North Beach Millefiori
Acrylic on fiberglass
Mini heart - 6" by 7"
© Ron Orpitelli 2020
In my work with a community-based AIDS service organization serving
Santa Clara County in the 1990's, we benefitted greatly from the leadership
and example provided by the San Francisco model of AIDS care at San
Francisco General Hospital. I have never forgotten this.
This heart is covered by depictions of Venetian glass beads in millefiori
patterns as a tribute to this South Bay Italian American’s memory of family
visits to San Francisco’s North Beach neighborhood over the past six
decades to revel in the flavors of our grandparents’ birthplaces in Italy. A
subtle reference to “il Tricolor” also adds to memories of living our heritage
through family-style dining with visiting relatives (and scaring them to death
driving the hills to North Beach).
This heart was decorated in support of the efforts of the
San Francisco General Hospital Foundation
to raise critically important funding through their "Hearts in San Francisco"
campaign for their mission to promote research, education, and care for all
at San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center. Visit the foundation
This piece was on display with the other mini hearts at Macy's Union
Square in San Francisco throughout January 2020. It then was part of the
fund-raising auction at the annual gala:
Hearts in San Francisco - A Night of Hope
An evening of celebration in support of vital mental health programming at
Zuckerberg San Francisco General - February 13, 2020 at Oracle Park.