The Wonders of the Powerhouse Arts District in Four New Shows
Marin Boulevard is not considered a place where pedestrians go on purpose. Nevertheless, there’s a new Australian bakery just north of Morgan Street, and a café, open air seating, and a bandshell outside of the big tower on the northwest corner of the Bay Street intersection. Right in between the two, Art House Productions has opened a gallery space with glass windows fronting the sidewalk, beckoning passersby. Curator Andrea McKenna has done her part for the walkability score of the neighborhood by keeping the walls full of eye-catching paintings and sculptures. McKenna understands the challenge. If you happen to be strolling by the Art House, she wants to stop you in your tracks, get you curious, and maybe draw you inside.
So far, she’s chosen her accomplices wisely. Mark Kurdziel, for instance, makes large paintings that look enticing from street level, and hit the eye like multicolored sprinkles on the otherwise dry and crumbly brownie that is Marin Boulevard in mid-March. (They’re pretty tasty on the Internet, too.) The good news is that those pieces are even better when they’re seen up close. You’ve got one last weekend to experience “Moments and Measure,” the engrossing Kurdziel show at Art House Gallery (345 Marin Blvd., 1-4 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays) before McKenna turns the floor over to Frank Ippolito, an artist who flashes actual lightboxes at viewers, in early April.