You can read San Francisco's Edible profile below:

    Soleil Ho Is (Still) Eating Their Feelings
    Soleil Ho is challenging the establishment from the very platform once synonymous with whiteness, privilege, and power, but to perform a gut rehab of restaurant reviewing itself: to frame it anew and fill it with an empathy it’s never known.

    🎨 Liz Hernández

    Photo of Liz Hernandez

    Liz Hernández (b. 1993) is a Mexican artist based in Oakland, California. Her art practice - which includes painting, drawing, sculpture, and writing - is deeply influenced by her memories and surroundings of Mexico City: buildings covered with handmade signs, chaotic trips to markets, visits to temples and churches, and her grandmother's house where she grew up.

    The subjects that she addresses are in a constant state of flux, but an element that is always present in her practice is the search for something that breaks the normalcy of everyday life. Hernández addresses this desire in multiple ways, from finding greater meaning in domestic objects and scenes to using supernatural elements and symbolism to address themes of modern life.

    Her work, partially autobiographical, has led to collaboration with her family in the shape of very personal research. This inquiry results in constant learning about her environment, family, and herself.

    She has exhibited in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Paris and Mexico City. (

    Liz Hernández's Conjuro para la sanación de nuestro futuro (A spell for the healing of our future) (2020)

    Liz Hernández' Conjuro para la sanación de nuestro futuro
    Liz Hernández' Conjuro para la sanación de nuestro futuro

    Conjuro para la sanación de nuestro futuro (A spell for the healing of our future) (2020), Hernández brings forth symbols and icons from milagros, or miracle charms, to summon a higher power for our community’s health and future and remind us that we are all connected.

    This is one of my favorite murals at SF MoMA's exhibition and the first work I saw by Liz Hernández.

    Liz Hernandez Painting Conjuro para la sanación de nuestro futuro
    Liz Hernandez Painting Conjuro para la sanación de nuestro futuro

    View more of Liz Hernández's art



    🎨 Taylor Smalls

    Taylor Smalls is a contemporary palette knife painter based in Oakland, California. Her work studies the kaleidoscopic depth of Black and Brown skin through the layering of highly pigmented color. It celebrates the endless nuances of melanated womxn by amplifying and exaggerating the underlying tones in colored skins that are often depicted dulled down or neglected, much like the people who inhabit them.

    Smalls has been working as a gynocentric painter since 2012, and continues to do so out of her west oakland studio.

    Taylor Small's Portfolio

    ZAŁATWIĆ - The use of bribes, charm, or connections to get something
    RASASVADA - The taste of bliss in the absence of all thoughts

    View of Taylor Small's Art


    PORTFOLIO — taylor smalls
    Selected original works by Taylor Smalls


    Additional Reads

    If you have other artists or links you'd like me to add, feel free to comment below or email me.