St. Francis of the Guns
Beniamino Bufano, 1898-1970
Following the assassinations of Martin Luther King, Jr., and Senator Robert F. Kennedy in 1968, Mayor Joseph Alioto initiated a voluntary turn-in drive that yielded 2000 handguns. He then commissioned Bufano to use the gunmetal in his sculpture, which he forged in Italy, adding bronze to the gunmetal to keep it from corroding in the city's foggy weather. A mosaic inlay depicts John F. Kennedy, Robert F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Abraham Lincoln, all victims of assassination by handguns, above a multi-racial children's chorus. The sculpture was dedicated by Mayor George Moscone who was himself assassinated by a handgun eighteen months later. It is on permanent loan from the San Francisco Art Commission.
Born in Italy, Bufano taught at the California School of Fine Arts, now the San Francisco Art Institute. Bufano's public sculptures in San Francisco include: "Madonna" at Fort Mason, "St. Francis" at Grace Cathedral, and "Peace" on Brotherhood Way near Lake Merced.
The Goddess of the Forest
Dudley Carter, 1891-1992
Originally 26 feet tall, this piece was carved from a single large redwood log that Carter estimated was over 700 years old. The sculpture represents important principles in totem design, such as shaping creatures to fit the form of the tree and avoiding deep cuts in the wood by adding smaller characters such as the owl and bear.
Carved during "Art in Action," it was given to the city in 1940. Water damage to the piece while it stood in Golden Gate Park has caused it to be shortened. It is now supported with a ribbed structure designed by Carter in 1986. An extensive restoration was completed by Art Department sculptor Roger Baird in 1993. It is on permanent loan from the San Francisco Art Commission.
CCSF Art Students and Faculty
Created as an art project by instructor Alan Brooks for students in Art 2B from 1974 to 1977, it preserves in concrete 300 faces of students and faculty. To make them, molds were made of their faces using plaster of paris. Then the hardened impressions were mounted on plywood and coated with a thin layer of latex. From these forms, casts were made which were filled with concrete for the completed mural panels. The varied features of the faces reflect the diversity of this vast urban campus.
This page was created by Lisa Velarde as part of Debbie Faires' Libr 240 class, Information Technology and Tools, School of Library and Information Science, San Jose State University.