Ara Jo was a bright light in the community who, among a multitude of other creative and charitable endeavors, led craft workshops for Oakland Public Library with the Rock Paper Scissors Collective.
She tragically was one of the many who died in the Ghost Ship Fire in December. This exhibit at the Main Library's TeenZone Art Wall on the Second Floor will showcase her work, her collaborations and her legacy.
Keka’s chosen medium is bold acrylic colors because it reflects my worldview and vision of people. Some of her subjects are real people that she has encountered; however, the majority of her pieces are a part of her identity as a native of Chile, and an immigrant in North America. She emphasizes bodies of colors and the growing complexities of identities in the USA.
This body of work intersects with Keka’s daily life, the presence of women, the elements of nature involved, and the idea of arriving and leaving a place.
She asks the observer: What does it mean to determine gender and race? She plays with our deeply ingrained societal obsession to label and to identify each other by race and gender.
Keka’s hope is that people can see their own humanity in others. It is not just a black and white theme. It's the gray areas between, the daring of each chakra that she tries to transmit through her work. Keka leaves it to the observer to determine what truly creates our distance from each other.
She is passionate in conveying the idea that color is truly a state of mind; we all see different shades, we all feel vibrant colors in different ways. The mix of colors and choice of brush strokes reflect and encompass what she sees in her world today.
The Oakland History Room is hosting a new exhibit, mounted by the Emeryville Historical Society, that will trace the history of Park Avenue from its days as an industrial corridor to its current state as home to Pixar studios, live-work lofts, and the administrative center of Emeryville. This photo exhibit will feature images of the many attractions, including sports, gambling, and entertainment that the street had to offer.
Arles n'existe pas by Lawrence Ferlinghetti is currently on display at the Rockridge Branch now through the end of May. Although known for his writing and poetry, Ferlinghetti is a member of the Beat Generation and co-founder of City Lights Bookstore in San Francisco. The work depicts Vincent Van Gogh during his time at Arles, France.
The Main Library is hosting an exhibit in April, This is What Democracy Looks Like, by the SF Bay Area Urban Sketchers. The drawings on display chronicle two recent events in Oakland: the Hands Around the Lake unity demonstration last November and January's Women's March. The sketches, like the events themselves, are part of a worldwide effort to highlight community engagement in social and political action.
The mission of Urban Sketchers is to raise the artistic, storytelling, and educational value of location drawing, promoting its practice and connecting people around the world. With a small sketchbook, pencil, or pen, sketchers “see the world one drawing at a time.” Want to know more about the Bay Area Urban Sketchers? Click here.