Café opens at noon
Ruth Gottstein, publisher of Coit Tower San Francisco and daughter of artist Bernard Zakheim, will talk about her father’s involvement as one of the artists who created the impressive, controversial murals influenced by Diego Rivera. She presents this definitive guide to Coit Tower authored by her sister Masha with stunning color photos by Don Beatty.
The Coit Tower Murals: An Experiment in New Deal Public Art- Lecture
At the bottom of the Great Depression, President Franklin Roosevelt created the Civil Works Administration to give millions of desperate Americans jobs. The CWA included a public art division that assigned 27 artists and their assistants to embellish the walls of the new Coit Tower on Telegraph Hill. Inspired by both the Italian Renaissance and the concurrent Pacific Maritime Strike, some of the artists pushed the permissible limits by painting overtly political themes which drew the wrath of powerful reactionaries. Dr. Gray Brechin will discuss the art, the artists, and the turbulent events during the creation of a pioneering experiment in federal arts patronage, a project that created controversy that lives on today.
After the lecture, attend a walking tour of North Beach and Coit Tower led by Liz Vasile.