San Jose Museum of Art: In my generation of art students, Robert Henri’s “The Art Spirit,” was required reading. Henri was a leading member of the Ashcan School and one of the most influential artists and teachers in American art of the early 20th century. Henri’s philosophical and practical musings were collected by former pupil Margery Ryerson and published as The Art Spirit (1923), a book that remained in print for several decades. The spirit of his ideas are still important to artists today: “Paint what you feel. Paint what you see. Paint what is real to you.” Robert Henri, The Art
A dozen of Henri’s oil paintings from his 1914 visit to California are on display at the San Jose Museum of Art. Portraits of everyday working people, including Indians, African Americans and newly arrived immigrants from China and Mexico exhibit Henri’s progressive (for the time) spirit and appreciation for “the little people.”
“Robert Henri’s California Portraits: Realism, Race and Region, 1914-1925” runs through Jan. 18 and gives an artist’s view of an anti-immigrant period in California history marked by exclusionary laws and discriminatory legislation. The pieces came to San Jose from the Laguna Art Museum.
Henri considered himself a progressive and celebrated California’s increasing diversity but modern eyes may see differently. Pretty Chinese girls and an almost stock cartoon portrait of a young African-American boy spell racist to us today; but when looking at his art, as with any artist, it’s important to consider the time and place as well as the the artist’s intent. “There is only one reason for art in America, and that is that the people of America learn the means of expressing themselves in their own time, and their own land.” Robert Henri.
Robert Henri’s California Portraits: Realism, Race and Region, 1914-1925: 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday-Sunday, until 8 p.m. third Thursdays. Through Jan. 18. $5-$8; 6 and under free. San Jose Museum of Art, 110 S. Market St. www.sanjosemuseumofart.org. More images at: http://cheznamastenancy.blogspot.com/
Pin-Up Show at Dickerman Prints: For one night only, Dickerman Prints hosts an audience participatory photo show. Those who attend are encouraged to bring their favorite prints and pin them the wall. 50% of sales will benefit the SF non-profit “Sixth Street Photography Workshop” which brings photography to the residents of SF’s hotels and shelters on the Sixth Street corridor. The other 50% of sales will go to the photographer.
How it works: Bring a favorite print (or prints under 16″x20″), and Dickerman will provide the magnetic pins for you to hang them with. Price your photo(s) accordingly. Browse others’ works on display while enjoying a complimentary glass of wine or a cold beer and mingle with local photographers. Buy a print from another photographer, if you wish. Your money will help to support “6th St Photography Workshop” which brings the art of photography to the homeless and transient residents living in the 6th St corridor. A great evening socializing with other Bay Area photographers and helping to support a wonderful local organization! Plus, maybe you’ll sell a print or two!
There is no cost to participate, and all are welcome.
Viewers will also choose a photo to win a “Viewer’s Choice” printing package prize worth $200 redeemable at Dickerman Prints. RSVP at Facebook. One night only Friday, Sept 26th (6 – 9 p.m.) 1141 Howard St.
Web on the Wall: Robert Koch Gallery presents a group show of six artists — Josh Begley, Douglas Coupland, Doug Rickard, Joachim Schmid, Penelope Umbrico and Michael Wolf— who source images from the Internet. Objects on view include images of prisons and military bases, images captured from Google Street View and portraits of 12 women who all have received the Nobel Prize for literature. Through Nov. 15. 11 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday. Robert Koch Gallery, 49 Geary St., S.F. (415) 421-0122. www.kochgallery.com.
Moulin Studios and the 1939-40 Golden Gate International Exposition. As the official photographer of the 1939-40 Golden Gate International Exposition, Gabriel Moulin had access to the newly constructed Treasure Island fair site that allowed him to work in an unfettered manner throughout the fair, and even before it
This lecture presents some of the most iconic work from Moulin’s 100,000+ piece archive, which also includes photographs of historically, politically, and culturally significant events in the United States and abroad. The speaker, Jean E. Moulin, is curator of the Moulin Studio Archive for over 35 years and the wife of Moulin’s grandson, Tom, who worked in the family studio and in the tradition of his grandfather, his father Raymond, and his uncle Irving. The lecture series, entitled “Little Island, Big Ideas” will continue monthly on Treasure Island.
Official Photographer of the Golden Gate International Exposition, 1939-40
Free Lecture – Building One, Treasure Island
10:30 a.m. – Saturday, September 27, 2014