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Once Pushed Out by the Nazis, a French Outerwear Brand Is Reborn in San Francisco

In 1925, in his shop on Rue de Bondy in the western outskirts of Paris, budding entrepreneur Joseph Smutek began making quality raincoats that were meant to last for generations. His business enjoyed 15 years of success before the 1940 Nazi invasion forced the Jewish craftsman and his sons to flee France and immigrate to the United States, shuttering their business forever. Seventy-five years later, Smutek's great-grandson, Daniel Smith, is reviving the brand in San Francisco.

Strike a Pose: 4 Bay Area Fashion Photographers to Watch

The new visual storytellers of the San Francisco fashion world draw their inspiration from sources as varied as dance, fine painting, film, and their collective international upbringings (from Germany to Turkey). Meet four local fashion photographers whose stars are on the rise.

Northern California Clinics Now Serving Ketamine (aka Special K) to Treat Severe Depression

A staple in emergency rooms and veterinary hospitals, the mind-altering drug called ketamine is now being hailed as a revolutionary treatment for those battling severe depression. 

Spring Has Arrived: See Beautiful + Exotic Orchids in Bloom at Fort Mason Center

As the saying goes: Roses are red, violets are blue, and orchids are way prettier and more exotic looking. (That's how it goes, right?) 

Celebrating the Year of the Monkey: Scenes from Chinese New Year in San Francisco

February 8th marked the first day of the Year of the Monkey and San Franciscans flocked to Chinatown to celebrate with food, friends, and fireworks. 

Get to Know the Animator Behind 'Bambi,' 'Beauty and the Beast,' + Howdy Doody at This Disney Museum Exhibit

Called "the Forrest Gump of the arts” by animated film producer Don Hahn (Beauty and the Beast, The Lion King), the late Mel Shaw designed ski resorts, restaurants, and a rubber ducky patented in 1950. He created oil paintings depicting California's history. But Shaw was most prolific in his 20-year career as an animator at Disney, where his doodles took life as some of the most iconic cartoon characters in history. Now, more than 100 of Shaw's works may be viewed in the Walt Disney Family Museum's new exhibit, “Mel Shaw: An Animator on Horseback.”

The Cognoscente: Behind the Simple Aesthetic of Designer Patrik Petersson

Born and raised in northern Europe, designer Patrik Petersson has a minimalistic aesthetic, a respect for the environment, and a hunger for innovation that we can all rally behind.

The Phantasmagoric Fashions of Funk-and-Flash Icon Billy Bowers Showcased in New SF Exhibit

Why don't more people know Billy Bowers? Not only did he foster the Bay Area-born funk-and-flash arts movement of the 1970s, he also dressed the Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, Aerosmith, New York Dolls, and Alice Cooper—all in outrageous phantasmagorical costumes that incorporated found imagery, cash money, and even taxidermy rats. This month, Billy Bowers is back on the scene with a show of new works, The Success of Excess: The Art of Billy Bowers, on display at Valencia Street's Glama-Rama. 

Property Porn: Inside the Los Altos Hills Mansion that Hosted Beyonce

Have you ever wondered where the Queen sleeps when she's away from home? 

Oakland Photographer Brittani Sensabaugh Captures Portraits of Life in America's Most Dangerous Neighborhoods

I had known Brittani Sensabaugh for less than two minutes before she started crying. It was last Thursday morning at a well known cafe in Uptown Oakland. We had just sat down over mugs of hot chocolate, when she pointed out to me that we were the only two "melanin people" (her term for people of color) in the room. Then, in walked a young black man wearing a T-shirt emblazoned with the words “Unarmed Citizen.” Cue the water works.

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