The day began with a gathered group of friends in the Kimball. My dad even came, and he's usually a bit of a rumor at my shows. I'm aware that the de Young is a world class museum, what I also know is that museums in general are trying for a less imposing vibe. Frequently when Native people have been in museums it is in the form of unattributed work and/or ethnographic displays. This month is very different. No one is taking this residency lightly. Having said all of that, we managed to create the atmosphere of a fairly laid back household celebration. Well-known flute player, Ogi, started us off with some music. It was, as usual, inspiring. Kanyon Sayers-Roods welcomed us to Ohlone territory and sang her version of the Grandmother Song. Cathrine Hererra, local Native and filmmaker was present as friend and event archivist. Additionally, there were many friends/artists/family present to help us 'warm' the space. It was stellar. We had guests all the way through really... Jerry Ferraz, local poet, curator of readings and guitar virtuoso made us some music. Our good friend and elder Dav Pate was present in spirit and in the form of some of his work, which will be on display on a rotating basis throughout the month. Mary Jean Robertson, current holder of a Native Local Hero Award and DJ, came around with music on CDs for when the party died down. It really didn't today, but the time may come... I could not have hoped for a better 'first real day in the gallery'.
When the group thinned a bit (as I said it never really cleared) Michael worked on laying out a painting he's doing on a buffalo hide. I picked a bit at this and that (this being tacking his blanket strip down on his piece, and that being a minor flower detail on a piece I'm almost finished with). I'm cutting leather tonight for the jacket I've planned as my main work while in the gallery, but I didn't work on it today (I think my brain was a bit tired from excitement, and also, there is the performance aspect of being present with the work and interacting with the public, it's something that may be a learning curve for me). People were through fairly regularly during the day. From a serial performer's point of view things went well, as there were ultimately at least as many audience members as performers. There is a strange thing about the door to the gallery, however. I'm not sure why, but some people come part way in and seem to think that they are not allowed farther. We're working on a solution to that issue, I suppose it could be that they don't enjoy their first impressions of our collective work. I'm leaning towards a spatial answer.
Towards the end of the day we had one more, very special guest. A female mallard took a walk over from the Pool of Enchantment and peered intently through the window at the gallery. She hung around for a bit and then sauntered back to her pond.
Those familiar with the ebb and flow of SF weather will not be surprised to hear that fog swirled in in mid-afternoon. If you've never seen the fog arrive in the bandstand area of Golden Gate Park, you should really come see. It creates these exciting kinetic geometries. I hope and expect that these will pull some fun shapes out of me. Anyhow, you should come see. You should also stop into the gallery and say hi.. you know, since you're going to be in the area.