a tale of a few cities

Cindy Sherman Retrospective at SFMOMA

July 14 – October 07, 2012

Cindy Sherman is recognized as one of the most important contemporary artists of the last 40 years and arguably the most influential artist working exclusively with photography. This retrospective traces the groundbreaking artist’s career from the mid-1970s to the present. Bringing together more than 170 key photographs from a variety of Sherman’s acclaimed bodies of work, the presentation constitutes the first overview of her career since 1997 in the United States. Sherman has served as her own model for more than 30 years, generating a range of guises and personas that are by turns amusing and disturbing, distasteful and affecting. The exhibition showcases the artist’s greatest achievements to date, from her early experiments as a student in Buffalo in the 1970s to her recent large-scale photographic murals.

Cindy Sherman, renowned American photographer and film director, is 58 today.

Visual AIDS, Postcards From the Edge, NYC

I am in such good company here – who doesn’t  recognize a Marilyn Minter when they see one?

Visual AIDS utilizes art to fight AIDS by provoking dialogue, supporting HIV+ artists, and preserving a legacy, because AIDS is not over. Visual AIDS is the only contemporary arts organization fully committed to HIV prevention and AIDS awareness through producing and presenting visual art projects, while assisting artists living with HIV/AIDS.

Postcards From the Edge is a unique fundraiser where each of the 1,500+ postcard-sized artworks are uniformly priced at only $85.00. All works are displayed anonymously, with the artis’s identity revealed only after the work is purchased. Featuring artworks by Jeff Koons, Yoko Ono, John Waters, Donald Baechler, Marilyn Minter, Ed Ruscha, Polly Apfelbaum, Adam Fuss, Kiki Smith, John Baldessari, Louise Fishman, Ross Bleckner, Barry McGee, Kay Rosen, Marcel Dzama, Jonathan Lasker, Mary Heilmann, Louise Lawler, Bill Jensen, Jane Hammond, Ann Hamilton, Hans Haacke, William Wegman, Kate Shepherd, Zoe Leonard, Jack Pierson, Lawrence Weiner, Pat Steir, Thomas Woodruff and over 1450 others.

There will be a Preview Party Friday, January 6 from 6 – 8 p.m. The Benefit Sale of postcard-sized art begins on Saturday, January 7th from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. and continues through Sunday, January 8th from Noon until 4 p.m.

For more information and to purchase tickets, please visit VisualAIDS.

My Submission to Postcards from the Edge, NYC

Peter Combe, Damien Hirst at SFMOMA, 2011 

Above is my submission to Postcards from the Edge, NYC. When I saw Andy Bosselman’s photo of San Francisco based artist, Xiang Gao outside SFMOMA – I cracked up and knew I wanted to incorporate Damien Hirst‘s noggin.

Postcards from the Edge is an exhibit and benefit sale of over 1500 one-of-a-kind postcard-size works of art by established and emerging artists. All artworks at Postcards from the Edge benefit are exhibited anonymously. The works are signed on the back only and though viewers receive a list of all participating artists, they don’t know who created which piece until purchased.

Postcards from the Edge will be hosted at Cheim & Read from January 6-8, 2012

Visual AIDS utilizes art to fight AIDS by provoking dialogue and supporting HIV+ artists.


Peter Combe, James Marshall’s Haas Atrium at SFMOMA

Posted in architecture, Art, Painting, Photography by petercombe on July 13, 2010


Kerry James Marshall; Visible Means of Support: Mount Vernon, 2009; acrylic latex on canvas, (photos, Peter Combe, 2010)


Specially commissioned for SFMOMA, Kerry James Marshall’s monumental murals in the Haas Atrium show Mount Vernon and Monticello, the estates of American presidents George Washington and Thomas Jefferson. Although these cherished sites have been depicted countless times, Marshall’s paintings stand apart by incorporating images of the slaves who supported plantation life. At first glance, a number of optical tricks conceal them from view, but visitors who engage in the artist’s visual game will discover figures that are so often omitted from representations of American history.


I shot these photos on a recent visit to SFMOMA. The museum’s interior has the most interesting architectural vantage points that never cease to offer interesting photographic compositions.

Haas Atrium >


A Tale on AFC’s Fresh Links!

Posted in trawling the net by petercombe on April 5, 2010
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Posted in humour by petercombe on April 1, 2010



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Tour de Force at SFMOMA

Posted in Art, San Francisco by petercombe on October 26, 2009
Candice Breitz, Mother (composite), 2005; six-channel video installation with sound


Yesterday’s visit to SFMoMA was particularly rewarding. The Museum seemed much larger this time, perhaps it was because all of the galleries were open. The above video ‘Mother’ by Candice Breitz was incredible. For this video piece, Breitz edited film performances by Faye Dunaway, Diane Keaton, Shirley MacLaine, Julia Roberts, Susan Sarandon, and Meryl Streep to create a revealing composite of the Hollywood cliché of the difficult mother. The video attached presents the work in a different format than was experienced yesterday. At the SFMoMA Breitz’s video monitors were arranged in a single slightly concave row. Nor is it the full length version, the clip above stops rather abruptly, before Shirley McLaine and Fay Dunaway’s performance comes into full stride.
A powerful achievement that must have employed months of editing. Really quite intense and enjoyable stuff. Go to Candice Breitz, click on ‘work’, then ‘video’ to watch the the full length video in a better resolution and sound.
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Today at SFMoMA

Posted in Art by petercombe on October 25, 2009

photo 4

Reflection caught in Zhang Haun’s Foam (4).

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Sensate: Bodies and Design

Posted in Art, San Francisco by petercombe on October 18, 2009



Andrew Kudless: P_Wall, 2006/2009; plaster and multichannel audio

Mutant bodies, fictional bodies, animate architecture: these are among the provocations offered by Sensate, an exhibition that reflects recent debates about what bodies are and how they are met and mirrored by design.

Sensate: Bodies and Design, running through November 8, 2009, at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.

Art Font

Posted in Art, San Francisco by petercombe on September 28, 2009

I gave the following pictures to my partner to mark an occasion this past February. After a snapping visit to the SFMoMA, I noticed much of the art I photographed could be interpreted as font. It should really be a no-brainer to decipher.




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