Posts in Back Page

Spirited posts and ramblings by contributors and staff; odds and ends

Missed Connection: The Stairwell

04.10.2013  |  By
Filed under: Back Page

George Bolling: Invisible is the Medium

03.29.2013  |  By
Filed under: Back Page, Conversations

Watching the mesmerizing coverage of the Mars Rover landing this summer, I was reminded of video artist George Bolling’s 1974 pioneering, real-time broadcast event Jupiter Flyby which attracted over 25,000 visitors to the Exploratorium in San Francisco between November 26 and December 2 of that year. During the event, Bolling was stationed at NAS... More

Carlos Villa 1936–2013

03.24.2013  |  By
Filed under: Back Page, Essay

Nobody wants to get that call, but at 3:41 am this morning I got it. Carlos Villa had passed away. I didn’t want to write an obituary, and so I am not mentioning his numerous awards and such – so this is not an obituary – OK?

It’s just that I had worked with him at the San Francisco Art Institute and saw how he had been a role model and father figure for so many students in the Bay Area and not saying something about that doesn’t seem right.

Also – it’s worth noting that while a cast of colorful charact... More

Receipt of Delivery: Jo Hanson – Snails and Street Sweeping

03.08.2013  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.

“Crawling on my belly in the garden, I photographed snails at their eye level and sometimes so close up the camera bumped into the snail. These images were often of exquisite beauty. I proje... More

Order To Go at SFMOMA

03.01.2013  |  By
Filed under: Back Page


A reply to another unusual inquiry received by SFMOMA 2/18/13:

Dear Mary Jane,

We are so happy you thought of SFMOMA to fulfill your salad needs for your wife’s birthday. I am hoping to clarify a few things to be sure we have your order together, as 3pm quickly approaches.

When you say chicken grilled with Caesar salad, do you want the chicken gri... More

Receipt of Delivery: Funk Lessons with Adrian Piper

02.22.2013  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.

Adrian Piper staged a number of collaborative performance events entitled Funk Lessons (1982–84) in which participants were invited to get down and party together. In the process of learning to discuss, dance, and listen to funk music, the events opened up individual awareness of the complex personal associations of this popular dance form with racial and cultural boundaries. The experie... More

Receipt of Delivery: Edmund Shea’s Memorial Tribute to Diane Arbus

02.15.2013  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.

“Probably nobody knows what Diane Arbus as a person was all about. As a photographer, some people admired her work, others reviled it and some simply ignored it. Rarely, if ever, have I seen such deification of a personality and that person’s work as has followed Diane Arbus’ suicide. [...] It was with singular visceral reaction that I received Edmund Shea’s announcement of... More

Receipt of Delivery: BlackMan’s Art Gallery

02.08.2013  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.

“Owner of the gallery and sponsor of the happening is W.O. Thomas Jr., ex-cable car gripman and self-taught painter and sculptor. He spent two years preparing the event, having completely re... More

Receipt of Delivery: Monte Cazazza’s Dirt Affectation

02.01.2013  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera. More on the artist and industrial music pioneer Monte Cazazza here and here.

More

Missed Connection: 2nd Floor

01.28.2013  |  By
Filed under: Back Page

Receipt of Delivery: Windows by Eleanor Coppola

01.25.2013  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.

Poster text: “Eleanor Coppola has designated a number of windows in all parts of San Francisco as visual landmarks. Her purpose in this project is to bring to the attention of the whole comm... More

Receipt of Delivery: New MOMA, Oakland

01.10.2013  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.

“The New Museum of Modern Art brought some healthy fresh air to the Bay Area gallery scene for two short years in the early 1970s [1971–73]. A collective of nearly 20 artists put the museu... More

Receipt of Delivery: Violations – Dennis Oppenheim

01.04.2013  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.

More

Diary of a Crazy Artist: My Gross New Year in Paris

12.31.2012  |  By

For quite a few years I was lucky enough to have some friends living in Paris. Most of them were going to École des Beaux-Arts for photography. They would let me come stay with them for a week or two and we would go out to clubs, drink, smoke cigarettes, and spend half the day making and then eating breakfast in our underwear. But on one trip I ex... More

Receipt of Delivery: Art in Space Launch ’84

12.29.2012  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.

“Through the miracle of science, the Art in Space Center has built a state-of-the-art rocket containing all the vital technology for a successful liftoff into the outer limits of our galaxy.... More

Days Merry; Nights Bright

12.24.2012  |  By
Filed under: 151 3rd, Back Page

Happy Holidays from all of us at Open Space — see you in the New Year!

More

Receipt of Delivery: The Six

12.21.2012  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.

“The Six Gallery was established in September 1954 with the intention that there might exist in the San Francisco area some outlet for the works of local artists who had heretofore been met with varying degrees of indifference, disinterest, or hostility by the larger commercial galleries and museums of art, where the concern seems to lie less with local, contemporary artists, than with o... More

Receipt of Delivery: Ellen Zweig’s She Travelled for the Landscape (Giant Camera)

12.15.2012  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.

“This piece was a long time ago, but was at a special time for me, a good time for my work. San Francisco was the breeding ground, the creative space, in which I could dream of Victorian lad... More

Receipt of Delivery: Mark Thompson and the Honeybees

12.08.2012  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.

“I began tending honeybees as preparation for a performance/film project called Immersion [1973–76]. At the time the 16mm film was a natural extension of my sculptural site investigations with moths, wild bees, living systems, harvesting and decay cycles, weathering and erosion processes — all the projects in one way or another involving a human intervention, gesture, or residual tra... More

Receipt of Delivery: Patricia Tavenner – Mail Queen

11.30.2012  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.

Today let us bow to the Mail Queen, aka Patricia Tavenner,and her long reign as a contributor to and curator within the global network of mail art and artists’ stamps. The Oakland-based artist adopted this nom de plume around the time that she began teaching courses on the “hidden” history of women artists. In 1972 she cofounded the Northern California Women’s Caucu... More

Receipt of Delivery: No Nothing Cinema

11.24.2012  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.

“A long time ago (or so it seems), people made films just for the fun of it. Then someone got the idea that film had to hurt. No pain, no gain. Somehow film showcases decided they were right. Today people still make films just for the fun of it. And we show them at the No Nothing Cinema.” — Dean Snider, 1983, co-founder, No Nothing Cinema (1982-1997, now New Nothing Cinema)

 

T... More

Happy Thanksgiving! Keyword: ‘pie’

11.22.2012  |  By
Filed under: 151 3rd, Back Page

In a search for something pleasing from the museum’s collection to share with you all today, I typed “pie” into ArtScope. And what a nice return on my effort: 141 works came up. That’s because PIE returns Pierre, and Pierrot, and pier, and pierce; along with photocopies and poppies, and more. I chose a handful of favorites I hadn’t fallen in love with before:

More

Receipt of Delivery: Sound Series I

11.09.2012  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.

More

Receipt of Delivery: Lew Thomas – 8 x 10

11.03.2012  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.

“The event resulted in a collaborative network that exceeded the boundaries of a single institution and its authority.” —Lew Thomas on 8 x 10, 1975

More

“It’s Hideous and It’s Eloquent” (A Bucket of Blood)

10.31.2012  |  By
Filed under: Back Page

Juliet Clark

“I will talk to you of art, for there is nothing else to talk about.”
—Maxwell H. Brock (Julian Burton) in A Bucket of Blood

California, 1959: in an apartment on San Francisco’s Fillmore Street, Jay DeFeo, a central figure in the city’s artistic bohemia, labors over a mammoth monochromatic painting called Deathrose. Meanwhile... More

Receipt of Delivery: Samore Gallery

10.26.2012  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.

“Several intentions were announced in early press releases, but one of the most important functions of the gallery was to serve as a (store)front for my ‘guerilla art’ activities, for which the imprimatur of the gallery structure confers legitimacy and lays down a smokescreen … A basic philosophy of the Samore Gallery has always been subversion, sabotage, and upheaval.”

... More

Receipt of Delivery: A.R.E. Inc. (1980-84)

10.19.2012  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.

The name A.R.E. was open to interpretation, encouraged in fact by a chalkboard at the stairs. This was apt for a space that was interested in the present moment, resistant to being fixed and going on the path toward institutionalization taken by the first wave of alternative spaces in the 1970s. Artists for Revolution in the Eighties is how A.R.E. was best known and listed on the group cal... More

Diary of a Crazy Artist: Our Binders Are Full of Women

10.17.2012  |  By

The presidential debate wasn’t even half way over when the Facebook page for “We have women in binders” reached 80,000 likes. Just as quickly, countless silly images could be seen on Facebook, Tumblr, Pinterest, and on blogs across the political spectrum. In case you missed it, here are a few of them.

More

Receipt of Delivery: Wally Hedrick’s S. F. 10th Anniversary

10.13.2012  |  By

Receipt of Delivery is a weekly series featuring Bay Area exhibition mailers selected from the SFMOMA Research Library’s collection of artists’ ephemera.

More