All-access art in The City

Aubrey Rhodes has always drawn. She was the kid at the diner drawing on the place mat. Art — a subject on par with recess — was play, not work. 

Rhodes, who’s participating this weekend in San Francisco Open Studios — a free, monthlong event in which more than 600 artists open their doors to the public — admits her “art story” doesn’t have a concrete beginning, middle and end. She simply recalls moments when she realized art was an entity that had power.

For instance, in kindergarten she was sent home with a note attached to a drawing of a naked, overweight lady she had done in class.

“I knew it wasn’t appropriate, but I did it anyway,” says Rhodes, who grew up in Modesto and moved to San Francisco in 2001. “That’s why I did it, actually. I wanted to see what would happen. I had no idea that some little drawing I did in kindergarten of some rotund, naked woman would cause such a flurry.”

This year marks Rhodes’ first time with Open Studios.

The citywide event, which spans four weekends across four sections of San Francisco, gets under way Saturday when artists showcasing photography, printmaking, jewelry and dinnerware, to name a few, open up shop in the Bernal Heights, Castro, Duboce, Eureka Valley, Glen Park, Mission, Noe Valley and Portola neighborhoods.

Rhodes calls The City’s art scene accessible, but says it takes a lot of footwork, time and effort for people to establish their work.

“What I love most are the different personalities that all the private galleries and artist-run initiatives create for themselves,” she says. “There’s something different championed at every venue. The diversity is gluttonous and the skills are crazy.”

Rhodes — whose studio is at 1890 Bryant St., a site housing a few dozen artists — is showing paintings inspired by contemporary images and current events. Using familiar images, including newspaper headlines, the paintings are collages representing a social subconscious.

“We’ll just have to see how it all shakes out after weekend one,” she says. “I think I’m just pretty fortunate to be a young, active artist in one of the most important creative cities in the world, making art with some of the best artists of my time. These are the days I hope to tell my grandchildren about.”

If you go

San Francisco Open Studios

When: 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturdays-Sundays; closes Nov. 1

Admission: Free

Contact: www.artspan.org

Dates and locations

Saturday-Sunday: Bernal Heights, Castro, Duboce, Eureka Valley, Glen Park, Mission, Noe Valley, Portola

Oct. 17-18: Buena Vista, Diamond Heights, Fort Mason, Haight, Hayes Valley, Marina, Mount Davidson, Pacific Heights, Richmond, Sunset, Ocean Beach, Twin Peaks, West Portal

Oct. 24-25: Financial District, North Beach, Potrero Hill, Russian Hill, SoMa, Tenderloin, Bayview, Excelsior

Oct. 31-Nov. 1: Hunters Point Shipyard

Art & MuseumsartistartsentertainmentSan Francisco

Just Posted

Epic Cleantec uses soil mixed with treated wastewater solids to plants at the company’s demonstration garden in San Francisco. (Photo courtesy of Epic Cleantec)
This startup watches what SF flushes – and grows food with it

Epic Cleantec saves millions of gallons of water a year, and helps companies adhere to drought regulations

San Francisco Giants manager Gabe Kapler congratulates San Francisco Giants first baseman Darin Ruf (33) in the dug out after hitting a home-run in the 5th inning against the Washington Nationals at Oracle Park on July 9, 2021. (Christopher Victorio/Special to The Examiner)
How Gabe Kapler sets the tone for Giants success with strategy, mindset

‘There’s no doubt in my mind that he’s the hands-down manager of the year’

The Kimpton Buchanan Hotel in Japantown could become permanent supportive housing if The City can overcome neighborhood pushback. (Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)
Anti-homeless discrimination stalls supportive housing in Japantown

Will NIMBY arguments keep homeless housing out of neighborhoods?

Suicide is the second leading cause of death for adolescents in the U.S. (Shutterstock)
Why California teens need mental illness education

SB 224 calls for in-school mental health instruction as depression and suicide rates rise

‘Ticket to Ride’ is made up of artistic renderings of Muni tickets, most of which are several feet tall. (Courtesy of Optimist Williams)
Celebrating pre-tech SF through Muni transfer tickets

‘Ticket to Ride’ exhibit presents public transit as ultimate equalizer

Most Read