Windows | Valentina Cirasola | Author and Designer

They say you should never lose your child curiosity. I never have lost mine. I came to San Francisco many moons ago and still feel I am a tourist in my life. The city to me is a great opportunity for learning, never lose the chance to visit buildings which contain arts and culture. The restaurant scene is my second interest, of course, learning about food of various cultures is very interesting, it’s always a good subject to talk about at dinner parties.

Walking up to Coit Tower is an enterprise, the Greenwich stairs on Telegraph Hill are steep and intimidated, but I like the challenge and always go up that way. Most people drive to Coit Tower, only to find out, parking up there is limited and waiting time, to take someone’s spot, is about  45 minutes. On the long climb up the stairs, I can admire the gardens and residents’ houses made of redwood, the only one that survived the earthquake of 1906. In their windows is easy to see parrots, of which at times, I hear their voices. If I turn around while climbing, it is like looking in the window of San Francisco bay, framed with trees and foliage, breathtaking!

(Click on each photo to view it larger).

Inside Coit Tower, the murals are a window in the history of America life during the Great Depression era of 1930s, a very difficult time for Americans, who lived the roaring ’20s and then suddenly knew poverty, as the economy stood still for about 5-6 years.  Those who have lived the Great Depression, lived the rest of their lives saving and conserving anything they could.

(California agriculture – vignette by Maxine Albro’s)

(Police calling for an emergency vignette)

The murals were part of the city’s Public Work Art Project. Various students collaborated in the projects,  inspired by painter Diego Rivera’s style. The murals depict the struggles of working class Americans. Through various vignettes we can see in the windows of chemical and steel mills working day, scenes in the cannery work, news gathering, packaging line, striking miners, women washing clothes and men panning for gold in the river, farming and wine making. In the window of city life, we can see a splash of everyday life, fashion of the era, a traffic accident, an armed robbery and a policeman calling for an emergency.

(Mural of the Library by Bernard Zakheim was one of the most controversial)

(Traffic accident and arm robbery – City Life mural by Victor Mikhail Arnautoff)

(Washing clothes at the river and gold diggers vignette by John Langley Howard)

(Chemists vignette)


(Industries of California – mural by Ralph Stackpole)

(Wine shop vignette)

The murals created around a real window, make American life of the era very real.
“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page”― Augustine of Hippo



Copyright © 2017 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved


Valentina Cirasola is an Italian interior designer in business since 1990. She is passionate about colors and all expressive arts. She is a “colorist”. To her, selecting art means to bring out the best energy of her clients and nourish their soul. She trots the world and loves to write travel notes, from which she draws inspiration to design home interiors of her clients .
She is the author of her book on the subject of colors: ©Red-A Voyage Into Colors available on


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