Silicon et Somniorum
San Francisco is a city of stories.
Stories of Coyote, Eagle, and Hummingbird, told by the indigenous Ohlone people.
The Mission San Francisco de Asís and the Presidio established by the Spanish in 1776.
The gold rush of the mid-1800s.
The earthquake and fire of 1906.
The military presence from the Civil War through the Pacific Theater of World War II.
The California Midwinter International Exposition of 1894 and World’s Fair in 1939.
By mid-century, it became a magnet for counter-culture: beat poets followed by hippies, musicians and occultists, artists and the Gay Rights movement.
By the 1980s, though, the spirit of the city began to change. The Embarcadero freeway cut across the historic piers. Skyscrapers began to loom over the old Victorians. And then the internet and Silicon Valley happened.
For almost 30 years, the City By The Bay has seen a near-relentless push towards stasis and banality.
It’s time to push back.
Art by Bryan Syme