Urban art hop

Explore galleries at San Francisco's 49 Geary

San Francisco galleries

Patricia Sweetow Gallery

Michelle McCarron

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If spending a leisurely couple of hours gallery hopping without having to repark the car sounds like a plan, head to the five-story building just east of Union Square, where more than a dozen of San Francisco's best-loved contemporary art galleries are clustered.

Shows change about once a month, and there's plenty of variety ― 871 Fine Arts has a don't-miss art bookstore in back, while Fraenkel Gallery is known for challenging, high-end photography, and Brian Gross Fine Art shows primarily abstract work.

Patricia Sweetow Gallery focuses on midcareer German Americans, and across the hall, the folks at tiny Toomey-Tourell Fine Art love answering questions.

The best times to go? Saturday afternoon, when the building is abuzz, or during First Thursday art nights, when galleries stay open until 7:30.



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