Trips Festival flier, 1966, California social, protest, and counterculture movements ephemera

The 1960s Revisited: A 50th Anniversary Celebration

Since the mid-20th century, San Francisco has been a beacon supporting underground movements, a vibrant arts and culture scene, and being...

Ghirardelli Square Courtesy of Fairmont Heritage Place

Urban Renaissance with Mermaids: Lawrence Halprin’s Ghirardelli Square

Today we know that the revival of the urban inner city begins with the restoration and re-use of old buildings....

Anna Halprin in Her Work Madrona, c. 1954 Photographer unknown; Anna Halprin Papers, Museum of Performance + Design

Celebrating the Legendary Dance Pioneer Anna Halprin

As 2015 comes to a close, so, too, does the year-long, worldwide 95th birthday celebration for the postmodern dance pioneer...

Sproul Plaza, courtesy Alison Moore.

Lawrence Halprin and the Plaza That Changed the World

On October 1, 1964, in the midst of a growing protest, University of California, Berkeley student Mario Savio hopped onto the roof of a police car in Sproul Plaza, the open space in front of the University’s administration building. Sitting in the car was former UC student Jack Weinberg who had been arrested for staffing an “illegal” table on Sproul on behalf of the civil rights organization, the Congress on Racial Equality (CORE). Their actions, and those of others, not only helped launch the Free Speech Movement, which would forever alter not only the UC campus, but also the fabric of American society.

Lawrence Halprin, Yosemite Studies, 1970, watercolor over photocopy on paper; courtesy of the Halprin Family Archive and Edward Cella Art + Architecture “Studying the granite formations, rivers, lakes, and waterfalls [of Yosemite] and their evolution has formed the basis of my design philosophy.” —Lawrence Halprin

Yosemite—Protected Wilderness

On October 1, 1890, President Benjamin Harrison signed legislation establishing the country’s third national park at Yosemite. Congress had recognized...

Stern Grove: “Mystical” Gift to San Francisco

August 16, 2015, concludes the 78th Stern Grove Festival—the annual outdoor performing arts event sponsored by the City of San...

Arson and Street War, Life magazine, August 27, 1965 Courtesy California ephemera collection, UCLA Library Special Collections

The 50th Anniversary of L.A.’s Watts Riots: Anna Halprin and the Studio Watts Workshop

Fifty years ago, from August 11 to 17, 1965, a community was shattered. A city was torn apart. Property was...

Anna Halprin; photo by Liz Hafalia, The Chronicle

Choreographing the Environment

San Francisco Magazine called her a “postmodern dance legend.” The San Francisco Chronicle declared that she “essentially invented postmodern dance.” Today dance pioneer Anna Halprin turns 95. To celebrate her birthday, fans worldwide in fifteen countries are staging hundreds of events this summer, including last week's "95 Rituals" in San Francisco.

Edward R. Stettinius, Jr., U.S. Secretary of State and chairman of the U.S. delegation, addresses the 16th Plenary Session on June 26, 1945. President Harry S. Truman is to his left.

70 Years Ago, a City Embraced the Future

On June 26, 1945, representatives of fifty countries attending the United Nations Conference on International Organizations at the two original buildings of the San Francisco War Memorial signed a charter for the newly established United Nations.

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