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Front Porch

Residents’ Talent on Display at San Francisco Towers Art Show

Art is a cornerstone of life at San Francisco Towers. Stepping into the lobby, you are greeted by an open two-story atrium that centers on a fountain featuring a statue of the Greek goddess Hebe. Off of the lobby, the hallways boast glass fronted cabinets where resident art collections are showcased in rotating exhibits that have included everything from wood sculptures and china to dolls and silver. Throughout the community, hallways are filled with beautiful original art and reproductions that have been donated by residents or provided by the Towers.

A framed photograph looking up a spiral staircaseResidents are encouraged to walk the halls and enjoy the variety of art on display. There is even a full guide to all of the artwork found throughout the community so that residents and guests can learn more about the different pieces.

“Art has been important to the community from day one of its opening,” say San Francisco Towers residents Judy Donahue and Holly Robinson. “Our halls and public spaces are filled with beautiful art.”

The 2nd floor holds a special place for art at the Towers as it is home to the Art Show, which features art created by residents and staff. Donahue and Robinson, who curate the Art Show, note that it provides “a vehicle for residents and staff to exhibit the art they have created.”

Walking down the 2nd floor hallway, residents and visitors pass walls lined with framed photographs, paintings in various mediums, and full canvases.  A bust is tucked into a corner atop a plinth, and intricately embroidered pillows, which are part of the show, settle on a Recamier sofa.

Residents are not only encouraged to enjoy the show but to submit their pieces for inclusion. All mediums are welcome at the art show, including ceramics, needlepoint, photography, paintings, jewelry, and sculptures.

The current show features about 50 participants with up to two pieces per participant to ensure that all interested residents and staff can see their art on display.

The art show is its own celebration at the Towers. Art pieces are shown for six months before a new set of art is exhibited and each new show is celebrated with a biannual cocktail party that celebrates both the art and the artists.

“We find it extremely rewarding to see the level of enthusiasm that residents have about their art and for fellow residents to enjoyA framed water color painting of a vase of flowers viewing the many diverse pieces in the show,” say Donahue and Robinson. “We particularly enjoyed exhibiting a Trash to Treasures show during our COVID-19 lockdown where we displayed whimsical pieces made from recyclable materials that brought smiles to viewers and boosted morale.”

Putting on the art show does come with its challenges, including determining how best to showcase unique pieces. As part of Robinson and Donahue’s role as organizers of the art show, they place the pieces on the wall themselves and create solutions for larger pieces. For the show currently on display, Robinson and Donahue had to find a heavy rod to support a beautiful needlepoint rug so that it could be properly hung.

The result is a hall full of unique pieces that represent the individual personalities of residents and staff at the Towers. “Walking along the corridor of art, you cannot help but appreciate the shared environment of collective expression,” says Christina Spence, Executive Director of San Francisco Towers. “It’s truly a celebration of one of the many reasons San Francisco Towers is such a special community.”

If you are interested in touring the Towers to see some of the beautiful artwork and learn more about the community, we would love to hear from you through the form below.

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