What should 10 fine arts students do in San Francisco for Memorial Day Weekend?
March 1, 2005 11:44 AM   Subscribe

10 fine arts students from Oregon State University are planning a trip to San Francisco for Memorial Day Weekend (arriving Friday night, leaving Monday morning). What museums or other art-related locations are worth visiting? Bonus points for hostel and cheap food advice!
posted by evilbeck to Travel & Transportation around San Francisco, CA (14 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
The Asian Art Museum is great. I was there for the first time 2 weeks ago.

Indian food is cheap here, particularly at Naan & Curry in North Beach, near the City Lights Bookstore (another cool point of interest).
posted by aGreatNotion at 11:51 AM on March 1, 2005

Yerba Buena, the Cartoon Art Museum and SFMOMA are within steps of each other and right off the Montgomery BART stop. Yerba Buena is often a treat with truly unique exhibits.

Check around for Open Studio days. They're usually Thursdays, but they may be changed around the holiday schedule. You can see amazing art in all the little galleries around Union Square for free, and occasionally get free cheese and wine and such.

Palace of the Fine Arts is beautiful, but quite difficult to get to without a car.

There are a number of hostels, but they're in the far reaches or the semi-sketchy neighborhoods. There's one up by Golden Gate Bridge that looks nice and you could cable car or bus it back to the gallery area.

Good luck and have fun.
posted by Gucky at 11:53 AM on March 1, 2005

Try Sam Wo in China Town. The food isn't spectacular, but it's inexpensive and you'll never go to another restaurant like this - it's truly an experience. Be sure to walk up the hill on Grant St so you can see the entrance to China Town.
posted by glyphlet at 12:15 PM on March 1, 2005

Cheap food in SF? Where to begin...

Mexican food in the Mission. You cannot go wrong. Like the BBQ thread recently posted, everyone has their own hotly-contested favorite; mine are Pancho Villa on 16th, and Taqueria Cancun on Mission.

Also in the Mission, incredibly good cheap Pakistani/Indian food at Pakwan on 16th.

Very good cheap sushi at Godzila Sushi on Divisadero. And a funky Godzilla mural and customers' crayon drawings of Godzilla on the wall, so it also qualifies as an art-related location!

And don't miss Thep Phanom on Waller in the Lower Haight. Not the cheapest, but extremely good Thai food for the money. And afterwards you can party at one of the local bars.

Oh, and while you're in the Mission, make the trek down to Mitchell's ice cream. Its worth the hike.

So much more, but that will get you started...

Have fun!!!
posted by googly at 12:29 PM on March 1, 2005

I'll let others tell you about the major museums.

Go to the Precita Eyes Mural center and get a mural map. There's some fantastic stuff out in the streets.

What Gucky is talking about is First Thursdays, named so because they happen on the first thursday of the month. Tons of open galleries. Free wine and cheese. Hip, local crowd.

If you like Maxfield Parish, go have a drink at the bar in the Palace Hotel where they have his Pied Piper

Find some artsy underground events

Eat cheap food that is unique to san francisco: Burritos at Pancho Villa or at Taqueria Cancun. Or poke around at greasy dives in Chinatown. Well worth it.
posted by vacapinta at 12:30 PM on March 1, 2005

googly, I didnt notice we matched taquerias on preview. I wouldnt say that Pancho Villa and Cancun are my current favorites but more of a "you can't go wrong" These days I hit either La Taqueria near 25th (great steak) or El Buen Sabor on 17th (beans and tortilla quality really stands out) or La Corneta (for their seafood burritos)
posted by vacapinta at 12:35 PM on March 1, 2005

Flavorpill is also a good source for happenings, particularly readings and music.
posted by aGreatNotion at 12:35 PM on March 1, 2005

Agreed, vacapinta. Cacun and Pancho Villa are can't-miss even if other places have better individual dishes.
posted by googly at 12:46 PM on March 1, 2005

Catherine Clark Gallery and the five or six other contemporary galleries in that building and on the block.
posted by RJ Reynolds at 2:23 PM on March 1, 2005

Yerba Buena is freakin' AWESOME -- consistently great shows there. Be sure to bring a student ID because they charge big bucks for entry.

Legion of Fine Arts, etc, out in golden gate park will probably be a trek for you, but they often have good painting exhibits, if you're interested in pre-20th century work.

New Langton Arts is FREE and close to the SFMOMA/Yerba Buena. I've seen some awesome shows there as well.

FecalFace.Com (SFW afaik) has art gallery openings, and the squidlist calendar has art events.

after yerba buena, head over to sixth street and market (walking down the nice open-air drug market and bumfest between mission and market) to find Tu Lan, which has the awesomest and cheapest vietnamese food ever (i lived on that corner for about two years and ate at Tu Lan nearly every day). The Arrow bar next door isn't particularly cheap, but it is (or was) a hipsterist type hangout if you're looking for something to do in that area after dark. There's a Cancun around the corner if you want to check that out too (on market -- same menu as the other cancun's, though the interior isn't quite as nice.). However, the best burrito (well, best experience of a san francisco burrito) in the city hands down is at Farolito's in the mission. Conveniently located near all sorts of mission-area bars and open until three am. To get the true flavor of the place, you need to head there at 2:30 am on a saturday, when all the other drunk stragglers are in there.

posted by fishfucker at 2:32 PM on March 1, 2005

oh, and a friend of mine runs the RX Gallery in the tenderloin -- i'm not really sure what their hours are (don't know if they're open outside of actual receptions), but he books some cool shows.
posted by fishfucker at 2:34 PM on March 1, 2005

oh, and culture cache is cool, and 111 minna is a good place to pay a little more than i'd like to get drunk on imported beer, look at art, and listen to your typical house/jungle/hip hop stuff that's popular with the moneyed set. (OH DIS 111 OHHHHHHH)

i'll probably think of more stuff later.
posted by fishfucker at 2:44 PM on March 1, 2005

While I would not technically call it an art venue you may want to check out the Japanese Tea Garden in Golden Gate Park. Be sure to take the tour to get all historical/gardening/art related information. I (accidentally) took this tour and was really surprised by all the things I learned.

Besides, if it is a beautiful day outside you may want to stretch your legs in a garden rather than be stuck in a gallery.

For food I recommend checking out World Sausage on Market and Church(ish). They have dozens of specialty sausages and A LOT of imported beers. There are also vegetarian options. It's about $10 a head including the tip.
posted by quadog at 3:21 PM on March 1, 2005

Here's your hostel.

And don't miss the Cartoon Art museum!

For cheap food, here's all the $ listings from sfgate.com.

Have fun! It's a great city - and if you want a treat, find out if the giants are playing while you're here. You can get bleacher seats (they save 500 to sell day of) for $12 at SBC Park.
posted by jasper411 at 4:40 PM on March 1, 2005

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