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Exhibition

Joan Brown

November 19, 2022–March 12, 2023

Floor 7

Tickets
Entry to this exhibition is included with general admission.

Comprising eighty colorful paintings and sculptures, Joan Brown spans the charmingly personal and engaging career of one of San Francisco’s most important local heroes. Deeply embedded in the Bay Area art scene, Joan Brown drew inspiration from many sources to create works that merge autobiography, fantasy, and whimsy, with weightier metaphysical and spiritual themes. This retrospective is the most expansive presentation on the artist’s work in more than twenty years, charting the turns and devotions of a vision that was once dismissed by critics as unserious but was rooted firmly in impassioned curiosity and research and remains uniquely compelling today.

 


Exhibition Preview

Joan Brown, Thanksgiving Turkey, 1959; The Museum of Modern Art, New York, Larry Aldrich Foundation Fund; © Estate of Joan Brown; photo: © The Museum of Modern Art/Licensed by SCALA/Art Resource, NY
Joan Brown, The Bride, 1970; University of California, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, bequest of Earl David Peugh III; © Estate of Joan Brown; photo: Johnna Arnold/Impart Photography
Joan Brown, The Dancers in a City #2, 1972; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, gift of Alfred E. Heller; © Estate of Joan Brown; photo: Katherine Du Tiel; courtesy San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
Joan Brown, The Night Before the Alcatraz Swim, 1975; GUC Collection, Highland Park, Illinois; ©️ Estate of Joan Brown; photo: Michael Tropea
Joan Brown, The Bather #5, 1982; collection SFMOMA, gift of the estate of Joan Brown, Noel Neri, and Michael S. Hebel; © Estate of Joan Brown
Joan Brown, Self-Portrait in Studio, 1984; Yale University Gallery, gift of Laila Twigg-Smith; © Estate of Joan Brown; photo: courtesy Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven
Joan Brown and her dog Bob, 1961; collection of the Estate of Joan Brown; photo: Glen Cheriton/Impart Photography; courtesy the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

 

 


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Presenting support for Joan Brown is provided by Janet and Clint Reilly and anonymous donors.

Major support is provided by Joachim and Nancy Hellman Bechtle, Lorna Meyer Calas and Dennis Calas, the Agnes Cowles Bourne Bay Area Contemporary Arts Exhibition Fund, the Mary Jane Elmore West Coast Exhibition Fund, The Elaine McKeon Endowed Exhibition Fund, the Stuart G. Moldaw Public Program and Exhibition Fund, Deborah and Kenneth Novack, Susan and Bill Oberndorf, the Bernard and Barbro Osher Exhibition Fund, Rummi and Arun Sarin Painting and Sculpture Fund, the Thomas Weisel Family, and Pat Wilson.

Generous support is provided by Joan Roebuck and the Wyeth Foundation for American Art.

Additional support is provided by Maryellen and Frank Herringer and Fred Levin.

Header Image: Joan Brown, The Bather #5, 1982; collection SFMOMA, gift of the estate of Joan Brown, Noel Neri, and Michael S. Hebel; © Estate of Joan Brown