Summer 2012 Merchandise

Nixon in China—Michael Schwab Poster

Following the success of his stunning poster for the 2011 Ring cycle, San Francisco Opera has commissioned famed Bay Area artist Michael Schwab to create a poster commemorating the Company premiere of John Adams’ Nixon in China. The posters are printed on archival fine art paper and are available now as an unsigned 16"x24" ($75) and signed collector's poster 24"x36" ($150) through the San Francisco Opera Shop, located in the War Memorial Opera House, and online. A limited number of posters are available from the Opera Shop.

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Schwab's work is easily recognized by his signature use of large, flat areas of color, dramatic perspectives and bold, graphic images of archetypal human forms. Often working from posed models, he typically designs spontaneously in front of the camera to achieve the lines and shadows he desires.  "My graphic heroes have always been the early 20th century poster artists from France, Italy and Germany. My goal was to combine the big, bold drama of those historic posters with a modern cutting edge attitude for this production," said Schwab. "I've always enjoyed creating dramatic poster images that tell a story. For me, the paper is my stage, with shapes, colors and typography working together to create a scene or evoke a mood—a message." 

Renowned Bay Area graphic artist Michael Schwab has created award winning images, posters, and logos for numerous clients, including Robert Mondavi, Turner Classic Movies, Amtrak, Willie Nelson’s Farm Aid, Robert Redford’s Sundance, the 2002 Winter Olympics, and the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy. In 1992, he collaborated with San Francisco Opera on the Company’s poster for Boris Godunov.


The Magic Flute—Jun Kaneko Poster, Book and T-Shirts

Jun Kaneko is a renowned Japanese-American visual artist. Born in Nagoya, Japan, Kaneko studied painting there with Satoshi Ogawa during his adolescence. He came to the United States in 1963 to continue his studies at the Chouinard Institute of Art when his introduction to Fred Marer drew him to sculptural ceramics. Kaneko has taught at some of the nation’s leading art schools, including Scripps College, Rhode Island School of Design, and Cranbrook Academy of Art. His ceramic, bronze, and glass sculptural work and two-dimensional artwork appears in numerous international solo and group exhibitions annually and is included in approximately fifty museum collections. He has realized almost thirty public art commissions in the United States and Japan. His previous opera productions were Madama Butterfly for Opera Omaha (2007) and Fidelio for the Opera Company of Philadelphia (2008).

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The Magic Flute poster (left)—both signed and unsigned—feature an original drawing of the act one two-headed snake.

The book, The Magic Flute by Jun Kaneko is a comprehensive look at the creation of San Francisco Opera’s 2012 production of The Magic Flute. Two years of work is documented in hundreds of color illustrations including costume sketches, production designs, projection drawings and photos of meetings with the production team, visits to the costume and prop departments and early technical rehearsals.

The whimsical costume sketches of The Magic Flute production designer, Jun Kaneko, are featured on an beautiful array of t-shirts at the Opera Shop. Sizes come in toddler and adult.

The toddler t-shirt features Kaneko's costume sketch of a single chick on the front and back:

The adult t-shirt features Kaneko's costume sketches of an array of chicks on the front: