Friday, May 26, 2017

Hodgepodge 209/365 - SFMOMA

We went up to San Francisco for the afternoon, to see the SFMOMA special exhibit on Henri Matisse and Richard Diebenkorn, which closes on Monday. Last chance!

It was a great exhibit, both to see the span of Diebenkorn's works over the course of his career—from abstract expressionism (not my favorite style, in anyone's hands, though Diebenkorn's use of paint and color did at least make me look) into figuration into his divinely light-filled abstract Ocean Park series—and to compare his work to that of one of his greatest influences, Matisse.

No photos allowed, so: no photos. Though I do find a few here by googling, of course.

Urbana #5 (Beach Town) (1953)
Cityscape #1 (1963)
Coffee (1959)
Ocean Park #79 (1975)

But I did take some pictures of the newly renovated and expanded (by 170,000 square feet!) building: it's now seven floors of big, beautiful galleries, a couple of cafes, several outdoor sculpture gardens. Just spectacular. And I took a few photos of only a few of the works that gave me especial pleasure as well. (Missing are Anselm Kiefer, Chuck Close, Emmet Kelly, Agnes Martin, oh, and a whole bunch of other artists whom I enjoy and who are so beautifully featured in these new roomy spaces. Such a treat!)

The atrium, the centerpiece of the old SFMOMA, is now
a bit sidelined—at one edge of the expanded museum—
but I still love it
Balcony onto the frontside of the museum;
in foreground: Dan Graham, Double Cylinder (The Kiss) (1994)
The fifth-floor sculpture garden with a view
of the new building's backside
(architect: Snøhetta)
Alexander Calder, Untitled (ca. 1940)
Alexander Calder, Big Crinkly (1979)—with the
fabulous fern-studded living wall as backdrop
Sol LeWitt, Wall Drawing 1247 (August 2007)
Dan Flavin, untitled (in honor of Leo at the 30th
anniversary of his gallery)
Richard Serra, Gutter Corner Splash: Night Shift (1969/1995)
Rex Ray, Untitled #107 (2013)
Self-portrait in Brancusi
(Antonin Brancusi, La Négresse blonde, 1926)

There's a wonderful photography section, which we breezed through without looking too closely, but which I'd like to return to, especially to see a show called "Good 70s" featuring the 1970s work of conceptual artist and photographer Mike Mandel. Part of what we did see today was a huge array of baseball trading cards (on top), with, below, made-up trading cards featuring photographers like Ansel Adams and Imogen Cunningham striking baseball poses, together with quotes (e.g., "Photography is more interesting than baseball"). It's called the "Baseball-Photographer Trading Cards" (1975) and is brilliant.

We will be going back. I loved SFMOMA in its old iteration, but I absolutely adore it now. The works really get the space they need.

1 comment:

  1. Love the concept of baseball-photographer trading cards. And, sadly, when I saw the title, "Coffee," I thought of, "Covfefe." Ugh.