Sunday, July 13, 2014

Arts at the Airport - Galleries and Wall Art at San Francisco International Airport (SFO)

SFO- MuseumDuring my recent travel abroad, I had extra time between check-in and boarding time so I was able to do what I've always wanted to do at San Francisco International airport. 

That is, to check out the airport gallery and art displays dotting the Main Hall departure area. What I discovered is neat and tasteful  collection of wall art and artifacts.

The Bay Area Rapid Transit, or BART, stops at the San Francisco International airport (SFO). At the end of the station is the International terminal. On the other end, the escalators take you to an automated people mover called Airtrain and takes to to the domestic terminals.

SFO - BART station

Here's a view of the main hall.

I don't know how often they change the galleries at the airport. The good thing about SFO is that it is not Disneyland-like just like the other airports outside the States. You won't see a cable car moving inside the airport or a Golden Gate Bridge in the Main Hall. In a lot of ways, I am glad they didn't make the airport look like a theme park. SFO has tasteful and not overwhelming displays to make airport visits and waiting a memorable one. 
SFO - International terminal

One of the galleries at the airport is called Doors: Entryways to World Cultures. It is behind the check-in terminals and between Boarding Gates A and G. I thought this collection is so fitting to be at an airport because both stand for being entryways. There were lots of doors on display but I'll just put a couple in this blog.

SFO- Doors

Door, early to mid-1900s
Igbo peoples
Inyi, Nigeria
Carved Wood
Fowler Museum at UCLA. Gift of Herbert and Shelley Cole
SFO- Door Igbo Inyi Nigeria

Door, early to mid-1900s
Senufo peoples
Ivory Coast
Carved Wood
Fowler Museum at UCLA. Gift of the Goldenberg Family Trust.
SFO - Door Senufo Ivory Coast

Granary Door, early 1900s
Toba Batak peoples
North Sumatra province, Sumatra, Indonesia
Carved Wood
Fowler Museum at UCLA. Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Richard B. Rogers.
SFO - Toba Batak Indonesia

Another gallery on display at SFO is called Lace: A Sumptuous History. The gallery is next to the Boarding Area A.  I do not see the relations with airports but it is equally enjoyable to see. Like the Doors gallery, the Lace gallery has lots of laces on display. I'll just include a couple of artifacts in this blog.
SFO - Lace

Early Laces
Early 1600s to late 1700s
Collection of Lace Museum, Sunnyvale, Ca.
Collection of Lacis Museum of Lace and Textiles, Berkeley, Ca.
SFO - Lace Early Laces

Filet Laces
Early 1900s
United States
Collection of Lacis Museum of Lace and Textiles, Berkeley, Ca.
SFO - Lace Filet Lace

Apron, c. 1890
Point de Gaze needle lace
Collection of Lacis Museum of Lace and Textiles, Berkeley, Ca.
SFO - Lace Apron Point de Gaze Belgium

Behind the Doors gallery and near the restrooms, you can find this sweeping wall art called Gateway by Korean American Ik-Joong Kang.

Gateway, c. 2000
Ik-Joong Kang
Mixed media on canvas, wood, ceramic tile,
found objects in cast acrylic
Collection of the City and County of San Francisco
Commissioned by the San Francisco Arts Commission and the
Airport Commission for the San Francisco International Airport
SFO - Gateway

Here's a side view of the Gateway. 
SFO - Gateway side view

Here's an upclose view of the Gateway. I like how random the small tiled paintings are. I have to see this again and spend more time to see what the little paintings contain.
SFO - Gateway close up

Here's a mural at Gate 98. I couldn't find the name of the mural and the artist.
SFO - Mural G98

Here's a view of the ticketing machine at the BART station.
SFO - Bart ticket machine

I made a mental note to always check the galleries whenever I am at the airport.

The next time you are at the airport and have time to spare before boarding time, you know what to do.


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