San Jose Public Art 
  The Online Newsletter of the City of San Josť Public Art Program 
May 2009  Volume 2, Issue 5
FOR ARTISTS! The San Jose Public Art Program is currently seeking artists for three new projects.  See below for more information.
In This Issue
Remembering Agriculture: A Living Tribute
Public Art Committee: Next Meeting May 19, 2009
New Public Art Projects: 3 Calls-For-Artists
Cultural Vision Plan: June 6 Catalytic Kick-Off
Public Events: May - June 2009
Two Fun Ways to Explore Public Art
View Past Issues of San Jose Public Art
Quick Links
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"Look east, look west--dream miles of blossoms.  Know that the mountains, once called "walls of the garden," sheltered over 200 square miles of orchard and vineyard.  By the 1980s, only a dozen square miles of the orchard remained, the deep alluvial soil and its memories yielding to a new era of computers and chips, asphalt and concrete." Robert Schildgen
These words capture the essence of Remembering Agriculture, an artwork by San Jose artist Tony May. Remembering Agriculture is a living tribute to San Jose's rich agricultural history, the driving force in the economy for more than 150 years.  


Remembering Agriculture recreates the distinctive shapes of those once familiar clusters of farm buildings that have quietly vanished from the Santa Clara Valley.The structures, a water tank tower, a windmill, a barn and a small shed, are intended to be ghost-like and near transparent in their appearance. They also function as arbors for vines and trailing plants that include ivy, honeysuckle and pink roses. Metal tablets containing text by writer Robert Schildgen about the valley's agricultural past are set within the brick paving around the structures. The project elements are intended to transform with time: the tablets will rust, the vines and plantings will mature and change with the seasons, and the structures themselves will disappear beneath the vines, all recalling the image of a farm long abandoned and overgrown with time.
RembAgro half grown viewRemembering Agriculture is on Santa Clara Street between Highway 87 and the Guadalupe River. The intentional interplay between the artwork and stark contrast of the urban elements of the location is intended to serve as a reminder that urban growth over the past 50 years has resulted in the almost complete disappearance of agriculture from the area, and, along with it the canneries, packing plants and fruit drying operations, and the work force: elements that made this one of the most productive agricultural valleys in the world.
Remembering Agriculture was dedicated in October, 1998.

Artist Tony May is a retired San Jose State University professor.

The Public Art Committee will hold its regular monthly meeting on Tuesday, May 19, 2009 at 5:30 PM. The following action items are on the agenda: 

Norman Y. Mineta San Jose International Airport 2008- 2010 Program

1) Concept Proposal for the Large Showcase Platform submitted by ZeroOne (Citywide)

2) Concept Design Proposal for the Concourse Wall Platform by Hess, Diddier, and Glassman (Citywide)

3) Design Development Proposal for the Reactive Wall Platform by Camille Utterback (Citywide)   

Public Art Committee meetings are open to the public. The meeting is in City Hall, 200 E. Santa Clara Street, Room W-119 in the Council Wing.  The meetings are open to the public.
The Public Art Committee, a sub-committee of the Arts Commission, is advisory to the Commission and to San Jose City Council. The Public Art Committee monitors and provides oversight in the artist selection, development and design review of public art projects throughout the City. 
For Artists - Three Calls-For-Artists Currently Open     
Extending the Green Vision - Water Pollution Control and Public Art

The City of San Jose Environmental Services Department is one of the newest clients to the Public Art Program. Current master planning for the San Jose/Santa Clara Water Pollution Control Plant (WPCP) in North San Jose is leading to some very exciting opportunities to integrate art with a very vital function of the infrastructure of San Jose and surrounding municipalities. The City understands water to be a precious resource for both human needs and the environment so ESD is involved in water conservation efforts to support the population and economic growth in San Jose and protect and preserve the environment. The City is also responsible for South Bay Water Recycling. In 2005, the success of SBWR reduced the use of drinking water for non-potable needs by more than 2 billion gallons. Tours are offered to the public regularly and are a fascinating way to learn about the ecology of wastewater management. For further information:www.sanjoseca.gov/esd/
The public art program for the WPCP is being launched this month with two Requests for Qualifications (RFQs):  
1. Photographer-in-residence to document the people, places and operations involved in the daily workings of the Environmental Services Department Storm Water, Water Pollution Control and Water Recycling Services. The photographer-in-residence will spend approximately 20 hours per week documenting the Department's work over a six month period. Open to Bay Area artists. The deadline for artist submittals for this project is June 5, 2009. 
2. Artist to develop interpretive artworks for long-term display at the Water Pollution Control Plant. The interpretive artworks will be an integrative aspect of the current WPCP tours that encourage visitors to reflect upon water conservation and use. The focus of this project will be on the creation of an artwork(s) that enhance the experience of and information about the WPCP provided through the tours. Open to artists nationwide. The deadline for artist submittals for this project is June 19, 2009.
Diridon Station Expansion Plans to Include Public Art
The City of San Jose Department of Transportation is also working with the Public Art Program on an exciting new initiative. As Downtown San Jose continues to be transformed into a vital urban center, the Diridon Station is expected to be its major land-based transit hub. With bus and light rail service, expanded commuter rail, a new BART station, and future high speed rail connections, the study area will also be a key regional hub for the entire Bay Area. As part of the Diridon Station Expansion plan the City has engaged Field Paoli, an urban planning firm, to develop a land use plan for the existing Diridon Station area. The Station Area Plan will establish a strong but flexible planning framework that will create opportunities for Transit Oriented Design at the station area and create a vibrant regional center with high transit use and sense of place. The City of San Jose recognizes and supports the importance of integrating public art and quality design into its planning efforts as a key element of this revitalization and the to realize the highest quality projects possible. 
To that end the City has issued the following RFQ:   
Public artist/team to work as a member of the planning team. The artist will work side-by-side with the various planners and consultants on both the land use plan and the re-use designs for the existing station. This exciting opportunity will develop a framework for the integration of public art as the site is developed over time. Open to artists in California, Washington, Oregon, Nevada and Arizona. The deadline for artist submittals for this project is May 26, 2009.

Public Art Next! the recently adopted public art master plan for San Jose includes specific recommendations for the integration of art and artists into planning efforts by the City, so this is an exciting opportunity to put these into practice. 
The full RFQ for each project may be found on our website at www.sanjoseculture.org/?pid=202.
Please note the deadline for submittal for each project is listed above with each project description.
For questions or additional information, please contact Public Art Program Coordinator Patricia Walsh at (408) 277-5144 ext. 18 or by e-mail at patricia.walsh@sanjoseca.gov.

Help shape the cultural vision for the San Josť General Plan Update!
Please join us for the Catalytic Town Hall Kick-Off of the Cultural Vision Plan.
DATE/TIME: Saturday, June 6 10:00 AM - 2:00 PM. Lunch will be included.
LOCATION: City Hall - Council Chambers and Council Wing Meeting Rooms 120; 200 E. Santa Clara Street.
Please RSVP to rsvpculturalaffairs@sanjoseca.gov  or by calling 408.277.5144 ext. 31 by June 1.
In conjunction with Envision San Jose 2040, the City of San Jose's current effort to update its general master plan, the Office of Cultural Affairs is overseeing development of a Cultural Vision Plan. The Cultural Vision Plan will be a high level set of goals and strategies to integrate into Envision San Jose 2040 that will also function as a stand alone plan. It is a noteworthy milestone that for the first time in San Jose's history, the City's general master plan will include an arts and culture element that will serve as a cultural development blueprint for the next 10-15 years. 
Guiding principles of the Cultural Vision Plan will include the public value of the arts, arts and economic prosperity, cultural participation, cultural pluralism, and innovation - all viewed as strengths of the civic and cultural life of San Jose and Silicon Valley. The planning process will take place over the coming months, with the goal of having the Cultural Vision Plan completed in the Spring, 2010.
The Catalytic Town Hall Kick-Off will be a structured forum in which community members as well as civic and cultural leaders will help shape and inform the cultural vision for San Jose.
We hope you will join us. Your participation will make a difference in this milestone effort. Please be sure to RSVP by June 1 to rsvpculturalaffairs@sanjoseca.gov


Meetings, Dedications, Celebrations, Lectures, Exhibits & More  

 Current listings for  May - June 2009 as of newsletter distribution  

Envision 2040: Community Meeting for City's General Plan Update
Date/Time: Wednesday, May 20, 2009; 6:30 - 8:00 PM
Location: Roosevelt Community Center; 901 East Santa Clara Street 
The purpose of the community meeting is to obtain feedback on where job and housing growth will occur in the City over the next 30 years. Input from the community will inform and influence the Envision San Josť 2040 Task Force and City Council decisions on where to locate growth. The Cultural Vision Plan will integrate into Envision 2040.

Cultural Vision Plan: Catalytic Town Hall Kick-Off
Date/Time: Saturday, June 6, 2009; 10:00 AM - 2:00 PM
Location: City Hall; 200 East Santa Clara Street; Council Chambers & Council Wing meeting rooms 
Please refer to the preceding newsletter article for detailed information about the Catalytic Town Hall Kick-Off of the Cultural Vision Plan, the arts and cultural element of Envision 2040.


A free exhibit that explores the history and art of cycling in the South Bay, San Jose City Hall's City Windows Gallery, 4th & Santa Clara Streets, in Downtown San Jose.   
W Valley Library Artichoke ArtBike Show is a range of expressions of the enthusiasm for bicycling found in the Silicon Valley environs, both historic and contemporary. From locally-made custom bicycles and finely-crafted bicycle parts to historic images and cycles demonstrating San Jose's long association with cycling, to more artful expressions of the sport.The exhibit is scheduled through June 2009.

bike show image


SPEED CITY - FROM CIVIL RIGHTS TO BLACK POWER: an exhibition presented in conjunction with History San Jose that presents a broad view of context of the runners, their lives and their controversial actions during the 1968 Olympics, curated by Urla Hill. On exhibit in the Council Wing 1st Floor Corridor Gallery continues into Spring 2009.

SHIFTING PERSPECTIVES - PUBLIC ART IN SAN JOSE: An exhibition highlighting a range of aspects of public art in San Jose, many of which are usually not seen. On exhibit in the City Hall Tower Foyer Gallery continues into Spring 2009.  

POSTCARDS FROM LAKE CUNNINGHAM: Vintage images from a beloved historic San Jose location, on display in the 18th Floor Lobby Gallery (Tower) through July 2009.  


Create your own walking tour!

Here are two ways you can enjoy public art in Downtown San Jose.
DOWNTOWN PUBLIC ART MAP - Updated 2009 Edition Now Available!
The San Jose Public Art Program's  colorful, informative map of public art projects in downtown San Jose has recently been updated. The 2009 Downtown Public Art Map is a fun and easy ways to see public in downtown San Jose.
Use it to create your own walking tour and include opportunities to stop and enjoy other features in the district including museums, galleries and restaurants.  
The Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Library includes an award-winning collection of more than 34 site-specific public artworks in locations throughout the library. Finding them is a process of exploration, discovery and is filled with surprises! A free colorful detailed brochure is available from the San Jose Public Art Program that will help you appreciate this extraordinary collection.  
You can request a free copy of the 2009 Downtown Public Art Map or the Recolecciones - Library Art Collection brochure. Please e-mail your request to  publicart@sanjoseca.gov, and include your mailing address.
You can also access a printable pdf version of the Downtown Public Art Map on the Public Art webpage of the Office of Cultural Affairs website at
San Jose Downtown Public Art Map.
Visit the online archive to view past issues! 
Current and past issues of San Jose Public Art can now be viewed on the Office of Cultural Affairs website on the Public Art webpages.
Go to www.sanjoseculture.org
San Josť Public Art is the way to keep connected and informed. Please stay with us for future editions.

We welcome your comments, ideas and suggestions. You can e-mail us at publicart@sanjoseca.gov.
Please forward this to people you know who might like to keep informed about public art in San Josť.