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Innovation Hangar
Palace of Fine Arts
3301 Lyon Street
San Francisco, CA




10:00 AM - 2:00 PM

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  • Good for Groups
  • Good for Kids
  • Indoors
  • Near MUNI
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Subframe Listening Event: Past is Prologue

California Historical Society
Jan 10, 10:00AM – 02:00PM

To close our Panama-Pacific International Exposition (PPIE) programming, we present an interactive program at the Palace of Fine Arts. Come meet the staff of Subframe, an audio storytelling project, and listen to their audio stories connected to the history of the PPIE, specifically their final episode titled, “The Past is Prologue.”

For this final episode of the season, Subframe collaborated with Johanna Hoffman from Shiftworks to create “The Past is Prologue,” an investigation of the PPIE site through the lens of long-term change. The episode explores how the site we currently call the Marina has changed over the millennia. Combining images, historical timelines and artistic renderings of times past, Shiftworks investigates how the site has physically changed and tracks the forces that enacted those changes. Understanding how the area went from hillside to wetland to the site of the PPIE, from thriving urban area to disaster zone following the Loma Prieta earthquake, helps us appreciate that no matter how much the ground beneath our feet feels solid, the world we live in is always shifting into something new.

More about Subframe: This year, Subframe partnered with the California Historical Society to produce an audio series exploring the Panama-Pacific International Exposition. The outcome is series of episodes taking listeners back in time 100 years to investigate the cultural contexts that gave birth to the 1915 World’s Fair. To do so, Subframe re-creates The Jewel City in the minds of listeners, utilizing the research of historians, artists and scientists. The exploration looks at gender roles, American imperialism, racial strife and the landscape itself through the lens of movies and literature.

More about Shiftworks: Shiftworks is a design and consulting firm that develops and promotes adaptive urban design. Using visioning, communication, design and planning techniques, Shiftworks develops innovative and practical solutions to negotiate the challenges of climate change. For more information, visit

They will be located inside the exhibition City Rising: San Francisco and the 1915 World’s Fair, at a listening station by the video, Dream City. 

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