Get SF Weekly Newsletters
Pin It

"Ruby": A Piece of Art Worth Going Down a Weird Alley For 

Wednesday, Apr 30 2014
Comments

Ruby

Walk down this dead-end street, and the first thing that hits you is the smell of urine. Barbed wire guards the parking lot to the left. Few pedestrians would willingly venture into such a scene. But those who do are treated to one of San Francisco's best works of street art: Ruby, a collaboration between Hawaii artist Kamea Hadar and the Bay Area artist named Poesia. Both representational and abstract, Ruby takes up a building's entire outside wall, and features a dark-haired, lipsticked beauty (Hadar's contribution), surrounded by a grid of lines and colored triangles (Poesia's contribution).

"A lot of times, people expect artists with similar styles to work together, but in my case, I like to go the other way and have contrasting works and contrasting styles," says Hadar, who began collaborating with Poesia after inviting him a few years ago to POW! WOW! HAWAII, an annual arts event that he co-directs in Honolulu.

Poesia's girlfriend, whose first name is Ruby, posed for the work, which went up last year. Ruby originated spontaneously during Hadar's August 2013 visit to the Bay Area for an exhibit of his work at San Jose's Cukui Gallery. That gallery is overseen by Orly Locquiao, a good friend of Hadar's who tattooed 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick. "I stayed with Poesia," says Hadar, "and we wanted to paint a mural, and we got connected with a friend who had connections to some walls in San Francisco, and I just decided to extend my flight and paint a big mural while I was there."

"Usually," Hadar says, "when I do a collaboration, I have someone do the background first and then I lay a portrait over it. But Poesia likes to pull lines off the figure. So he did some of the background, I laid the portrait, and then he took some lines that go off her shoulder and the corner of her chin for the lines in his piece."

The lines make the work seamless as it transitions from Hadar's art to Poesia's. The best vantage point to see Ruby may be the intersection of Colton Street and Colusa Place, which has to be approached from a block south of Stevenson. With its odd mix of apartments, a residential hotel, businesses, parking lots, and dead-end streets, the small area between Market and Otis streets and Gough and 12th streets is a curious corridor, with few pedestrians. Ruby and other nearby street art stand out in this transitional neighborhood. JC

About The Author

Jonathan Curiel

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Slideshows

  • U2 @ SAP Center in San Jose
    Last night U2 performed the first U.S. date of it’s Innocence + Experience tour at SAP Center in San Jose. All four band members were present despite recent injuries sustained by both Bono and Edge. The sold out show took audience members on a walk down memory lane as the band revisited their roots. The innovative stage and lighting used gave the arena show an intimate feel, and engaged audience members in all sections of the venue. Photographs by Sugarwolf.
  • Bay to Breakers 2015 - NSFW
    The 103rd annual Bay to Breakers 12K race was packed on Sunday despite the cold weather. With a starting point a few blocks from The Embarcadero, people dressed as bananas, Elvis and everything in between ran west through the city and finished at the Great Highway where breakers crash onto Ocean Beach.

    Photographs by Christopher Victorio.

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed