Tuesday, February 19, 2013

SFJAZZ Center Mural Time-Lapse

Artists Sandow Birk and Elyse Pignolet were commissioned by SFJAZZ to create three murals for the SFJAZZ Center. Two of these ceramic tile murals, titled “Jazz and the Nation” and "Jazz and the City” are located in the second floor lobby. They combine to form one overall composition - a fictionalized cityscape made up of influential and important jazz venues from across the United States and San Francisco. They also depict historical images and references of jazz from its roots in African music and the early days of New Orleans' second line traditions to the jazz styles of St. Louis, Kansas City, Chicago, New York, the West Coast, and Europe. The second mural includes great jazz venues and defining moments in the history of San Francisco jazz from the Fillmore District to the dot.com boom.

The third mural, "Jazz and the Afterlife,” is located in the Lester Young Green Room. It is a parody of religious "Judgment Day" murals with club goers going up to a "heaven" of harps and bagpipes or down to a swinging party in a jazz "hell" where horns blast and jazz fans celebrate.

Sandow Birk said, "Since the history and scope of jazz is enormous and couldn't be contained in one mural, we have tried to depict places where jazz happened, to be located in the center where jazz will be happening now."

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