City and County of San FranciscoSan Francisco Arts Commission

May 18, 2011

Visual Arts Committee - May 18, 2011
Wednesday May 18, 2011
3 p.m.
25 Van Ness Avenue, Suite 70


Commissioners Present:
Lorraine Garcia-Nakata, JD Beltran, PJ Johnston, Dorka Keehn, Barbara Sklar.

Staff Present: Mary Chou, Allison Cummings, Carol Marie Daniels, Marcus Davies, Jill Manton, Jennifer Lovvorn, Judy Moran, Kate Patterson, Susan Pontious, Zoë Taleporos.

Note: All votes are unanimous unless recorded otherwise.

The meeting commenced at 3:07 p.m.

1. Consent Calendar

1. Motion for the Director of Cultural Affairs to approve the mural design for FAMILIA, a 150' x 15' painted mural by artist Victor Reyes. The mural is to be placed on the wall of San Francisco General Hospital's Community Health Network Building located at 2789 25th Street which faces Potrero del Sol Skate Park. This project is a collaboration between San Francisco General Hospital, the San Francisco Recreation and Parks Department and Buena Vista Elementary School Parent-Teacher Association.


2. Motion to approve the Construction Documents Phase deliverables (finalized lighting plan, site plan and refined sculpture designs for integration into architectural construction documents) by Cliff Garten for artwork for the General Hospital Acute Care Unit: Entry Drive Median.

Motion: Motion to approve consent calendar items.
Moved: Beltran/Sklar

2. Redesign of San Francisco Arts Commission Logo

Luis R. Cancel

Director of Cultural Affairs Luis R. Cancel informed the Commissioners that he had thought about redesigning the San Francisco Arts Commission’s (“SFAC”) logo for some time, and felt the event of the 80th anniversary was the perfect opportunity to do so. He reported that he was in conversation with the designers of Studio 1500 who offered to implement a complete rebranding of the agency, including a logo redesign, on a pro bono basis. Mr. Cancel noted that in any branding exercise, it is difficult to decide on a logo for an organization. He stated that with 15 Commissioners, it would be an impossible task to coordinate schedules for all to be involved in the process. Mr. Cancel proposed that the decision of the final logo be devolved to the Visual Arts Committee (“VAC”) with himself and Commissioner Chew acting as the primary liaisons with the design team.

Mr. Cancel introduced Partners and Creative Directors of Studio 1500, Julio Martínez and Eric Schmitt, and asked them to discuss their background. Mr. Martínez stated that he and Mr. Schmitt had previously been designers at Pentagram Design where they mostly worked on large projects. Mr. Martínez explained that he and Mr. Schmitt decided to create their own design company that would allow them to work with smaller agencies and continue to do freelance and pro bono work. Mr. Martínez expressed that Studio 1500 focuses primarily on brand development by building on what has already been established for their clients. He stated that he and Mr. Schmitt were particularly excited by the challenge of creating a new logo for the SFAC. Commissioner Johnston expressed concern that the SFAC rebranding would not receive adequate attention because it is a pro bono project for Studio 1500. Mr. Schmitt argued that having a small, efficient staff allows for greater personalized attention to all projects in their scope of work. Mr. Martínez stated that he understood Commissioner Johnston’s concern regarding pro bono work and explained that his design firm views it as an important contribution to the community. He added that Studio 1500 pursues pro bono projects for the creative stimulation as well as the opportunity for high visibility. Commissioner Sklar expressed concern that Studio 1500 was too small a company to take on the task of rebranding the SFAC, particularly in a new digital age. Mr. Schmitt replied that their company is based on a newer model where they utilize partner relationships to address technology needs not supplied within their team. Commissioner Beltran stated that the SFAC has become much more visible in the past few years and is happy to have such high level designers working on the rebranding efforts.

Commissioner Johnston stated that he was unclear about devolving the final logo design to the VAC and suggested that it be brought to the full Arts Commission as a committee report. Mr. Cancel replied that the devolving the final logo design to VAC would streamline the design process and ultimately result in a sharper, more impactful image. Commissioner Johnston affirmed he was in favor of Commissioner Chew and Mr. Cancel working with Studio 1500, but wished to discuss the process of adopting the new logo. Mr. Cancel stated that the logo design would have to be in a highly evolved state before it was presented to the Full Commission and suggested devolving the primary decision to the VAC. Commissioner Johnston noted that typically when an item is placed on the Full Commission agenda consent calendar, it is rarely severed and discussed. He stated that larger issues, such as adopting a new logo, should be presented to the Full Commission. Commissioner Johnston recommended that the motion be revised.


Motion: Motion to authorize the Director of Cultural Affairs, Luis R. Cancel and Commissioner Gregory Chew to work with Studio 1500 to redesign the San Francisco Arts Commission logo and make the recommendation for adoption to the full Arts Commission.
Moved: Beltran/Sklar


3. Bayview – Anna E. Waden Branch Library History Panels
Susan Pontious

Program Director Susan Pontious reported that the San Francisco Public Library Branch Library Improvement Program seeks design proposal approval for large-scale glass History Panels to be installed on the exterior façade of the Bayview – Anna E. Waden Branch Library. Ms. Pontious explained that the History Panels are being developed by a community project are not funded through the Art Enrichment Ordinance. She added that the Art Enrichment project associated with the Bayview Branch Library is being developed by artist Ron Saunders. Ms. Pontious introduced the Principal of THA Architecture Inc., Kacey Jurgens, to make a presentation detailing the History Panels proposal.

Ms. Jurgens noted that the Bayview Branch Library is located on the corner of Revere Avenue and 3rd Street in the Bayview neighborhood. She explained that the Bayview community is interested in having the neighborhood, its residents and its diverse history reflected in the new library architecture. To accommodate this request, Ms. Jurgens stated that the architecture team decided to incorporate glass panels containing historical neighborhood images. Ms. Jurgens explained that that one panel is devoted to the history of the Hunters Point shipyards, while others incorporate recognizable identifiers of the area such as the Bayview Opera House and various community gardens. She noted that while the color of the panels had not been decided on, she was hoping to incorporate sepia toned images against an off white background. Ms. Pontious recommended that VAC approve the conceptual direction of the panels and ask to see the final design presented at a later date.

Motion: Motion to approve the design proposal for the glass History Panels to be installed on the exterior façade of the Bayview Branch Library.
Moved: Beltran/Sklar


4. Old Business

Judy Moran requested an opinion from the VAC regarding the possibilities of VAC members attending the June 20th Civic Design Committee (“CDC”) meeting in order to discuss the integration of two artworks into the revised architectural design of the Central Subway, Union Square/Market Street (UMS) Station. For the June 20th CDC meeting, she reported that the CDC at their May 16th meeting asked the UMS Station architects to incorporate imagery of the proposed two artworks into the new UMS Station designs so the CDC could assess the impact of the architecture and the artwork on one another. Given the complex and extensive integration of the two large artworks into the concourse level and platform level of the UMS station, Moran was concerned that the roles of each of the two Commission subcommittees regarding approval of the artwork, as opposed to approval of the architecture, might need to be clarified at the CDC meeting.

Ms. Moran also mentioned that there was some discussion at the CDC meeting about relocating the entrance of the UMS Station from Geary Street to Stockton Street. Commissioner Johnston confirmed that a decision requiring the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency to relocate the station entrance is outside the purview of the CDC.

Commissioner Keehn assured staff and the other VAC members that the CDC is fully cognizant of the fact that the VAC is responsible for approving the artwork, not the CDC. Therefore, it was decided that VAC members would not attend the June 20th CDC meeting, other than Commissioner Keehn who serves on both committees.

5. Public Safety Building
Jennifer Lovvorn

Project Manager Jennifer Lovvorn reported that the final selection panels for three art opportunities at the Public Safety Building had taken place on May 10 and May 17, 2011, resulting in the following selected artists: Shimon Attie for the Police Memorial site, Paul Kos for the South Plaza site, and Merge Conceptual Designs for the Fire Station site. Ms. Lovvorn reminded the Commissioners that the artist selection was based on artist interviews and presentations of past work, rather than conceptual proposals.

Ms. Lovvorn described the work of Mr. Attie chosen for the Police Memorial site, explaining that his practice is primarily based on temporary memorials, which often take the form of installations in public space involving text and photographic imagery. The panel selected Mr. Attie because of his experience with community engagement on past memorials and his familiarity and sensitivity to the nature of this type of project. Ms. Lovvorn described the work of Mr. Kos chosen for the South Plaza site, and noted that the panel was particularly taken by Mr. Kos’s project, the Poetry /Sculpture Garden at 199 Fremont Street, San Francisco. Ms. Lovvorn noted that the ranking of the South Plaza finalists was extremely close, but there was consensus after the vote. Ms. Lovvorn described the work of Merge Conceptual Designs (Franka Diehnelt and Claudia Reisenberger), a team chosen for the Fire Station site. She stated that the team had experience creating an artwork for the Fire Department of San Jose. While the panel liked that these artists bring this experience to the project, the artwork for the Public Safety Building would be unique and specific to the needs of this site and stakeholders. Ms. Lovvorn noted that the artists were also closely ranked for the Fire Station site, but the panel had consensus. Commissioner Beltran, who served as a panelist for this project, commented that the selection panel was thoughtful and thorough.


Motion: Motion to approve the selection of the following artists as recommended by the Public Safety Building Artist Selection Panel for the public art projects associated with the Public Safety: Police Memorial – Shimon Attie; Fire Station – Merge Conceptual Design, and South Plaza – Paul Kos.
Moved: Beltran/ Sklar


Motion to authorize the Director of Cultural Affairs to enter into a contract with Shimon Attie, selected by the Public Safety Building Artist Selection Panel for design and engineering of an artwork for the Public Safety Building: Police Memorial in an amount not to exceed $74,000.
Moved: Beltran/Sklar


Motion to authorize the Director of Cultural Affairs to enter into a contract with Merge Conceptual Design, selected by the Public Safety Building Artist Selection Panel for design and engineering of an artwork for the Public Safety Building: Fire Station in an amount not to exceed $50,000.
Moved: Beltran/Sklar


Motion: Motion to authorize the Director of Cultural Affairs to enter into a contract with Paul Kos, selected by the Public Safety Building Artist Selection Panel for design and engineering of an artwork for the Public Safety Building: South Plaza in an amount not to exceed $95,000.
Moved: Beltran/Keehn

6. Hayes Valley Playground
Jennifer Lovvorn

Ms. Lovvorn reported that the artwork by Laurel True, Lily Pod, has been successfully installed at the Hayes Valley Playground, which is located at the intersection of Hayes and Buchanan streets. She presented images of the installed artwork, which is sited near the entrance to the playground. The mosaic sculpture includes salvaged materials such as asphalt, concrete, brick and terrazzo from the old facility with brightly colored hand-carved tiles and glass. The artwork has been inspected to ensure that there are no sharp edges.

Motion to approve the installation of an artwork, titled Lily Pod, by Laurel True, at Hayes Valley Playground.
Moved: Sklar/ Beltran

Motion: Motion to accept into the Civic Art Collection an artwork, titled Lily Pod, 2011 by Laurel True, commissioned for Hayes Valley Playground. Sphere shaped sculpture is approximately 36” high x 44” diameter and is covered with glass, tile and mixed media mosaic.
Moved: Beltran/Sklar

7. 2011-2012 Prequalified Artist Pool
Jennifer Lovvorn

Ms. Lovvorn reported on the Artist Selection Panel’s recommendations for the 2011-2012 Prequalified Artist Pool. She stated that out of 563 applications, the panel selected 121 artists for inclusion. The artist pool will be a resource for staff that will use it to cull candidates for new public art projects with budgets under $200,000. Ms. Lovvorn described the statistical composition of the 2011-2012 Prequalified Artist Pool: 55% San Francisco based artists; 75% Bay Area based artists (which includes San Francisco); and 12% out-of-state artists. She thanked Commissioner Keehn for her participation in the selection process.

Motion: Motion to approve the following artists for the 2011-2012 Prequalified Artist Pool: Jose Antonio Aguirre, Ryan Alexiev, Kathy Aoki, Michael Arcega, John Bankston, Suzy Barnard, Brian Barneclo, Eliza Barrios, Jerry Barrish, Mark Baugh-Sasaki, Linda Beaumont, Chris Bell, Laura Boles Faw, Val Britton, Elaine Buckholtz, Mona Caron, Susan Cervantes, Freddy Chandra, Colab Studio, Adriane Colburn, Randy Colosky, Ilana Crispi, Maria Cristalli, Colette Crutcher, Paz de la Cazalda, Roberto Delgado, Alicia Escott, Flaming Lotus Girls, Bill Fontana, Chris Fraser, Stephen Galloway, Bencia Gantner, Karen Ganz, Ann Gardner, Mariana Garibay, Cliff Garten, Carmen Lomas Garza, Nataly Gattegno, Tracy Ginsberg, Stephen Glassman, Brian Goggin, Doug Hall, Michael Hayden, Gerald Heffernon, Jenny Heishman, Oliver Hess, Cameron Hockenson, Robert Horner, Yumei Hou, Joyce Hsu, Suzanne Husky, Ed Inks, Cynthia Innis, Packard Jennings, Henrik Kam, Sheila Klein, Ching Ko, Paul Kos, Philip Krohn, Adam Kuby, Yoon Lee, Carrie Leeb, Hugh Leeman, Mary Lucking, Whitney Lynn, David Maisel, Sue Mark, Jet Martinez, John Melvin, Merge, Julio Cesar Morales, Anna Murch, Masayuki Nagase, Susan Narduli, Ali Naschke-Messing, Tony Natsoulas, Kelly Ording, Erik Otto, Erin Palmer, Jackson Patterson, Lisa Levine and Peter Tonningsen, Eric Powell, Ann Preston, Konstantin Prishep, Christopher Puzio, Rebar Group, Peter Richards, Ricardo Richey, Riza A+D, Lordy Rodriguez, Leah Rosenberg, Sterling Ruby, Ruben Rude, Norie Sato, Ron Moultrie Saunders, Donna Schumacher, Shan Shan Sheng, Bonnie Ora Sherk, Leslie Shows, Buster Simpson, Emanuela Sintamarian, Savanna Snow, Chris Sollars, Charles Sowers, Miriam Stahl, Eric Staller, Jennifer Starkweather, Roger Stoller, Stephanie Syjuco, Kana Tanaka, Joe Thurston, Cynthia Tom, T.W Five, Paul Tzanetopoulos, Camille Utterback, Kerry Vander Meer, Catherine Wagner, Megan Wilson and Jody Zellen.
Moved: Beltran/ Sklar

8. Palega Recreation Center
Jennifer Lovvorn

Ms. Lovvorn presented the revised design and budget by Kelly Ording for the Design Development Phase of the Palega Recreation Center Interior Artwork Project. Ms. Lovvorn stated that the design revisions address the Artist Selection Panel’s prior recommendation that Ms. Ording incorporate brighter colors and revise her composition to ensure that key elements are visible from the street through the window archways. Ms. Lovvorn reminded Commissioners that the Recreation and Park Department provided additional funding for this project to increase the size of the mural to be almost floor to ceiling and wall to wall.

Motion: Motion to approve the Design Development Phase deliverables (mosaic mural design modified to fit within the building design and revised budget) by Kelly Ording for an interior artwork for the Palega Recreation Center.
Moved: Beltran/Keehn

9. SOMA West Skateboard Park

Mary Chou

Project Manager Mary Chou presented the three finalists and one alternate recommended by the Artist Selection Panel for the art opportunity at SOMA West Skateboard Park. Ms. Chou explained that the Skateboard Park is a Department of Public Works (“DPW”) project that will consist of a skating area under the Central Freeway. Ms. Chou reported that from conversations with the local community, SFAC staff and DPW, it was determined that the artwork should be located on the freeway support columns. It was also determined that the artwork should be bold, graphic, and able to be read from a distance. Ms. Chou presented the work of finalist Michael Arcega, stating that the panel liked his thoughtful use of materials. Ms. Chou presented the work of finalist Yoon Lee who was selected by the panel for her ability to graphically depict motion. Ms. Chou presented finalist Jovi Schnell who was selected for her bold color and imagery as well as her use of symbols. Ms. Chou then presented the alternate finalist, Ricardo Richey whose work incorporates strong color and geometric forms.

Motion: Motion to approve the Artist Selection Panel’s recommendation of the following artists as finalists for the SOMA West Skateboard Park art opportunity: Michael Arcega, Yoon Lee and Jovi Schnell with Ricardo Richey as an alternate and to authorize the payment of an honorarium not to exceed $500 to each finalist to develop preliminary artwork proposals.
Moved: Beltran/ Keehn

10. Chinese Recreation Center
Mary Chou
Staff Report

Ms. Chou presented Shan Shan Sheng’s revised artwork design and final text for the Chinese Recreation Center. Ms. Chou reminded the Commissioners that they had previously approved the artist’s design deliverables but had requested a review of her text. Ms. Chou presented an English translation of Ms. Sheng’s text that includes Chinese poetry from the Song and Tang dynasties and characters that describe the Chinese American experience. Ms. Chou noted that Ms. Sheng has altered the placement of the strands to enhance the overall design. In addition to approval of the final text, Ms. Chou requested the approval of this change.


Motion: Motion to approve revised design and final text for Shan Shan Sheng’s artwork for the interior of the Chinese Recreation Center.
Moved: Beltran/Keehn

11. Cabrillo Clubhouse
Susan Pontious

Ms. Pontious reported that the Artist Selection Panel for the Cabrillo Clubhouse will take place at the end of June or early July and requested the participation of a Commissioner. Both Commissioners Beltran and Keehn volunteered. Ms. Pontious commented that she is considering the use of a chain link fence material produced in the Netherlands for this particular project. Ms. Pontious noted that the price of the material would allow an artist to create a design and stay within the project budget.

12. Public Utilities Commission
Susan Pontious

Ms. Pontious presented an update on the new Memorandum of Understanding (“MOU”) with the Public Utilities Commission (“PUC”). Ms. Pontious reported that she and Mr. Cancel and Ms. Manton had recently attended a meeting with PUC staff and both department attorneys. The meeting determined that PUC is able to fund community based projects with Art Enrichment funds and is primarily interested in working with the SFAC’s Community Art and Education (“CAE”) program. Ms. Pontious noted that she was able to deter the PUC from establishing fixed public art percentages in their MOU, and hopes to work with CAE on joint projects. She expressed her wish to develop a program that would meet the goals of the PUC, but would not exclude public art opportunities. Commissioner Keehn thought that based on a later conversation with Juliet Ellis, the PUC was open to public art commissions and was willing to have those projects related to community. She stated that it appeared that the PUC had little interest in administering the public art process, but hoped that the resulting projects were community focused. Commissioner Keehn expressed belief in the flexibility in the types of projects that could be produced. She stated that it was the responsibility of the SFAC to communicate the various ways that public art may be involved in the PUC’s overall plan. Ms. Pontious stated that she would like to present some of the Public Art Program’s smaller budget projects that directly engage and reflect specific communities. Commissioner Johnston stated that it was also important to communicate the community benefit of having large scale, significant, destination public art projects in San Francisco. Ms. Pontious commented that she would work with SFAC staff to craft a proposal for how the PUC’s public art program could be conducted. Commissioner Keehn noted that the PUC had invited her to attend their Commission meeting in June and suggested more interaction between SFAC and PUC staff in general. Both Commissioners Johnston and Keehn noted the importance of defining the SFAC’s role in PUC public art projects within the MOU.

13. Collections
Allison Cummings

A. Report on the dispensation of artwork, Flying Dragon-Snake-Monkey-Bird, by Johanna Poethig at Boeddekker Park.

Project Manager Carol Marie Daniels presented the work Flying Dragon-Snake-Monkey-Bird by Johanna Poethig, currently installed at the recreation center at Boeddekker Park. Ms. Daniels explained that the recreation center is going to be demolished and rebuilt, and she is currently working with Ms. Poethig to relocate her artwork. Ms. Daniels noted that the new recreation center will not have enough wall space to accommodate Ms. Poethig’s artwork. Because of this, there may be a possibility of altering the artwork to fit within the given space. Ms. Daniels explained that she discussed the possibility of moving Ms. Poethig’s work to the façade of a nearby private building that would allow the work to remain fully intact. She mentioned that the current owner of the building has informally expressed interest. However, SFAC staff did not see this relocation as an optimal solution since the work would no longer exist on City property. Ms. Daniels described another possible option to relocate the artwork to the Hamilton Recreation Center. She stated that the walls opposite the swimming pool could accommodate the height of the artwork, but would require some alteration of its length. Ms. Daniels informed the Commissioners that the final decision on the artwork relocation would be presented to the VAC for approval at a later time. Commissioner Johnston suggested de-accessioning the artwork to eliminate the need for alterations and allow the artist to reinstall in a location of her choice. Ms. Daniels confirmed she would explore that possibility with Ms. Poethig.

B. Report on conservation of Peter Voulkos sculpture, Untitled.

Senior Registrar Allison Cummings reported that the conservation of Untitled by Peter Voulkos located at 850 Bryant Street has been completed. Ms. Cummings displayed images of the sculpture as it originally appeared in 1971, a recent image depicting the work before the restoration, and an image demonstrating the work post-conservation. Ms. Cummings noted that previous records indicate the sculpture was made entirely of bronze, but the work is actually comprised of many materials including brass and steel. Ms. Cummings explained that the patina on the various materials had aged in different ways, resulting in a non-uniform surface and color. She noted that through the funds raised by ArtCare and the efforts of Ruth Braunstein, the work received its first ever total repatinization. Ms. Cummings explained that she worked with Artworks Foundry who was able to match the sculpture’s materials and created a consistent color throughout the work.

C. Discussion of next steps with de-accessioning of Masquerade in Black by Jay DeFeo.

Ms. Pontious recounted the decision to de-accession Masquerade in Black by Jay DeFeo, stating that it was a difficult painting to install in public. Ms. Pontious noted that the painting is extremely large and a public display would create the need to encase it in plexi. Ms. Pontious stated that while advancements have been made in anti-glare plexi materials, the painting has a dark color palette and encasing the work would make it difficult to see due to light reflections. Ms. Pontious explained that the SFAC had voted to sell the work to a local museum, but none have wanted to make the purchase. She commented that the Commission would need to determine whether or not they wanted to consider a private sale. Discussion ensued as to whether or not the SFAC should continue to hold the painting in the possibility that an appropriate installation site may eventually be found.

D. Return of stolen Mark Adams tapestry, Pond in Golden Gate Park, by the San Francisco Police Department.

Ms. Cummings presented a tapestry work by Mark Adams, Pond in Golden Gate Park, which was stolen from the Moscone Center in 2000. Ms. Cummings stated that at that time a police report was filed, the work was rewoven and reinstalled, but the original was never found. She stated that earlier this year, the rewoven work was moved to the San Francisco International Airport Terminal 2. Ms. Cummings reported that she was contacted at the end of February 2011 by Mr. Adam’s estate informing her that someone was selling a tapestry closely resembling the stolen Pond in Golden Gate Park. Ms. Cummings commented that she and Ms. Pontious immediately alerted the San Francisco Police Department (“SFPD”). Ms. Cummings noted that the woman selling the tapestry had advertised it on Craigslist, and after a Police sting operation, the woman was arrested and the tapestry impounded. Ms. Cummings reported that unfortunately the District Attorney opted not to press charges and the woman was released from custody. The tapestry was taken into the possession of the SFPD and Ms. Cummings identified the work as the original. Ms. Cummings stated that she was currently in conversation with the insurance company to determine the ownership rights.

14. New Business

15. Adjournment

The meeting adjourned at 5:15 p.m.

ZT 5/18/11



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