May 18th, 2009
This week, 1:AM Gallery
Walking south on 6th from Market Street you get an eerie feeling. With a few exceptions the people, shops, and alleys feel half alive. Sometimes the street seems like a B-movie version of a ghost town, only the Town Bank is now a pawnshop and the Saloon at the end of town is a caged liquor store. As you pass Natoma and reach the corner of Howard and 6th Street there are signs of life, and funny enough it comes in the form of graffiti. On the northwest corner sits 1:00 AM, an art gallery, graffiti paint supplier, and toy store.
1:00AM sits kitty corner from the Defenestration Building. The Defenestration Building is the graffiti covered building with the grandfather clocks, sofas, lamps, and refrigerator flying out of it. The building is a four story abandoned tenement that exudes more life than many of the occupied buildings in the neighborhood. 1:00AM and affiliated graffiti artists paint a new skin every time the building’s walls molt.
Dan Pan is the owner/operator of 1:00 AM and has managed the building for 10 years. Dan moonlights as a property manager and has spent a lot of time covering up tags by the younger generation of graffiti purveyors. It was on 6th street where he met Twick, a prolific, deep rooted, and legendary SF graffiti artist. Through classes and community outreach, Twick and Dan are educating the neighborhood and the greater Bay Area about the positive and negative aspects of graffiti. Instead of fighting against the rogue graffiti painters, 1:00AM along with The San Francisco Planning and Urban Research Association, is trying to unite them with graffiti mentors that want to channel their energy and passions to meaningful art works rather than the quick territorial pissings that pollute the walls and windows of many buildings in SOMA. Dan and Twick have helped commission many walls in the area for murals to help keep random graffiti down.
The gallery is open 6 days a week and supplies local graffiti artists with the tools of their trade: Montana professional spray paints, caps for different spray styles, and Krink graffiti markers. The store also offers graffiti classes taught by Twick, and new street-art themed shows every month.
Go to 1:00 AM’s website to find out more about upcoming art showings, Twick, and the Inner City Prophets, or to take an art class.