While living in the South of Market, Patricia Araujo was a witness to many of the changes taking place in this redeveloping neighborhood. Her fascination with domes, towers, sacred and municipal structures began with daily observations of the Golden Gate Theatre at Sixth and Market. Her beautiful book gracefully captures the mixture of architectural styles characteristic of downtown San Francisco in the twenty-first century.
“Araujo echoes the discipline and practicality of architectural drawing but also evokes the surreal quality of Giorgio De Chirico's urban dreamscapes. Her paintings and drawings portray such survivors of Beaux-Arts San Francisco as the Hibernia Bank building, the Palace Hotel, and the Ukrainian Orthodox Church at Folsom and Seventh Streets as being at once old and new”.
“In this book, as in downtown San Francisco, the nineteenth century lives on in the service of the twenty-first. All that is left of The Emporium, a department store built in the 1890s, is its splendid classical dome, which sits atop the almost parodistically classicizing interior of the Westfield San Francisco shopping center.”
“Araujo reminds us that the buildings of our cities' commercial neighborhoods were architects' fantasies before they became assertive new realities and then, after the passage of time, objects of nostalgia. All three stages of that evolution live side by side in this book. These paintings and drawings depict praiseworthy examples of San Francisco architecture, some utilitarian and others grandly ornamental. The book as a whole reaffirms the city's daydream of itself as a uniquely beautiful amalgam of past and present.” Jerome Tarshis, Art Critic
SOMA SEEN presents 13 drawings and 22 paintings, dated from 2002 to present, and full color illustrations. Also accompanied are candid photos by Patricia of the places which in turn became the basis for the SOMA series. All art work, text and photography by Patricia Araujo. Foreword by Wilma Parker. (80 pages total).
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