Crossroads Community (the farm): Early Life Frame Leads to Development of Potrero Del Sol Park & A Living Library

Enjoy short video on Crossroads Community (the farm), a pioneering, urban agriculture, environmental education, multi-arts, community gathering place that began in 1974 and incorporated a major freeway interchange.  The open space is now site of Potrero del Sol Park, which was originally inspired by The Farm.

Also see below Original Proposal For The Farm, Drawing/Collage © 1974 by Bonnie Ora Sherk, Founding Director and President of Crossroads Community (the farm) from 1974-1980, and picture of Model of The Farm: View South To Freeway ©1977 Bonnie Ora Sherk.

[caption id="attachment_9227" align="aligncenter" width="426"]Original Proposal For The Farm, Drawing/Collage © 1974 by Bonnie Ora Sherk Original Proposal For The Farm, Drawing/Collage © 1974 by Bonnie Ora Sherk[/caption] [caption id="attachment_9242" align="aligncenter" width="550"]Model of The Farm: View South To Freeway ©1977 Bonnie Ora Sherk Model of The Farm: View South To Freeway ©1977 Bonnie Ora Sherk[/caption]

Affectionately known as The Farm to the thousands of participants from all walks of life - locally and globally - The Farm also led directly to the development of  A Living Library, which began right after Bonnie Ora Sherk left The Farm at the end of 1980.

The Farm, was located in San Francisco in the crossroads of four, low-income, multicultural communities (Mission, Bernal Heights, Potrero Hill, Bayview) on 7+ acres adjacent to, and including the intersection of a major freeway interchange (101 at Chavez & Potrero). The Farm, was an early Life Frame*, and involved extensive land transformation including the integration of disparate, derelict, land parcels into a new city culture-ecology park at the convergence of three hidden Creeks - Islais, Precita, Serpentine, now called Potrero Del Sol Park.  (*The Life Frame literally engages and frames life, so we can see it and experience it more profoundly- Bonnie Ora Sherk.)

[caption id="attachment_9268" align="aligncenter" width="550"]Crossroads Community (the Farm) Crossroads Community (the farm) - BEFORE © 1974 Bonnie Ora Sherk[/caption] [caption id="attachment_9270" align="aligncenter" width="550"]Crossroads Community (The Farm) Crossroads Community (the farm) & Potrero Del Sol Park -AFTER © 1980 Bonnie Ora Sherk[/caption] [caption id="attachment_9269" align="aligncenter" width="550"]Crossroads Community (the Farm) Crossroads Community (the farm): First Garden on State Land - BEFORE © 1975 Bonnie Ora Sherk[/caption]
[caption id="attachment_9271" align="aligncenter" width="550"]Crossroads Community Crossroads Community (the farm): First Garden on State Land - AFTER © 1980 Bonnie Ora Sherk[/caption]
The Farm educated people of all ages about ecology and natural, integrated systems, including all the arts.  It was the home of farm animals, who lived in The Raw Egg Animal Theater (TREAT), organic vegetable and flower gardens, a human theater, and diverse community gathering places. It included a state preschool, a library, several performance spaces, farmhouse and kitchen, events, dances, community meetings, classes, other public and private gatherings. Neighborhood residents, local schools, as well as the visual and performing arts communities, were invited to participate in The Farm’s interdisciplinary, ecologically oriented, multi-arts activities and educational programs.  People from all over the world came to visit The Farm, as it provided a good example of urban agriculture, before that became a burgeoning field.  Additionally, The Farm was also one of the first Alternative Arts Spaces in the United States.
  [caption id="attachment_9243" align="aligncenter" width="550"]Scene From Crossroads Community (the farm): Boys Mowing The Lawn Next To The Freeway © 1976 Bonnie Ora Sherk                      Scene From Crossroads Community (the farm): Boys Mowing The Lawn Next To The Freeway    ©1976 Bonnie Ora Sherk[/caption]
[caption id="attachment_5030" align="aligncenter" width="550"]Scene From The Raw Egg Animal Theatre At The Farm: Buck Meets The Cat © 1976 Bonnie Ora Sherk Scene From The Raw Egg Animal Theatre [TREAT] At The Farm: Buck Meets The Cat © 1976 Bonnie Ora Sherk[/caption]
Please see below an original work, Crossroads Community (the farm) is an alternative to alternative art spaces, by Bonnie Ora Sherk © 1979, commissioned by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art for the exhibition, Space Time Sound, at SFMOMA, 1980:
The Farm by Bonnie Ora Sherk
Read this short original text below on The Farm written by Bonnie Ora Sherk in 1977 on Crossroads Community (the farm) official stationary, for the Center For Critical Inquiry, 1st International Symposium, San Francisco Art Institute.
Crossroads Community (the farm)
Crossroads Community (The Farm)
Crossroads Community (The Farm)
This original text has been republished in diverse books worldwide, including:
  • Politiques de la Végétation, Marco Scotini, Editor, Eterotopie, France 2017
  • Vegetation As Political Art, Marco Scotini, Editor, Parco Arte Vivente, 2014
  • NATURE: Documents of Centemporary Art, Edited by Jeffrey Kastner, Whitechapel Gallery/MIT Press, Extract from Crossroads Community (the farm),     Center for Critical Inquiry Position Paper, 1st International Symposium, San Francisco Art Institute, 2012
  • ART AND SOCIAL CHANGE:  A CRITICAL READER, Edited by Will Bradley And Charles Esche, Tate Publishing, 2007
  • Theories and Documents of Contemporary Art, A Sourcebook of Artists’ Writings, Edited by Peter Selz And Kristine Stiles, UC Press, Berkeley, 1996
 

Additionally, Art Installations on The Farm have been exhibited nationally and internationally in addition to being published in books and journals worldwide.

Selection Of Exhibition Venues on The Farm Listed Below:

•  Van Abbe Museum, Eindhoven, The Netherlands
•  Parco Arte Vivente, Turin, Italy
•  Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy
•  National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art Korea, Seoul, Korea
•  Kunstraum Kreuzberg/Bethanien, Berlin, Germany
•  Museum of Modern Art/PS 1, New York City
•  Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, California
•  National Museum of Women, Washington, DC
•  American University Museum, Washington, D.C
•  Vancouver Art Gallery, Vancouver, Canada
•  Roski School of Art, USC, Los Angeles, California
•  Site Santa Fe, Santa Fe, New Mexico
•  Smart Art Museum, Chicago, Illinois
•  California College of Art Wattis Gallery, San Francisco, CA
•  San Francisco Art Institute, San Francisco, CA
•  Cincinnati Center for Contemporary Art, Cincinnati, Ohio
•  Belkin Gallery, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada
•  Braunstein / Quay Gallery, San Francisco, California
[caption id="attachment_9266" align="aligncenter" width="640"]Installation on Crossroads Community (the farm) by Bonnie Ora Sherk at Kunstraum Kreuzberg/Bethanien, Berlin, Germany, 2012 Installation on Crossroads Community (the farm) by Bonnie Ora Sherk at Kunstraum Kreuzberg/Bethanien,                Berlin, Germany, 2012[/caption]