A posh neighborhood hides in the city’s sixth Grigangelo Museum

By all the sensible logic of modern-day San Francisco, the Grigangelo Museum should not exist.

As you drive by the upscale residential neighborhood of Saint Francis Wooden in your approach to the 42-year-old “museum,” the pure response is to assume you need to confuse Google Maps. However hold previous the multi-million greenback Spanish-roofed homes, and you may ultimately come to 225 San Leandro Highway, a mirage of a home that appears like a cross between a circus and Burning Man’s camp.

It is an unlikely web site for what is perhaps one of many metropolis’s artists’ final resorts, the thoughts of a busy beehive of costume makers, inside designers, writers, musicians, visible artists and each number of ill-fitting theatrical youngsters. They work collectively across the clock to create an immersive, guided expertise that instills guests with a playful sense of surprise. Maybe a little bit extra introspection than they signed up for.

The exterior of an outdoor sunset home that doubles as the Grigangelo Museum, photographed in San Francisco, Friday, June 3, 2022.

The outside of an outside sundown house that doubles because the Grigangelo Museum, photographed in San Francisco, Friday, June 3, 2022.


Charles Rousseau / Svgat

Detail shot from the interior design of the Gregangelo Museum in San Francisco.

Element shot from the inside design of the Gregangelo Museum in San Francisco.


Charles Rousseau / Svgat

Detail shot from the interior design of the Gregangelo Museum in San Francisco.

Element shot from the inside design of the Gregangelo Museum in San Francisco.


Charles Rousseau / Svgat

Detail shot from the interior design of the Gregangelo Museum in San Francisco.

Element shot from the inside design of the Gregangelo Museum in San Francisco.


Charles Rousseau / Svgat


The personal home at 225 San Leandro Highway in San Francisco, prime left, doubles because the Gregangelo Museum and options an intricately inventive inside. (Charles Russo/SFGATE)

The inside of the Gregangelo Museum seems like Trendy artwork set up Meow Wolf, besides what old style hippies did at Outdated College San Francisco as an alternative of hipsters at New College in Santa Fe. The home is a labyrinth of winding corridors and secret rooms with each inch of wall area lined in colourful mosaics, a hoarse paradise of curious trinkets and furnishings that spans from baroque to sci-fi. The phrase ‘curated’ will get thrown up rather a lot for areas like this, however the Gregangelo Museum is the other – the whole place is inside a distortion of actuality realm of first thought, greatest thought power.

The supply of this mutilation is Gregangelo Herrera, the chief of a effervescent gang with rotating blades as a main technique of transportation. He serves as coach for a bunch of artists who work within the sprawling home in any respect hours of the day, working laborious on new gadgets from the museum in addition to installations commissioned by Herrera’s occasions manufacturing firm, Velocity Arts and Leisure. Its historical past started with the large home in 1980.

Local artist Gregangelo Herrera, owner of the namesake Gregangelo Museum, in San Francisco's Outer Sunset.

Native artist Gregangelo Herrera, proprietor of the namesake Gregangelo Museum, in San Francisco’s Outer Sundown.

Charles Rousseau / Svgat

When most of his artist friends have been relocating to extra refined and reasonably priced areas of the town, Herrera did the other.

mentioned Herrera, who started doing informal excursions within the ’90s and specials within the 2000s.

In contrast to the Meow Wolf, this isn’t an journey of your selecting, however relatively guided excursions for small teams (most 6 folks, $75 per ticket). Each room in the home has its personal story. One snug, suite-like room has dozens of pairs of sneakers masking the partitions, and visitors are requested which pairs are probably the most trendy with them, and who prefer to stroll of their sneakers. Most of these prompts are supposed to be a catalyst for dialog, self-examination, and private progress.

Gregangelo Museum tour guide Nick Brentley guides guests through a tour of the gardens, Friday, June 3, 2022.

Gregangelo Museum tour information Nick Brentley guides visitors by a tour of the gardens, Friday, June 3, 2022.

Charles Rousseau / Svgat

“I name it a connection,” Herrera says. “It isn’t a museum in any respect, the title all the time makes me ashamed, however it’s the one factor we are able to do to make it an attraction that individuals can attend.”

Like each leisure venue, the pandemic — or “hoopla as he calls it Grigangelo” — has pressured the museum to adapt. They turned their patio, public easement, and driveway into a short lived artists’ studio for 30 highschool and school college students. Common museum excursions have been remodeled into out of doors experiences, with as much as 22 exhibits per night time for small teams of visitors. The uproar sparked some complaints from close by residents, however the protests fell on deaf ears.

Our neighborhood affiliation instantly mentioned, ‘Oh no no, you possibly can’t complain about this place. They get an order to work from home similar to you and they’re artists, so that is what they do,” Herrera mentioned, claiming that neighbors have turn out to be enamored of the museum’s curious presence.

Detail shot from the interior design of the Gregangelo Museum in San Francisco.

Element shot from the inside design of the Gregangelo Museum in San Francisco.


Charles Rousseau / Svgat

Marcelo Deveritas, Creative Director of the Grigangelo Museum in San Francisco.

Marcelo Deveritas, Inventive Director of the Grigangelo Museum in San Francisco.


Charles Rousseau / Svgat

Grigangelo Museum staff pose for a group photo near the entrance to the building, Friday, June 3, 2022.

Grigangelo Museum employees pose for a bunch photograph close to the doorway to the constructing, Friday, June 3, 2022.


Charles Rousseau / Svgat

Detail shot from the interior design of the Gregangelo Museum in San Francisco.

Element shot from the inside design of the Gregangelo Museum in San Francisco.


Charles Rousseau / Svgat


Views of the Grigangelo Museum in San Francisco, with employees, decrease left, together with inventive director Marcelo Deveritas, higher proper. (Charles Russo/SFGATE)

Though many of the leisure business is again to enterprise as standard at this level, the Gregangelo Museum has bowed to its centerpiece. They nonetheless supply indoor excursions, however the focus has shifted to turning the outside of the home into a brand new expertise based mostly on the thriller of the Sphinx. Three backyard areas characterize youth and innocence, puberty and sensuality, knowledge and demise. The narrative drives a sequence of puzzles based mostly on the encompassing surroundings, which mainly acts like an escape room – resolve the puzzle, and transfer on to the subsequent step.

These challenges naturally turn into prompts for dialog, main the visitors to get to know one another (and themselves) a little bit higher. You will be requested to share an expertise that originally felt small however had the broader butterfly impact, a time while you’ve misjudged somebody based mostly on their look, and even larger questions in regards to the that means of humanity.

A view of the colorful gardens outside the Gregangelo Museum.

A view of the colourful gardens exterior the Gregangelo Museum.

Charles Rousseau / Svgat

It is a languid expertise in immediately’s cynical panorama that feels stubbornly antiquated – like a bunch of artists thriving within the posh suburb of one of many world’s most costly cities. However for Herrera and the remainder of his various group of creators, their general mission is not only about their very own arts, however opens up a way of self-expression of their visitors.


“Your story actually emerges because the tour goes on,” Herrera says. “Artwork is mostly a motivator so that you can inform the story.”