Friends @ Home Art Docent Webinar | The Birth of Impressionism: Masterpieces from the Musée d’Orsay
Jan 27 @ 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Please note: Registration for this event is required and is available here: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_496K6rPKS8Gu3E1kE5hybQ

Renoir’s La Loge (The Theatre Box), 1874

This talk revisits the first of the two landmark exhibitions organized by the Musée d’Orsay and shown at the de Young in 2010. The two exhibitions covered French painting in the last half of the 19th century, a period that is considered one of the most transformative in Western Art. The nearly 100 works in this exhibition let you follow a group of artists who rebelled against the subjects and styles of art preferred by the establishment and who went on to create new subjects and new styles of painting. At the time they were called lunatics and madmen; today they are known and loved as the Impressionists.

Our docent for this talk will be 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 Webinar | Hidden in Plain View: The African American Art Experience
Feb 8 @ 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Please note: Registration for this event is required and is available here: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_XcsMXo6ETem8TRyz-3IfGw

Palmer Hayden, The Janitor Who Paints, ca. 1930

During the 1930s there was a renaissance of sorts in the arts in America. African-American painters and sculptors, as well as writers, musicians, and actors, many of them centered in Harlem, were popular and admired. Then, almost without recognizing it, they seemed to disappear. Where did they go and why did they seem to vanish from the public conversation? As it turns out, they were still here, alright, but they were “hidden” in plain view. Join us as we “rediscover” them and attempt to answer the mystery!

Sherrill Koopot will lead us on this exploration. She has been a docent with the Phoenix Art Museum in Arizona since September 1986. She has also served in many administrative, training, and management jobs in the museum’s docent program, and is a past Co-Chair of the National Docent Symposium. She was honored as Docent of the Year in 1995, and was nominated for the Governor’s Award for an Individual in the Arts. The Friends of the Alameda Free Library are pleased to welcome Sherrill to our Friends @ Home series.

This program is made possible in part by a generous donation from the Alameda Rotary Club.

Friends @ Home Author Webinar | Elsa Hart Discusses Her Books
Feb 10 @ 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Please note: Registration is required for this event, and can be done here: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_yJ2_dVBmRl27PzgIXbXV4Q

We are delighted to invite best selling author Elsa Hart to discuss her books, Jade Dragon Mountain, The White Mirror, City of Ink, and The Cabinets of Barnaby Mayne. The novels are set in eighteenth century China and England, a period and places of great interest to the author.

The daughter of a journalist, Elsa was born in Rome and spent much of her childhood abroad, attending international schools in Moscow and Prague. She is drawn to stories about travelers throughout history, and likes to put her own characters in places that are unfamiliar to them. Her first three mysteries follow the exploits of a crime-solving librarian in 18th-century China. Her fourth novel, The Cabinets of Barnaby Mayne (August 2020), introduces Cecily Kay, an 18th-century plant enthusiast whose fascination with botany leads her into a world of collectors, apothecaries, artists, and charlatans.

Bay Area folks who are interested in purchasing any of Ms. Hart’s books before this talk can order directly from Books Inc. via their website.

Friends @ Home Author Webinar | Robin Sloan Discusses “Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore” and “Sourdough”
Feb 17 @ 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Please note: Registration is required for this event, and can be done here: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_2lOBFYEmT6aK8BUv7alVIQ

Robin Sloan’s first novel, Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore, was a New York Times Best Seller, translated into more than twenty languages. His latest novel, Sourdough, was published in 2017. With his partner Kathryn Tomajan, Robin produces California extra virgin olive oil under the label Fat Gold. He lives in Oakland and works out of the Murray Street Media Lab, down by the railroad tracks. He will be talking about the Bay Area inspirations behind his two novels, Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore and Sourdough.

Friends @ Home Art Docent Webinar | Revelations: Art From The African-American South
Feb 24 @ 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Please note: Registration for this event is required and is available here: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_ua-y0MXITlaqzoJA3erTgg

Thornton Dial, Lost Cows (2000-2001)
Art from the African-American South from the Collections of the DeYoung Museum

Do you have the ability to see and create art out of something completely ordinary? To find meaning in things that other people might overlook, even throw away? For centuries African American artists working in the Southern part of the United States had to “make do,” utilizing whatever materials they could find; but what emerged will make you reconsider what art can and should be.

With the addition of 65 objects, purchased from the Souls Run Deep Foundation, the Fine Arts Museums expands their collection of African American art created by until now largely unknown artists. Join us as we take a look at the ingenuity and creativity that can be borne of oppression and sacrifice.

One of our favorite docents, Marsha Holm, will lead us in this intriguing exploration. Marsha Holm 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.

This event is made possible in part by a generous grant from the Rotary Club of Alameda.