Renée Gertler: Scintilla Glimmer

November 5 – December 3, 2022
Opening Reception: November 5, 4–7 pm

image: Chambers, 2019, 30 x 20 inches, ink, color pencil on paper

On view in the SFArtsED gallery at 1275 Minnesota Street is a solo exhibition by SFArtsED Artist Mentor Renée Gertler. Renée’s sculptural objects and drawings act as visual investigations of the psyche, her works sway between logic and intuition, inspired by scientific inquiry and the world of metaphysics.

About the Artist

Renée Gertler was born in Santa Barbara, California to Dutch Mother and a Hungarian Father. Renée is a visual artist and educator, currently living and working in the San Francisco Bay area. Her drawings and sculptures explore ideas around metaphysical, psychological and emotional landscape. She holds a BFA and MFA in Sculpture from The California College of Arts. She studied landscape architecture at Harvard University’s Graduate Studies of Design. As an Artist Mentor with SFArtsED, Renée taught visual arts in the San Francisco Unified School District. Her sculptures and installations have been exhibited at the Headlands Center for The Arts, New Langton Arts, Spaces Gallery, Southern Exposure, Eleanor Harwood Gallery and Et. al gallery. She has been awarded the Anthony and Cadogan Fellowship, a Danish Arts Council Grant and artist residencies at the John Michael Kohler Arts/ Industry program, Spaces, Cleveland Ohio, Vermont Studio Center, Pilchuck School of Glass Emerging Artists Fellowship, The Macdowell Colony and Kala Art Institute.


Artist Statement:

After a few visitors to my studio mentioned a feeling of déjà vu and shared an anecdote about Viola Frey, I was inspired to begin looking into the paranormal, the occult, and the energetic world. I visited the Viola Frey archive and learned that in fact, my current studio was her old reading room. Inspired by two realms most would consider diametric opposites: science and the transcendental, I combine elements from numerology, mysticism, scientific diagrams, architecture and psychology (especially the geometrical psychology of B. W. Betts).

The drawings and sculptures on view oscillate between these concepts. While scintilla means a hint or trace of something, glimmer refers to an unsteady shine. This exhibition is both a search for glimmer, and the fugitive presence of Frey in my studio. Scintilla Glimmer seeks to explore the difference between the mystic and the scientific. 

The catalyzing energy of Ruth Asawa, who started the Alvarado Art Workshop (which later evolved into the San Francisco Arts Education Project), is a huge inspiration to me in my studio practice and my family life. Asawa was a mother to six children but maintained a rigorous studio practice. When I worked as an Artist Mentor with SFArtsED, the open attitude of bringing contemporary art to students in public schools was imbued with spontaneity that I attribute to Asawa.         

 – Renée Gertler

Price List
Time is a landscape, 2019
Beads, Paper Media, Thread, Plexiglass, fluorite
16 x 9 x 9 inches