Palmer D. French

  • Robert Arneson, David Williams, and Werner Jespen

    The Albreaux Gallery recently opened at the Cannery with a group show largely devoted to funk art and, in the main, pieces previously exhibited by artists associated with the regular stables of other galleries. Setting the tone of the show was one of the ceramic toilets executed half a decade ago by Robert Arneson who, as a painter and graphicist rather than as a ceramicist, just opened an extensive exhibition of recent work at the Hansen Gallery.

    The Hansen show finds humor and sophisticatedly flamboyant satire continuing to form the basic mood of Arneson’s work. A large series of canvases are

  • San Francisco

    The seemingly unlimited capabilities of the wizards of polymer chemistry to synthesize molecules not found in nature, and thus to create substances not only displaying unique properties, but often fusing, in strange, startling and hitherto impossible and uncontemplated combinations, properties once thought exclusively and inimitably special to certain types of animal, mineral or vegetable substances and by-products—is producing not only for industry but for today’s artists, an apparently inexhaustible variety of highly versatile materials. Popularly designated as plastics, their potentialities

  • Joseph Raffael, William Allan and Charles Gill

    The approach of autumn found the local galleries one by one either reopening or again initiating formal exhibition schedules after bridging the summer months with casually rotating group shows made up usually of items left in storage from the previous year’s feature presentations of stable artists. The Berkeley Gallery’s 1967–68 season slumped to a close with two successive shows which were perhaps an all-time low for this gallery: photo-collages by Joseph Raffael and “boxes” by William Allan. Both shows were tediously overextensive and reiterative.

    The Raffael photo-collages explored without

  • Jan Evans and Ernest Posey

    Over the past months the Galeria Van Der Voort has been developing an excellent stable of artists who are exploring and contributing to those ways of working which might well be termed “Neo-Pythagorean” currents in the contemporary mainstream; artists of admitted predilection for the drafting board, ruler and compass, whose work is crisp and hard-edged, bridging the gap between the “pure” and the “decorative” in the elaboration of smooth, poised symmetries wrought with meticulous care and craft in whatever medium and sometimes projective of mathematically contrived, systematically pursued

  • Terry Allen

    Before a recent suspension of its exhibition schedule pending imminent relocation in more adequate premises presently in preparation, the Michael Walls Gallery exhibited drawings by Terry Allen, a young native of Wichita, Kansas, currently living in Los Angeles where he graduated from the Chouinard Art Institute. Allen displays a precocity of graphic dexterity as well as of graphic wit in a cartoon style owing much to such by-products of the Hippie sub-culture as the Zap Comics and their prototypes in “camp” psychedelic cartoon posters. In a rather prolific output of mixed-media spoofs (using

  • Thomas Sully, Rembrandt Peale, Albert Pinkham Ryder and Ralph Blakelock

    Maxwell Galleries played museum on an ambitious scale recently in organizing and presenting at its Sutter Street showrooms an extensive cataloged exhibition of historic American painting in which a large selection of items from the firm’s own considerable inventory of American period paintings and works by late 19th-century East Coast Impressionists and West Coast Regionalists was fortified with extensive loans from the American holdings of public and private collections throughout the Pacific Coast area. While no doubt the Public Image and promotive publicity functions accruing from the prestige

  • Milton Avery

    One of the more obvious Maxwell omissions in this latter area was compensated for only a few blocks away in the Reese Palley Gallery’s showing of a selection of works by the late Milton Avery, whose sometimes lyrically poetic, sometimes blandly humorful, and often decoratively composed stylistic and quasi-abstract impressions of landscape, figures, birds, plants and trees, deriving from and modifying many mannerisms from turn-of-the-century organic free-form idioms, blended well with the faint echoes of Van de Veldian Art Nouveau lingering in the opulent, sweeping curves of spiral ramp and

  • “Looking Back: Bay Area 1945–1962”

    Historical moods also prevailed at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art in (yet another) provincial retrospective-introspective show devoted to 25 artists who were prominent in the San Francisco art community between 1945 and 1962. While the show was entitled “Looking Back: Bay Area 1945–1962,” it was, on the admission of its organizer, curator John Humphrey, primarily devoted to San Francisco. The East Bay and influences centering around the University of California, and deriving from Hans Hofmann’s incumbency there some time back, were neglected in favor of the oft-retold legend of the

  • San Francisco

    Art as environment and event seemed to be the subject of a triple billing at the Hansen Gallery during September when an exhibition of painted fiberglass wall-hangings by Tom Holland formed part of the audience surroundings for three enactments of a multi-media program entitled Over Evident Falls, collaboratively organized, produced and performed by electronic composer Steve Reich and artist William T. Wiley, with the assistance of Cynthia Ripley, Patrick Gleason and Jim Scoggin.

    Holland’s pieces are textured in a manner which makes them seem somewhat primitively assembled from strips and jaggedly

  • San Francisco’s Summer Season

    Drawings from various eras provided the dominant theme of featured museum exhibitions throughout the San Francisco Bay Area during the summer season, with the California Palace of the Legion of Honor in San Francisco and the University of California’s Berkeley campus concurrently vying for the spotlight in presenting extensive major exhibitions of Old Master Drawings, while the summer schedule at the San Francisco Museum of Art seemed to follow suit in a preponderance of shows dealing with modern graphic techniques, as well as with contemporary extensions and revivals of historic master

  • “Synchronism and Related American Color Painting”

    The summer season at the San Francisco Museum of Art was, for the most part, given over to a slow procession of limited-itinerary touring exhibitions originating elsewhere. An exhibition entitled “Synchronism and Related American Color Painting,” currently circulated by the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and seen here as a corridor show during June and July, was an historical footnote, as it were, isolating for scrutiny a minuscule and fleeting ripple in the main wave of Cubist influence on early 20th-century American painting.

    William C. Agee’s informative and well-illustrated catalog for a

  • “The Drawings of Hyman Bloom”

    “The Drawings of Hyman Bloom,” organized and circulated by the University of Connecticut Museum of Art brought to the San Francisco Bay Area a varied and extensive introductory survey of distinguished graphic work by an artist whose reputation in the eastern United States—particularly along the Boston-New York-Philadelphia axis—is already solidly established, and for whom over the past decade drawing has tended to emerge as the predominant vehicle of a distinctive style.

    Although born in 1913, a subject of the late Czar Nicholas II in what is now (Soviet) Lithuania, Hyman Bloom was only seven