San Francisco Artists on the Horizon

The exhibition, San Francisco Artists on the Horizon, curated by Micaela van Zwoll from Micaela Contemporary Projects, opens at the Résidence de France on Wednesday, 24 April, 2019 with a cocktail reception from 6 to 8 pm.

Featuring the work of JP Long, Silvia Poloto, and William C. Rolf, San Francisco Artists on the Horizon is an exciting collaboration of artists who use innovative materials and ideas to address classical notions of visual beauty.

JP Long. C2H2 26 (2016). Carbon and Canvas. 48 x 62 x 2 in.

JP Long. C2H2 26 (2016). Carbon and Canvas. 48 x 62 x 2 in.

JP Long is a young father (his first son was born on March 3, 2019), sculptor and artist whose Oakland based art practice transitioned from jewelry/metal arts studies at California College of the Arts to large outdoor sculptures. For this exhibition, he presents us with expressive paintings derived from his use of flame and metal deposits on canvas.

Long's career launched in the mid-2000s with a series of large glass-and-steel sculptures to which he added planes of color, and developed a series of canvasses featuring oxidation and carbon patterns. Native aesthetics and a modernist and geometric approach to sculpture invite notions of serendipity and structure. When considering the artist’s practice of control in relation to his work with glass and sculpture, the unpredictable oxidation and carbon patterns in this canvas series is a beautiful two dimensional addition to his practice.

Silvia Poloto. Wabi-Sabi 49, 2018. Mixed media. 80 x 80 in.

Silvia Poloto. Wabi-Sabi 49, 2018. Mixed media. 80 x 80 in.

Silvia Poloto, originally from Brazil, is a dynamic and charismatic artist in San Francisco. Working on a large and visually rich scale, her work is abstract and mesmerizing, invoking the natural cycles of her personal life.

She states, “the context for this work to emerge and speak began when I was architecting and designing my home after a period of great change and tragedy.”

“The relationship between my-self and the structure was felt, was lived, as if I were inside one of my paintings - from the outside in, from the inside out, me and the empty space, me and the objects, how the objects were placed and in return placed me, the relationship among each other and the negative space around it.”

“I became an active part of the space as much as a passive one, as I experienced myself having total control over it while having no control at all, as if experiencing all as potentiality, and ultimately creativity as creation and co-creation.”

“The result was a breathing space for the eye and mind, surrounded by the sea and the sky, with inner and outer vistas merging and emerging. Being became becoming, in lived experience, in open space, and attachments became vapor.”

“What I sought with my living space, and continues with my artwork, is a kind of essential refined simplicity reduced to the extreme, understated and unassuming yet with active presence, dynamic possibility and quiet authority. A breathing space for essence to emerge.”

William C. Rolf. Enroute to a meeting. Archival photograph. Framed.

William C. Rolf. Enroute to a meeting. Archival photograph. Framed.

There is no question about William C. Rolf’s avocation as a true Francophile! Rolf's life-long affection for European life styles of the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries gift the viewer with a sense of elegance and gentility through his photographs. While recent images are an exploration of trend-setting architectural statements, Rolf also developed photographic essays of notable architectural elements found in the monumental structures of Versailles, the Centre George Pompidou, and the geometric gardens of the Chateau de Sceaux.

Rolf’s photographic sensibility is refined, warm, and humorous, as seen in his images of the Deyrolle collection, where he juxtaposed surprising elements within the beautiful interiors of a revered natural science institution.

When designing this exhibition, the curator took into consideration the use of the Résidence de France as a site of public and private meetings directed by the Consul General of France. Given the exceptional views of San Francisco from the reception rooms, the curatorial mission became a question of how to marry the work of local artists with ideas that might surface during the course of developing relationships in these rooms. In response, we invited the artists, JP Long, Silvia Poloto, and William C. Rolf, to work with us. Their work is at once abstract in concept and execution, yet representational, of the multi-cultural demographic of San Francisco.

2019Micaela van Zwoll