Nine-Foot-Bronze Sculpture by Internationally Renowned Artist Stands Tall on Embarcadero Promenade

“As Sounds Turn to Noise” by Thomas J Price Unveiled by the San Francisco Arts Commission and Port of San Francisco

“As Sounds Turn to Noise” by Thomas J Price. Image: Courtesy of the Artist and Hauser & Wirth

“As Sounds Turn to Noise” by Thomas J Price on Embarcadero, July 9, 2024. Image: SFAC Staff

SAN FRANCISCO, July 9, 2024 – The San Francisco Arts Commission, in partnership with the Port of San Francisco, are pleased to announce the installation of a nine-foot-tall bronze sculpture by British artist Thomas J Price on San Francisco’s Embarcadero promenade between Pier 1 and the Ferry Building.

As Sounds Turn to Noise, 2023, measuring 110 3/8” high x 47 1/2" wide x 32 3/4" deep, will be on site for a period of six months through January 2025, with the possibility of an extension. The larger-than-life bronze sculpture depicts a young Black woman dressed in jogging attire. The subject of the bronze works that are part of this sculpture series are a composite of multiple people from observations and amalgamated photographs taken by the artist, as well as 3D scanning that took place during an open call in LA summer 2022.  

The artist challenges existing norms of who gets to be memorialized in bronze, wanting people to feel valued and respected, heard, and seen. 

“When it comes to public art, who gets to decide who is memorialized? With his larger-than-life sculptures, Thomas J Price makes it possible for everyday people, especially Black men and women who are often not represented in sculptural art, to see themselves reflected,” said Ralph Remington, Director of Cultural Affairs. “The Arts Commission is thrilled to partner with the Port of San Francisco to bring As Sounds Turn to Noise to our City’s beautiful and iconic waterfront where visitors and locals alike will be able to experience it up close and personal.” 

Thomas J Price is a British sculptor who lives and works in London. His work has been exhibited internationally; however, this is the first time one of his sculptures is being displayed in a public outdoor space in California. 

“The Port of San Francisco is the city's welcoming front door to the world,” said Executive Director Elaine Forbes. “We celebrate this beautiful sculpture - a symbol of inclusion and a monument to the power of being seen - as yet another waterfront attraction for everyone to celebrate and share.” 

As Sounds Turn to Noise was part of a series of five large-scale figurative sculptures, ranging in height between 9 and 12 feet tall, that were shown as part of Beyond Measure in the summer of 2023 at the Hauser & Wirth Downtown Los Angeles gallery.  

Selected exhibitions of his work have taken place at the Victoria and Albert Museum and the National Portrait Gallery in London, the Yorkshire Sculpture Park in the UK and at Marcus Garvey Park in New York City in collaboration with the Studio Museum of Harlem. 

Funding for this installation is provided through the San Francisco Arts Commission’s Public Art Trust, which was established in 2012 to receive contributions from developers as part of their fulfillment of the 1%-for-Art requirement mandated for development projects in designated San Francisco zoning districts, and the Port of San Francisco.  

This installation continues a tradition started by the Arts Commission of bringing temporary large-scale sculptural installations to various locations around the City since 1998. 

The sculpture is being loaned to the City and County of San Francisco by the Hauser & Wirth Gallery.

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About the Artist
Thomas J Price’s multidisciplinary practice confronts preconceived attitudes towards representation and identity, foregrounding the intrinsic value of the individual and subverting structures of hierarchy. Celebrated for his large-scale figurative sculptures, Price draws our attention to the psychological embodiment of his fictional characters, highlighting nuanced understandings of social signifiers and predetermined value. Amalgamated from multiple sources, the works are developed through a hybrid approach of traditional sculpting and intuitive digital technology. Price balances methods of presentation, material and scale to challenge our expectations and provide cues for deeper human connection. He encompasses historic constructs with a newness that at first glance can go unnoticed, but that live in the public realm as silent totems for change.  

To learn more, visit: thomasjprice.com  

About the San Francisco Arts Commission  
The San Francisco Arts Commission is the City agency that champions the arts as essential to daily life by investing in a vibrant arts community, enlivening the urban environment and shaping innovative cultural policy. Our programs include: Civic Art Collection, Civic Design Review, Community Investments, Public Art, SFAC Galleries, and Art Vendor Licensing. To learn more, visit sfartscommission.org.  

About the Port of San Francisco  
The Port of San Francisco manages 7.5 miles of waterfront that is home to popular destinations and attractions, historic districts, small businesses and robust maritime opportunities. The Port works to advance environmentally and financially sustainable maritime, recreational, and economic opportunities for the City, Bay Area, and California. To learn more, visit: sfport.com.  

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