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Riki Rafner

The Commonwealth Club of California Showcases Work of Local Artists at New Home

The Works of Bay Area Artist Linda Fong:  May 1, 2018 through June 29, 2018 

San Francisco (May 14, 2018)—The Commonwealth Club is proud to continue its tradition of showcasing the work of local artists at its new headquarters based at 110 The Embarcadero.   The pieces are being displayed on a rotating basis in the Club’s new Farmer Gallery based on the Lobby Level.  With funds from Tawnie and John Farmer, former Chair of the Commonwealth Club Board, The Club was able to establish a gallery space with proper lighting and a professional hanging system.  Now through June 29, The Club is pleased to present the creations of Linda Fong.

Artist Linda Fong noted, “I am honored that The Commonwealth Club has chosen to feature my work in their stunning new building.”  She added, “Abstraction and improbable colors are combined with more traditional pictorial devices - perspective and layering, for instance.  With these images as points of departure, I hope that viewers can experience personal connections and form individual interpretations.”  

Fong continued, “Ordinary objects and random observations capture my attention and trigger jumbled reveries about life and its confusing characteristics.  In attempting to make sense of things - or not - I generate images using a mix of both narrative and abstract elements.  My paintings are populated with imaginary forms obliquely connected to real life counterparts. Abstraction and improbable colors are combined with more traditional pictorial devices - perspective and layering, for instance.  With these images as points of departure, I hope that viewers can experience personal connections and form individual interpretations.”

Curator of the Club’s exhibits Lynn Curtis commented, “There is no doubt those who visit The Club’s exquisite new Farmer Gallery will be inspired by what they see.”   She added, “I am delighted to have the pleasure of working with so many talents, and provide a venue for local artists to reach a wider audience.”

About the Artist: 

Linda Fong relocated to the Bay Area from Honolulu in 2002. With a degree in Design from Carnegie Mellon University, she worked for many years as a graphic designer and freelance illustrator in New York, Philadelphia, and Hawaii. She is now working as an artist full time at her studio in the Hunters Point Shipyard in San Francisco. She has shown her work in numerous exhibitions, both in Hawaii and in the Bay Area, and each fall she participates in San Francisco Open Studios.

About Lynn Curtis: 

Longtime Commonwealth Club volunteer and artist herself Lynn Curtis has curated over 40 of the Club’s exhibitions since 2007.  Curtis produced exhibits in the Gold Room of the Club’s former office space at 595 Market Street from 2008 through 2014.

Curtis noted, “I love looking at art and looking for artists.  It’s an exciting adventure seeking these visual treasures.  Open Studios in the Bay Area provides a great opportunity to visit the artists where they work.” Curtis also frequents local galleries, mines local papers, and receives recommendations of those she meets at the Club. Of the work she chooses to display she says “All of them must be honest, with a unique insight.  The winners draw me to them.”

Curtis, a native of Pennsylvania, attended the College of the Arts in Oakland, known as the College of Arts and Crafts.  She is a graduate of the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, the first and oldest art school and museum in this country, established in 1805. She says she is indebted to the classical training she received there which, in fact, is the substance of her art background.

Notes Curtis, “The exhibition program is a continuation of the purpose of the Club: to expose the public to new thoughts and ideas as a public forum.  The exposure here, though, is silent.  Each artwork speaks to the viewer’s eyes, and the viewer must internalize what he sees.”  Curtis recommends that the viewer always asks, “What is this artist trying to say to me, and why?” 

Exhibits of artworks at the Club's Farmer Gallery are available during most business hours and, unless otherwise noted, are free to view. Many exhibits will also feature a special event featuring the artist.  For more information about Club exhibits please visit

Interested parties may send exhibit proposals with photos via email:

About the Commonwealth Club of California:

Founded in 1903, The Commonwealth Club of California is the nation’s premier public affairs forum, with more than 22,000 members.  Based in San Francisco with a second office in San Jose, the Club hosts over 450 speeches, debates and discussions each year on issues of regional, national and international significance.  The Club continues to host its guests -- from presidents and activists, to scientists and chefs, at its offsite venues around San Francisco, in Silicon Valley, the East Bay, and in Marin County as well.  In addition to its traditional forums, the Club hosts the Climate One project on climate change and Inforum, the Club’s division oriented to younger community members.  It has sponsored public policy projects over the years, ranging from early 1900s studies and reports leading to environmental and social legislative and policy innovations, to more recent efforts to improve state governance in California.  The Club has produced a PBS film, published books and publishes a bi-monthly magazine, The Commonwealth.

At least 1 million people listen to The Commonwealth Club’s weekly radio broadcasts on more than 230 public and commercial stations across the country. The Club’s podcasts are downloaded about 2.5 million times each year. The Club’s videos also appear on the California Channel, C-SPAN and YouTube, where they have been viewed millions of times. For the past 11 decades, the Club has fostered free speech and civic dialogue on a wide range of topics, addressing key issues in society, culture, politics, the economy and more in more than 450 live programs each year.  For more information, visit

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