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San Francisco: Arts for the City: Civic Art and Urban Change


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In 1934, San Francisco's Coit Tower was finally complete and open to the public. Seeing that iconic spire, you'd never guess the years of debate and artistic passion that went into its creation: how many people petitioned against its construction, how controversial the WPA murals were, how deeply loved it became. Coit Tower was one of the San Francisco Arts Commission's first projects, and it set the tone for the next 80 years of public art in a city full of world-class sculptures, music venues, and community arts programs. From the Ethnic Dance Festival to slam poetry performances at the Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts, Arts for the City tells the story of an urban landscape where diversity, creative energy, and political activism are reflected in civic art that is bold and innovative and where citizens take pride in vigorous, often contentious, creativity. Illustrated with images by distinguished contemporary photographers and artwork from the city's Civic Art Collection of over four thousand pieces, it is a celebration of a uniquely fascinating American city and a journey through the events that have shaped San Francisco's rebellious and vibrant cultural reputation. Hardcover, 224 pages

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