The ATS is leaving a heart in San Francisco as a sign of hope, happiness, and support for a beloved community.
A mural by local artist Hershey B. Bautista depicting the city skyline and two hands forming a heart was commissioned by the Society as it planned its return to San Francisco — and in-person meetings — for the ATS 2022 International Conference, May 13-18.
The painting can be viewed at the corner of Eddy and Cyril Magnin streets.
Giving back to the host city has long been a priority of International Conference planners. This year, as organizers visited San Francisco to map out conference activities for close to 10,000 participants, they were struck by the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on businesses connected to the travel industry and corporate events. They found familiar venues still regaining their vibrancy.
To support this sector and contribute to the living tableau of the city, the ATS partnered with Ms. Bautista to provide a mural outside the Parc 55 San Francisco hotel, with support from Hilton Hotels and event management company Freeman.
“Like most cities, San Francisco’s hotel community was hit hard, and we can still feel and see the impact today,” said Emily Catanzaro, CMP, ATS senior director of meeting services. “Though business is slowly bouncing back, data shows that hotels are still experiencing a loss in group and corporate travel. The absence of this business has caused some of our favorite hotels to close their doors, while others are waiting to welcome guests back. Some are operating with fewer staff and others are slowly rebuilding their large teams.”
San Francisco is a mainstay in the ATS International Conference rotation, most recently hosting the premier respiratory health conference in 2016.
“Staff, attendees, and leadership are thrilled to support one of our favorite places to gather,” Ms. Catanzaro said.
A native of the Philippines, Ms. Bautista earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Metropolitan State University of Denver and a Master of Fine Art Drawing and Painting at Academy of Art University. Her work reflects the role American television played in helping her to adapt to the unfamiliar culture she encountered when moving to a new country as a young teenager.
“My content has been influenced by shows on MTV, Cartoon Network, Nickelodeon, and PBS, and the way in which their presentation of information shaped my understanding of the United States,” she explains in an artist statement on her website.