Press Release

Bank of the West Partners with San Francisco Museum of Modern Art to Bring Art, Culture and Education to the West
SAN FRANCISCO, CA | Apr 28, 2016

Digital Exhibit Highlights the Birth of California and the Birth of Photography

Today the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) unveiled the Photography Interpretive Gallery sponsored by Bank of the West to reporters in anticipation of the museum's opening on May 14th. The Gallery contains three digital interactive exhibits highlighting photography and its history in California and the West. This is the latest of several initiatives Bank of the West has supported to promote cultural, entrepreneurial and educational experiences in the greater San Francisco Bay Area and across the Western United States.

“The opening of the new SFMOMA is a watershed moment for the city of San Francisco, and helps bring the center of the arts world out West,” said Michael Shepherd, Chairman and CEO of Bank of the West. “Bank of the West is honored to support the museum, which offers the largest gallery space dedicated to photography of any art museum in the country. Through Photography Interpretive Gallery exhibits, we hope to engage with visitors to promote and celebrate art, culture, design, innovation, and education.”

The Photography Interpretive Gallery is designed to foster a deeper understanding of how photography shapes perception by featuring three digital exhibits that engage visitors in new and surprising ways. Exhibits include:

  • The View from Here, a digital interactive exhibit highlighting Yosemite, the Central Valley and San Francisco;
  • Self-Composed, a digital interface encouraging users to make their own likeness; and  
  • A videoexhibit titled In Their Own Words, showing the personal journeys of artists such as Ansel Adams, Edward Weston, Imogen Cunningham, and Dorothea Lange.

Jean-Marc Torre, senior executive vice president, Commercial Banking Group at Bank of the West, visited the new Photography Interpretive Gallery and created his own Self-Composed image (see sample attached  #SelfComposed). “We take an innovative approach in how we see and use technology to support our clients, and with Self-Composed, we are doing the same in the arts,” said Torre. “This exhibit puts innovation in the hands of visitors, demonstrating that art and creativity can come from all of us.”

Bank of the West has a rich history in channeling the exploration, creativity and curiosity of the West through photography, art, and design, as exemplified through the Bank's “Go West” campaign and branding. The strategic partnership with the Photographic Interpretive Gallery is reflective of the Bank's California heritage and commitment to the communities they serve.

“We are a part of a vibrant and creative community in San Francisco and throughout the Western United States,” continued Shepherd. “Both as an organization and through individual Bank of the West team members, we have long supported the arts, and are proud to support the heritage of the West by partnering with cultural institutions like SFMOMA.”

Bank of the West's sponsorship of SFMOMA continues its ongoing support of the arts. Bank of the West was the Presenting Sponsor of the Frank Gehry at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) and currently supports the Cantor Arts Center at Stanford University and the Sonoma Valley Museum of Art. The bank has also sponsored exhibits at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco since 2008. Bank of the West supports an annual International Hackathon with parent company BNP Paribas to promote entrepreneurship, and as well sponsors Look West, a partnership with The New York Times that brings innovators in the arts, media and technology on stage for engaging discussions with New York Times journalists throughout the Western United States.

Follow news and updates on the SFMOMA opening on Twitter using #newSFMOMA and following @BankoftheWest and @SFMOMA.

About Bank of the West:
Bank of the West is a regional financial services company chartered in California and headquartered in San Francisco with $75.7 billion in assets as of December 31, 2015. Founded in 1874, Bank of the West provides a wide range of personal, commercial, wealth management and international banking services through more than 600 offices in 22 states and digital channels.  Bank of the West is a subsidiary of BNP Paribas, which has a presence in 75 countries with 185,000 employees.

Media Contacts:
Anita Fox, Corporate Communicationst
Bank of the West

Julia Mellon
Bliss Integrated

Corporate Headquarters

180 Montgomery Street
San Francisco, CA 94104


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