Exhibition Press Release

SFMOMA Looks At Silicon Valley Through Photographs By Gabriele Basilico

Exhibition dates: January 26 - June 15, 2008

Release date: November 5, 2007

The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) is pleased to present Gabriele Basilico, on view from January 26 through June 15, 2008. The exhibition presents a series of nearly 50 black-and-white and color photographs taken by Basilico at the invitation of SFMOMA during a month long residency in the Bay Area from April 25 to May 25, 2007. The photographs examine Silicon Valley sites associated with the recent technology boom, such as IBM's now abandoned original headquarters and suburban housing developments.

Gabriele Basilico is organized by Sandra S. Phillips, SFMOMA's senior curator of photography; this exhibition inaugurates a three-part photographic series exploring the current state of Silicon Valley.

Basilico creates beautiful, often haunting portraits of urban environments that favor areas of transition and transformation. His pictures are marked by an eerie stillness—and a notable absence of people—that propels architecture and landscape to the forefront and turns the viewer's attention to frequently overlooked places. Chronicling the impact of the technology boom on the region, this exhibition will be the first of an ongoing project focused on Silicon Valley, in which artist's will document the area on film. Basilico's objective style and affinity for observing marginalized urban settings in a classical mode promises a compelling counterpoint to future instalments in the project.

A native of Italy, Basilico studied architecture during his student years in Milan. His architectural education shaped his photography, in both subject and style. He launched his career researching the urban industrial areas of Milan, and has since become well known as a major photographer of cities in Europe and the Middle East, including war-devastated Beirut. He often focuses on places where cycles of construction and decay are apparent.

As a companion to the exhibition, Skira has published a fully illustrated catalogue, Gabriele Basilico, Silicon Valley, 07. The hardcover book is available at the SFMOMA MuseumStore.

Support for the exhibition has been provided by the Istituto Italiano di Cultura.

Media Contacts

  • Sandra Farish Sloan, 415.357.4174,
  • Libby Garrison, 415.357.4177,
  • Robyn Wise, 415.357.4172,


San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
151 Third Street
San Francisco, CA 94103

Founded in 1935 as the first West Coast museum devoted to modern and contemporary art, SFMOMA is currently undergoing a major expansion project that will significantly enhance gallery, education, and public spaces, enabling the museum to better showcase more of its expanded permanent collection. While the museum is temporarily closed for construction,  through 2016, SFMOMA is “on the go” with an extensive array of off-site programming across the Bay Area, including collaborative and traveling museum exhibitions, major outdoor projects and commissioned installations, and new education initiatives.

Visit sfmoma.org or call 415.357.4000 for more information.