It was an art museum filled weekend. Saturday was an occasion to visit the Berkeley Art Museum and check out the new exhibit Hippie Modernism: The Struggle for Utopia. The show is full of ephemera, prints, including some of the work of Corita Kent, macramé and photography form the era including a series Clay Geerdes photography of the Cockettes. But the exhibit is not limited to what might be the expected memorabilia — the show also explores the world of high tech hippies – yes, high tech hippies, who were exploring and utilizing what was the latest technological innovations in their work. Examples include the Community Memory Project – a very early “social media” device developed by Berkeley’s Village of Arts and Ideas Commune. The exhibit runs through May 21st and the website lists a number of related events, panel discussions, etc. And finally Teri Friedman’s new installation (above right) is a perfect complement to the current exhibit.
Sunday was the annual Member for a Day event in the Bay Area offering reciprocal access to other museums. The SFMOMA’s costly membership and entrance fee ($25) might seem like chump change to my young, techie neighbors, but for an artist like myself, I’ll take an opportunity to visit for free. The expanded museum is overwhelming when crowded, and those outdoor “escape” terraces are much appreciated. The highlight of the visit was Tomás Saraceno’s installation Stillness in Motion — Cloud Cities (see below). It is clearly a crowd pleaser and slightly dangerous for us tall folk. There was another, very inspirational discovery at the SFMOMA – but more about that soon….