Sunday, August 21, 2016
San Francisco of Modern Art
Long ago in 2010 I wrote a post about a photography exhibit at SFMOMA devoted to Henri Cartier-Bresson, and received an email from the museum requesting that I take down a few photos which were under some serious copyright restrictions from the Carter-Bresson estate. They also informed me that SF MoMA was the wrong way to refer to the museum, and that the correct branding was SFMOMA, all caps, no spaces. Having worked in corporate graphics departments most of my life, I was sympathetic, and the lowly person in the P.R. department who sent that email was sweet and charming in the wording of their request.
The huge new building addition at SFMOMA necessitated by the donation of the late Donald Fisher's massive modern art collection just reopened this year in May, and it looks as if the reconstituted P.R. department is no longer engaging in due diligence. A new signage campaign has just been installed on MUNI buses encouraging people to take the 14 Rapid bus from the Mission downtown to the newly reopened SFMOMA. The only problem is that somebody not only got the SFMOMA branding wrong, but they forgot the word "Museum." Happy Mission District families of color are being encouraged to take the 14 Rapid to the "New San Francisco of Modern Art." That should be the name of a local art movement.