SPECIAL MEETING OF THE FULL ARTS COMMISSION
Thursday, September 10, 2009
25 Van Ness Avenue, Suite 70
President Johnston called the meeting to order at 3:07 p.m.
- Roll Call
P.J. Johnston, President
Maya Draisin, Vice President
Cass Calder Smith
Ron Miguel, ex officio
- Approval of Minutes
This item was withdrawn from the agenda.
- President’s Report
President Johnston noted that the location of this meeting was unusual for the full Commission. He said that the agenda for this meeting had originally been focused on the strategic planning process, but that its focus was changed to orient some of the new Commissioners on the programs of the Arts Commission. He added that the tough economic times have stressed the Commission to push the strategic planning process.
President Johnston announced the appointment of three new Commissioners: Gregory Chew, Astrid Haryati, and Barbara Sklar. He introduced Commissioners Chew and Haryati, who were present.Commissioner Chew thanked President Johnston and gave a brief history of his work on other City Commissions. Commissioner Haryati also thanked the Commission for the opportunity to serve.
President Johnston announced new Committee appointments. Commissioner Sklar and Commissioner Chew will serve on the Visual Arts Committee, and Commissioner García-Nakata will serve as the chair of that Committee. Commissioner Haryati will serve on the Street Artists Committee, with Commissioner Melania as the new chair of that Committee. Commissioner Haryati was also appointed to the Civic Design Review Committee.
- Director’s Report
Mr. Cancel gave a brief background report on the strategic planning process and schedule, and explained that the process would involve the full Commission at one of its upcoming meetings.
He presented the Bayview Opera House financial audit information, which covered the past four fiscal years. He explained that it showed that the Opera House incurred significant deficits during the leadership transition in recent years. However, he said he was pleased by the efforts of the new leadership to operate Bayview Opera House without deficits.
Mr. Cancel announced that a new initiative, Art in Storefronts, a joint project of the Arts Commission and the Office of Economic and Workforce Development, would soon be launched. The program places site-specific artwork in vacant storefronts for a period of several months. The request for proposals received an astounding 180 submissions from San Francisco artists. The locations for the artwork will be central Market Street, Third Street, and lower 24th Street. The kickoff event is scheduled for October 1, 2009, with the launch of the central Market storefronts; the Mayor is expected to attend. The program will roll out in the other corridors in the following weeks.
In response to Commissioner Calegari’s question whether this event was in lieu of the Mayor’s Art Award, Mr. Cancel explained that the Mayor had not yet selected the recipient for the award, and that the event has been postponed.
Commissioner Young asked how many storefronts would be involved; Mr. Cancel replied that there would be twenty storefronts initially, and more would be added if additional funding became available.
Mr. Cancel announced that on September 17, 2009, a major public artwork by Maya Lin, What is Missing, will be dedicated at the Academy of Sciences. The Academy has the distinction of housing two major installations by the artist, who has promised that What is Missing is her last public memorial. The multimedia sculpture is a reflection on all the various ways the loss of habitat and loss of species is affecting the Earth. Director of Programs Jill Manton described the artwork as poignant and poetic. She added that the dedication is scheduled for 5:15 p.m., and she encouraged all the Commissioners to attend.
Mr. Cancel reported that Cultural Equity Grants staff will begin reviewing proposals for the next grants cycle.
Mr. Cancel reported that street artists and the Street Artists staff have reached a compromise with the Hayes Street merchants association, which has opposed adding street artist spaces along Hayes Street. The proposal calls for street artists to sell their work in the stores, but not on the street. It was the assessment of staff that the small number of spaces originally proposed would not create a critical mass of artists on Hayes Street. This agreement will allow many more artists to have work for sale in the stores along the street. Arts Commission staff will present this proposal to the Board of Supervisors’ Land Use Committee, which has jurisdiction over the designation of street artist spaces.
Mr. Cancel sadly announced the recent passing of Ms. Manton’s mother, Marilyn Manton. He requested that this meeting be dedicated to the memory of Marilyn Manton.
- Consent Calendar
RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-213:
Approval: RESOLVED, that this Commission does hereby adopt the following items on the Consent Calendar and their related Resolutions:
Approval of Committee Minutes
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-214: Motion to approve the Executive Committee Meeting Minutes of March 23, 2009.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-215: Motion to approve the Executive Committee Meeting Minutes of April 17, 2009.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-216: Motion to approve the Civic Design Review Committee Meeting Minutes of May 11, 2009.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-217: Motion to approve the Civic Design Review Committee Meeting Minutes of July 20, 2009.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-218: Motion to approve the Visual Arts Committee Meeting Minutes of August 19, 2009.
Visual Arts Committee Recommendations (August 19, 2009)
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-219: Motion to approve the six poster designs titled Taking In by artist Pamela Wilson-Ryckman for the Art on Market Street 2009-2010 Program and authorize the artist to proceed to print four reproductions of each design for installation in 24 Market Street kiosks from October 5 to December 31, 2009.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-220: Motion to approve an honorarium in the amount of $4,000 to Kelly Lindner for her coordination of an exhibition at City Hall commemorating the 40th anniversary of the San Francisco Arts Commission Gallery.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-221: Motion to approve the artist selection panel’s recommendation of the following artists as finalists for the North Beach Branch Library public art project: Bill Fontana, Paul Hayes and Mark Malmberg as finalists and Mark Baugh-Sasaki as the alternate.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-222: Motion to approve the artist team Wowhaus’ revised proposal for the Ortega Branch Library, as recommended by the Ortega Branch Community Artist Selection Panel, and to authorize the artist to proceed to final design.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-223: Motion to approve the artists Mark Grieve and Ilana Spector and their proposal for the Visitacion Valley Branch Library, as recommended by the Visitacion Valley Branch Community Artist Selection Panel.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-224: Motion to authorize the Director of Cultural Affairs to enter into contract with the artists Mark Grieve and Ilana Spector in an amount not to exceed $75,000 for the final design, fabrication, and transportation of an artwork for the Visitacion Valley Branch Library.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-225: Motion to approve an increase of Owen Smith’s contract for the fabrication and installation of an artwork at Laguna Honda Hospital from $197, 740 to $287,515 in order to change the material for the three lobby murals from paint on canvas to ceramic mosaic.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-226: Motion to approve the construction mock-up for Cliff Garten’s handrail and release to fabricate.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-227: Motion to approve Rupert Garcia’s proposal for the lobby of General Hospital, which includes artworks on the stairwell wall, the wall behind the reception desk, the terrazzo floor, and the pedestrian bridge.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-228: Motion to approve the artwork proposal by Paul Kos for the Surgery Waiting Room on Basement 1 of the General Hospital Acute Care Unit.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-229: Motion to authorize the Director of Cultural Affairs to enter into a contract with Paul Kos for an amount not to exceed $90,000 for design, fabrication, transportation and installation consultation for an artwork for the Surgery Waiting Room on Basement 1 of the General Hospital Acute Care Unit.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-230: Motion to approve public art approach and selection plan for Main Entry Drive Sculpture and Plaza Artwork as detailed in the Main Entry Drive Sculpture and Plaza Artwork Project Outline.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-231: Motion to approve up to five of the following artists and their site assignments as recommended by the selection panel for the General Hospital Acute Care Unit—Windows and Glass Elements on Floors 3-7: Stephen Galloway, Mildred Howard, and Julio Cesar Morales.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-232: Motion to approve the public art approach and artist selection plan for Sunset Playground as detailed in the Sunset Playground Public Art Project Outline.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-233: Motion to approve the following arts professionals as potential selection panelists for the Sunset Playground Public Art Project
Abby Chen, Curator, Chinese Culture Center
Jennifer Easton, Public Art Administrator, San Jose Public Art
Kate Eilertsen, Director, Sonoma Valley Museum of Art
Walter Kitundu, artist
Ellen Oh, Executive Director, Kearny Street Workshop
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-234: Motion to approve the public art approach and artist selection plan for Cayuga Playground as detailed in the Cayuga Playground Public Art Project Outline.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-235: Motion to approve the following arts professionals as potential selection panelists for the Cayuga Playground Public Art Project:
Michael Arcega, artist
Kate Eilertsen, Director, Sonoma Valley Museum of Art
Jennifer McCabe, Director, Museum of Craft and Folk Art
Hal Nelson, curator, San Francisco Museum of Craft + Design
Pepe Ozan, artist
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-236: Motion to approve art project guidelines for the SOMA West underpass artwork for a budget not to exceed $72,000.
- Committee Reports and Committee Matters
- Executive Committee—P.J. Johnston, Chair
- President Johnston reported that the Committee had not met due to lack of quorum.
- Civic Design Review Committee—Cass Calder Smith, Chair
- In the absence of Commissioner Smith, Commissioner Chow reported that the Committee did not meet. Members of the Committee, artists, and local architects did take part in a design charrette for three new Public Utilities Commission groundwater pump stations. He reported that there was also a follow-up meeting in which the designs were discussed further with architects from the Bureau of Architecture.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-237: Motion to approve Phase 3 of the Harding Park Recycled Water Project.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-238: Motion to approve Phase 3 of the SFMTA Geneva Historic Car Enclosure.
- Community Arts, Education and Grants Committee—Maya Draisin, Chair
- Commissioner Draisin reported that the Committee did not meet in August. She added that the Cultural Centers have begun to meet the new requirements for reporting.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-239: Motion to approve the proposed 2009-2010 Management and Program Plan and budget for SOMArts Cultural Center and sub-grantee Asian Pacific Islander Cultural Center for a grant not to exceed $781,291, contingent upon completion of revisions (including $587,343 to SOMArts, $96,974 to sub-grantee Asian Pacific Islander Cultural Center, and $96,974 to sub-grantee Queer Cultural Center).
Lex Leifheit, Executive Director of SOMArts, presented the new marketing and outreach materials for the Cultural Center and reviewed their achievements over the past year. She thanked the Committee for their continued commitment to the Cultural Centers.
Commissioner Young recused herself from voting on the following motion.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-240: Motion to approve the proposed 2009-2010 Management and Program Plan and budget for the African American Art and Culture Complex, for a grant not to exceed $477,827, contingent upon completion of revisions and submissions.
London Breed, Executive Director of the African American Arts and Culture Complex (“AAACC”), reported that the center’s reopening was attended by more than 500 people. She said that AAACC’s work is vital to the long-term stability of the community, and she hopes to establish it as a venue for the community. She added that new events and programs will begin in October, she invited all the Commissioners to visit, and she thanked the Commission for its support.
Mr. Cancel added that the new episode of Culture Wire features the AAACC ribbon cutting and a tour of the facility.
- Street Artists Committee—Sherene Melania, Chair
- Commissioner Melania reported that the Committee discussed the proposal for spaces along Hayes Street.
- RESOLUTION NO. 0910-09-241: Motion to approve requests by former certificate-holders for priority issuance of certificate with waiver of re-screening of wares: Jeanette Wucherer, Xavier LeBon, Teresa Mabalatan, Suzanne Kinavey.
- Visual Arts Committee
- President Johnston noted that this has been a challenging summer for the Committee, and requested a presentation to the full Commission on current projects within the next couple of months. He said that General Hospital is a tremendous project with distinctive artworks on several floors, and with exterior works as well. He added that staff and the Committee have put a great deal of work into several branch libraries as well. He noted that public art is the first thing the general public sees of the Commission’s work.
Commissioner García-Nakata also acknowledged the staff for their thoughtfulness, attention to detail, and hard work on the many projects underway.
- Strategic Planning
Amy Lilley, Department of Human Resources, gave a brief update on the strategic planning process for the Arts Commission. She explained that the staff has all had the opportunity to participate in an analysis of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (“SWOT analysis”) for programs and for the agency as a whole. She reviewed the next steps in the strategic planning, which will involve the Commissioners and community stakeholders. After a meeting with community stakeholders, DHR staff will compile a draft plan to be reviewed and discussed by the Executive Committee. The final plan will go to the full Commission for approval. Commissioners emphasized that the plan should address the Commission’s priorities, goals and strategies in the context of budgetary and legislative constraints.
Vice President Draisin left the meeting at 4:07 p.m.
- New Business
There was no new business.
- Reports and Announcements
Commissioner Melania left the meeting at 4:15 p.m.; thenceforward, there was no quorum.
Each of the Program Directors presented a brief overview of his or her program.
Ms. Manton explained that she had been recently appointed Director of Programs after serving for many years as Public Art Program Director. She said that, along with Director of Grants San San Wong and Director of Finance Kan Htun, she served on the management team reporting to Mr. Cancel. She looks for ways that programs can build on each other’s assets.
Community Arts and Education (“CAE”) Program Director Judy Nemzoff explained that her program had been created to foster cultural and community engagement throughout the city, not just in the city center. She described WritersCorps, the Cultural Centers and the arts education program, and discussed their varied funding streams, including the National Endowment for the Arts, the Library, the Hotel Tax Fund and other sources. She invited Commissioners to visit the Cultural Centers with her, and to get to know the other CAE programs as well.
San San Wong explained that she had been the Cultural Equity Grants (“CEG”) Program Director for two years before her recent appointment as Director of Grants. She explained that the mission of CEG is to support the enrichment of San Francisco’s multicultural landscape. She described the origin of the program as a response to the perception that City funding went primarily to large organizations; the enabling legislation calls for funds to go to historically underserved communities. She described the four granting programs and their funding, as well as the grantmaking process. She gave some statistics on applicants and their audiences. She discussed the current direction of the program, looking at grantmaking as cultural investment, and spoke briefly on the California Cultural Data Project as a new initiative.
Ms. Manton discussed the Civic Design Review program, noting that it was one of the original mandates of the City Charter. She explained that all City building projects are subject to the three-phase design review. The Commission recently began assessing a design review fee to cover the cost of the program. Ms. Manton added that staff and the Civic Design Review Committee are working with the client departments to clarify standards and the review process.
Gallery Director Meg Shiffler described the Gallery as an exhibition program spanning multiple locations, noting that they mount more exhibitions than any nonprofit arts program, with a smaller staff and less funding. She reviewed the history of the Gallery, founded in 1970 as Capricorn Asunder. She described the three exhibition spaces—401 Van Ness, 155 Grove Stree, and City Hall—and their current and upcoming exhibitions. She noted that Bill Fontana, who created the sound sculpture in the City Hall Rotunda, will be receiving a lifetime achievement award from the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Ms. Shiffler invited everyone to participate in the Gallery’s new fundraising event, Passport, on October 7. Finally, she noted that the Gallery will celebrate its 40th anniversary in 2010.
Public Art Program Director Susan Pontious explained that until a few years ago, the Public Art Program and the Civic Art Collections were separate; she now directs the merged Public Art and Collections Program. She explained that the program, established in 1969, was one of the first in the nation. Legislation mandates that two percent of construction costs for City projects go to public art. In addition to permanent artworks, the Public Art Program is also responsible for the Art on Market Street program, and many temporary installations. She reviewed the proposal and review process, which includes a great deal of community input, intended to take into account the context and the constituency for the artwork. She briefly described the Civic Art Collection, consisting of some 3,000 to 4,000 objects, ranging from small works on paper through very large sculptures, in public spaces and inside 130 City buildings. Challenges include maintaining, conserving and caring for the artworks, as well as maintaining an accurate, thorough and accessible catalogue.
Street Artists Program Director Howard Lazar explained that he has been with the program since its inception 37 years ago. He noted that the program enhances the city’s appeal to tourism, an enormous engine of the city’s economy. Mr. Lazar reviewed the history of the legislation creating the program, and explained that the Arts Commission issues licenses to the artists selling their own work, who must demonstrate that they are the makers of the work. He explained that the program has always been mandated to be self-supporting. Mr. Cancel commended Mr. Lazar’s management of the program.
Rachelle Axel, Development Director, explained that she had been with the Arts Commission for eight and a half years, and that her charge is to bring in money for each of the programs. She has raised $1.95 million in the last two years, from private giving, foundation grants, and other sources. She reported that other grant applications are pending, and she mentioned current and upcoming projects for which she hopes to raise additional funds, including the StreetSmarts program and the Gallery’s fortieth anniversary. She is also working on developing corporate support for the agency and its activities.
- Public Comment
Ellen Egbert spoke in favor of the mural on the Bernal Heights Library.
Richard Everett spoke against restoring the mural on the Bernal Heights Library.
There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 5:31 p.m.