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Other Works in this Series:
Floating Araujo Dome Old Emporium Rising Old Emporium dome at dawn Awakening of Dome Rising Towering Dome Towering Dome, Phase One Elevation Metamorphosis II Metamorphosis I Revival of the Old Emporium

Metamorphosis I
Size: 54" x 72"
Medium: Oil on canvas
Date: 2004

Smith Collection, Santa Fe, NM.

San Francisco's Old Emporium is located at 5th Street, between Market and Mission Streets. The classical façade that survived the 1906 earthquake and the glorious rotunda, by which shoppers browsed underneath was called the “greatest mercantile building in the world”, when it opened in 1896. The Emporium was a cultural crossroads for decades by Bay Area residents who met under the dome.

The Old Emporium, became more fascinating to me since the 2004 re-development. For the last decade the building had been closed. The Old Emporium converted to Westfield San Francisco Shopping Centre in September, 2006. A new episode for the building’s history and a metamorphosis to follow.

What I discovered at the Old Emporium, as the construction site was evolving on Mission Street, I was manifested by the fantastic dome’s exterior. I would have never been able to see this dome from its exterior, if demolition had not been attempted. Since the beginning of 2004, I have observed several phases of the construction. The dome is the main architectural element conserved. It has been intriguing to observe the dome suspended by bars and elevated to 60 feet off the original ground level. I have reflected on ancient dome structures, of how they were built, and the careful detail and function of support. It has been a marvelous gift to meet this dome and share it with San Francisco’s cityscape. I am pleased to observe a building’s metamorphosis, still preserving a 20th century beauty into contemporary time.

Metamorphosis was exhibited in 2005 during Patricia's graduation party at Clara Street Studio, in San Francisco. This painting was sold thereafter to a lovely couple residing in San Francisco's SoMa district. This couple now reside in New Mexico. Metamorphosis is featured in Patricia's book entitled, SOMA SEEN, published in 2008.




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