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Friday, 17 May 2024 to Saturday, 13 July 2024

Straight off the success and critical praise of his 2023 show, “THE ART OF CODE SWITCHING,” in New York City, acclaimed artist Don Hershman will present his first-ever San Francisco solo exhibition, “I AM A BARN.” A profound exploration of life's journey through the lens of aging barns, houses, and shacks, this captivating exhibit—comprised of 22 new works meticulously painted on wood panels—invites viewers to embark on a reflective journey through the artist's own experiences of resilience, creativity, and wisdom.  Drawing inspiration from the rustic charm of these architectural relics, Hershman ingeniously employs them as metaphors for the twists and turns of their own artistic odyssey. Each brushstroke captures not only the physical decay and endurance of these structures but also the profound narrative of perseverance and transformation. Through the medium of paint and wood, Hershman eloquently narrates the story of growth, and the inherent beauty found in life's trials.

"I have always been fascinated by the silent voices embedded in aging structures," says Hershman. "In 'I AM A BARN,’ I sought to intertwine my own journey as a physician and artist, with the timeless symbolism of these weathered edifices. In my lifetime, I’ve survived medical school debt, two pandemics, the death of my mother as well as my first partner of 17 years. These paintings are testaments to the human spirit, with each crack and weathered plank echoing the trials and triumphs of a lifetime. As viewers navigate through each piece, they are encouraged to reflect on their own encounters with adversity and the transformative power of perseverance.

Curator :


Artist ( Description ): 

Don Hershman leads a dual life of accomplished podiatric surgeon and fine art painter. As a child, Don Hershman was profoundly influenced by his field trips to the world-class museums such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art. He fantasized about becoming an artist, drawing incessantly, creating sketchbooks, and experimenting with color well into high school. When it came time to choose a career, he felt compelled to lock in a secure path that pointed toward medicine.

Donald went on to receive his BA in premed with psychology from State University of New York at Buffalo and trained in podiatry at California college of Podiatric Medicine in San Francisco before establishing his own private practice there in the early 1980s. During medical school and surgical residency, he continued to draw, enabling him to better conceptualize the intricate spatial relationships between anatomical structures. As with a scalpel, he began to perfect his command of the pencil and paintbrush.

As he was building his medical practice, Don was also evolving a body of artwork, exploring various media in the form of drawings and paintings, and finding his voice as an artist. While hosting a party in 1992, with many of his new artworks hanging in his home, Donald was invited by a guest, a curator at the Spectrum Gallery, to participate in a group show she was organizing. To his surprise, all of his pieces in that show sold, giving Donald the confidence and inspiration he needed to push on more seriously with his art. Hershman’s work is exhibited in solo and group shows nationally and internationally, and is included in private collections. In 2020 and 2023, Hershman was jury selected for a group show at the deYoung Museum in San Francisco. In May 2021, he had a successful show, Donald and Victor: Under the Influence: at Salomon Arts Gallery in New York.

In 2022, Hershman had a solo exhibition, Sexuality and Shadows, in Provincetown, MA. Hershman’s acclaimed exhibition, The Art of Code Switching, had its debut in 2023 at the renowned Salomon Arts Gallery in Manhattan’s Tribeca district. A collection of works from Hershman’s Shadow Series is featured at The Passdoor in Sonoma.

Venue ( Address ): 

440 Brannan Street

San Francisco, CA 94107

Radian Gallery , San Francisco

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05/17/2024 to 07/13/2024


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