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How to Choose the Perfect Contemporary Art for Your Home

Mario Wagner with his installation at the Pop Up in Union Square.
Mario Wagner with his installation at the Pop Up in Union Square.

Racked is no longer publishing. Thank you to everyone who read our work over the years. The archives will remain available here; for new stories, head over to, where our staff is covering consumer culture for The Goods by Vox. You can also see what we’re up to by signing up here. is known for making art more accessible to the masses. Since November, the Emeryville company has done so for the the San Francisco masses by hosting a series of events that let locals chat (and drink) with creators and tastemakers. This week, we stopped by the pop-up store in Union Square for the latest in that series, an evening with Berkeley-based artist Mario Wagner and Juxtapoz editor Evan Pricco. Planning to add art to your home this year? You're in luck because Evan gave us the lowdown on how to find the perfect piece.

Walking into a gallery to buy your first piece of contemporary art can be an intimidating (and expensive) experience, but the Now + Juxtapoz installation is a good way to wet your feet. Let's be honest: Prints are cheaper than originals and the people have already suggested tasteful frames and mattes for the pieces, saving you hours of indecision at your neighborhood frame shop. (Even Mario admitted that he liked one of his pieces better in the frame that the pros selected.)

The collection that Evan curated for the installation includes a range of styles and mediums—playful portraits, abstract pieces, and Mario's collages—to reflect the types of pieces that Juxtapoz covers.

Now that Juxtapoz has chosen works for the pop-up shop, how should you choose your piece? Evan suggests picking what you makes you happy. "Art's supposed to make you feel good, make you think, make you engaged with different ideas. If you just go in content and knowing what you like, I don't think it should ever be intimidating."
· [Official Site]
· Juxtapoz Magazine [Official Site]
· Mario Wagner [Official Site] Pop Up

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