The entrance hallway isn't usually a highlight of a visit anyplace, but Ardency's corridor is plastered with cool and weird postcards featuring bizarre advertisements and gaudy celebrities from decades past. Owner Lou Rigali bought out the stock of San Francisco's Quantity Postcards a few years back and now reprints them at his downtown Oakland art-and-framing shop. You can buy them in bulk or as singles; we're still trying to convince him to produce a collector's box with one of each. Gallery director Michele Ramirez curates rotating exhibitions in the adjoining space. Ardency shows Bay Area artists exclusively -- most recently featuring Alexander Cheves, Janet M. Denninger, Gabriella Laz, P.G. Meier, and Nada Savic. With openings attended by ardent art fans, local artists, and assorted hipster hangers-on, it's become a mainstay of the East Bay's gallery scene in a very short time (turning two years old in August). This month, Ardency features Felipe Flores ("Flirting with Death I Found Holiness") and in June, a group show called "Under the Nails: New Prints."
Readers' Pick: Traywick Gallery
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