Public art is, well, let's call it “complex.” From the very start of any project it's acknowledged that a certain number of people will hate it outright. We happen to think that Cupid's Bow on the Embarcadero, for example, is (at the very least) inoffensive. Yet one Yelp commenter calls it a “stupid oversized happy meal toy embedded in the ground,” while another asks, “What the hell am I looking at?” As for a giant humanoid proposed for downtown made from debris of the former Transbay Terminal, a commenter on our sister blog the Snitch said, “What garbage!” (And not in a good way.) And then of course there are things like the fountain at Justin Herman Plaza, which has few (if any) defenders. (One Yelper said, “it reminds me of an industrial sewage outfall.”)
But San Francisco got some good news recently when three public arts projects were named the best in the nation by two arts experts at a national convention over the weekend, according to the San Francisco Arts Commission.