San Francisco

“Society for the Encouragement of Contemporary Art, 5th Selection”

San Francisco Museum Of Art

This society feels that the San Francisco area has too few galleries, and seeks to rectify this situation by collecting paintings in a price range which they feel will be attractive to local collectors, and will at the same time give local museum-goers an insight into what the latest mode is in the outside world.

And, if we may judge what is happening by their findings, hard edge painters whose names are unfamiliar to us, are painting pictures we seem to have seen before—twenty years ago; someone else imitates Matisse; two others imitate Larry Rivers. The freshest note of topicality is provided by the pop artists (with their new branch on the old dada tree), perhaps best represented by Andy Warhol’s Untitled movie star with lavender face on a silver screen with detail in newspaper point printing technique. And another idiom, certainly known here, but not much practiced, is the plastic paint on raw duck method, which produces a stain effect, represented in this assortment by Helen Frankenthaler’s very feminine and floral Filter. Ernest Briggs is here, too, reminding us that hundreds of San Francisco artists have left this place, seeking a more active marketplace.

Knute Stiles