Tuesday July 5th 2016
In a recent post on the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco blog, WUDPAC Fellow José Luis Lazarte Fellow
discussed his graduate internship at FAMSF working with the materials
of Alan Sonfist, an artist whose pencil renderings of seismograms
immortalized two California earthquakes.
From the June 15, 2016 blog post, entitled "Ironing out Wrinkles // Fixing Earthquake Faults":
When Alan Sonfist’s (b. 1946) California Earthquake came to
the Paintings Conservation department for treatment, my first thought
was: This graphite drawing on canvas is more a drawing on a textile than
it is a painting. As such, the artwork fell between conservation
specialties, and its treatment required collaboration among the
Paintings, Paper, and Textiles Conservation departments at the
Museums. This drawing on canvas was born from Sonfist’s idea that
natural disasters should be honored as historical events. Here, the
artist immortalized in pencil the seismograms for two earthquakes, which
occurred in October 1, 1969 in Santa Rosa, CA. The selection of this
piece for the exhibition Wild West: Plains to the Pacific prompted the assessment of several creases that cut across the drawing and were visually distracting.
For images and details about this treatment, read the full blog post here.