Haight St is a sub-cultural paradise with slight changes between generations. Our hippies are now replaced with oppressed 18 year old boys talking about how they were deprived of their mother’s nipple post middle school and how I need to give them funds for their molly habits. I mean at least take some proper drugs dude. I want to see rotting teeth and protruding bone structures! What remains still is the genuine spirit of what Haight St has always embodied. You have coffee for the brewers, bikes for the transporters, records for the diggers, beer gardens for the chuggers, skate decks for the thrashers, clothing for the hipsters and of course bongs for the stoners.
New to the scene is HoodLab SF. Part clothing company, part hemp enthusiast (well duh) and part gallery with their first show displaying works by local artisan Sam Flores. It’s truly a pleasure to see Mr. Flores develop into the painter that he is today. He was the first artist I knew of from the Upper Playground alumni (others being Mike Giant, Jeremy Fish and Dave Choe) back in college during my graphic design days. Known for his large hands and nicely nestled objects on top of character’s heads, the shop featured a vast variety of works that he’s done within the last two years.
Say you are at massage parlor and Mimi asks you if you’d”Like to have mo fun?” at the cost of $250. Just as you’re about to politely say no, she then offers the basic rub and tug for a mere $80. You scramble for your wallet shamefully pulling out four 20s and proceed to open up Instagram to Van Style’s profile. Buying art is sort of a similar experience. Original work can be a hefty price tag but a copied print can satisfy that craving almost the same and at fraction of the cost. Still, I’d prefer the latter…and I am talking about buying art…you pervert.
Just in time for the holiday season, Upper Playground drops some alternative gift options from the typical dirty mags for pops or rubber dildo for moms. Never shying from greatness, UP brought out prints from Munk One, Mars-1, Jeremy Fish, Morning Breath, Miss Van, Estevan Oriol, Sam Flores, Craola and more.