Presented for your reflection.
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November 23, 2005 (Wednesday) – Ruth Asawa sculptures at de Young
Ruth Asawa is an example of what it means to be an artist. She’s one of the most inspiring examples we have. She has used her talents, training and life experience to enrich her community, and certainly most of the people in San Francisco are grateful for her presence here. I’ve been thinking about her body of work (artworks as well as activism) since seeing her hanging wire sculptures at the de Young recently.
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The 15 works are made of copper, brass or Montel wire and are crocheted or hand-woven. They hang in the vestibule of the tower, casting reticular shadows against the concrete walls. One of her untitled circular tree pieces (I think of them as tree mandalas) is mounted against one wall. If you’ve lived in San Francisco any length of time, you’ve certainly seen one or more of her fountains or sculptures and heard about her work with local school children. Sometimes I wonder why we hear so much about young artists who act like (are treated like) rock stars, when there are artists like Ruth Asawa quietly working in their communities, year after year. There must be many more like her, out there in other towns around the country. I hope they’re valued by their communities.
In case you’re new in town, or reading this from elsewhere, here are some links about Ruth Asawa:
Her own, excellent, comprehensive webpage, with great scrapbook photos.
An upcoming show (December 1, 2005 – January 14, 2006 – Sculpture and drawings) at Rena Bransten Gallery
A story from the November ’05 Noe Valley Voice (Asawa’s neighborhood paper.)
KQED’s recent Spark video (downloadable) about Asawa and her influences.
Her exhibit 3 years ago at the Oakland Museum.
A DVD documentary about Ruth Asawa