Sunday, January 02, 2011

Great Art hidden in plain site in San Francisco

*All the following images are from google image search, I was visiting the Rincon annex murals the other day, it struck me that a lot of people might not know about it. Each city offers a lot of art, which is stuck there, it will never leave, perhaps the locals take for granted, because to visit is free and they have been around for decades. Here are 3 such examples;

1 - the Frank Brangwyn murals in herbst theatre.

In my opinion Frank brangwyn is the greatest muralist who has ever been, so if you live in San Francisco you should feel lucky that some of his masterpieces are located here.

Herbst theatre is a smallish theatre located on van ness st across from city hall. It is worth seeing any show here just to glimpse the 8 murals frank brangwyn painted in 1915. these painting have really found a home here, even though they were originally painted for something else.

Brangwyn was born in Belgium but is known as being a British mural painter.

Dean cornwell studied with brangwyn for a bit.

there are a total of 8 murals, 4 on each wall each set depicting the classic 4 elements, earth, air, fire and water.

2- Rincon annex murals

These murals are great, and it is free to walk in!

There are 27 murals, they are painted by a russian immigrant named anton refreiger in 1940 as one of the last depression era public works murals. A sort of golden age where the american government became a great patron of the arts through things like the WPA.

San Francisco has several WPA era murals, but these are in my opinion the finest.

3- Palace hotel - Pied Piper bar

The palace hotel is on market street. It is old and beautiful.

this is the maxfield parrish painting in the bar.

This painting is a real beauty. Since Parrish is such a forgotten American great, this painting is the only example of his work I have ever seen.

My mother took me here when I was ten years old to look at the painting, but she was asked to leave because children are not allowed in bars.

I hope this infromation leads some people to view these great works of art for the first time. happy new year and buy my book!