Art in Action exhibition

About This Item

Silent, color footage from the Golden Gate International Exposition on Treasure Island in San Francisco (1939/40), produced by Orville C. Goldner. Features scenes from the Art in Action exhibition, including coverage of Diego Rivera and Miné Okubo working on the Pan American Unity Mural and of various artists demonstrating: sculpture; mosaics; printing; doll making; weaving; pottery and axe carving. Note that Movette Film Transfer of San Francisco remastered this 16mm negative film print in March 2018 in 2K resolution (2048x1556 pixels), using a Lasergraphics film scanner. Opening graphic designed by Carrie Hawks.

Please note that some people have identified the woman shown working on the Pan American Unity Mural as Thelma Johnson Streat and not Miné Okubo. Please feel free to share your opinion on this in our Comments section.

To access more detailed information about Rivera's work on the Pan American Unity Mural, visit City College of San Francisco's The Diego Rivera Mural Project (web link below):

Type of material
Kodachrome amateur film
Recording medium
16mm color silent film
Date aired
Originally aired on
Orville C. Goldner

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I was also trying to track down the mural that the person labelled as Okubo was assisting at--however, it is not in the newly restored mural that is at the SFMOMA. I wonder if there are sections that were just demos, or otherwise did not make it into the final set of panels, the ones at City College-->SFMOMA? I am also curious who the man on the right is, in the hat?

Isn't that Thelma Johnson Streat, rather than Mine Okubo?

San Francisco Native Contact Will Maynez via City College SF and ask his expert opinion.

I have Diego's work table in my garage from that exhibition. The fire chief in our neighborhood helped out during that time and asked Diego if he could keep the work table after he was done with it and also since much of the exhibition was being removed anyway. He put it in the garage and expanded it to work on his personal projects.  He was the first owner of the house in 1940 and I am the second. It's always been one of our family's fun stories. It was my favorite table to work at crafts when I was growing up as well. His daughter passed along the history to us when we moved in back in the 80's. It's been sitting there ever since. We are about to remodel our home and I'm not quite sure what to do with it. Nice piece of history, but it is large and not so pretty. 

Please note that the link to the Diego Rivera Pan American Unity website is

The woman featured in the film is Miné Okubo not Thelma Johnson Streat.

All the images of Diego Rivera are in this video on Art in Action.

HI, I just want to know was there any more film on Deigo Rivera working on the mural by Orville Goldner and if so is their any way I can view it.

Thanks Hubert Massey

i love it

This post gives the light in which we can observe the reality. this is very nice one and gives indepth information.

As someone living in a remote area of Canada I can only applaud any innovation in online art museums. I couldn't put into words how the internet has opened up so many opportunities for people like myself who love the arts but will never be able to visit the worlds great galleries and museums, in addition to now being able to listen to the BBC (3, 4 & 7gre) and read the Guardian!!

Thanks for this post. The video gives a clear information about the art in Action exhibition, including coverage of Diego Rivera and Thelma Johnson Streat

Nice post, note that Diego Rivera adds almost 1/4" of plaster to the plaster substrate that came with the massive steel panels on which the "Pan American Unity" mural is painted.

Hi Everyone,

We spent a good deal of time trying to verify the identify of the woman shown illustrating the fresco technique: Thelma Johnson Streat OR another assistant, Mine Okubo.  The family of TJS could not absolutely say that it was Thelma; Mine wrote in a memoir that she demonstrated the fresco technique when she worked at the Fair...

Thanks for putting this on-line. Note that Diego Rivera adds almost 1/4" of plaster to the plaster substrate that came with the massive steel panels on which the "Pan American Unity" mural is painted. He painted on the last "intonaco" layer.

The mural is open to view about 40 hours a week at City College of SF. Look on our website for current viewing hours and directions.

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