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tv   [untitled]    September 7, 2011 9:30pm-10:00pm PDT

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>> hello. welcome to "culturewire." we are here today with bay area artist jody chanel, and we are here to see the plaza where your piece has just been installed. >> i have been doing large-scale paintings in the galleries and museums, and the idea that in the future, i could do something that would hang out a little bit longer than the duration of the installation the kind of appeal to me. i quickly found out about the san francisco arts commission school and realized there was a pre-qualified school you had to apply to, so i applied to the. >> how long did it take you to develop this work for the plaza?
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>> this was a fast track project. design development was about a month. >> let's look at the beautiful mural. i have never seen a mural created on asphalt. >> the heat of the asphalt, a new layer of asphalt. then, these wire rope templates that were fabricated for the line work get laid down and literally stamped into the asphalt, and then everything was hand-painted. >> maybe you could talk about some of the symbolism, maybe starting in the middle and working out. >> [inaudible] the flower of industry. >> it is like a compass. there's an arrow pointing north. >> within the great bear consolation, there are two
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pointed stars here. they typically lead one to the northstar, otherwise known as polaris. so i thought it has a layer of theme. >> let's talk about some of the other elements in the peace. we are walking along, and there is a weather vane. there's a sweet little bird hanging on the side. what kind of bird is that? >> [inaudible] the smallest of the gulf species, and it lives around the bay area. >> you want to talk about the types of flour patterns that you send? >> [inaudible] around 1926 or so by the dahlia society. >> what is this bird here? >> that is the california quail. >> coming up here, we had a
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little blustery theme. what is this area here? >> this is supposed to be the side view, the expense of the golden gate bridge. >> there it is. >> there are really beautiful elements of architecture still around, i would say that it gives that feeling over to the work. >> what are your hopes for it? >> that in a way it just becomes part of the area. i think it is starting to have that feeling. people utilize it. they sit and, and have their lunch and play on -- they sit and, and have their lunch and play on that -- they sit and come and have their lunch and play on it. just for it to be part of the neighborhood. that is my hope.
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>> is such a beautiful addition to our public art in san francisco. thank you for joining us. it was nice to meet you. and thank you for telling us about your beautiful mural. thanks for watching "culturewire." >> san francisco is home to a renowned civic art collection that includes a comic works -- iconic works by local and national artists integrated into our public buildings and six basis. the arts commission has struggled to take care of the priceless collection because of limited resources. in an effort to gather more funding for the maintenance of the collection, the art commission has joined forces with the san francisco art dealers association to establish
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art care, a new initiative that provides a way for the public to get involved. the director of public affairs recently met with the founder and liquor -- local gallery owner to check out the first art care project. ♪ >> many san franciscans are not aware that there is a civic art collection of numbers almost 4000 works of art. preserving the collection and maintaining it is something being addressed by a new program called art care. it is a way for citizens to participate in the preservation of the civic art collection. with me is the creator of the art care program.
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welcome. the reason we wanted to interview you is that the artist in question is peter volkas. why is he so important to the history of san francisco art? >> he is a very famous ceramic ist. knowing the limitations of clay, he got involved in bronze in around 1962. he was teaching at the university of california, berkeley. >> your gallery celebrated the 50th anniversary of continuous operation. you are a pioneer in introducing the work and representing him. >> i have represented him since 1966. i was not in business until 1961. he made a big deal out of
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working in clay. the things he was doing was something never seen before. >> it is a large scale bronze. it has been sitting here of the hall of justice since 1971. talk about what happens to the work of art out of the elements. >> the arts commission commissioned the piece. they did not set aside money for repair. it has slowly changed color. it was black. it has been restored. >> it has been restored to the original patina. >> there was no damage done to its. i do not think there were any holes made in it.
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they have been working on it for six or eight weeks. it is practically ready to go. i am very excited to see it done. >> over the course of the arts in richmond program, we have added almost 800 works of art into the public space. maintaining that is not something that the bond funds allow us to do. this is why you came up with the idea of art care. >> i hope we get the community going and get people who really like to be involved. we will give them a chance to be involved. if you are interested in art, this is a marvelous way to get involved. there is work all over the city where every year ago. -- there is artwork all over the city wherever you go.
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my idea was to get people in the neighborhood to take care of the pieces and let the art commission have the money for the bigger pieces. >> i was talking to the former president of the arts commission yesterday. the 2% ordnance is something he helped to champion. >> it is all over california and other states now. we really were the forerunners. it is a wonderful thing to bring the community into this now. people have seen art being put into the community. this has not been touched by any graffiti. it just faded over time. it is so open here. there is nobody watching this. i think that is a plus to the
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community. i hope the graffiti people do not go out there now that i am opening of my mouth. >> i want to thank you for the 50 years you have already given to the city as an arts leader. >> i started in to briberon, i's only been 45. >> you have championed his work over these years. >> it has been exciting working with him. it is one of the highlights of my life. >> thank you for being part of "culture wire" today. >> to learn more about the program and the list of public arts in need of maintenance, visit the website. thank you for
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>> about four years ago, [inaudible] look at how beautiful this was. there is our relationship to the planet. these regions are the wealthiest, the most powerful. that really has impacted the planet. it is almost impossible now to go anywhere and had it really be completely dark. there are very few locations that you can find. that means our relationship to the sky, there is a way where we dominate the sky. we cannot see anything really. we are blinding ourselves in a way.
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>> you can look at the images, they are beautiful. when i started four years ago, there was a conversation about environmental issues that was very different. this is not being talked about in the way it is now. . this has just been like an amazing growth. i anticipate the project to be something that opens a dialogue to public interest in these
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ideas. so the work is really made to be seen in this environment. it's been show in museum, in gallery, but never in a public setting. and it's kind of ideal for both myself and the works to have this real dialogue with the public not only in san francisco but people coming from all over the world. >> since the dawn of electricity, that light is something that people feel connected to and inspired by. personally, there is space to keep that alive, just finding balance. the key is to find some balance.
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>> welcome. we are here doing our building san francisco tour. we're going to have a very interesting tour of elevators in sanford cisco. we have all gotten into an elevator, the doors have closed, and it has carried us to our destination. have you ever wondered how elevators were -- work?
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we check out the need outside the elevator using current technology and we learn about the latest destination elevated technology all here in san francisco. we will also visit the machinery where all the behind- the-scenes gears control these incredible machines. we are very fortunate today to have an expert with those who is going to walk us are around elevators in san francisco. can you tell us about the history of elevators in san francisco? the measure -- >> sure. the history of elevator technology evolves with the city. first elevators were installed for moving materials in the 1860's. in the 1870's, the first passenger elevator was installed, and that allowed building heights to go up to about seven floors. starting in the 18 eighties,
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1890's, the first electric elevators were installed. that allowed for buildings to go up even higher, even more than 10 floors, and those were the first elevators that became representative of what we consider modern elevators today. >> so the height of buildings is related to elevator technology. >> both of these technologies encourage architects to build taller buildings. engineering and materials science provided a higher quality of steel to build with, and having passenger elevators meant it was the necessary anymore to climb a long flight of stairs to get to the top of the building. the elevator made the upper floors of the building more attractive than they were before. >> here we were at the historic st. francis hotel, which was actually a representation of the evolution of elevators. can you tell us more about san francisco history here at the
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st. francis? >> sure. st. francis demonstrates well the evolution of elevated technology. and substantially damaged the 1906 earthquake and rebuilt in 1907 or 1908, and extend it again in 1913. then a new tower was added in 1932, so there is all sorts of elevator technology you can see at the st. francis that very much represents the building history of san francisco. >> i understand there is a really old elevator still operating here. >> that is right, the elevator installed in the 1913 expansion. we can go look at that. >> let's go take a look. here we are in a spectacular st. francis lobby. here is the clock. when people say "meet me at the clock in the st. francis." let's look at that elevator. >> ok, let's do it.
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>> here we are in the elevator installed as part of the expansion, and this is the way it was originally installed about 100 years ago. it has a manual switch just like elevators did back then, and it runs on dc power. this was from a time before elevators ran on ac power. >> when did they switch? >> decided to switch in the 1920's, so this elevator predicts that by about 19 years. the doors are also manual, so this elevator predates the use of automatic doors on elevators. >> can we take a ride?
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>> absolutely. going down. >> how many troops do you think this elevator has taken in its lifetime? millions. >> yes, this one probably has. certainly hundreds of thousands. >> very smooth. >> it really does run smoothly. >> there we go. take some serious operation. there we go. >> this is really beautiful. >> this is served by that old elevator we were just in. >> built at the same time, also in 1913. >> what a gorgeous room. i think we should have a party here. >> that is a great idea. >> let's look at the machine room for that old elevator. >> ok, let's go. >> here we are in the machine room with all these wonderful,
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old, a burly, industrial-era equipment. tell us what we've got here. >> this is really the beginning of a modern elevator. what we would describe as an overhead traction-geared elevator. that type of elevator still exists. even though this was made in 1913, elevators like this have continued to be manufactured up until the present day. >> so overhead means these cables attached to the top of the car. >> correct, exactly right. >> our hoist machine is located overhead, and this is a traction machine, so it is an evolution beyond the winding from elevator. this is the drive ship. this is the gear box, and this is original from 1913. it is a heavy-duty design that we really do not see any more today. that is probably part of the reason why this elevator has already lasted close to 100 years. this is the break for the voice machine -- teh brake.
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>> we have the original controller here. fortunately, the power is turned off. >> this room was built in 1913, but the national elevator cut actually was not introduced until 1921. >> tell us about this antique controller. what makes it different from a modern controller? >> the elevator is running on the original d.c. power. really simple in operation. does not include a lot of the features we would have in an elevator today, automatic door operation, dispatching, push button operation. none of those features are present, but this is the original from 1913. on this side, we have all the relays that actually control the elevator. the safety service -- city circuit, position,

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