Thursday, June 3, 2010

Community Rejuvenation Project Bay Area

Hello Kids,

I've been running around for the past month and I apologize once again for not updating you all on my works in progress. But lately I've really gotten into this great Oakland arts project that is quickly becoming my new obsession.

Check out this video we produced yesterday on a bunch new murals that the project put up across from Lake Merritt. We walked around the neighborhood yesterday and asked people what they thought of the work and reminded them about the block party that is happening on Saturday to celebrate Oakland pride.

Check out their website too. One of the student artists, Leo, is the most adorable 16 year old on the planet! I hung out with him yesterday at a new wall in the deep east (MacArthur and Seminary). He named this new mural and garden they worked on all week, Life Garden. Its going to be amazing!

There is a community meeting on Sunday to discuss what they want to do with the huge space. It used to be a gas station so its unlikely that they will be able to grow veggies in the dirt but the idea of raised beds are appealing to everyone as well as a seating area where people can hang out.

Of course, there is always the politics of making sure this actually gets finished. And the property owner may still need some convincing. I find it's better to ask forgiveness than ask permission. Sometimes people just need to be shocked into being part of something instead of convinced in the first place.

Here is another video about a different wall the group painted not too long ago.

In the summer they host a Summer Youth Project, where students get credit for helping to paint city commissioned murals. Don't worry you will get tons of updates all summer on this year's project. But take a read about an article that was written on my 30 birthday about the summer program.

Good stuff in Oakland!!
Renee Claire

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