Friends @ Home Art Docent Webinar | Post-Impressionist Masterpieces from the Musée d’Orsay
Mar 17 @ 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Please note: Registration for this event is required and is available here:

Van Gogh’s “The Bedroom,” 1888
Van Gogh, Gaugin, Cézanne and Beyond: Post-Impressionist Masterpieces from the Musée d’Orsay

This virtual docent presentation will focus on the 2nd of the two incomparable exhibitions organized by the Musée d’Orsay and shown at the de Young in 2010. The 2nd exhibition provided a splendid overview of French art in the wake of Impressionism. Masterpieces by Van Gogh, Gaugin, Cézanne, Seurat, and others attest to the many diverse stylistic movements that are included under the umbrella term Post-Impressionism.

Gauguin’s “Arearea,” 1892

Guiding us in our exploration of the exhibition will be docent Rita Dunlay. Rita has been a member of the Docent Council of the Fine Arts Museums since 1994. As a member of the Art Talks Program she has prepared over 30 talks on special exhibitions at the de Young and the Legion of Honor. Among the most recent are “Early Rubens,” “Casanova: The Seduction of Europe,” “Monet: The Early Years,” “Pierre Bonnard: Painting Arcadia,” “J.M.W. Turner: Painting Set Free,” and “Girl with a Pearl Earring: Dutch Paintings from the Mauritshuis.” Rita is from Pennsylvania and graduated from the University of Michigan, where she majored in French.

Friends @ Home Art Docent Event | Crystal Bridges Museum Tour
Mar 25 @ 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm
Please indicate your interest in participating in this event here:

The Lantern Bearers, Maxfield Parrish, 1908

On March 25, 2021 at 2:00 PM Pacific, the Friends will sponsor a virtual tour of the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art.

The museum, located in Northwest Arkansas, was founded by philanthropist and art patron Alice Walton. It opened to the public on November 11, 2011. Its permanent collection spans five centuries of American Art, and includes such iconic images as Asher B. Durand’s “Kindred Spirits,” Norman Rockwell’s “Rosie the Riveter,” Andy Warhol’s “Coca Cola (3),” and Stuart Gilbert’s portrait of George Washington. The extensive collection also includes works by such notable artists as Georgia O’Keeffe, John Singer Sargent, Edward Hopper, Thomas Hart Benton, Jasper Johns, Jackson Pollock, Andrew Wyeth, and Grant Wood.

The museum emphasizes architecture in a way which is as stunning and inspirational as the artwork it contains. Designed by internationally renowned architect Moshe Safdie, its structures are meant to provide views of the surrounding landscape and play up the interaction between architecture, art, and nature. In addition to Safdie’s building, the grounds of the museum contain a relocated Frank Lloyd Wright house and a Buckminster Fuller dome.

An aerial view of Crystal Bridges

This tour will be different from the Friends of the Library’s other virtual events, in that it will be produced and broadcast over Zoom by the museum itself. A tour guide will be assigned by the museum, and a link to the event will be sent to us about a week before it is scheduled. We will forward the link to everyone who has requested to join the tour with us.

Friends @ Home Author Webinar | Deepa Anappara Discusses Djinn Patrol on the Purple Line
Apr 10 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm
Please note: Registration is required for this event and can be done here:

Deepa Anappara’s transporting debut novel Djinn Patrol on the Purple Line has been nominated by The Mystery Writers of America for the Edgar© Award as the Best Novel of 2020. Three friends venture into the most dangerous corners of a sprawling Indian city to find their missing classmate. All the way at the end of the Purple metro line lies a jumble of tin-roofed homes where nine-year-old Jai lives with his family. From his doorway, he can spot the glittering lights of the city’s fancy high-rises, and though his mother works as a maid in one, to him they seem a thousand miles away. Djinn Patrol on the Purple Line plunges readers deep into this neighborhood to trace the unfolding of a tragedy through the eyes of a child as he has his first perilous collisions with an unjust and complicated wider world.

Jai drools outside sweet shops, watches too many reality police shows, and considers himself to be smarter than his friends Pari (though she gets the best grades) and Faiz (though Faiz has an actual job). When a classmate goes missing, Jai decides to use the crime-solving skills he has picked up from TV to find him. He asks Pari and Faiz to be his assistants, and together they draw up lists of people to interview and places to visit. But what begins as a game turns sinister as other children start disappearing from their neighborhood. Jai, Pari, and Faiz have to confront terrified parents, an indifferent police force, and rumors of soul-snatching djinns. As the disappearances edge ever closer to home, the lives of Jai and his friends will never be the same again.

Deepa Anappara was born in Kerala, southern India, and worked as a journalist in India for eleven years. Her reports on the impact of poverty and religious violence on the education of children won several journalism awards. The novel won high praise from The New York Times, NPR, The Washington Post and Time Magazine.

Bay Area folks who are interested in purchasing Djinn Patrol on the Purple Line before this talk can order directly from Books Inc. via their website.

Friends @ Home Art Docent Webinar | A Toast to Wayne Thiebaud
Apr 14 @ 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Please note: Registration for this event is required and is available here:

Three Machines, 1963

Wayne Thiebaud recently marked his 100th birthday. Join us as we celebrate an illustrious career during which Wayne Thiebaud has teased, tempted, and tantalized us as he examines our daily lives and evokes memories so deep we didn’t even know we knew. Whether it’s his desserts, landscapes, deli cases, or portraits, Thiebaud remains fascinated by the most commonplace scenes, objects, and circumstances. He simply makes the ordinary extraordinary.


Dark Cake, 1983

One of our favorite docents, Marsha Holm, will lead us in this celebration. Marsha has been a docent with the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco since 1979. In addition to giving tours and lectures in all areas of the museums’ collections, from Africa to the Pacific Islands, from the Americas to Europe, she has served in several administrative capacities, including new and continuing education for FAMSF docents. She has also assisted in training docents at the Blackhawk Museum, the Oakland Museum, and the San Jose Museum of Art in addition to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.