West by Midwest

San Francisco

decade


1940s

1945

Lawrence and Anna Halprin move to San Francisco.

1945

Suzanne Jackson moves to San Francisco.

decade


1950s

1950–52 1950

Roy De Forest attends the California School of Fine Arts (now San Francisco Art Institute).

1951

Emory Douglas moves to San Francisco with his family for his health.

1953

Roy De Forest earns his BA from San Francisco State College.

1955

Anna Halprin founds the San Francisco Dancers’ Workshop.

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1957

Bruce Conner marries Jean Sandstedt on September 1 in Lincoln, Nebraska (Sandstedt’s hometown). Together, Bruce and Jean Conner move to San Francisco that night.

1958

Roy De Forest earns his MA from San Francisco State College.

1959

Tom Marioni is drawn to San Francisco’s Beat poetry and jazz scenes, and moves there in 1959.

decade


1960s

1960s–70s 1960

Anna Halprin devises City Dance, a daylong participatory event in which Halprin performs with members of her San Francisco Dancers’ Workshop and the people of San Francisco. City Dance is performed between 1960–69 and 1976–77.

1960

William T. Wiley earns his BFA from San Francisco Art Institute.

1960s 1961

Barbara Kasten goes to San Francisco to work as a stylist and display dresser for department stores.

1961

Jean Conner has solo exhibitions at the University of California, San Francisco Medical Center, where she works as a clerk in the women’s clinic, and City Lights bookstore in San Francisco—both of which her husband, Bruce Conner, helps organize.

1961

Suzanne Jackson moves back to San Francisco.

1962

William T. Wiley earns his MFA from San Francisco Art Institute.

1962

William T. Wiley begins teaching at the University of California, Davis, alongside Roy De Forest.

1963

Lynn Hershman Leeson moves to the Bay Area to study painting at the University of California, Berkeley, but drops out before the semester even begins.

1963–66 1963

Stephen Kaltenbach attends the University of California, Davis, where William T. Wiley and Roy De Forest are teaching.

1965–69 1965

Under the pseudonym Eddie Russia, Ruscha assumes the role of art director for Artforum, which moves from San Francisco to Los Angeles in 1965 and rents a space above the Ferus Gallery. Ruscha remains the art director two years after the publication moves to New York from Los Angeles.

1960s 1965

Emory Douglas studies commercial art at San Francisco City College. There he is inspired by the works of Elizabeth Catlett, Aaron Douglas, and Charles White, and becomes involved in the Black Arts Movement.

1965

Bruce Conner and Jean Conner return to San Francisco and live in the Haight-Ashbury district.

1965–92 1965

Roy De Forest teaches alongside William T. Wiley at the University of California, Davis.

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1966

Suzanne Jackson graduates from San Francisco State University having majored in painting and minored in theater.

1967

Miriam Schapiro and her family move to California after her husband Paul Brach is offered a job as chair of a new art department at the University of California, San Diego. Schapiro is offered a position as lecturer. While at the university, Schapiro meets physicist David Nabilof, with whom she collaborates on computer-aided sketches for her paintings, including the Computer Series.

1968

Barbara Kasten returns to Northern California to work on her MFA at San Francisco State University.

1968

Billy Al Bengston has a solo exhibition at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art titled Motel Dracula.

1968

Gladys Nilsson, Jim Nutt, and Karl Wirsum are included in the exhibition Now! Hairy Who Makes You Smell Good at the Hyde Park Art Center. It travels to the San Francisco Art Institute.

1968

Larry Bell is included in the group exhibition Serial Imagery, which travels to the Pasadena Art Museum and the University of California, San Diego’s art gallery.

late 1960s 1968

Roy De Forest congregates at the Rainbow House at 908 Steiner Street in San Francisco. The house was a place where Davis–Sacramento artists like Bruce Conner and De Forest could mingle with their peers.

1969

Emory Douglas is briefly roommates with Kathleen and Eldridge Cleaver. The home is a hub for the Black Panther Party’s San Francisco chapter.

1969

Gladys Nilsson has a solo exhibition at the San Francisco Art Institute’s Clay Street Gallery.

1969

Roy De Forest has a solo exhibition at the San Francisco Art Institute.

decade


1970s

1970

Gladys Nilsson and Karl Wirsum are included in the group exhibition Surplus Slop from the Windy City at the San Francisco Art Institute. Wirsum creates a poster for the exhibition.

1970

Tom Marioni founds the Museum of Conceptual Art, an alternative art space in San Francisco. The museum continues operating until 1984.

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1972

Bruce Conner and Jean Conner organize A Conner Family Show at the Quay Gallery in San Francisco. It also includes works by their nine-year-old son Robert.

1972

A year after Al Ruppersberg’s Al’s Grand Hotel takes place, Lynn Hershman Leeson and Eleanor Coppola decide to transform two rooms in the Dante Hotel, a transient hotel in the North Beach neighborhood of San Francisco. On Halloween 1973, Hershman Leeson places two life-size wax cast figures, one black and one white, under rumpled bed sheets, surrounded by her belongings. For nine months, visitors in the know are allowed to sign in at the front desk and view the installation for free. The installation ends when someone visits the room at 3 am, mistakes the wax figures for corpses, and calls the police, who collect all the objects and take them back to the station.

1972

Lynn Hershman Leeson earns her MA in art criticism from San Francisco State University.

1973

The Dennis Hopper One Man Show opens at the James Willis Gallery in San Francisco.

1973

Tom Marioni begins hosting Wednesday night salons in his San Francisco studio as a social gathering of friends and artists.

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1974

Bruce Conner designs a poster for Anna Halprin‘s San Francisco Dancers’ Workshop. It is projected onto the wall of the rotunda of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) during a performance.

1974

Judith Barry moves to the San Francisco Bay Area to work at an architecture firm.

late 1970s 1974

Judith Barry pursues studies with Bertrand Augst at the University of California, Berkeley, and the San Francisco Art Institute.

1974–78 1974

Lynn Hershman Leeson operates The Floating Museum, a project that commissions, organizes, and exhibits site-specific, public art in unconventional spaces. The project begins in the San Francisco Bay Area and eventually occurs across the globe.

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1975

Hal Fischer moves to San Francisco for graduate school at San Francisco State University; he receives his MA in photography in 1976.

1975

Jim Nutt has a solo exhibition at the San Francisco Art Institute.

1970s 1976

Hal Fischer is part of loose Bay Area artist group called Photography and Language, which also includes Lutz Bacher and Lew Thomas.

1976

Larry Bell is included in the group exhibition Painting and Sculpture in California: The Modern Era at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.

1977

Carlos Almaraz is included in the group exhibition The Aesthetic of Graffiti at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.

1977

Judith Barry organizes Seven Sundays After the Fall at La Mamelle, an alternative art space in San Francisco. This series of performances by women includes women from the Woman’s Building in Los Angeles. Barry conducts discussion groups with over 80 women performance artists in the region.

1977

Judith Barry contributes an outdoor sound installation as part of Lynn Hershman Leeson’s 1977 Floating Museum project (H)errata.

1978

Gay Semiotics (1977) is first published by NFS Press (cofounded by Lew Thomas and Donna Lee Phillips), which published conceptual photography books. Many of the models in Gay Semiotics were among Hal Fischer’s friends and community in the Castro and Haight-Ashbury districts

1978

Lynn Hershman Leeson invites Motion to be a part of her Global Space Phase Invasion II project through the Floating Museum at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, out of which comes Judith Barry’s Kaleidoscope performance and subsequent video.

1979

Judy Chicago debuts The Dinner Party in March at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) and travels to Chicago in December 1981.

decade


1980s

1980

Hal Fischer has a solo exhibition at ASUC Studio, University of California, Berkeley, titled Sommerpause – European Snapshots.

1985

Catherine Opie earns her BFA from the San Francisco Art Institute.

1987

Hal Fischer earns his MFA from the University of California, San Diego.

decade


1990s

1993–2004 1993

Lynn Hershman Leeson is a professor of electronic arts at the University of California, Davis.

1997

Kori Newkirk earns his MFA from the University of California, Irvine.

decade


2000s

2007

Lynn Hershman Leeson becomes chair of the Film Department at the San Francisco Art Institute.

decade


2010s

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Gladys Nilsson and Jim Nutt discuss their initial impressions of Adeliza McHugh and the importance of the Candy Store Gallery in the Bay Area art community. Interview for _Candy Store Film Project_ by Laurence Campling, 2012.

2017

Judy Chicago creates Be No More, a dry-ice installation, at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art as part of their new building’s opening celebrations.

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