On my way to the White Elephant Sale Sunday morning, I passed a place I’d been before… I recognized the corner, and yet it looked strikingly different. What before had been a bleak stretch of blank concrete, bordered by litter and feces strewn dead grass & weeds, had now become a lovely meandering ArtWalk.
Here are a handful of the artworks that span the block of Peterson Street between Ford and Chapman, just two blocks from the Oakland Museum’s White Elephant Warehouse, and equally close to the Institute of Mosaic Arts, which I wrote about when I first launched this blog in 2009 (IMA).
I’m assuming the Mosaic Institute was instrumental in the production of these mosaic pieces. Wrong. This is why we should not assume. Duh. Thanks to Kim and Jill for setting me straight…
This entire project was organized by the Jingletown Arts and Biz Community, JABC, namely Jill McLennan and Cynthia Elliot, and sponsored by Pro Arts and the City of Oakland. The various artworks were created by a host of artists from the community, independent of IMA.
Seeing these recent installations got me even more excited about the class I’ll be taking at the Institute next month (Mosaic 101). I plan to blog about the specifics here… please stay tuned.
Kim Larson is also responsible for the Virgin Of Guadalupe mosaic below.
Below you can see a hint of what this stretch used to look like… the photo features Lee Krasnow of Pacific Puzzle Works – I shot him in the summer of 2009 for a story in Oakland Magazine. His workshop is located just across the street. You can see the wall was nearly completely blank, and we both had to be on guard to avoid the numerous piles of poo.
Now the adjacent strip incorporates a waving walking path through tidy mulched landscape and a gorgeous custom laser-cut iron sign requests that visitors kindly pick up after their pets. I didn’t see one poop!
ps – The White Elephant Sale was a huge success… volunteers said Saturday was their busiest day, EVER. (Glad I went Sunday!) I bought 4 sweaters, 1 small bookcase, and a birdhouse that looks like someone’s abandoned woodshop project. I can’t wait to paint it and hang it in my yard…
pps – Friday Night’s Art Murmur was great and I’ll have more on this in the coming days…
ppss – Here’s one last mosaic that you see as you turn the corner onto Ford. This one is much older as I shot it back in 2009 (but never posted it).