'Tectonic Array' Showcase

Artists Michael Murphy, Melissa Arendt in new exhibition at S.F.'s 111 Minna Gallery
Michael Murphy art
Michael Murphy art from 'Tectonic Array'

Forgetting modernism is certainly not something our readers have to worry about. And when they think 'tectonics,' San Franciscans in particular might be excused if they are more concerned with the earth's shifting crust than with an aesthetic.

But these concepts are great sources of inspiration, however, to San Francisco artist Michael Murphy.

The result will receive its largest showing yet when Murphy and fellow artist Melissa Arendt are featured in 'Tectonic Array,' an exhibition opening with a reception September 5 and running through September 27 at 111 Minna Gallery in San Francisco.

Murphy, who was profiled extensively with a cover story in CA-Modern magazine in 2013, grouped his 30-odd pieces in the show in three categories: a selection of paintings including some new work, and the vivid giclee prints comprising his two series frequently shown throughout San Francisco, 'Forgotten Modernism' and 'Super Sonic.'

Michael Murphy art
Melissa Arendt art from 'Tectonic Array'

He noted that, stemming largely from the popularity of San Francisco Victorians, the city's foremost modernist structures are often underappreciated. "There's a lot of resistance," he said last week of this neglect. "But the architect wants to be living in the 20th and 21st century too."

Murphy, who spent 18 years as a practicing architect and these days married to one, creates work that one admirer described to CA-Modern in his recent profile as having "made architecture into art."

As for being supersonic, images of airborne jet planes—as in the mid-century travel posters Murphy collects—also play a prominent role in his art. "It's not really an obsession with air travel. It's just a feeling of openness, of traveling somewhere," he explained, noting that trailblazing modernist Le Corbusier often placed cars in photographs of his buildings partly to convey that same sense of freedom.

For more information about the 'Tectonic Array' exhibition and opening reception (at which both artists will appear), click here.