Saturday, November 6, 2010

Museum News and Views, Saturday Edition

What a week! An election, a new governor and no more Meg Newman (for now),  more Republicans for Obama to deal with, the Giants win the World Series and MUNI/BART go down for a massive fail on Wednesday. But your trusty art reviewer and viewer struggled onwards (outwards? face downwards but hopefully not in the gutter!)

 "Sam" by Julie Michelle. Part of the I Live Here show at SOMArts.

I made it to Julie's show which was even better than I hoped. The new moon was in Scorpio on opening night, which was appropriate for this project as it deals with the citizens of SF, their pasts, their presents, their hopes and dreams, their fears, their loves, their problems - the where I came from, where am I now and where am I going?

Julie started it when she was laid off, certainly a life changing event and one that is presided over by Scorpio, ruled as it is by Pluto, the god of the underworld and the dark places of the soul where creativity is born. But Scorpio is also the sign of renewal and this show will give you a real sense of the amazing resilience of so many people here. Their stories and their faces are mesmerizing.

Go and see the images, read the stories, laugh, cry, sigh, admire the poetry and love the city that draws so many different people from so many different parts of the Globe. Julie photographs them and lets them tell their own stories but it is her talent and compassion that bring forth such inspired responses. Most people freeze in front of a camera and stumble over their own biographies; Julie doesn't judge, doesn't edit but asks questions from the heart. People open up to her in an amazing way and the results of that are on the wall for all to share.

" ...."And how could you not read a story that opens: "Three big things happened to me when I moved to San Francisco: I found myself; I met the love of my life; and I got breast cancer." (If you can make it to the end of Sonia's story without both crying and laughing, you're a far stronger person than I am.)"  Keith Laidaw,

correction on the link for Julie Michelle's show, "I Live here."

Her show of the denizens of SF is paired with Chris Rusak's velvet/shinny black surfaces, text based paintings. Using text, Rusak expands the vision of the I Live Here:SF project by manipulating participants’ stories to demonstrate the inner structure of the city’s collective experience. His printmaking is a metaphor for the story-collecting process of photography.

SOMArts: 7th and Brannan -

Museum laugh of the week: What picture is more gay! Eakins or Cadmus? Is! Is not! The debate rages (?) on and those involved get their knickers in a twist (as it were).

Thomas Eakins. The Wrestlers (LACMA) 

"Curators at LACMA and the Columbus Museum of Art are wrestling over The Wrestlers (above). As you may know, the CMA deaccessioned Thomas Eakins’ The Wrestlers in 2005, allowing LACMA to buy it the following year. Earlier this year LACMA curator Ilene Fort published a scholarly article in the American Quarterly suggesting—as an aside—that Midwest homophobia might have prompted the sale of the Eakins masterpiece. Now CMA curator Melissa Wolfe begs to differ, reports Eric Lyttle in The Other Paper, a Columbus weekly. The Eakins sale proceeds went to buy the Philip and Suzanne Schiller collection of American modernism, which, according to Wolfe, “has an extremely homoerotic component to it—more so than the Eakins work.” After that, the gloves were off." ....

“Anyone who’s really a scholar working in this content knows (Fort’s hypothesis) is an invalid comment. I didn’t think anyone would take it seriously.” —Melisse Wolfe, CMA

“I think everyone in Columbus is overreacting.” —Ilene Fort, LACMA

Wolfe faults Fort’s scholarship as “sloppy” and detects “a West Coast stereotype of the Midwest that is erroneous, tired and worn out.”........more at....

A new face at SF MOMA: SFMOMA Appoints Robert W. Lasher as New Deputy Museum Director, External Relations 

The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) announced the appointment of Robert W. Lasher as the museum's deputy director, external relations, a newly created position. Starting on November 1, 2010, Lasher will supervise a new External Relations division, overseeing the museum's Development Department and Marketing and Communications Department. He joins SFMOMA's two current deputy museum directors, of curatorial affairs and of administration and finance, serving under Director Neal Benezra on the museum's senior leadership team.

Free Admission to the Legion of Honor on Veteran's Day

In honor of all of those who have served the country, the Legion of Honor offers free admission on Veterans Day to all veterans and active military personnel with military I.D.

On November 11, 1924, Adolph and Alma Spreckels gave the California Palace of the Legion of Honor to the people of San Francisco in honor of the California men who died in World War I. Eighty-six years later, the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco continues to honor veterans with unique public programs.

Opening Tuesday, November 9th: Student Exhibit at SFSU:

Juried by their peers, this 21st annual exhibition features students’ latest work in video, photography, textiles, metal arts, ceramics, sculpture, printmaking and more. The jury also selects works from the University’s collection of watercolor and oil paintings by the late Leo D. Stillwell Jr.

Reception: Tuesday, Nov. 9, 4–6 p.m.
Gallery hours: Wednesdays–Saturdays, 11 a.m.–4 p.m.
(Note: closed for Thanksgiving break Nov. 24–27)

1 comment:

scott davidson said...

I pondered to myself recently what were the most important things in my life. The answer seems to be clear that art was up there in importance. Why? Frankly, I don't really know. May be someone here can enlighten me?
As was my wont when I have some free time, I browsed the marvelous site,, where they keep thousands of digital images for customers to select to have printed into handsome canvas prints for their homes.
This image jumped out to jolt my reveries: Still life with bread, by the Cubist Georges Braque. Is art like this picture, as essential as bread and water, or should I say bread and wine?