The ten-year drought in California is over. Fountains are flowing again. Cherry blossoms and daffodils are in bloom in the Park. I have come out of hibernation and the synapses are sparking. And Spring is in the air!
Unlike the East Coast, we are experiencing beautiful weather in San Francisco. Germans often wish friends and family “A Beautiful Weekend”, and indeed we celebrated one this week.
Can you walk to a museum within a mile where you live? Indeed, we are fortunate enough to have both the DeYoung Museum and the Academy of Sciences within a stone’s throw of home. We finally took advantage of the convenience and did a twofer in one day to use our memberships in both. For visitors to San Francisco, you can easily conquer these in one fell swoop as they are opposite each other in Golden Gate Park. In the tower at the top of the DeYoung (a Herzog and DeMeuron masterpiece), you can grab a killer view of San Francisco within Golden Gate Park (see images shown below) from the tower (see header image above of tower).
The annual “Bouquets to Art” at the DeYoung allows floral designers to interpret a famous painting or exhibit. The scent of the flowers enhance the experience. A few of my favorites are shown here. Flowers are scattered throughout the museum, with two or three displays in each gallery. The floral displays coerce you into a lively dialog with the paintings.
The nearby Academy of Sciences is a recently renovated, Platinum LEED building. That means it is a sustainable, net-zero energy building. We had neglected this natural history museum and aquarium until recently, after I saw the ones in New York and Berlin. The albino crocodile, Earthquake exhibit, Butterfly Terrarium (in a structure that imitates the Reichstag!) and full-scale skeleton of a blue whale are notable. And, in true San Francisco style, the Terrace Cafe had a decent menu with our choices here (Fish Tacos and Skirt Steak with Arugula Salad).
The annual CAAM (Center for Asian American Media) Festival, held in San Francisco over the past couple of weeks, closes this weekend. The “Guangzhou Dream Factory”, was an evocative documentary about African entrepreneurs in China, and a series of seven short films showcased emerging filmmakers. Here’s a couple of shots from the new trendy “Uptown” neighborhood of Oakland where the New Parkway Cinema is located, and the Q&A with the directors and actors of the film shorts.
My midterm art review for figure drawing earlier this week helped me to organize and present what I have produced in class. Here is a spectrum of work along with others’ work. See if you can detect my “style” vs. others’ contributions!
At the beginning of the week, the Acting Chancellor of City College of San Francisco presented plans for the Fort Mason campus, where I attend art classes. Unfortunately, the lease is up for renewal. Options were presented to a vocal group of teachers, students and representatives of the arts in San Francisco. It was a contentious meeting. Despite the re-accreditation and free tuition for San Francisco residents next year, the budget and planning process is very unclear and dubious.
You’ll soon see the launch of the Fourth Annual “Travels with Myself and Others” World Trip! Stay tuned and follow along “real time” during the posts next month! You can check out the itinerary of places to be visited on the tab at the top for “World Tour 2017 (or in the series of bars on the upper right on a mobile device). Join me and and don’t forget to send your comments!