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 Yosemite as worthy of protection since 1864, when in the midst of the Civil War it granted the magnificent and … Read more

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 Francisco—at the historic Sigmund Stern Recreation Grove south of Golden Gate Park.

As the season closes, we recall the history … Read more

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 destroyed. Lives were lost.

The Watts Riots in Los Angeles—to some a riot, to others a rebellion—were set off by … Read more

Anna Halprin; photo by Liz Hafalia, The Chronicle

Choreographing the Environment

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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


It was late April 1945 and the war in Europe was nearing an end. On April 29, German forces surrendered in Italy. The next day, Adolf Hitler committed suicide. A few days later in Berlin, Soviet forces captured the German … Read more

Casaelya Festival flier, California social, protest, and counterculture movements ephemera

California social, protest, and counterculture movements ephemera collection

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Mojo Navigator Rock & Roll News


The wild going-ons of San Francisco’s psych rock scene were recorded in the West Coast’s first rock & roll magazine Mojo Navigator R&R News. Its premier issue, published by teenagers David Harris and Greg Shaw on August 8, 1966, … Read more

San Francisco Viewing Society from the CHS San Francisco Ephemera Collection

Straight Ashbury Viewing Society

The Bay Area has long provided experimental filmmakers with an embracing enclave in which to share their films with eager, appreciative audiences. This early flyer for the Straight Ashbury Viewing Society, most likely from 1966, advertises a non-profit film club … Read more

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