Tag Archives: Oakland Museum of California

Oakland Standard Launch Party – another fun late night at the museum

3 Feb

When the Oakland Museum reopened last May, I loved that they threw a weekend long party that went straight through Saturday night. There’s something kind of magical about being at a museum past midnight. Missed out? Not to worry – tomorrow (Friday) night, they’re holding another late night event – the Oakland Standard Launch Party.

The evening will start out with tag team talks by Oakland artists and writers, like Novella Carpenter the West Oakland farmer who’s blog – Ghost Town Farm – you should really be reading, and Walter Kitundo, inventor of the phonoharp. That will be followed by a performance by the Turf Feinz, super talented Oakland turf dancers who’s YouTube videos you’ve likely seen. If not, here’s their most famous video:

And from 10pm-1pm the party will turn into a dance party, with music by DJ Mia Moretti.

Sounds like fun, huh? Entrance is free, so there’s no reason not to at least stop by to check it out. Plus, the East Bay Bicycle Coalition will be providing valet bike parking.

And if you’re wondering what the Oakland Standard is, you’re not alone. Even after reading the description on OMCA’s website I didn’t quite get it. The Bay Citizen interviewed curator Rene de Guzman about it, and the interview explains not only what it is but why OMCA is doing it. I highly recommend reading the interview if you’re interested.

See you at the museum tomorrow night!

Last chance to see Pixar exhibit at Oakland Museum of California

29 Dec

This Sunday I was lucky enough to take my parents and my wife to the Oakland Museum of California to see PIXAR: 25 Years of Animation. I’ve been meaning to see the exhibit for months, but my parents visiting provided the impetus to go, since my mom is a huge Pixar fan. All four of us loved the exhibit – it was creative, fun, and engaging, and we learned a lot about Pixar’s movie-making process.

Unfortunately no photos were allowed inside the exhibit, but I did snap a couple in the gift shop that provide a small taste of the artwork featured in the exhibit:

The exhibit featured artwork from each of Pixar’s films in many different forms – storyboards, sculptures, color stories, collages, sketches, paintings, and computer animation. It was especially fun to see the initial sketches and the ultimate development of some characters – Buzz Lightyear and Woody from Toy Story, Sully from Monster’s Inc., and Edna from The Incredibles. The sketches of Edna were particularly fun since she’s such an over the top character, and the eight or so versions of her all expressed her personality in different ways.

I knew the basics of the animation process before going into the exhibit but had no idea how many mediums they used along the way. The most surprising to me was the use of detailed collages, which left me wondering what kind of amazing stack of magazines they have to work with at Pixar. The exhibit also introduced me to color stories, which at first glance look a bit like storyboards – beautiful pastel depictions of scenes from a movie placed in sequential order. But color stories focus less on the story line and more on the colors and overall feel of the film, which are part of what makes Pixar films so magical.

At the end of the exhibit were two creations made especially for the exhibit. One was a 3D Toy Story zoetrope – a series of static statues that appear to be moving when spun around. It features a penguin bouncing, alien jumping into a hole, Woody riding a horse, army men parachuting, and more. I love zoetropes and was mesmerized by this one. Here’s a short video of it from YouTube:

There was also Artscape – a movie shown on a very wide screen in a room filled with benches and bean bag chairs. We sat down through the entire video, as original artwork from most of the Pixar movies was displayed in a way that made you feel as though you were moving through and with the artwork. The screen moved in such a way that it made me feel as if I was running behind Dash from The Incredibles through the forest or as if I was floating up with tons of balloons in Up.

The exhibit left me wanting to re-watch all the Pixar films and to see the only one I’ve yet to see (Toy Story 3). I couldn’t recommend this exhibit more highly – if you’re a fan of Pixar, you really must go.

Unfortunately, the exhibit is ending on Sunday, January 9th so you only have a few more days to go. And as you may have heard, you must get tickets ahead of time as they sell out quickly. I looked into it, and there are still tickets available January 5-9, but several of the time slots have sold out (the rest of December is entirely sold out unless you’re a member). So if you want to see the exhibit, look at your calendar and buy your tickets online now. I promise you won’t regret it.

May 10-16 Oakland Political & Community Events

10 May

Tuesday, May 11th – Making History Reception for Victoria Kolakowski for Judge

(Disclosure: I proudly work for Victoria Kolakowski’s campaign.) Michael Colbruno, Oakland City Attorney John Russo, Berkeley Councilmembers Darryl Moore and Kriss Worthington, Board of Equalization Chair Betty Yee, Michael Lighty, and John Gooding invite you to a fundraising reception to support Judge Victoria Kolakowski for Alameda County Superior Court Judge. We need your help to make history! An Administrative Law Judge with the California Public Utilities Commission, Vicky has over four years judicial experience and over 20 years of legal experience, primarily with complex civil litigation. Only 29% of Alameda County’s almost six-dozen Superior Court judges are women, and none are openly LGBT. There has never been an openly transgender trial court judge anywhere in the U.S. The reception will take place from 5:30-7:00pm at Clear Channel Outdoor, 555 12th Street, Suite 950. Find more info and RSVP on Facebook or email events@kolakowskiforjudge.com. Donations may be made securely online at http://kolakowskiforjudge.com.

Wednesday, May 12th – Happy Hour for Rebecca Kaplan

Rebecca Kaplan’s Exploratory Committee for the 2010 Oakland Mayor’s race invites you to join us for a happy hour and celebration! Rebecca will discuss the challenges facing our city, and invite your feedback and ideas. We can provide economic revitalization, public safety, and effective government by working together to “build an Oakland we can all be proud of.” The event will take place from 5:30-7:30pm at The Historic Cathedral Building, 1615 Broadway. Contributions welcome but not required. Find out more info and RSVP on Facebook or on Rebecca Kaplan’s website.

Thursday, May 13th – Bike to Work Day

This year’s Bike to Work Day, as usual, sounds awesome. Enjoy pancakes, prizes, all day valet bike parking, AC Transit demonstrations on loading bikes onto buses, biking with your councilmember, fuel at energizer stations, and much, much more. The main events take place from 7-9am at Frank Ogawa Plaza in downtown Oakland. For a full listing of events and more details, visit the Bike to Work Day website.

Thursday, May 13th – Mix It Up East Bay

Join us for a monthly happy hour bringing together young activists, organizers and leaders in the East Bay. Dr. Anthony Smith, Superintendent of the Oakland Unified School District will be the featured speaker of the night. Come hear about OUSD’s new strategic plan for the district and the vision for a vibrant public school district that meets the needs of all Oakland families. Free Snacks! Drink specials ’til 7 pm! Speaking program begins at 7 pm. Mix It Up East Bay is held every 2nd Thursday of the month from 6-9pm at Shashamane at 2507 Broadway. It’s accessible by 19th Street BART station or by AC Transit lines 1/1R, 51, 59. For more info and to RSVP, visit the event’s Facebook page.

Friday, May 14th – 4th Annual Oakland Indie Awards

I judged the Oakland Indie Awards for the second time this year, and I was blown away by the nominees. Trust me, this is an event you won’t want to miss! Join us to celebrate Oakland’s innovative, socially- and environmentally-responsible businesses and artists. Winners will be announced at the event—come help us celebrate! This year we’ve brought together jerk fish tacos, pambasos, hand dipped chocolate, art subscription services, edible gardening product manufacturers, a full bar, the unveiling of our WINNERS, and so much more!  The event will be held from 5:30-9:00 pm at Jack London Pavilion, 98 Broadway in Oakland (formerly Barnes & Noble). Tickets are $20 and you can find out more at the Indies website.

Saturday, May 15th – Streetfilms Screening Party

The premiere screening of three new films, produced by Streetfilms from their Bay Area Street Portraits series. The films were directed by local filmmaker Charlotte Buchen, and feature Bay Area individuals who have unique relationships with bicycles and cycling. One of the films just happens to be about Sal and the Actual Cafe! The screening will take place from 7-10pm at Actual Cafe, 6334 San Pablo Avenue. For info about the films being shown and to RSVP, see the Facebook event page.

Sunday, May 16th – Oakland on Two Wheels

Explore Oakland and its environs with the Oakland Museum of California’s bike-tripping docents the third Sunday of the month as we leisurely wend our way through Uptown, Downtown, Fruitvale, Port of Oakland, West Oakland, Brooklyn, or the Lake Merritt area. Reservations are a good idea: docentcenter@museumca.org or 510-238-3514. Participants must be 12 or older. Bring your own bikes, helmets, and repair kits. Meet at the main entrance to the Museum on Oak Street at 10 a.m. Free.

April 26-May 2 Oakland Political & Community Events

25 Apr

Monday, April 26th – Citywide Zoning Update Community Workshop (North & West Oakland)

Three large community workshops are scheduled to give you a chance to learn about and comment on the proposed commercial and residential zoning text and maps.  In order to present the information in a manageable way, the city has been divided into three geographic areas. This workshop will focus on proposed Zoning changes to West and North Oakland including the North Oakland Hills. The workshop will be held at the North Oakland Senior Center (5714 Martin Luther King, Jr. Way) from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. For more info, visit the zoning update website.

Wednesday, April 28th – AC Transit Board Meeting

At this week’s meeting, among other items, the AC Transit Board will be discussing further service cuts. You can read about the background of the need for further cuts at John Knox White’s excellent article on Oakland Seen. This meeting will take place at 6pm in the 2nd floor board room, 1600 Franklin Street. You can read the agenda and see the relevant memos here and you can listen online here.

Wednesday, April 28th – Gang Injunction Discussion with Chief Batts

On Wednesday, the Oakland Neighborhood Watch Steering Committee will host Police Chief Anthony Batts, and Ms. Rocio Fierro of the City Attorney’s Office, to discuss the proposed North Oakland Gang Injunction. Chief Batts and Ms. Fierro will address the following components related to the proposed Gang Injunction:

  • What the Gang Injunction is, and how they have been successfully used elsewhere.
  • The areas and boundaries of Oakland to be impacted by the Injunction.
  • Who will be impacted, and how will they be impacted.
  • The possibility of using Injunctions elsewhere in Oakland, if this one is successful.
  • Statements to address the City’s positions on the ACLU’s opposition to the Gang Injunction.

This meeting takes place from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., at City Hall, One Frank Ogawa Plaza, in Hearing Room 4. Please RSVP to attend this meeting. You may send an RSVP to Felicia Verdin at fverdin@oaklandnet.com or you may contact Felicia at 238-3128. For more info, visit Today in Montclair’s event listing.

Friday, April 30th – Oakland Underground Film Screening: Major Music

The Oakland Underground Film Festival in partnership with Jack London Square presents an exciting spring and summer series of films, performances, and art installations. This week’s FREE screening is “Major Music: Sonic Youth & Kurt Cobain.” The screenings begin at 7pm at Jack London Square Pavilion Theater (formerly Barnes & Noble), 98 Broadway. More info about this screening and future screenings can be found at the event website.

Saturday, May 1st – Jane Brunner’s May Community Advisory Meeting: “Keeping the A’s in Oakland”

This month’s community meeting features Planning Commissioner Doug Boxer, Discussing Fan Support & Economic Study and Eric Angstadt, Outlining Site Options & Next Steps. This meeting will be held from 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 noon at Peralta Elementary School, 460 63rd Street. To learn more, call 238-7001.

Saturday, May 1st – Jane’s Walk

UPDATE: Thanks to Dan Schulman for informing me that there are Jane’s Walks all over Oakland on Saturday. You can see the full listing at the Jane’s Walk website.

Formerly Oakland’s bustling downtown district in the days of railroads and streetcars, this area’s grand, brick, commercial Victorian buildings, now restored, continue to thrive as offices, galleries and eateries. Visit the historic Washington Inn, G.B. Ratto & Co. International Grocers, Swans Marketplace and the “Friends of the Library” bookstore. The tour will also stop by Lafayette Park, where Sue Mark will talk about the 10,000 Steps historic parks project. No Need to Sign Up . . . Just Show Up. The Jane Jacobs inspired tour takes place from 10am-1pm, beginning at G.B. Ratto & Co., 821 Washington Street and ending at La Borinqueña Mex-icatessen at 582 Seventh Street, where walkers can meet owner Tina Tamale and eat lunch. For more info and to RSVP, visit the Facebook event page.

Saturday-Sunday, May 1st-2nd – OMCA Opening Celebration Weekend

If you’ve been waiting the re-opening of OMCA as anxiously as I have, you should be excited about this awesome 31 hour event: “The newly transformed Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) opens Saturday, May 1, with 31 hours of continuous, round-the-clock free programs and events. The festivities begin at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 1, on the street in front of the new Oak Street entrance with a Native American Ohlone blessing, a marching band, Project Bandaloop performing a spectacular aerial dance, and more. And the non-stop celebration continues through 6 p.m. Sunday, May 2. “Only in California” Saturday afternoon activities highlight the innovative and creative spirit of California. Saturday evening and overnight activities take on a more adult flavor with dancing, food, a no-host bar, flashlight tours, and conversations on unique California topics—merging into early morning yoga. Sunday is especially for families with dancing, drumming, juggling, the Oakland Interfaith Gospel Choir, and more. The new OMCA Store will be open the full 31 hours so visitors can shop throughout the event.” All festivities take place at OMCA, 1000 Oak Street. Find specific info about the weekend’s activites at OMCA’s website.

Oakland Updates: Translink, Sweeeeet Oakland, Bike Access, National Night Out, Council Catch Up & Scraper Bikes

7 Aug

Just a reminder that tonight is the East Bay Express Best of the East Bay Party at the Oakland Museum of California from 5pm-midnight. You really should stop by for at least a little while. It’s free, should be a lot of fun, and will probably be the last time you see the museum before it closes for renovations on August 23rd. And now onto the updates.

Using Translink on BART: On Tuesday, I wrote about BART finally implementing Translink, and on Wednesday evening, I got to try it out myself (yay!). But I must admit that I was a bit confused about where to swipe my card. I was looking for something labeled “EZ Rider” since I knew Translink would use the same reader, but there was nothing like that. I did figure it out, but others I know just gave up. Luckily, the Translink Facebook page posted a photo of where and how to swipe the card:

Translink on BART

New blog joins the blogoaksphere: Sweeeeet Oakland launched late last month and “will be focused around political, food, and event happenings as well as generally cool things to check out in and around Oakland California.” Graham Patterson, the author, moved here just 6 months ago so it should be interesting to follow his explorations of his newish home.

Don’t try biking to the Lake Merritt Boathouse: You might have heard that there was a ribbon cutting ceremony yesterday at the Lake Merritt Boathouse. If you drive, there’s plenty of parking for you there. But if you bike, according to dto510, there’s absolutely no bike parking. Hopefully that will get fixed, especially since, as WOBO reports, new bike lanes were completed this week on Lakeside Drive.

Video from National Night Out: There was lots of talk about National Night Out leading up to Tuesday night, but I haven’t heard too much about how it went. Myrtle Street Review videotaped their block party in West Oakland. Looks like it was a fun night:

Catching up on old Council Meetings: Miss the Council during their recess? Well, there’s no need to since you can catch up on past meetings via videos online. Maybe the pro-parking protests could go back and watch all the meetings they missed out on in which the parking changes were discussed in great detail. Another way to catch up is via Oakland North’s “live” (well, it was live) coverage of the budget council meeting on July 28th. The coverage is good, but my favorite part is the caption of their picture of Sanjiv Handa: “Sanjiv Handa addressing council members. As usual.”

Scraper bike photos: Also from Oakland North is a great set of photos from the “Healin’ from Killin’” bike ride for peace. Here’s a sample, but head over to Oakland North for the rest.

Scraper Bikes 1

Scraper Bikes 2

Bringing the playa to Oakland’s runway

28 Jul

I have several heavy, substantive posts that I really want to get to this week, but those will have to wait until at least tomorrow. I didn’t think I’d get to write anything this evening because of the long council meeting, but you’re in luck, since they’re discussing the Army Base yet again, and I doubt there’s anything new that can be said. I just hope they make a decision tonight. (But if you do want to hear more about the Army Base, check out the entertaining tweets from V Smoothe and dto510.)

So while I have the meeting on mute (one of the joys of watching from home instead of at City Hall), I thought I’d discuss a not so heavy topic. Last Wednesday, I went to the Oakland Airport to fly to LA. As you might know from my previous posts on this subject, one of my favorite features of the Southwest terminal is the art. Unless I’m rushing to catch a flight, I usually walk slowly through the terminal and stop to look more closely at the most interesting art.

I had plenty of time last week so as I walked past the Pyramid bar, I looked to my left to see if a new exhibit had been installed. To my dismay, the wall was entirely empty! At first, I thought hopefully that maybe they were in between exhibits, and by the time I returned in August for another flight, they’d surely have some new art up.

But over the past week, I’ve thought about it some more and have become less hopeful. Maybe the Oakland Museum of California no longer has the funding for the exhibits. Or maybe the Oakland Museum can’t maintain an exhibit during its renovation, which will close the museum from August 23rd through May 2010. Or maybe the Port thinks the Oakland Museum exhibits aren’t good enough so they’re spending half a billion on a fancy exhibit from Paris (ok, ok, that wasn’t a serious thought, but I couldn’t resist).

I looked around online a bit and couldn’t find an explanation so if you have one, I’d love to hear it. But if the Oakland Airport is looking for a new exhibit, I’ve found it:

reno airport bm exhibit

reno airport bm exhibit tickets

The above images, via the Black Rock Arts Foundation blog, depict “From Playa to Runway – The Art of Burning Man,” which air travelers can view at the Reno-Tahoe International Airport through September 14th. This exhibit is full of gorgeous photos and interesting artifacts from Black Rock City. There are also a couple of interactive sculptures featured.

Now it makes tons of sense for this exhibit to be unveiled at Reno’s airport, the closest airport to Burning Man and one through which so many Burners travel. And it makes just as much sense for Oakland to be its second stop because so much Burning Man art is created here and so many Oaklanders attend Burning Man year after year. So if Oakland Airport is looking for its next exhibit, this should be it.

May 4-10 Oakland Political & Community Events

3 May

Monday, May 4th – BART Police Department Review Committee Meeting

You might have heard that the BART Police Department Review Committee had been holding secret meetings, but luckily Sweet Melissa called them on this and now they’re announcing their meetings. Well, announcing the times and locations, but they’re still not providing any further info in the form of an agenda or even a general description. So you’ll just have to head down there to find out what they’re talking about. The meeting is at 10am in the BART Board Room, which is located in the Kaiser Center 20th Street Mall, Third Floor, 344 20th St., Oakland

Tuesday, May 5th – Oakland City Council Meeting

On Tuesday, the Council will be considering approving the surface parking lot in Uptown and we need your help to stop it. Check out the full action alert here. Oh, and they’ll be discussing some other issues too. They’re done voting on the special election tax measures so now they’re moving on to discussing other ways to get money, mostly in the form of federal stimulus funds. See the full meeting agenda and check out my post about how to watch and understand City Council meetings if you need some guidance on how or where to view the meeting. The non-ceremonial parts of the meeting start at 7pm at the Council Chambers in City Hall, 1 Frank Ogawa Plaza.

Wednesday, May 6th – Young OBA Mixer

The Oakland Builders Alliance now has a younger arm and they are holding their first mixer this Wednesday. According to their Facebook page, “This will be a special opportunity to meet with young professionals like yourself interested in the future of Oakland.” They’re holding the event at Somar, which I’ve yet to check out so I’ll likely be stopping by for a drink before BARTing to the County Democratic Central Committee meeting. You should stop by too from 5:30-7:30pm at Somar, 1727 Telegraph Avenue. For more info and to RSVP, see the Facebook event or check out V Smoothe’s post about it.

Thursday, May 7th East Bay Young Dems’ First Annual Awards Gala

East Bay Young Dems is holding our first awards gala this week, honoring Alameda County Supervisor Keith Carson. I’ve personally invested a lot of time and energy into this event, and I would love it if you could make it to the party on Thursday. If you’ve attended or heard about an EBYD event, then you know we know how to throw incredible parties, and this one will be no different. So join us on Thursday from 6:30-9:30pm at Swarm Studios & Gallery, 560 2nd Street in the Jack London Square neighborhood. For more info and to RSVP, head over to Facebook.

Sunday, May 10th – Visit Chabot Space & Science Center or Oakland Museum of California for Free

This is awesome – on Mother’s Day, the Koret Foundation is sponsoring several Bay Area museums to offer free admission. And two of the museums offering free entry are in Oakland – Chabot Space & Science Center and the Oakland Museum of California. If you’re looking for a Mother’s Day activity, this sounds like the perfect opportunity. Chabot is open from 11am-5pm and is located at 10000 Skyline Boulevard. Oakland Museum of CA is open from 12-5pm and is located at 1000 Oak Street.

First Friday Adventures

2 Apr

We all know about the art murmur, which is a great way to spend the first Friday evening of the month, but this first Friday, there are lots of other options to get out and enjoy Oakland, especially if art galleries aren’t your favorite place to hang out. Here are some adventures you can take tomorrow night:

Adventure 1: Celebrating Bikes & Small Bites in Temescal

Tip Top Bike Shop is turning 2, and to celebrate the store’s birthday, they’re having a party, complete with cake, music and beer. But it gets better than that – though the party is free, they’ll be accepting donations, all to benefit Walk Oakland Bike Oakland. The party starts at 6pm at their shop at 4800A Telegraph, and you can find out more details at WOBO’s blog. Once you’ve had your fill of cake and bike talk, head across the street to Barlata, the recently opened but already popular Spanish tapas bar. I’ve yet to go there, but City Homestead gave it a great review (A-, which is pretty much as high as her ratings go). Stop in to have some wine and nibble on small plates. When you’re done, hop on your bike or the 1 bus to get home.

Adventure 2: A Night at the Museum

Can I just say that I love the trend of museums staying open at night? And tomorrow night, the Oakland Museum of California will be open after hours, from 5-9pm, as it is every first Friday. Swing by 1000 Oak Street to catch a lecture, enjoy some jazz, watch a movie, or just wander the museum. But 9pm is far too early to end a Friday night, so afterward, walk three blocks up Oak Street to 14th to grab a drink at Ruby Room.

Adventure 3: A Classic Evening in Uptown

Every other Friday, the Paramount screens classic movies for only $5! Tomorrow, they’ll be showing An American in Paris, featuring Gene Kelly as an ex-G.I. who just wants to paint (and, of course, dance). Catch the movie at 7pm, and when you’re done, head from Broadway to Telegraph to check out the Den at the Fox Theater. The Den is the bar attached to the Fox, which is open to the public (without paying for a show). The space is gorgeous, filled with sofas, tables, and a piece of the ceiling from decades ago that’s apparently fake (but still nice to look at). My favorite parts are looking out the windows on the second floor and checking out the old switchboard, which is still very much in tact. Grab a cocktail or a bite to eat and enjoy being transported back to the 1920s for an evening. And while you’re gazing out the window, see if you can imagine any more uses for the empty lot across the street.

Lots to do this weekend – art, music, parades, and… fungus?

5 Dec

I think I’ll be staying in and recuperating this weekend, but if you’re looking for something fun to do, there’s no shortage of great events to attend:

Tonight (Friday): Oakland Art Murmur

The monthly evening of art gallery shows and entertainments in Uptown. Read my review of the art murmur here. If you’re coming from anywhere south of Uptown, I encourage you to stop by Awaken Cafe first, where they have an art showing every first Friday of the month, complete with music, snacks, and drinks. You can find out about tonight’s show here.

When: Friday, November 5, 2008 from 6:00pm-10:00pm (individual art gallery times vary)
Where: Uptown Oakland, mostly between Broadway and Telegraph, and Grand and 29th
How Much: FREE!
More Info: http://www.oaklandartmurmur.com
Accessible by 19th Street BART station or by AC Transit lines 1/1R, 51, 72, 11, 12, 59.

Tonight (Friday): Fundraiser Party for the Flaming Lotus Girls

The Flaming Lotus Girls are some of my favorite Burning Man artists. Every year, they create an interactive fire sculpture that usually becomes one of the favorite gathering places out on the playa. They also like to share their artwork with Oaklanders, often bringing their art installations to the Crucible’s Fire Arts Festival. Here’s a photo I took at the 2007 festival of the Serpent Mother, my favorite piece the Lotus Girls have created:

Well, making this incredible art is not cheap so they’re hosting a fundraiser to fill in their budget gap for their most recent piece, Mutopia. Early in the evening, they’ll be having a cocktail party and gallery showing, and later in the night they’ll be a huge party with three rooms of electronic music. It should be an amazing party.

When: Friday, November 5, 2008 from 7:00pm-6:00am (that’s not a typo – it really does go all night long)

Where: Location TBA – call 415-963-3555 (my sources tell me it’s likely to be in West Oakland)
How Much: $10 before 11pm, $15 after
More Info: http://www.flaminglotus.com/party.html

Saturday: Oakland Holiday Parade

V Smoothe raves about the Oakland Holiday Parade every year, and if it’s as good as she says it is, you won’t want to miss it. I hope they bring back this AC Transit float that V Smoothe photographed a couple years ago:

When: Saturday, December 6, 2008 at 2:00pm
Where: Broadway and 11th Street to 20th Street, to Harrison Street
How Much: FREE!
More Info: http://oaklandholidayparade.com/
Accessible by 12th Street BART station or by many AC Transit lines.

Saturday-Sunday: Fungus Fair

The Inadvertent Gardener wrote a hilarious post about how she found out about the Fungus Fair, and you really should go read the whole post if you’re looking for a laugh. She reminded me about the annual Fungus Fair, which takes place at the Oakland Museum every year. I’ve been meaning to go to this for years and have heard good things about it so if you like learning about mushrooms, check it out.

When: Saturday & Sunday, December 6 & 7, 2008 from 10:00am-6:00pm
Where: Oakland Museum of California, 1000 Oak Street@ 10th St.
How Much: $8 general/$5 seniors and students with ID/members and kids under 5 free
More Info: http://www.museumca.org/exhibit/exhi_fungus_08.html
Accessible by Lake Merritt BART station or by many AC Transit lines.

Appreciating Art at the Oakland Airport

31 Jul

If you want to appreciate art, you might think to go to a museum or walk through neighborhoods to find public art. But you probably wouldn’t think to go to the Oakland airport. And I probably wouldn’t have thought about it much either, except that last Thursday I was stuck at the airport for eight hours. I had a few options: I could freak out at the airline employees (which many others did), I could hang out at the bars drinking Bloody Marys (which I did), or I could wander around the airport somewhat aimlessly (which I ultimately did).

As I wandered, I got a chance to truly appreciate some of the beautiful artwork and natural beauty I had quickly walked by on previous airport trips. There are of course lovely views of the bay (excuse the glare – I was taking pictures on my phone):

And the glass mural of cranes – Going Away, Coming Home – which makes me smile every time:

Then I stumbled onto the Oakland Museum of California’s exhibition – Artists as Collectors. It’s really neat and various parts of it are spread out throughout the terminals:

The exhibit features interesting collections of mundane objects that become art when displayed together as a collection. Like these blenders:

Ceramics and tea pots:

And my personal favorite, the collection of hats:

I wouldn’t recommend going to the airport just to see these collections, but if you travel much, chances are that one of your upcoming flights will be severely delayed (it’s typical now with all the airlines in crisis). So instead of freaking out at the airline employees, grab your self a drink and take a stroll around the airport to appreciate some uniquely artistic collections.