Although people often blame online commerce for putting brick and mortar stores out of business, the website Art.com has opened a new pop-up store in downtown San Francisco.
Boasting thematic displays from “Man Cave” to “Color Riot” filled with gift items including stationery, candles, bowls and knickknacks, the Emeryville-based online retailer’s new shop at 117 Post St. resembles a museum store; it’s also hosting guest speakers at a series of special events.
But the store’s real stars are the prints, posters and photographs on the walls, which are offered in various forms — silk-screen, giclee, poster, canvas and metal prints — as well as thousands of framing, mat and mounting options. Computers at the store give visitors the chance to see what their finished art piece will look like before they buy it.
With an archive of more than 1.5 million images, Art.com has something for everyone, with more than 7,000 images from the Musee d’Orsay in Paris, 2,000 Van Gogh options, 30,000 New Yorker cartoons, 3,000 images tagged “San Francisco” and 2,500 images under “Vogue.”
Conde Nast, a key contributor, offers nearly 40,000 images.
Shawn Waldron, senior director of archives and records at Conde Nast, appearing at the store today, says, “With the advent of the Internet, we can bring the archive to a wide audience and make it accessible and bring it into their homes in a way that we never could before. The collection goes back over 100 years, and Conde Nast has worked with the leading photographers of their day. It’s a museum-level collection.”
Other upcoming events include a meet-and-greet with “The Face” host and photographer Nigel Barker, cake tasting with Blue Bottle chef Caitlin Freeman, and a meet-and-greet event with artist Mario Wagner — all of whom have contributed works to Art.com, some of which are framed and on view on the store’s mezzanine level.
Other artists have curated mini collections for the store. They include Jonathan Adler, choreographer Alonzo King and screenprinter Justin Kerr, founder of Black Sheep Postal Service, slated to host a screen-printing workshop January.
IF YOU GO
Art.com pop-up shop
Where: 117 Post St., S.F.
When: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sundays-Thursdays, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Fridays-Saturdays
Contact: (800) 952-5592, www.art.com
Note: Events run from 7 to 9 p.m. and are free with RSVP: www.facebook.com/art.com/events
Tuesday — “Inspired By: Condé Nast Collection” with Shawn Waldron
Thursday — Meet and greet Nigel Barker, celebrity photographer and host of “The Face”
Dec. 4 — “Live Colorfully: The Bold Italic,” DIY crafting hosted by the online magazine
Dec. 7 — Family Ornament Collage Workshop, hosted by Petit Collage
Dec. 10 — “Modern Art Desserts,” meet author and chef Caitlin Freeman for conversation and cake tasting