Letters to the Editor: July 2021

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Regarding the loss of hilltop on Kansas Street – not Rhode Island, as reported in the May View – doesn’t the dirt belong in a Potrero Hill museum, where future Hill dwellers can experience the charms of rocky, weedy, hilltops once common hereabouts, but now fallen out of favor?

Stephen Fotter
Florida Street


I did the Potrero Hill mural in the 1980s. No one reached out to interview me, as was stated in “Potrero Hill Mural Fading Away” (June). I have all the original designs, photographs, articles, and complete documentation. 

I’ve tried, unsuccessfully, on three occasions over the years to find ways to restore that mural. [Potrero Hill Archives Project Director] Peter Linenthal knows of a couple of my attempts. I also contacted [Former View Publisher, who passed in 2019] Ruth Passen and the building’s owners about it. 

No one has contacted me for a few years. I didn’t turn away the opportunity to be interviewed or contacted.

I retain first right of refusal as stated in a contract with the City of San Francisco. I’d very much like to participate in the mural’s disposition! I’d be heartbroken to be overlooked in that process. 

I continue to be a very active community artist. I live outside of Kansas City on the Kansas side in Overland Park. Ten years ago, I founded a nonprofit community arts center, Interurban Arthouse.

I devoted more than three years of my early career (unpaid), researching, interviewing, presenting and publicly defending the right for that mural to be painted before I was able to begin. I was the primary painter over eight months, assisted by artist Scott Branham who still lives in California and remains my good friend. 

Dan Fontes was only an acquaintance, had no role designing and a very small role in painting that mural.

Susan Cervantes is incorrect; there was an ultraviolet and graffiti coat painted over the colors. The technology of that coating is probably what crystallized. I used Polytex mural paint. 

If there’s an effort to restore that mural I should be contacted. Not only is it the right thing to do I’d be honored to play a role again. 

Nicole Emanuel
Founder, Art Director, InterUrban ArtHouse