“Everything is an art perfect material” was the mantra of Bay Area conceptual artist David Ireland (1930-2009), who spent more than 30 years transforming his sprawling 1886 Victorian house in the Mission into a living work of art, home to some of his best-known sculptures, drawings, and furniture designs. Starting on January 15, fans of Ireland's work may visit his home and see it all for themselves.
Upon the artist's death in 2009, the 500 Capp Street Foundation was established to oversee the preservation of David Ireland House and the study of Ireland's work. This week, the ongoing restoration project celebrates its completion with an exhibit in honor of the home's reopening, as well as special events including artist talks, a Champagne christening, and dance performances.
The 3,000-piece collection of David Ireland House, which captures the internationally renowned artist’s whimsical and freethinking approach to the process of making art, will be open for public viewing, along with various photographs and other paraphernalia, such as glass jars filled with the dust of the home's previously sanded floors and dirt from the old boarded-up windows. German and Norwegian holiday breads, given to Ireland by friends visiting from abroad, are affixed to the walls; and the “Collection of Brooms with Boom” is arranged in the formation of a clock as a statement on the fleeting life cycle of everyday household objects.
Tours are booking up fast. While supplies last, you may also snag your very own piece of the house, a section of wall in poster form, compliments of Southern Exposure and The Thing Quarterly. General admission to the house is $20. Check online for more information and special events. // David Ireland House, 500 Capp St. (Mission), 500cappstreet.org