Big City Modern Rediscovered

Michael Murphy’s ‘travel poster’ art keys on ‘forgotten’ S.F. architecture for AIA exhibit
Forgotten Modern

Picture, if you can, a San Francisco that’s modern and proud of it, that celebrates its office towers of glass and steel and its angular open-plan libraries—a San Francisco whose Painted Ladies aren’t Victorian homes on Alamo Square but rectangular beauties that rarely draw tourists.

That’s the San Francisco artist Michael Murphy gives us in ‘Forgotten Modernism,’ an exhibit of his limited-edition prints at the American Institute of Architects San Francisco. The exhibit, co-sponsored by Docomomo, runs now through December 20 at AIA SF at 130 Sutter Street. The reception is 6 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 27 at the same location.

Murphy, an architect who was raised in San Francisco, rediscovered the beauty of the city’s modern buildings after ten years in England. His goal, he says, is “to bring these buildings back before people’s attention.”

Graphically, the prints suggest brightly colored 1950s travel posters, showing Joe Eichler’s Summit apartments atop Russian Hill, Japantown, the old Jack Tar Hotel in its glory, plus treasures that are hard to place.

“They all exist,” the artist promises, “every one of them.”

For more on ‘Forgotten Modernism,’ click here.

To view Michael’s Murphy’s art, click here.