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Ex-Military Bunkers to Host Major Group Exhibition in San Francisco

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Battery Boutelle, one of five 'Home Land Security' exhibition sites overlooking the Golden Gate Bridge (Photo: Nina Dietzel)

Former military structures overlooking the San Francisco Bay will be transformed into the setting for Home Land Security — a free, large-scale art show this fall on the theme of security.

The non-profit art organization behind the wildly popular Ai Wei Wei show on Alcatraz in 2014 — the FOR-SITE Foundation — has invited 16 big name contemporary artists from nine different countries to create art installations in five of the long-abandoned bunkers located at Fort Winfield Scott and the Presidio in San Francisco.

The National Park Service, which is partnering with FOR-SITE alongside the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy and the Presidio Trust to mount the exhibition, is opening a few of these structures to the public for the first time.

‘Mosque III (After National Mosque of Nigeria, Abuja),’ 2010; 'tank-killer' missiles, bullets, brass, steel, gun trigger; 25 x 29 x 31 in.
One of the works featured in the upcoming ‘Homeland Security’ show: ‘Mosque III (After National Mosque of Nigeria, Abuja),’ 2010; ‘tank-killer’ missiles, bullets, brass, steel, gun trigger; 25 x 29 x 31 in. (Photo: Jock McDonald/Courtesy Al Farrow and Catharine Clark Gallery, San Francisco)

Work by internationally known artists including American video artist Bill Viola, American installation artist Liza Lou and Korean sculptor Do Ho Suh, as well as Bay Area artists such as Al Farrow, Trevor Paglen and Michele Pred, will reflect on the impact of security issues on our lives. The exhibition will include pieces created in a wide variety of media including painting, sculpture, performance, and video.

Former Bay Area military outposts have been used for artistic purposes before, though this happens quite rarely. FOR-SITE previously did a show the mark the 75th anniversary of the Golden Gate Bridge in 2012 at Fort Point (International Orange), and the Headlands Center for the Arts in Marin used to be the home of Fort Barry.


Home Land Security runs Sept. 10 — Dec. 18 at five sites in Fort Winfield Scott and the Presidio in San Francisco. Details here.

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