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Jewel City: Art from San Francisco's Panama-Pacific International Exposition

October 17, 2015–January 10, 2016

Herbst Exhibition Galleries

The year 2015 marks the centennial of the Panama-Pacific International Exposition (PPIE), the San Francisco world’s fair that celebrated the opening of the Panama Canal and the city’s reconstruction following the great earthquake of 1906. The grand exposition covered 76 city blocks and boasted national and international pavilions showcasing innovation, industry, and the arts.

At the heart of the PPIE was one of the most ambitious art exhibitions ever presented in the United States, encompassing more than 11,000 paintings, sculptures, prints, and photographs, in addition to a significant array of public murals and monuments.

To mark this anniversary, Jewel City revisits this vital moment in the inauguration of San Francisco as the West Coast’s cultural epicenter. The landmark exhibition at the de Young reassembles more than 200 works by major American and European artists, most of which were on display at this defining event.

Learn more about the city of San Francisco's full PPIE 100 program.

Share your experience of the exhibition with us on social media @deyoungmuseum #JewelCity.

No photography allowed.

This exhibition is organized by the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco. President’s Circle: Lisa and Douglas Goldman Fund. Benefactor’s Circle: National Endowment for the Arts. Supporter’s Circle: Marianne H. Peterson. Community Partner: Ghirardelli Chocolate Company. Media sponsor: San Francisco Chronicle. This exhibition is supported by an indemnity from the Federal Council on the Arts and the Humanities. 

Night Illumination—Panama-Pacific International Exposition—San Francisco, California, 1915, 1915. Published by Pacific Novelty Company. Color letterpress halftone. FAMSF, gift of Barbara Jungi in memory of Elsie F. Miller; James Tissot, L’ambitieuse (The Political Woman) (detail), 1883–1885. Oil on canvas. Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, New York, gift of William M. Chase, 1909, 1909:10; Edwin Deakin, Palace of Fine Arts and the Lagoon (detail), ca. 1915. Oil on canvas. Crocker Art Museum, Sacramento, long-term loan from the California Department of Finance, conserved with funds provided by Gerald D. Gordon, LOAN.2006.Deakin; Francis Bruguière, Machinery Hall, West Entrance, at Night (detail), 1915. Gelatin silver print. FAMSF, gift of the Whitton Family to the Percy Gray Collection