California Today: In San Francisco, Public Art Soars High Into the Skyline

 

California Today: In San Francisco, Public Art Soars High Into the Skyline

By David Streitfeld and Charles McDermid

May 22, 2018

Good morning.

The Salesforce Tower, the second tallest building west of the Mississippi, has already redefined the San Francisco skyline. Now it will take the concept of public art to new heights.

Starting tonight, 11,000 LEDs will project an ever-changing visual display on the six-story crown of the building. The screen will be fed in part by cameras around the city that survey the bay, the weather and activity in a local park.

Jim Campbell, the artist in charge, calls it “Day for Night.” As the city winds down for the evening, it will catch a glimpse of where it has been.

“The images will be very abstract — clouds, ocean waves,” Mr. Campbell said. “I don’t like street scenes much because they have the feel of a security camera.” But he’s also experimenting with prerecorded images, including dancers from Alonzo King Lines Ballet, a local company.

“A typical model for public art is that you deal with the surroundings — the community and the environment,” Mr. Campbell said. “That has to be thrown away here. You can’t even see ‘Day for Night’ from the immediate surroundings. The skyline is the context.”

Mr. Campbell, a longtime San Francisco resident, studied mathematics and engineering at MIT. He became a filmmaker and in the mid-1980s started doing interactive video installations. “Day for Night” is a nod to the 1973 Francois Truffaut movie, whose title refers to a process for shooting night scenes during daylight.

His project, best viewed from a mile or two away, has nothing to do with Salesforce. It stems from a developer requirement to fund public art in the downtown core. In a city that is getting a reputation for being all about money, Mr. Campbell’s high-profile work has the chance to give new luster to less crass concerns.

“I’m hoping for a lot of different reactions but I don’t want it to be a spectacle,” he said. “The other night, when we were testing, it became clear that the color that works best is amber. It makes sense, it blends right in. San Francisco’s skyline is amber.”

California Online

(Please note: We regularly highlight articles on news sites that have limited access for nonsubscribers.)

 

Although allegations of improper conduct against Dr. George Tyndall dated back to the 1990s, he was allowed to continue working at the University of Southern California’s student health center until 2016.CreditJenna Schoenefeld for The New York Times

• “This is only going to grow.” Five women filed lawsuits against the University of Southern California, alleging that the school’s former gynecologist had sexually abused them during medical examinations and that the university failed to protect students. [The New York Times]

• The San Bernardino County district attorney asked Gov. Jerry Brown to deny a death row inmate’s request for clemency and further DNA testing in his conviction for a 1983 Chino Hills homicide. [Orange County Register]

• An update in the Aliso Viejo explosion: Stephen Beal, 59, who was arrested on an explosives charge after a blast killed his ex-girlfriend last week at her day spa in Southern California, was ordered held without bail. [A.P.]

• Attorney General Xavier Becerra filed an appeal to a court ruling that overturned the state’s assisted suicide law. [The Sacramento Bee]

 Alerting undocumented migrants to federal immigration sweeps could mean jail time for leaders of sanctuary cities under a bill proposed by Representative Steve King of Iowa. The Republican named the bill the Mayor Libby Schaaf Act, after the Oakland mayor who this year tipped off the Bay Area to a sweep. [The Washington Times]

• What once was a grand tradition in Oakland — a party at Lake Merritt along a placid stretch of the San Francisco Bay — had new life on Sunday, as locals gathered for a picnic called “BBQing While Black.” [The New York Times]

 A “bizarre” police chase that began in Anaheim and topped speeds of 100 miles per hour across three counties ended when the driver abandoned the vehicle, while the driver of a second vehicle raced off and was detained. [The Press-Enterprise]

 Attorney General Xavier Becerra was accused of illegally filming political ads inside the Supreme Court building in Sacramento by his election rival Dave Jones, the state insurance commissioner. Mr. Becerra’s campaign said it had a permit to film and criticized the “desperate attempt” by Mr. Jones’s “floundering campaign.” [San Francisco Chronicle]

• Is this Oakland developer building sorely needed housing — or dropping gentrification bombs? [San Francisco magazine]

 In San Diego, a judge authorized crews to remove tents and makeshift shelters left on public property in the downtown area for more than three hours during the day. [San Diego Union-Tribune]

 A San Francisco man was killed in an Uber car while celebrating his one-year anniversary with his wife in Napa Valley. [Napa Valley Register]

merlin_138464562_9ce92b74-7b1f-4b61-b756-6d05f898dc3e-jumbo.jpg

 The Angels’ two-way star Shohei Ohtani, above, has emerged as a dominant force on the mound. The 23-year-old is also hitting .321 with six home runs and 17 runs batted in in only 84 at-bats. [Los Angeles Times]

 A violent storm some 375 miles south of New Zealand produced a 78-foot wave, the largest ever recorded in the Southern Hemisphere. The waves from that storm will hit the Central Coast today and tomorrow. [San Luis Obispo Tribune]

• Braden Richardson, 23, of Jasper, Tex., won the bull-riding competition at the Redding Rodeo. The all-around cowboy award went to Jordan Ketscherof Squaw Valley. [Record Searchlight]

 And Tim Hardaway, who played point guard for the Warriors from 1989 to 1996, was inducted into the Bay Area Sports Hall of Fame. Also among the five inductees was Matt Cain, the former Giants pitcher, and Brandi Chastain, the former U.S. national soccer player. [SFGate]

And Finally ...

 

21Eveningbriefing-slide-5LQK-jumbo.jpg

The Indian-owned Morongo Casino Resort and Spa near Cabazon is one of dozens of California casinos that leaders of the Indian tribes say are legally entitled to play a major role in sports betting.CreditDavid McNew/Getty Images

State officials from California to Connecticut spent last week maneuvering for control of the tens of billions of dollars in projected revenue from sports betting, and joining them was another group of powerful gambling operators aiming to claim their piece of the action: American Indian tribes.

In California, dozens of Indian-owned casinos generate close to $8 billion in annual revenue, the most of any state, giving the tribes enormous influence over the gambling industry.

California also allows forms of gambling in two other areas that are interwoven with the state’s history: horse racing, which was legalized in 1933, and card rooms, of which there are close to 90 across the state and which trace their heritage to poker-playing miners during the Gold Rush.

Read the whole article here.

California Today goes live at 6 a.m. Pacific time weekdays. Tell us what you want to see: CAtoday@nytimes.com.

California Today is edited by Julie Bloom, who grew up in Los Angeles and graduated from U.C. Berkeley.