La Jolla Community Foundation sets sail with mural no. 6


By Susan DeMaggio

The sixth in a series of possibly a dozen public artworks in the La Jolla Community Foundation’s Murals of La Jolla project is being installed this week on the Citibank building at 7900 Herschel Ave.

It should be finished early next week, said the foundation’s executive director, Charlene Pryor.

The 48 x 48 foot mural titled, ‘the sea,’ by Ann Hamilton, will be mounted on the west side of the building. The Hamilton installation will face mural no. 5, Ryan McGinness’ “53 Women,” which is on the rear wall of 1111 Prospect St., near Hotel Parisi.

“There’s even more exciting news ahead for the murals project,” said Phyllis Pfeiffer, chair of the La Jolla Community Foundation, who is also publisher of the La Jolla Light. “An anonymous donor with links to a Foundation in Boston would like to underwrite the seventh mural, which will be located in Bird Rock at the La Jolla Independent BMW Services building at 5535 La Jolla Blvd.”

Pfeiffer said the murals project art selection committee is busy identifying an artist for this project.

“ the sea ” has the selection committee delighted.

“It’s stunning, gorgeous,” said Lynda Forsha. “For a large scale work, it is subtle, mysterious, atmospheric. We believe residents and visitors alike are going to love it.”

Ann Hamilton was born June 22, 1956 in Lima, Ohio. She is a contemporary artist best known for her installations, textile art and sculptures, but also is active in the fields of photography, printmaking, video and video installation.

She trained in textile design at the University of Kansas and later received an MFA from Yale University in sculpture. She taught at the University of California at Santa Barbara from 1985 to 1991 and won the MacArthur Fellowship in 1993.

In 1999, Hamilton was the American representative to the Venice Biennale with an installation of walls embossed with Braille, which caught a red powder as the substance slid down from above.

Allegheny Riverfront Park in Pittsburgh, Pa. is one of her major commissions.

Hamilton was named a 2007 Agnes Gund Foundation Fellow and awarded a $50,000 grant by United States Artists, a public charity that supports and promotes the work of American artists. In 2008, she won the 14th Annual Heinz Award for Arts and Humanities. She teaches at the Ohio State University and lives in Columbus.

The Murals of La Jolla project also includes Kim MacConnel’s “Girl from Ipanema” (Lapiz Building on Drury Lane between Silverado and Kline Street); Roy McMakin’s “Favorite Color” (7596 Eads Ave.); Anya Gallaccio’s “Surf’s Up” (7540-7542 Fay Ave.); and John Baldessari’s “Brain/Cloud (with Seascape and Palm Tree)” (1250 Prospect St., view from La Jolla Cove).

The art selection committee includes Mary Beebe (director of UCSD’s Stuart Collection), Matt Browar (art collector), Hugh Davies (director of the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego), Erika Torri (director of the Athenaeum), Lynda Forsha (independent curator), Michael Krichman (executive director, inSite), and Mark Quint (owner, Quint Contemporary Art)

Ann Hamilton in her own words about ‘at sea’

2012, 44 ½ x 44 ½’

this image - of a ship - wind in its sails - is the image of a figure set on the horizon on a course charted for places unknown

it floats isolated in the oceanic - abstracted - untethered - in between home port and eventual destination

suspended in the moment of crossing from a “here” to a “there”

a still photograph from a journey - is a moment - fixed in the time of its perpetual present

we chart our path, know up from down, land from water, and take our bearings from the horizon - we perceive it as fixed but know by tides, by sun and moon that everything is in motion

similarly - we entrust photographs to fix a moment in time while knowing that memory is remade and turned over by the current moment

an image then - like memory is both a reality and an illusion

like a ship placed into weather - it entrusts to fate what the journey might find

the process of making it was, similarly, an act of finding

like a stylus - a small surveillance camera - an eye - steadied and directed by the hand - moved across the surface of the photograph

its seeing returns time to what was fixed in time - the hand takes the journey the body cannot make

just as the boat is suspended in its journey across

so the image holds all the possibilities of being between that is the period of a pendulum or a swing

it is a suspension which acknowledges the weather but perches in everything that might be

it is a past, a present and a future, a dream and a hope

heading into the turbulences that gathers on its horizon

Want to Know More?

• Watch a PBS interview with Ann Hamilton:

• Contact La Jolla Community Foundation: