Façade of Gagosian Gallery in San Francisco, ©M-PROJECTS, courtesy Gagosian Gallery.

Façade of Gagosian Gallery in San Francisco, ©M-PROJECTS, courtesy Gagosian Gallery.

SF Art Gets Pumped More

Gagosian and Pace galleries

The new, the now, the influential SFMOMA is creating a bit of a ripple effect. I am happy to report that Art Market San Francisco, the art fair, is doing quite well, drawing a shoulder-to-shoulder crowd over the weekend of April 27–May 1 at Fort Mason. They also had terrific work, from such local galleries as Chandra Cerrito Contemporary and Adler & Co., as well as out-of-towners like Walter Maciel, Timothy Yarger, Forum and Nancy Hoffman. Parking was insane though, with a craft fair taking place in a nearby building at the same time.

Installation view of 67 68 69, photo by Florian Holzherr, copyright James Turrell, courtesy Pace Gallery.

Installation view of 67 68 69, photo by Florian Holzherr, copyright James Turrell, courtesy Pace Gallery.


That same weekend Pace Gallery established a beachhead on the West Coast in Palo Alto, right in the heart of Silicon Valley. The new gallery opened with a James Turrell show (which runs through July 30), an artist who should appeal to the dot-comers. And Pace had already opened a temporary exhibition space nearby, Pace Art + Technology, featuring the dazzling art video/tech installations of teamLab, the hot Japanese art group. Some pieces bloomed in darkened corridors, others in their own rooms. The immersive animations/videos reflected Japanese themes and aesthetics in a Hi-Tech way—such as depiction of life cycles, with flowers and plants budding, blooming, fading.


And this fall, strategically located across from the Howard Street entrance of SFMOMA, two new galleries will be opening. Gagosian moved into the former storefront of Crown Point Press, at 4,500 square feet with the opening of its inaugural exhibition “Plane.Site” on May 18th. And right next door will be the John Berggruen Gallery, one of San Francisco’s most blue-chip galleries, showing works by Chuck Close, Martin Puryear and Bridget Riley. Berggruen will take leave of its old Grant Avenue space, where they’ve held court for 44 years, for the new 10,000-square-foot space. This will be big enough for exhibitions and for some projects they have in mind, says Gretchen Berggruen, wife of John Berggruen and an active partner in running the gallery. “We were ready for a change, to reinvent the space,” she says. “We’ve been talking about moving, and then we saw this historic brick building—and lo and behold it was right across the street from the museum!”