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Artful Animals, Part 1

November 17, 2012April 28, 2013

Since the dawn of time, human beings have been fascinated with the animal world. Depictions of animals are some of the earliest known artistic efforts, dating back to the Paleolithic Era. And this interest has never abated. From sustenance to companionship, animals play a variety of roles in our lives and inspire a range of emotions—fear, love, awe—as well as a host of symbolic associations.

composite camel

Anonymous Indian artist. Composite Camel, 19th century. Miniature. Achenbach Foundation for Graphic Arts. 1963.24.694 

Royal Treasures from the Louvre: Louis XIV to Marie-Antoinette

November 17, 2012March 31, 2013

The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco present an unparalleled collection of decorative arts from the Musée du Louvre, Paris, including some of the most exquisite treasures of the French monarchy from the time of Louis XIV until the Revolution of 1789.

Ticket Information 

Adults $20, Seniors 65+ $17, Students with current ID $16, Youths 13-17 $10 and Members and Children 12 and under are free.

Order tickets online

Groups of 10 or more have access to priority booking and private tours. Contact the group sales office at groupsales@famsf.org or 415.750.3620.

Exhibition organized by the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco with the exceptional collaboration of the Musée du Louvre.

Grand Patrons
Cynthia Fry Gunn and John A. Gunn

Major Patron
San Francisco Auxiliary of the Fine Arts Museums

Louvre Circle
Mr. and Mrs. Adolphus Andrews, Jr.
Stephanie Ejabat
Richard B. Gump Trust
Mr. and Mrs. William Hamilton
Mr. and Mrs. Kevin C. Lynch

The luxury hotel sponsor is Taj Campton Place.

The catalogue is published with the assistance of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Endowment for Publications.

Royal Treasures from the Louvre

L: Portrait of Louis XIV, 17th century. Goldsmith-jeweler: Laurent Tessier Montarsy (?–1684). Miniature painting, silver, and diamond. Inv.: OA12280. Photo: Jean-Gilles Berizzi. C: Agate ewer. Paris, c. 1650. Enamelled gold mount. Entered the collection of Louis XIV before 1673. Inv.: MR231. Photo: Jean-Gilles Berizzi. R: Bust of Marie-Antoinette. Commissioned by Prince Alexandre Kourakine. 1782. Hard-paste porcelain. Inv.: OA10898. Photo: Peter Harholdt.

René Bouché: Letters from Post-War Paris

July 14, 2012October 14, 2012

In 1940, art director and fashion illustrator René Bouché (1905-1963) left war-torn Paris for New York and became a regular contributor to Vogue magazine. In 1945, Vogue commissioned Bouché, who was an art director and fashion illustrator in Paris before World War II, to cover the first post-war couture shows in Paris. The trip to Europe was traumatic for the artist, who discovered a people struggling to regain normalcy after the war.

René Bouché

L: René Robert Bouché, “La Parisienne,” from The Morning After, Paris, 1945. Pen, ink, and color wash. Gift of Denise B. Fitch in memory of my late husband, René Robert Bouché (1905–1963). 2010.61.2.13. R: René Robert Bouché, "5 o'clock beer—cherchez la femme, never mind where and how" from The Morning After, Paris, 1945. Pen, ink and color wash on paper  Gift of Denise B. Fitch in memory of my late husband, René Robert Bouché (1905–1963). 2010.61.2.15

Marcel Duchamp: The Book and the Box

Reva and David Logan Gallery of Illustrated Books
July 14, 2012November 11, 2012

The rarely seen Boîte en Valise (1941) and Sur Marcel Duchamp (1959) take center stage in this small-focus exhibition featuring seven artworks by Marcel Duchamp (1877–1968) that refuse to conform to traditional bibliographic structure, hovering between book, objet d’art, and sculpture. The Boîte for example is a leather suitcase that contains miniature replicas, photographs, and color reproductions of Duchamp’s other works.

Marcel Duchamp

Marcel Duchamp, Self-Portrait in Profile, from Sur Marcel Duchamp/Eau et gaz à tous les étages by Robert Lebel (Paris: Editions Trianon, 1959). Torn-paper collage. Museum Purchase, Reva and David Logan Collection of Illustrated books, Reva and David Logan Fund. 2001.19.3

Gifts from the Gods: Art and the Olympic Ideal

July 28, 2012June 23, 2013

Plato considered both art and athletics to be gifts from the gods, and the connection between art and sports in ancient Greece can be viewed as an aspect of its religious beliefs as well as its competitive spirit. Every fourth year for a thousand years, from 776 BC to AD 395, the pageantry of the Olympic festival attracted citizens from all over the Greek world. The Games at Olympia were held in honor of Zeus, and a visit to these competitions was also a pilgrimage.


Support for the exhibition is provided by Richard Beleson in memory of the 1972 Israeli Olympic Team.

Red-figure Kylix (detail). Greek, Athens, 440−430 bc. Painter of London E 777 Painter. Terracotta. Interior: Two athletes. Exterior: Athletes conversing. Gift of the Queen of Greece through Alma de Bretteville Spreckels. 1925.346.16

Man Ray | Lee Miller: Partners in Surrealism

July 14, 2012October 14, 2012

Man Ray |Lee Miller: Partners in Surrealism consists of approximately 115 photographs, paintings, drawings and manuscripts that explore the creative interaction between Man Ray and Lee Miller, two giants of European Surrealism. This is the first exhibition to focus exclusively on the pair’s artistic relationship. It also includes selected works by artists in Ray and Miller’s circle in Paris, including paintings by Pablo Picasso, Max Ernst, Roland Penrose, Dora Maar, and a small sculpture by Alexander Calder.

Ticket Information 

Adults $15; seniors 65+ $12; youths 13–17 and students with current ID $11; free for members and children 12 and under.

Man Ray|Lee Miller: Partners in Surrealism is organized by the Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Massachusetts. 

Observatory Time—The Lovers

Man Ray (1890–1976). A l’heure de l’observatoire—les amoureux (Observatory Time—The Lovers), c. 1931; color photograph, 1964, after the original oil painting. The Israel Museum, Jerusalem. © 2011 Man Ray Trust/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/ADAGP, Paris. Photo © The Israel Museum by Avshalom Avital

Bernini's Medusa

November 17, 2011March 4, 2012

Musei Capitolini in Rome are lending San Francisco one of their greatest treasures, the remarkable Baroque masterpiece The Medusa by Gian Lorenzo Bernini (1598–1680), one of art history’s finest sculptors and a leading figure in Italian Baroque art and architecture. Recent conservation efforts have restored this sculptural triumph to its full glory and revealed previously hidden artistic techniques.

Press Release 

This loan is made possible by Sovraintendenza ai Beni Culturali di Roma Capitale—Musei Capitolini. George and Judy Marcus are the exclusive sponsors of the exhibition.

Gian Lorenzo Bernini, The Medusa, 1640s. Carrara marble. Musei Capitolini, Rome

Program Support

To support our mission, the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco offer an extensive array of education and public programs for audiences of all ages that complement our special exhibitions and permanent collections.

Favorite Things: An Exhibition of Artist Books in Memory of David Logan, 1918–2011

August 6, 2011February 12, 2012

The Reva and David Logan Gallery of Illustrated Books was one of David Logan’s favorite things. In 1998, Logan and his wife, Reva, gave their outstanding collection of more than 300 modern artist books to the Fine Arts Museums; their generous gift was celebrated that year in a newly constructed gallery named for them at the Legion of Honor. Since then, the gallery has been devoted to exhibitions celebrating the excellence and diversity of the artist book, a unique art form that combines text with art (usually in the form of original prints) to form a unified whole.

Favorite Things: An Exhibition of Artist Books  in Memory of David Logan

Above: Joan Miró, pages from À toute épreuve (Proof Against All), by Paul Éluard (Geneva: Gérald Cramer, 1958). Color woodcuts. FAMSF, Museum purchase, Reva and David Logan Collection of Illustrated Books, Reva and David Logan Fund, Prints and Drawings Art Trust Fund, Fine Arts Museums Foundation Auction Proceeds, Unrestricted Art Trust Fund. Artwork © 2011 Successió Miró / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris


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