FAMSF Blog

A Message from the President

As an extensive national search to find a new director draws to a close, we look forward to making a public announcement soon. As we prepare to embark on the next chapter of our long history it’s a good time to reflect on the amazing success we’ve experienced over the past several years.

The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco (FAMSF)—which comprises the de Young and the Legion of Honor—is one of the most successful organizations of its kind in the world. We operate under the highest standards of governance. It is because of our high standards that we are a flourishing art institution that continues to exceed expectations both financially and artistically.

Our organization is among the largest and most respected art institutions in the country. Due to the efforts of our talented staff and dedicated Board of Trustees, we have been able to bring to San Francisco some extraordinary exhibitions such as:

Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the PharaohsBirth of Impressionism: Masterpieces from the Musée d’OrsayVan Gogh, Gauguin, Cézanne and Beyond: Post-Impressionist Masterpieces from the Musée d’OrsayGirl with the Pearl Earring: Dutch Paintings from the MauritshuisAnd, coming in 2013, David Hockney: A Bigger Exhibition

Diane B. Wilsey
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Dutch Clouds, Past and Present

Conversation 6, a special exhibition on view at the San Francisco Arts Commission Main Gallery in the Civic Center through April 27, pairs Jason Hanasik, a local multimedia artist, with Berndnaut Smilde, an internationally recognized installation artist from Amsterdam. Today’s guest blogger Meg Shiffler is the director of the SFAC Galleries, and in this entry focuses on the work of Smilde and its relationship to paintings featured in the special exhibition Girl with a Pearl Earring: Dutch Paintings from the Mauritshuis.

Berndnaut Smilde, Nimbus Munnekeholm, 2012

Smilde1
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Behind the Scenes: De-installing the Salon Doré

Almost as soon as the Salon Doré was de-installed from Gallery 11 late last year, the comprehensive conservation and restoration project began (and continues today in full view of the public in Gallery 13). Before a single component of the room was removed, however, months of planning and research went into readying the Salon Doré for this massive undertaking.

Deconstruction
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A Feast for the Eyes

Foodies and art aficionados alike can feast their eyes on delectable still lifes in the special exhibition Girl with a Pearl Earring: Dutch Paintings from the Mauritshuis on view at the de Young through June 2. With the abundance of delicious artwork on view, it is only fitting that the de Young Café provides equally delicious food to satiate cravings experienced while inside the exhibition.

Abraham van Beyeren, Banquet Still Life, after 1655. Oil on canvas, Royal Picture Gallery Mauritshuis, The Hague, Acquired in 1977 with the support of the Rembrandt Society (inv. no. 1056). Image courtesy of the Royal Picture Gallery Mauritshuis, The Hague

Beyeren
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All’s Fair in Love and Art

In two weeks, Artist Fellows Andy Diaz Hope and Laurel Roth present the culminating exhibition of their yearlong fellowship featuring the display of their monumental tapestry triptych, The Conflicts. This Valentine’s Day, Hope and Roth share the secret behind their success in love and art.

Timeline of Cooperation
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A Devil in the Details

The special exhibition Rembrandt’s Century, currently on view alongside Girl with a Pearl Earring: Dutch Paintings from the Mauritshuis, is striking both in its breadth and for the fact that the works on view all come from the Fine Arts Museums’ permanent collections. Preparations for this exhibition were lengthy, with some works requiring restoration treatments. In this blog post, paper conservation intern Laura Neufeld demonstrates how, in matters of conservation, the devil really is in the details.

Willem Jacobsz Delff (Dutch, 1580–1638). Allegory on the State of the Netherlands under Spanish Tyranny (detail), 1622. Engraving. Achenbach Foundation for Graphic Arts. 1963.30.22127

Delff detail
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