Jun
29
to Sep 30

Bella Sosis: Opens Saturday, June 29th

Bella Sosis

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Opening: Saturday, June 29th, 4pm - 7pm

The Pauline Kael - Jess Murals House

2419 Oregon St, Berkeley, CA

Please join us this Saturday, June 29 from 4:00 - 7:00pm in celebrating the opening of Bella Sosis's first solo exhibition.

What is important in Bella Sosis’ art is the work itself and the process that is made visible and palpable. Though it may seem like her work is purely concerned with formalist pursuits, this is not the case. Deep down, Bella cares deeply about what she puts out into the world, perhaps too much.

What shows in her work is a process of doubt that leads to perfection. Through her own personal uncertainty, Bella finds clarity. Her work attempts to answer the question of if and when a work is ever done -- does it need layer upon layer, like her oil “skins,” or is a quick pass all that’s needed? To show her confusions and suspicions in her inability to choose is how Bella makes her work, whether it is through an insatiable labor or through a momentary impulse, both actions are full of vitality.

While Bella’s process leads us to believe she is a perfectionist, she heroically seems to know when to stop and exactly how to let the spirit and soul of her representational efforts ebb through, and onto the surface. Bella bravely bares her stream of consciousness to us all.

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Bella Sosis (b. 1991, Chicago, IL) was raised by her parents and her extended family from Soviet Ukraine, outside of Chicago. Her early years were spent with her great grandmother and great grandfather, who encouraged her as an artist and hung her work in their apartment. 

When she was twelve years old, she was diagnosed with a severe case of Crohn's disease that kept her out of school for week long stays at the hospital. Bella had to drop out of school for her freshman year of high school due to the severity of the illness, which she believes forced and early disillusionment. 

Bella would go on to graduate from UC Berkeley in 2015 with a BFA. Though many of her works in the past were figurative, inspired by Richard Diebenkorn and David Park, she has found herself more intrigued by organic and abstract works. Lately, "unfinished works" have been her thrill, with thinner applications, initial strokes still visible, and quickly done, compelled by a momentary impulse. 

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Jul
16
7:30 PM19:30

Pauline's Picks: Cabin in the Sky

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Please join Tuesday, July 16th, for the second night of a summer film series we are calling Pauline's Picks. We will be screening films from the Cinema Guild run by Pauline Kael and James Broughton, located on Telegraph Avenue right here in Berkeley. We will begin with Gibson Art Projects' own picks from films that were screened at the Guild in 1956.

We will begin at 7:30pm, but feel free to come by earlier to see the new exhibition, chat with us, and get a good seat, as space will be limited!

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Pauline's Picks: The Golden Coach
Jul
2
7:30 PM19:30

Pauline's Picks: The Golden Coach

Please join us this summer for a film series we are calling Pauline's Picks. We will be playing films from the Cinema Guild run by Pauline Kael and James Broughton, located on Telegraph Avenue right here in Berkeley. We will begin with Gibson Art Projects' own picks from the year 1956. This Tuesday, we will be screening The Golden Coach, by Jean Renoir.

“At his greatest, Jean Renoir expressed the beauty in our common humanity; that’s what Anna Magnani at her greatest expressed. This 1952 movie—his tribute to commedia dell’arte—is also a tribute to her fabulous gifts, and she gives the film its gusto. We see her here not only as a sensual, earthy “woman of the people” but as an artist who exhausts her resources in creating the illusion of volcanic reality. Though Renoir has taken Prosper Mérimée’s vehicle and shaped it for her, it will be forever debatable whether it contains her or she explodes it. But as this puzzle is parallel with the theme—a Pirandellian confusion of theatre and everyday life—it adds another layer to the ironic comedy. The film is set in a dusty frontier in Renaissance Peru: a band of Italian strolling players is attempting to bring art to South America. The movie has been compared to “Così Fan Tutte”—it is light and serious, cynical and beautiful, a blend of color, wit, and Vivaldi’s music. This was Renoir’s second color film (after “The River”), and his directorial rhythm seems to falter in his work in color, but, given the film’s glow and warmth, this defect is trifling. The cinematography is by Claude Renoir. In French, English, and Italian.”

Pauline Kael

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Jun
6
7:00 PM19:00

Kevan Jenson: As If, A Pragmatic Conversation About Mysticism

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As If, A Pragmatic Conversation About Mysticism

To allow mysticism into our contemporary lives the phenomenological tool of epoché or “bracketing” is essential. We must bracket out our skepticism and act “as if” a mystic event can come to fruition in what we currently label “Reality.”

In this talk we will explore the content and form of the mysticism practiced in Berkeley by Robert Duncan and Jess, and link it to a wider cultural flow of mystical ideas and “spirits” into California Consciousness.

Kevan Jenson will open the discussion by performing an “As If” ritual with the night’s congregants at Gibson Art Projects: we will draw a group I Ching hexagram and use the images and strategies from that specific consultation to motivate and condense our ruminations.

Please join us on Thursday, June 6 at 7:00pm at the Pauline Kael - Jess Murals House to listen and participate with us. Please RSVP to Reuben or Paris.

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Kevan spent nine years working with James Hillman on a project about Marcel Duchamp. Kevan studied with legendary Berkeley artist Harold Paris, and is a close friend and confidant of Peter Selz. Kevan completed an interdisciplinary degree in 2012 at UC Berkeley on “The Artist and The Urban Imagination.” He produces films for German theorist and filmmaker Hito Steyerl, includingDrill, opening at the Park Avenue Armory in NYC this June. Gibson Art Projects put up a solo booth of Kevan’s smoke paintings at Pulse Art Fair in Miami Beach this past December.  Kevan is married to Maria Jenson (of SOMARTS); their son Marcel attends public school in Berkeley.

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ROBERT DUNCAN CENTENARY CELEBRATION: Sponsored by the Jess Collins Trust and Gibson Art Projects
May
11
to Jun 9

ROBERT DUNCAN CENTENARY CELEBRATION: Sponsored by the Jess Collins Trust and Gibson Art Projects

Though renowned as a poet, Robert Duncan (1919-1988) was also a graphic artist who produced visual work of considerable interest. As a celebration of the poet’s centenary, some of this rarely-seen work will be on display at the Jess-Kael House, 2419 Oregon Street, in Berkeley from Saturday, May 11, 2019, 2-4:30 (opening) through June 9, 2019.

Open Salon Hours:

Tuesdays during exhibition from 5pm - 7pm. For private viewings, please email reuben@gibsonartprojects.com or paris@gibsonartprojects.com.

On Robert Duncan by Jack Foley

A friend of Robert Duncan’s remarked, “Robert would come to these parties, and if nothing else was going on, he could always draw. It was a form of play.” “Play” is a central element in any description of Duncan, whose rich, dense, brilliant verse was at once a challenge and an inspiration to anyone who came into contact with it. For Duncan, consciousness was bound up and intertwined with words like childhoodmagicromanceprimal, and these elements are present in his graphic work as well. “I am everywhere involved in religion,” he once remarked with amusement, “but nowhere does my involvement produce a church.” Acutely aware of all the artistic ramifications of Modernism—and constantly paying homage to them—he nevertheless produced work rooted in what Modernism always represented as its generic enemy: Romanticism. “I see always,” he wrote in one of the poems of The Opening of the Field (1960), “the underside turning.” The instrument for his graphic work was not the brush but the wax crayon. “When I write by hand,” he remarked, “I can feel the poem in my hand.” Something of the same thing can be said of these drawings. “Lines” produced by the crayon echo “lines” produced by the pen. For Duncan, as for Jess, “writing” was a form of “drawing,” drawing a form of writing. “Drawingwise,” Duncan remarked to a student once, “your drawing looks like it was withdrawing, not going forward.” Duncan’s drawings are never like that.  They are reminders of an artist who once said, “The world of spirit is everything,” and who praised Alfred North Whitehead because Whitehead thought of people “not as entities but as events”: “So for me there is a question: Is there a me? I? What I do is that I pose a creative process in which I assemble me from surrounding facts.” “Assemblage,” fantasy, homoeroticism, and poetry meet in both this artist’s verse and his graphic work, as they did in his life.

Where

The Pauline Kael - Jess Murals House is located at 2419 Oregon Street in Berkeley. Film critic Pauline Kael lived there from 1955 to 1964, and the house boasts many beautiful murals created for Pauline Kael and her young daughter in 1956 by the artist Jess (1923-2004). 



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Apr
28
12:00 PM12:00

Dreamscape 101: Celebratory Brunch Party

  • The Pauline Kael - Jess Murals House (map)
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Won't you join us for brunch?
In honor of the show extension and finale of Lawrence Jordan: Dreamscape 101, we will be holding a celebratory brunch party on SundayApril 28 from 12:00pm - 2:30pm. We will have all the fixings, so do join us to say goodbye to the exhibition, and hello to Lawrence. If you'd like to view the show but can't make it to Brunch, feel free to email Reuben to schedule an appointment.

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Circus Savage
Mar
3
10:00 AM10:00

Circus Savage

  • The Pauline Kael - Jess Murals House (map)
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Join us for Circus Savage, a twelve-hour-long film comprised of Lawrence Jordan’s unused film, what he calls his visual autobiography.

In his words: "I have woven together a vast river of image and sound from all the unused film material piled up in my studio since 1952. In essence this is my visual autobiography. There are clips from strange and unusual films, all the out takes from all my films, as well as all the uncompleted projects.

The sound makes no attempt to comment on the picture, but goes its own way: See a rose, hear a bomb. To me there is a wonderful counterpoint, continually bristling with surreal innuendo."

Feel free to come and go as you please!

Donation based and tickets are available HERE

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Documentary Screening & Dialogue with Lawrence Jordan
Feb
3
2:00 PM14:00

Documentary Screening & Dialogue with Lawrence Jordan

  • The Pauline Kael - Jess Murals House (map)
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Join us on this Sunday afternoon to watch the documentary on Lawrence Jordan, Moments of Illumination, along with a Q&A following the documentary with the artist himself. Proceeds go to the artist and The Committee to Preserve the Jess Murals (a 501c3 non profit).

Tickets are $20 and can be purchased HERE

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A Night of Films by Lawrence Jordan
Jan
31
7:00 PM19:00

A Night of Films by Lawrence Jordan

  • The Pauline Kael - Jess Murals House (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

Join us for a night of films by Lawrence Jordan, featuring a combination of collage and live-action film. Films include Big Sur: The Ladies, Cornell 1965, Duo Concertantes, Orb, Our Lady of the Sphere, Visions of a City.

Tickets are free!…though any donation proceeds go half to the artist and half to The Committee to Preserve the Jess Murlas (a 501c3 non-profit). Please RSVP HERE. It will be an intimate viewing experience with an amazing projector so we can only host up to 20 people. Get your tickets while there are still some available! Looking forward to it.

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Jan
26
to Mar 31

Lawrence Jordan: Dreamscape 101

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Lawrence Jordan: Dreamscape 101

Opens Saturday, January 26, 3:00 - 6:00pm

January 26 - March 31, 2019

Lawrence Jordan’s first solo exhibition in Berkeley since 2012 aims to achieve two things: The first is to bring Jordan and his work back to the very house where he, Jess and Robert Duncan spent critical time with Pauline Kael. The nostalgic and domestic setting will certainly provide a key to unlock Jordan’s enigmatic work, that ranges in both media and time.

The second goal is to provide a space that can accommodate the variety of media in which Jordan creates. By exhibiting collages amongst boxes, the viewer can easily see the connection between Jordan’s process which he sees as an “alchemical process to convert lead into gold.” Jordan’s alchemy turns the “detritus of culture” into dreamlike sequences. We will also be hosting unique film screenings of collaged and live action films over the course of the exhibition. 

Dreamscape 101 acts as a survey of Jordan’s oeuvre, but perhaps the better word is something more akin to a homecoming.  We have physically returned to the space where some of the earliest and most formative days of Jordan’s career occurred, right here in the Pauline Kael - Jess Murals House.

Film Program:
Thursday, January 31, 7:00pm: A Night of Films by Lawrence Jordan
Sunday, February 3, 2:00pm: Documentary Screening & Dialogue with Lawrence Jordan
Sunday, March 3, 10:00am - 10:00pm: Circus Savage

Film still from  Duo Concertantes , 1961 - 1964.

Film still from Duo Concertantes, 1961 - 1964.

Lastly, don't miss The Alchemist’s Lens: The Works of Lawrence Jordan at Anglim Gilbert Gallery, from January 5 - February 2, 2019, exhibition opening on January 12, 2019 from 4:00-6:00pm at Minnesota Street Projects in San Francisco. We are thrilled to be participating in one of two Lawrence Jordan exhibitions taking place in tandem this winter. 

Curated by Paris Cotz 

For sales inquiries, please contact: reuben@gibsonartprojects.com
For all other inquiries, please contact: paris@gibsonartprojects.com

Address:
The Pauline Kael - Jess Murals House
2419 Oregon Street
Berkeley, CA
94705

Opening Hours:
Open by appointment only
& Stay tuned to the newsletter for updates on Open Salon hours

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Duchamp for Painters
Apr
18
7:00 PM19:00

Duchamp for Painters

A talk between Caitlin Haskell of SFMOMA and Berkeley surrealist smokepainter, Kevan Jeson

Caitlin Haskell

Caitlin Haskell is associate curator of painting and sculpture at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA). She has curated or co-curated numerous exhibitions at SFMOMA and elsewhere, including René Magritte: The Fifth Season (2018), Edvard Munch: Between the Clock and the Bed (2017), and Portraits and Other Likenesses from SFMOMA (2015). Following her doctoral dissertation on the critical reception of Henri Rousseau, she has published on modern and postwar artists such as Alexander Calder, Donald Judd, and Walter De Maria, among others.

Kevan Jenson

Kevan Jenson's works are collected in the Centre Pompidou and the Gerald R. Buck collection at UC Irvine, as well as privately. He Frequently produces film projects for video artist and art world provocateur Hito Steyerl. Kevan is a noted Duchampian, and worked for many years with best-selling author and psychologist, James Hillman, on relating the work of Marcel Duchamp to depth psychology. Kevan believes a reconnection of Duchamp to the practice of painting is long overdue.

Setting the Scene

Caitlin and Kevan's talk will take place at The Pauline Kael - Jess Murals House and is hosted by Gibson Art Projects. Jenson's Carbon Sequestration exhibit is currently on display and works from the show will be referenced in the talk. 

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Kevan Jenson's Carbon Sequestration
Mar
24
to May 29

Kevan Jenson's Carbon Sequestration

Exhibition of Jenson’s mystic surrealist smoke paintings illuminates the relationship between his imagery of ecological change, and his process of working with a burning torch as a brush.

This gallery is a private residence and arts salon. Aside from events such as this reception, which is open to the public, visits must be coordinated with Gibson Art Projects by emailing reuben@gibsonartprojects.com

(BERKELEY, CA) - From March 24th, 2018 through May 19th, 2018, Gibson Art Projects presents Kevan Jenson’s Carbon Sequestration. In Jenson’s G.A.P. expo in March, entitled Carbon Sequestration, the idea of being held captive by a host of contemporary problems (global warming, an oil economy, the loss of our natural landscapes to deforestation and amplified natural disaster like wildfires) is conflated with notions of how good paintings capture viewers and hold them enthralled. In Jenson’s paintings we are held by the swirling imaginal field of the works AND understand that they are literally made via combustion. The works also sequester carbon in the paint layer. The process explores the perils of our ecology, but in an ironically beautiful way. The presentation features a selection of smoke paintings on canvas such as “Pip” (image below).  Jenson’s smoke works are collected in the Centre Pompidou and The Gerald Buck Collection at UC Irvine.

Aesthetics provide a path of engagement with the world, especially a world in crisis.  Kevan follows on the processes and ethics used by Surrealists to keep Western culture moving forward during the darkest years of the 20th century - a free engagement with the imagination, in particular “automatic” imagery.  He believes that artists will keep the inner flames of inspiration lit during the dark passages lying ahead as we negotiate our way through another era of upheaval. If we place Jenson’s work in this context, they begin to open up as omens, visions, and harbingers of danger, or opportunity, and as places of contemplation.  They reveal a mystic vision for our times.

Kevan Jenson is in a lineage of American magician / alchemist painters such as Frederic Church, Mark Rothko and Jackson Pollock. Like them, he paints “landscapes” that probe our imagination and reveal a realm that elicits beauty yet whispers and ebbs warnings. Famed art historian Peter Selz claims “he knows how to make magic.”

Jenson came from a family of artists, writers and musicians, but at 17 started at UC Berkeley in math and science.  He quickly abandoning that field at 18 and headed for a career in art after discovering and idolizing Marcel Duchamp. At Cal, he studied with sculptor Harold Paris and became his assistant and mentee. During his time with Paris he experimented with smoke, yet it was an image of Yves Klein with a flamethrower that pointed out a path. After Paris died, Kevan packed up and left Cal to embrace the NYC art world where had a studio in a post-punk musician’s building in Chelsea in the early 80s while working as an NYC cab driver.

Kevan did some initial smoke work in NY, but when he came back to California in ‘85, he was immediately inspired by the landscape, ecology and psychology of fire and started fervently working with smoke on canvas.

The fire culture runs deep in California and started with its native peoples who were in touch with this cyclical aspect of the landscape. The hills in California are constantly burning. The native word Temescal, which is a neighborhood just a walk away from this exhibit, comes from smoke healing ceremonies and preventative fires. Kevan says, “There is a ritualistic part of using fire as a tool. I got into smoke upon arrival back in California… and haven’t stopped.”

Jenson has a resume that reads like many lifetimes packed into half a life. Jenson studied and worked with a California master, cut his teeth in the New York art scene in the 80s, worked as an artist in LA while simultaneously working as a video engineer and film producer with folks like David Lynch and Hito Steyerl. Jenson even spent nine years working with the best-selling psychologist James Hillman on the links between Marcel Duchamp and Depth Psychology.

We find an artist embraced by legends of the past and present. Peter Selz, one of the most influential curators and art historians of the 20th century, curated a 20-year retrospective of Kevan’s work at Meridian Gallery in SF in 2008 as well as highlighting him at Rocking Horse Gallery in 2017. At the same time, we see Jenson working with and supported by Hito Steyerl, whom Art Review dubbed  “The Most Influential Artist of 2017” on their Power 100 list.

It’s easy to see the visual magic that Jenson creates in his smoke paintings, but what’s even more important is what is underneath or upside down in the way that Kevan has used his diverse palate of experience to comment on our most fundamental western ideas, and his Californian identity.

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David Kampmann's Dogs & Icons
Aug
19
to Oct 31

David Kampmann's Dogs & Icons

  • Pauline Kael - Jess Murals House (map)
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Kampmann's paintings are about the interaction of the human and divine addressing the underlying unity of all creation. Light and manifest spirit are the protagonist of his work. Kampmann's work is also about painting itself, making references to biblical imagery, artworks and artists that share his intent and history. Dogs play an important role as key subjects, characters and love itself. This show combines the iconography, influences and spiritual connection that are shared between mankind, God and Dog.

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Artists from the Art Collection of Robert Duncan and Jess
May
13
4:00 PM16:00

Artists from the Art Collection of Robert Duncan and Jess

You and your friends are invited to a special exhibition: 

Artists from the Art Collection of Robert Duncan and Jess

at

The Pauline Kael - Jess Murals House

2419 Oregon Street

Berkeley, CA 94705

Opening Reception: 

Saturday, May 13, 4:00 - 7:00pm 

Films: 

Friday, May 19, 7:00 - 8:30pm, there will be a screening of a portion of Jess's 12-hour collage film Peekaboo Flicks, along with a short documentary on Robert Duncan and Jess's San Francisco home. 

This exhibit brings together rarely seen works by artists whom the poet Robert Duncan and the artist Jess encouraged and collected for over thirty-five years. The works are being lent by the Jess Collins Trust and a number of Bay Area collectors. 

The Pauline Kael House, where the distinguished film critic lived and worked from 1955 to 1963, features a remarkable series of murals and tableaux by Jess (1923 - 2004), which will be available for viewing during the exhibition. 

A one-time $25 donation is asked for preserving and restoring several of the murals.

Artists Included: 

Paul Alexander, Ronald Bladen, Brock Brockway, Lyn Brockway, Robert Duncan, Ernie Edwards, Norris Embry, Landis Everson, Tom Field, Madeline Gleason, George Herms, Fran Herndon, Harry Jacobus, Gina James, Jess, Lawrence Jordan, William McNeill, Claire Mahl, William Brodecky Moore, Nata Piaskowski, Philip Roeber

Exhibit Hours: 

Saturday, May 13 - Sunday May 14, 1:00 - 4:00pm

Friday, May 19 - Sunday May 21, 1:00 - 4:00pm

Directions: 

The Pauline Kael - Jess Murals House is two blocks north of Ashby and one half-block east of Telegraph, Berkeley. 

R.S.V.P. & Further Information

karinmcphail@sbcglobal.net or 510.848.4609

Sponsored by the Committee to Preserve the Kael/Basart House and Jess Murals, a non-profit 501(c)3, and Reuben Gibson of 2419 Oregon St. 

This spring event is dedicated to Harry Jacobus in his ninetieth year and to the memory of Pauline, Robert, & Jess. 

We look forward to seeing you!

 

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Feb
26
2:00 PM14:00

Gibson Arts Projects presents the works of Feng Jin

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Gibson Art Projects proudly announces its first exhibition of the 2017 season with the exciting and dynamic work of Beijing based artist, Feng Jin, who has left behind 20 important pieces he created in Oakland, which will be exhibited between February 26th and March 30th.

Born in Harbin, China in 1966, of Korean descent. Jin's creativity was forged, much like his metal sculptures, with the pressure of growing up Korean in China and being alienated on the playground, forced to find solace in alone time and crafts.

Jin Studied at the Central academy of Fine Arts, Beijing, China’s number one art institute. 

Jin says “my sculpture is an intimate dialogue between human and the boundless strength of metal, an expression of thoughts, emotions, dreams, passions, destinies and desires that are constantly bounding out of my mind.”

Jin takes the ideas of ancient Chinese culture and forges a contemporary identity through the strengths of his hands, heart and mind. 

Refreshments and light snacks will be served. Viewings after the opening are by appointment only. Please email reuben@gibsonartprojects.com to set up a private viewing during the month of March.

Tickets to this event are free, however we'd love for you to make a donation to help us preserve, restore and uncover the Jess murals. Learn more about the house and its history at www.gibsonartprojects.com.

SUPPORT

The Committee to Preserve the Jess Murals & Kael-Basart House is as a 501(c) 3 nonprofit organization. Your donations are 100% deductible! Your tax-deductible donation will help cover the costs of preserving the murals and developing the house as a center for educational and cultural activities. No donation amount is too small, donations are tax-deductible and our tax ID number is 47-1636422.

Parking

Free street parking is available and the lot at 2855 Telegraph Ave is open on Sunday and is also free of charge.

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