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Surreal Art

[whitespace] street art Corporate Crazies

Text by David Boyer
Photos by Elana Koff

What do Starbucks and the Bay Guardian have in common? Both companies are creating some of the scariest public "art" in the city. Here's a sample of what's on view right now.

street art

Somebody Wants to Be Your Neighbor: Starbucks 'understands' its customers. And when it decided to open a new venue in a 'gay' neighborhood (at Church and Market), a 'gay' mural depicting 'gay' life must have seemed appropriate. Unfortunately, they've seen too many old documentaries about 'the Castro' and have concocted a stereotype-laden scene: one flamboyant roller skater, a florist, a painter, three 'gay' flags, five dogs, three cats and two goldfish. Furthermore, if this mural is true, only two out of every dozen people in the Castro are not 'of color' and all black folk have dreadlocks.

street art

Big Brother Brugmann: From the sides of buses, billboards, and now larger-than-life murals (Leavenworth and McAllister), the editor/publisher of the Guardian is watching you. So you'd better be reading his damn paper.

Seen any other works of street art you think the kids should know about? Done some yourself? Help us catalog the scene in future issues by sending a photo (or at least the location) to Real Art c/o San Francisco Metropolitan, 1776A 18th St., SF, 94107 (or email us: [email protected]).

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From the June 1-14, 1998 issue of the Metropolitan.

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