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Triptych by Ken Fowkes to Appear in 2023 de Young Open

Ellen Gilkerson | Published on 8/26/2023

The Secret Life of Daisies, an evocative triptych by PACC member Ken Fowkes, has been selected to appear in The de Young Open, the second triennial juried community art exhibition featuring artworks by artists from the nine Bay Area counties.  This salon-style exhibition will take place in the Herbst Exhibition Galleries at the de Young and will display the artists’ work edge-to-edge and floor-to-ceiling.  Artists may offer their works for sale.  In addition, a selection of artworks will be acquired for the de Young’s permanent collection.  This exciting show will run from September 30 through January 7, so you’ll have plenty of time to mosey up to the museum and peruse the local talent.


The Open builds upon the success of the first triennial that took place in 2020.  Of 7766 submissions this year, fewer than 11% were selected by a group of jurors comprising Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco curators and prominent Bay Area artists.

Ken says:  The Secret Life of Daisies is a triptych of images from a series I worked on in 2021, and hope to get back to at some point.  The series depicts flowers and leaves that are either wilted or dried, and that express a recognizable gesture.  In photographs of people, gestures give us a sense of what was happening in the time leading up to the moment of capture, as well as after.  For my series, I tried using this storytelling technique to evoke a sense of fantasy.  In this triptych, I also used gestures to connect the separate images.  

You may remember this image from the Flora category of the January 2023 digital competition, where it won Third Place.

MbrInNews 2023_08 Fowkes Daisies
Ken Fowkes:  The Secret Life of Daisies

If you are a member of the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, you can take advantage of the Member Preview Days, Thursday, September 28, and Friday, September 29.  


The opening day celebration will take place on Saturday, September 30, and will include live performances by local musicians, food trucks, pop-ups, and film screenings.  Entry on opening day and every Saturday is free for Bay Area residents.  


The de Young opened in 1895 and is home to American art from the 17th century through today, textile arts and costumes, African art, Oceanic art, arts of the Americas, and international contemporary art.  Along with the Legion of Honor, the mission of the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco is to connect visitors with local and global art in order to promote their knowledge of and curiosity about the past, deepen their engagement with the art and ideas of today, and stimulate their creative agency in their own futures.





de Young:
  Golden Gate Park
  50 Hagiwara Tea Garden Drive
  San Francisco, CA 94118

  415-750-3600 (M-F, 9 am to 5 pm)

  888-901-6645 (24/7)


The 2023 de Young Open:

  September 30 – January 7
  Tuesday–Sunday, 9:30 am–5:15 pm

  Member Preview:

    Thursday, September 28, and Friday, September 29, 9:30 am to 5:15 pm

    Tickets recommended

  Opening Day:

    Saturday, September 30, 11 am to 4 pm

    Free, tickets not needed - schedule

  Free Saturdays:

    This exhibition and the permanent collection are free to Bay Area residents every Saturday.