SAN FRANCISCO, CA (December 18, 2018) — The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) announces an exciting lineup of exhibitions on view at the museum this spring, ranging from major retrospectives to video installations to new commissions. SFMOMA will host the exclusive West Coast presentation of Andy Warhol—From A to B and Back Again (May 19–September 2, 2019), the first Warhol retrospective organized in the U.S. since 1989 and the largest in terms of scope of ideas and range of works. The extraordinary digital mural JR: The Chronicles of San Francisco (opening May 23, 2019 in the museum’s free public space) will celebrate the unique faces and voices of nearly 1,200 people from across San Francisco’s multifaceted communities.
Co-presented by SFMOMA and the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, Suzanne Lacy: We Are Here (April 20–August 4, 2019) will be the first major retrospective of the Los Angeles–based pioneer of socially engaged art and public practice. snap+share: transmitting photographs from mail art to social networks (March 30–August 4, 2019) will trace the evolution of sharing photographs through a wide range of media including paper-based art, video projections and participatory installations.
SFMOMA will also present the following exhibitions this spring:
New Work: Rodney McMillian
February 9–June 9, 2019
Los Angeles–based artist Rodney McMillian’s work addresses how American political and social histories shape issues of class, race and gender. In his first solo museum presentation on the West Coast, McMillian will bring together his long-standing interest in the representation of the American landscape with an exploration of home as a place and a state of mind. The exhibition will feature a painted abstract panorama spanning the entirety of the gallery paired with a soundscape interweaving iconic 1980s songs performed by McMillian and the voice of a social advocate proposing radically new language and polices around the condition of homelessness. This immersive installation will question the political systems that promise freedom and equality for all and highlight the power of the individual to affect hope and create change.
Opening February 16, 2019
Alexander Calder revolutionized sculpture by inviting the unseen forces of the natural world to be elements of his work. Through a focused selection of sculpture, this exhibition will explore the way the natural world, such as the movement of the sea and the swaying of the wind, provided subject matter and inspiration for many of Calder’s mobiles. As Jean-Paul Sartre once noted of his works, “One of Calder’s objects is like the sea and equally spellbinding: always beginning over again, always new.”
Barbara Stauffacher Solomon
February 23–April 28, 2019
In addition to the iconic, large-scale supergraphics at The Sea Ranch in Northern California, Barbara Stauffacher Solomon has also created work on a smaller, hand-held scale. On view in the museum’s third-floor Architecture and Design gallery, this selection of her small-scale designs will include graphic ephemera she created for SFMOMA in the 1960s, drawings of green architecture from the 1980s and visual puns and pithy illustrations from her recent artist books.
snap+share: transmitting photographs from mail art to social networks
March 30–August 4, 2019
With millions of images sent across the Internet and social media every day, snap+share will offer a new way to visualize—and experience—how photographs have become ubiquitous in our daily lives. Spanning the history of mail art to social networks, this unique exhibition will explore the outward gesture of sharing pictures, instead of the more traditional, inward act of taking photographs. Among the many works visitors will encounter are the first-ever camera photo sent by phone, as well as Erik Kessels’s monumental roomful of printed photographs uploaded online in 24 hours. They will also be welcomed to participate in David Horvitz’s contemporary meme-making project by putting their heads in a working freezer in the galleries, while Eva and Franco Mattes’s piece representing a popular cat meme will peer down from overhead. The exhibition will continue outside the museum walls, with Aram Bartholl’s massive red geolocation pin sculpture installed atop the museum.
Suzanne Lacy: We Are Here
April 20–August 4, 2019
SFMOMA and Yerba Buena Center for the Arts
Suzanne Lacy is a pioneer of socially engaged art and public practice, promoting dialogue and collaborations with communities—artists, activists, organizations, schools—throughout her prolific career. Co-presented by SFMOMA and the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (YBCA), Suzanne Lacy: We Are Here is the first retrospective of the Los Angeles–based artist. At SFMOMA, visitors can explore Lacy’s entire career, from her earliest feminist work to her latest immersive video installations. The YBCA presentation offers a new, experimental approach to authorship and participation, revisiting key collaborative projects through the lens of today. This includes an in-depth focus on The Oakland Projects (1991–2001), a series on youth empowerment, media education and policy. Both venues will host live activations in the galleries and a vibrant range of public programs.
Pat O’Neill: Three Answers
April 20–August 4, 2019
A pioneer of experimental cinema, the Los Angeles artist Pat O’Neill developed innovative techniques for radically altering imagery in the predigital era. His highly inventive 16mm films from the 1960s and 1970s explore dense layering and movement within a still frame. In recent years, O’Neill has reworked several of his early films into multiple projections. The dynamic three-channel installation Saugus Series (1974/2014) will be joined by the films 7362 (1967) and Let’s Make a Sandwich (1978), a suite of related framed pieces, and an accompanying online screening program.
In conjunction with Pat O’Neill: Three Answers, SFMOMA will spotlight O’Neill’s contemporary moving image work in a weekend presentation (June 6–9, 2019) in the Gina and Stuart Peterson White Box. A second film program on June 22 in the SFMOMA Phyllis Wattis Theater will center on the Los Angeles Independent Film Oasis (1976–81), a collective founded by a group of filmmakers that included Pat and Beverly O’Neill.
Stephen ESPO Powers: Daymaker
Opening May 18, 2019
Brooklyn-based artist Stephen Powers brings his iconic graphic work to SFMOMA with Daymaker, a new site-specific commission for SFMOMA’s third-floor architecture and design gallery. Powers, who began his art practice as a graffiti artist under the moniker ESPO, focuses on the language of signs, typography and the visual clutter of our everyday. His work riffs off our emoticon-driven culture, and his lyrical witticisms capture our collective unease with the rapidity—and often vapidity—of instantaneous communication. Powers reminds us of the importance of human connection, the inevitability of time and the way we craft and recraft our own personal narratives.
Andy Warhol—From A to B and Back Again
May 19–September 2, 2019
Andy Warhol—From A to B and Back Again—the first Warhol retrospective organized in the U.S. since 1989, and the largest in terms of scope of ideas and range of works—will be an occasion to experience and reconsider the work of one of the most inventive, influential and important American artists. With more than 300 works of art, many assembled together for the first time, this landmark exhibition, organized by the Whitney Museum of American Art, will unite all aspects, media and periods of Warhol’s 40-year career.
JR: The Chronicles of San Francisco
Opening May 23, 2019
Floor 1, Roberts Family Gallery
Celebrate the voices of our extraordinary, unique and diverse city in The Chronicles of San Francisco, by internationally recognized artist JR. Over the course of two months in early 2018, the artist set up a mobile studio in 22 locations around San Francisco, where he filmed and interviewed nearly 1,200 people from across the city’s multifaceted communities. In the completed work, a digital mural scrolls across a seamless bank of screens, bringing together the faces and untold stories of the people we encounter every day. Presented in SFMOMA’s Roberts Family Gallery off of Howard Street, this work is free and accessible to the public.
Generous support for New Work: Rodney McMillian is provided by Alka and Ravin Agrawal, SFMOMA’s Contemporaries, The Fund for Contemporary Art, Adriane Iann and Christian Stolz, and Robin Wright and Ian Reeves.
Generous support for Barbara Stauffacher Solomon is provided by Lorna Meyer Calas and Dennis Calas.
Major support for snap+share: transmitting photographs from mail art to social networks is provided by Randi and Bob Fisher. Generous support is provided by The Black Dog Private Foundation, Katherine Harbin Clammer and Adam Clammer, Katie Hall and Tom Knutsen, Melinda and Kevin P.B. Johnson, Nion McEvoy and Leslie Berriman, Wes and Kate Mitchell, and Diana and Steve Strandberg.
At SFMOMA, major support for Suzanne Lacy: We Are Here is provided by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. Generous support is provided by Lionel F. Conacher and Joan T. Dea and Susan Swig. This project is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.
Generous support for Stephen ESPO Powers: Daymaker is provided by Suzy Kellems Dominik.
Andy Warhol—From A to B and Back Again is organized by the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York. National leadership support of Andy Warhol—From A to B and Back Again is provided by Kenneth C. Griffin. Bank of America is the National Tour Sponsor. Major support is provided by Doris Fisher, James C. Hormel and Michael P. Nguyen, and SFMOMA’s Collectors’ Forum. Generous support is provided by the Breyer Family Foundation, Roberta and Steve Denning, Mary J. Elmore, Jacqueline Evans, Linda and Jon Gruber, The Hoefer Family, Mary Jo and Dick Kovacevich, Christine and Pierre Lamond, Park L. Loughlin, Sir Deryck and Lady Va Maughan, the Stuart G. Moldaw Public Program and Exhibition Fund, Deborah and Kenneth Novack, the Bernard and Barbro Osher Exhibition Fund, Lisa S. Pritzker, Arun and Rummi Sarin, Nancy and Alan Schatzberg, Lydia Shorenstein, Dana and Jim Tananbaum, Shannon and Dennis Wong, and Kay Harrigan Woods. This exhibition is supported by an indemnity from the Federal Council on the Arts and the Humanities.
The Chronicles of San Francisco is made possible by Lynne and Marc Benioff. Generous support for the exhibition is provided by Ivette and Charles Esserman and Laura Scher and Ian Altman. Additional support is provided by Wayee Chu and Ethan Beard. SFMOMA’s Art Commissioning Endowed Fund is supported by Roberta and Steve Denning, Patricia W. Fitzpatrick, Diana Nelson and John Atwater, and Denise Littlefield Sobel.