San Jose Museum of Art puts San Francisco artist in the spotlight


The San Jose Museum of Artwork has managed one more minimal miracle, organizing “Jean Conner: Collage,” the 1st solo exhibition for the San Francisco artist who turns 89 this week. The stunning display of her breadth of perform, stretching back again many years to the 1950s, drew a delighted crowd to an opening reception previous Friday night time.

“Jean is a unique voice in an critical generation of Bay Place artists that included Jay DeFeo, Joan Brown, Bruce Conner, the Beats and so a lot of more,” S. Sayre Batton, executive director of the San Jose Museum of Artwork, claimed at Friday’s opening. “But with this exhibition, focusing on her collages and with an accompanying and important publication that we’re quite happy to produce we hope to provide increased interest to her unique apply.”

Visitors walk through the exhibition, "Jean Conner: Collage," at the San Jose Museum of Art on Friday, May 7, 2022. (Sal Pizarro/Bay Area News Group)
Visitors stroll via the exhibition, “Jean Conner: Collage,” at the San Jose Museum of Artwork on Friday, May 7, 2022. (Sal Pizarro/Bay Space News Group) 

Conner – who was married to (and however overshadowed by) celebrated artist Bruce Conner – has an unbelievable eye for composition and method that’s obvious even to novices like myself. Most of her operate is drawn from the internet pages of mid-century mainstream journals like Lifestyle Magazine and Ladies’ House Journal but they consider on new meanings in her preparations.

And though a lot of the exhibition – divided into five sections by concept – is only gorgeous, there is a stunning amount of humor. The bat traveling out of a soup pot surrounded by a crowd of eager chefs is amusing, but the subtle depth of a compact woman’s arm caressing a slash of meat on the counter is wicked. And somehow she managed to seize the grim spirit of Richard Nixon in a stark, black-and-white piece designed extra than a 10 years in advance of the phrase Watergate meant nearly anything to anybody.

Three of Jean Conner's sea-themed collages from 1982 are on display as part of her first solo exhibition at the San Jose Museum of Art, which opened Friday, May 7, 2022. (Sal Pizarro/Bay Area News Group)
A few of Jean Conner’s sea-themed collages from 1982 are on screen as aspect of her 1st solo exhibition at the San Jose Museum of Artwork, which opened Friday, Might 7, 2022. (Sal Pizarro/Bay Region News Group) 

Getting the initial museum to give Conner a solo clearly show is a enormous feather in the cap for the San Jose Museum of Art, and congratulations are thanks to the curatorial workforce led by Curator Rory Padeken and former assistant curator Kathryn Wade. Padeken was a short while ago appointed the curator for contemporary and contemporary artwork at the Denver Artwork Museum, so this is an wonderful way to say farewell to San Jose.

“Jean Conner: Collage” is on display as a result of Sept. 25, and the museum is presently open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. Go to for hrs and ticket price ranges.

MACLA AUCTION HITS THE Road: Anjee Helstrup-Alvarez, government director of MACLA in downtown San Jose, is enthusiastic to convey back the Latinx Artwork Now! Auction in particular person on May possibly 14 for the to start with time due to the fact 2019. And this yr, the 23rd yearly event – showcasing the get the job done of extra than 55 artists in the Bay Place and past – is using spot outdoors at Parque de los Pobladores adjacent to the gallery at 510 S. To start with St.


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