Category Archives: art cars

Some Fun Stuff for your Weekend…

Today you get a list. You love lists. Right?

Here’s a smattering of events happening this weekend. Not comprehensive. Just a few things I thought sounded interesting…

FRIDAY – May 2nd

  • Art Murmur (of course) – It’s First Friday again. With this week of ridiculous summer weather wrapping up, I imagine tonight will be quite a party. For those actually interested in seeing some art, comprehensive list of openings/exhibits here.
  • Project Youthview – 10th Annual Film Screening & Awards Night – At the incredible iconic Paramount Theatre, this event showcases 12 select youth-created film shorts from across the Bay Area, including music videos, documentaries, and animation pieces. The featured 2013 Sundance-winning Documentary Short, Rich Hill, will also be screened. 6:30pm-9:30pm. Cost $20 adults; $7 youth
  • Pro Arts Gallery 40th Birthday Party – a free, inclusive community celebration, kicking off the open studios season with an opportunity to view the Preview Exhibition featuring works by over 400 artists participating in East Bay Open Studios 2014. 6pm-8pm

SATURDAY – May 3rd

  • California Bookstore Day is today, and if you’ve never heard of this before, don’t worry… this is the inaugural event, celebrating more than 90 independent bookstores across the state. Each will feature parties with music, food, drink, and of course authors. I’ve chosen one below to highlight, but do check out your own indie favorite… they’re sure to have something going on.
  • Diesel Bookstore in Rockridge will be featuring one-of-a-kind, limited-edition items like unique books and art, signed prints and lithographs, plus Mac n’ Cheese courtesy of Homeroom, libations from Emma Christensen–brewer and author of True Brews, live vintage acoustic music with Dodge’s Sundodgers, literary karaoke and cocktails. 10am-9pm
  • Linden Street Brewery Feria Urbana – a hip urban fair made up of local artists and designers selling a wide range of items at accessible prices (jewelry, housewares, clothing, ceramics, etc.) Brewery will have beers on tap, local wine tasting, food trucks, and more. Get those Mother’s Day gifts while you’re at it! 12pm-5pm
  • Jack London Square Vintage Car & Truck Show – showcasing more than 60 vintage cars, trucks and motorcycles from the 1920s to 1960s, the waterfront will transform into an auto mecca showcasing rare vehicles. Enjoy live music, delicious eats from Jack London Square’s fantastic restaurants. 10am-4pm
  • Life Size Mousetrap Launch Party at NIMBY – Hosting a kid’s program in the afternoon featuring the Life Size Mousetrap, local gypsy junk rockers Junk Parlor, kids activities, and more. At night doors will open for the “grown-up” kids. They’ll run the Life Size Mousetrap and feature performances from local luminaries of music, dance, aerial acrobatics, burlesque, and more. With full bar, food vendors, a night market and more fun than you can throw a bowling ball at… kid’s program 2-5pm ($5 donation/family); party 9pm-2am

SUNDAY – May 4th

  • Maifest in Oakland – celebrating the cultures of Germany, Austria, and Switzerland through food, beer, music, and dance. Hosted by Oakland Nature Friends this spring festival takes place at our local Tourist Club not far from Joaquin Miller Park (I’ve been to the Marin Tourist Club which is always great fun and can’t wait to check out our local version). Bier, Spätzle, Bratwurst, Kartoffelsalat, and Würstchen. YUM. Bring your Lederhosen! Check here for details. 12pm-5pm. Cost $10

Oakland Tourist Club, Maifest in Oakland, Oakland Nature Friends

Art Murmur is cool. And it’s tonight.

Here are some shots from my last Art Murmur back in March.   Yes, March.  I know.  I’m lame.

In any case, this weekend is a big one for ART.  Art Murmur, East Bay Open Studios, the Temescal Art Hop and more…  Maybe I can redeem myself by cramming!  And actually tending to this blog for a bit.

Who’s in?

We came upon this gorgeous mural somewhere on 26th street. I think we were next to Uptown Body & Fender, or maybe this was part of Uptown Body & Fender… I’m not quite sure. But there was this incredible mural, which looks to me like a collaborative effort. I recognize the work of thomas christopher haag (I have shots of some of his other murals I’ve yet to post). I love his fantastical creatures and use of geometric building blocks that remind me of Chuck Close crossed with Piet Mondrian. Or something like that.


I love the diá de los muertos skull above, and the incredible four-eyed face below. I’m too square to read the tags on the mural, so if anyone knows who else contributed to this, please send some info…

oakland mural, thomas christopher haag, uptown mural
oakland mural, thomas christopher haag, uptown mural
Then of course there were the fancy cars…
vintage cars, uptown body & fender
vintage cars, uptown body & fender
And a nice Eddie Colla piece I hadn’t seen before.
eddie colla, like a sieve, vintage car, little red corvette
And lastly, the preamble from the Declaration of Independence, which begins, “We hold these truths to be self-evident…”
declaration of independence, preamble, right to revolution, despotism, we hold these truths to be self evident
And ends with “it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.”

Deep.

Maker Faire in pics…

What can I say? It was an extravaganza… a cornucopia… a bonanza!!! So much to see, and so little time. I’m at a loss for words to describe all of the incredibly ingenious and fantastically ridiculous things we saw yesterday… so I’ll just share a few pics. Hope you enjoy!

Back to bookstores tomorrow…

maker faire 2010, albert einstein, secret to creativity

Maker Faire, reconstructed device

robot, maker faire

sewing patterns, steam music

coke & mentos powered vehicle

legos, maker faire

vanity van at maker faire

Maker Faire, bicycle power, bicycle drawn carriage

Maker Faire, piano box

solar powered device station, solar station for recharge

daytime telescope, telescope kit

kite cameras, aerial photography, kite photography

beaming up cows, Glow in the dark UFOs

fiesta hall

remote controlled shark

lifesize mousetrap

little strong man

Maker Faire 2010, robotic Gamelan orchestra

Art Murmur is FUN.

Is there anyone out there who still hasn’t been to Art Murmur? If so, I gotta say, you’re really missing out. This is one fun event, and I feel like it just keeps getting better and better. New gallery spaces are popping up like mushrooms in January. Recent changes to Oakland’s cabaret ordinance make live music at restaurants and cafes now legal (who knew it wasn’t??). And the street vending scene, including gourmet dining offerings on the go, continues to gain steam every time I visit.

We tooled around the central district of the Murmur (between Telegraph & Broadway and 23rd & 26th streets) for a couple hours. In addition to the conventional gallery spaces, you’ve got all kinds of action getting thrown into the mix…

We came across this “street” art on an abandoned building…

nina, cuss, cuss '10

The red one seems to be signed “NINA” while the yellow one has “NINA” incorporated into the drawing at top (in balloons) but is signed “Cuss ’10”.

graffiti street art, oakland art murmur

We encountered a couple new galleries on 25th street (more on these later in the week), but before entering, we spotted this bike parked outside. How can you not love a bike dressed up as a tiger?! I told you Art Murmur was fun. We would see this bike again, but under entirely different circumstances, before our night was through…

art bike, oakland art murmur, oakland art bike

We watched these guys for a bit… It’s always amazing to me how just two people with drums and guitar can build a completely encompassing musical experience.

art murmur oakland, live music art murmur

A street stencil at one of the gallery entrances taunts us…

street stencil, graffiti stencil art, oakland art murmur

The entire block of 23rd street (between Telegraph and Broadway) is closed off for street vending and we came across this giant steel snail spewing fire above the crowd… A young boy was ushered into the cockpit and allowed to pull the reins that triggered the fire. It was pretty hilarious because he wanted to go full throttle 100 percent of the time (boys will be boys). His dad had to tell him, “Just pull it for a bit. Then you gotta let go.”

art car, burning man car, snail car

There’s much more to tell, but I’m trying to save some for later in the week… I’ll just say that as we were wrapping up our Murmur tour, we found ourselves on a Broadway corner waiting for the light to change. We heard the distinct sound of a marching band in the distance, but clearly approaching fast. As the band came around the corner, we saw that they were all on bikes (tuba player included!) Some were costumed and our tiger bike friend was in the mix, and though they seemed a bit lost (I heard them say “Where’s the party?” and “I think we overshot it” and “let’s head back and see if we can find it”), they certainly seemed to be having a raucous good time! Hilarious.

bike parade first friday, marching band on bikes

Pinball Throwdown at the Stork Club

I hadn’t been to the Stork Club in about a hundred years. I am too old for bone-crushingly loud music in tiny venues these days… but back in the day, the Stork was one of the only cool clubs with an unbelievably eclectic roster of live music that friends and I used to frequent… I saw my first Idiot Flesh show there… it was mind-blowing! The Stork Club has been around for as long as I can remember  – it’s an Oakland institution.  Though in a different location now, and without all the Christmas creepiness (it used to be Christmas all year long), they’re still rockin’ the East Bay hard!

Stork Club Oakland

Stork Club Bar in Oakland

I stopped in Saturday night to witness the Pinball Throwdown hosted there between rival gangs, Oakland Pinball Mafia and Radio Pinball Union.  My friend Ryan clued me in to this event with a hilarious article from the Oakland Tribune: Night Owl: Oakland Pinball Showdown…

Here’s the flyer for the night…

Oakland Pinball Showdown flyer

The idea was that the two rival pinball gangs would compete on three vintage machines in the Stork Club’s back game room… high score takes the title.

The pinball fanatics were out in full force… and the folks from Lucky Ju Ju didn’t disappoint, bringing their full fledged pinball museum on wheels – Lil Ju Ju. Created by multimedia artist Michael Schiess, the museum houses four vintage pinball machines (though sometimes as many as six) in a 1947 Spartan Manor, rebuilt with hydraulic leveling system, reinforced frame, and upgraded suspension. What’s even cooler is that play on the machines is FREE. That’s right folks. It’s the same premise that operates at Lucky Ju Ju’s prime facilities in Alameda… make a donation – no quarters required.

1947 Spartan Manor Pinball Museum

Lil Ju Ju Mobile Pinball Museum

Lil Ju Ju Mobile Pinball Museum

I had to leave before the end of the evening so I don’t know who won the throwdown. Anyone?

There were three live bands… Cleve-land, Straggler, and VIR. The lead singer from one of the latter two bands (sorry, not sure which one) performed in a full batman get-up. Awesome! He had some serious pipes too.

Music at Stork Club

Batman performs Stork Club

In addition to all the pinball fans, there were some proud members of the The Church!: Elvis Underground, representing and proselytizing. I love these guys!  And how could you not when their philosophy is so simple and pure:

“To continue and further the Work of Elvis Presley, The King, toward uniting all species in universal rhythm and harmony.

Amen to that brother!

Check out their website… it’s full of fantastic and fun tidbits, not to mention some serious principles.  I’ll post The Eleven Commandments of Elvis here, because they’re just that good:

  1. Follow That Dream
  2. Don’t Be Cruel
  3. Love Me Tender
  4. Shake, Rattle, and Roll
  5. Do the Clam
  6. Treat Me Nice
  7. Don’t
  8. It’s Now or Never
  9. Return to Sender
  10. Viva Las Vegas!
  11. Wear My Ring Around Your Neck

You can read the more detailed scriptures on their site… Elvis Underground.

Magic Bus

Hey everybody… so I don’t really have a theme this week. I think I’m just gonna go a little stream-of-consciousness on y’all. Free things up a bit. Get a little bit random…

Yesterday I was on my way back from a small photoshoot for Oakland magazine, when I spotted a couple graffiti murals out of the corner of my eye. I circled back to get a closer look and passed this wild ride on my way…

oaktownart_20090929_1

I had just been thinking, literally the day before (while posting my modified truck w/ diamond plated flames), “where have all the art cars gone?” I feel like you used to be able to see them all the time, but lately I haven’t seen as many. Then, BOOM! This gem.

The universe provides, people.
Don’t forget it.

oaktownart_20090929_2

oaktownart_20090929_3

This baby’s got it all… Yellow Submarine, Ziggy Stardust, My Little Pony, Mr. Potato Head, and more. And why the hell not?? Let’s all get a little bit random! (SOV)

oaktownart_20090929_dtl

oaktownart_20090929_4