Weekend art walk in The City 

It may not be the first destination that comes to mind when San Franciscans go on weekend jaunts, but if all goes according to plan, it soon will be.

Last Saturday, an event hosted monthly in The City’s South Beach and South of Market neighborhoods highlighted the area’s recent emerging art scene.

As the name suggests, Last Saturday occurs the last Saturday of every month. Between 1 and 4 p.m., six galleries (Aftermodern, Arthaus, Andrea Schwartz, Gallery 16, MM and Richard Taylor) invite the community at large to view art, enjoy a glass of wine and perhaps a few edibles. This weekend will mark the third Last Saturday.

The contemporary and modern art galleries are within walking distance of each other; many try to schedule openings or artists’ receptions to coincide with the event.

"The thread between all of us is all the work we show is very contemporary, but our focus is completely different," says James Bacci, owner of Arthaus Gallery and a founder of the event, which is modeled after First Thursday, during which galleries in and around Union Square host receptions for the public.

Last Saturday promises to be more leisurely.

"First Thursday is after work, and people sort of clamor to get there. It’s a fast thing if you want to see a lot," Bacci said. "[For Last Saturday] people aren’t coming from work. It’s more of a weekend activity."

Its other aim is to draw attention to an oft-overlooked residential area, one that promises to boom in the next few years.

"I felt that the area roughly between the SFMOMA and AT&T ballpark was an exciting and energized area that was more representative of the contemporary emerging San Francisco that my gallery represents," says Jonathan Joseph, owner of Aftermodern Gallery on Third Street.

For Marina Cain, co-director of MMGalleries, the afternoon art crawl also helps bring foot traffic to her second-story gallery.

Last Saturday has also fostered camaraderie between gallery owners, Cain says. Arthaus gallery, now in its 10th year, relocated to South Beach/SoMa three years ago with the belief that the neighborhood would soon explode in popularity. Joseph opened Aftermodern in the district with a similar vision.

"We’ve been really gratified with the response," Joseph said. "It’s only been two Saturdays in two months, but it has brought people to the area. We’ve had people tell us they weren’t even aware of this pocket of The City."

For more, call (415) 543-1550 or visit www.last-saturday.com.

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Staff Report

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A daily newspaper covering San Francisco, San Mateo County and serving Alameda, Marin and Santa Clara counties.
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