Oakland CA, June 21, The sun was shinin g brightly as sweet breeze blew through the world famous Jack London District. Musicians, producers, promoters, film makers, activist, and local industry execs converged on the Oakland Metro. The purpose the summer kick off event organized by Former Oakland Mayoral Cadidate, Orlando Johnson was to bring the music entertainment industry movers and shakers & grassroots community leaders together, so they can network and pool resources to improve the quality of life for everyone. Director of Oba Dogon SSS and Inersha Entertainment recording artist, Brotha Chaz Walker, attended the expo with his sons, Tyreke, Jessie and Ayodele. Walker said, " the boys are music students and they all aspire to be musicians, I think this is great. However, I want to them to understand the music industry as well amd become powerfful executives.
The event consisted of a panel discussion, speeches by local leaders and entertainment industry executives and live performances by some th ehottest artist inthe Bay Area.
Panalist and presenters included, Rayven Justce Sr, Kraig Debro, Wilson Riles, Orlando Johnson, Legendary Freddie Hughes, Reinaldi Gilder, Brotha Chaz Walker , Ca$h Out mom, Tracy Reed, Sean Kennedy.Wilson Riles Jr. explined the benefits of a proposed local currency. Riles told the audience that "we would call that local currency the “ACORN.” This captures a local prosperity/growth concept for the currency." He added that "The United States has a rich history of local currencies. Riles wrapped up his presentation by saying, "the ACORN ID-currency card has many advantages for example ID cards also function as a discount card for some City services such as libraries, zoos, and public transportation . To learn more the push for local currency in Oakland visit http://oaklandcityidcard.org/acorns/
There were live performances by Rayven Justice, iStevie, Geez L- Money Sutf, Mitchy, Slap Team, Bo, A.M.C, Verbal Assassinz, Lady Swagga, K R, What it do, Sofu, Empress Freedom, and Bay Boys Of Comedy. This was truly a town production and everyone got their chance to shine. The performers rocked. Major props to business who stepped up like Planet Of The Grapes, Oakalnd Green Party, KPR1 Radio, Baylife Entertainmetn and GoDer Magazine. Thank you for supporting the vision.
Let Peace Begin With Me
Day By Day, One Human Interaction at a time, we can reduce and ultimately stop violence in our community. No one wins when gun shots ring out. Last year 130 live were lost in Oakland. Granted 7 people were gunnned down in one day by mentally ill man One Goh, 44 at Oikos University. We all agree that it is time to change our culture and replace violent acts with acts of kindness. However, it seems eaiser said than done.
Well, I propose that we all start right now, right where we are, by being nicer to everyone who crosses our path. Let us all be more respectful and more tolerent. Let's pause for a moment before we raise our voice at someone. Just a thought. A little love goes a long way.
Urban Releaf, Day Of Service Honoring Dr. King
Urban Releaf empowers Oakland and Richmond residents including children and youth to beautify their own neighborhoods. The organization teaches community members, that rehabilitation through tree planting and environmental awarenessl revitalizes our core urban spaces.
In Honor of Martin Luther King Jr. the comunity celebrated the life and legacy of a man who sowed seeds of hope, nonviolence and equality for all. "During the less than 13 years of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s leadership of the modern American Civil Rights Movement, from December, 1955 until April 4, 1968, African Americans achieved more genuine progress toward racial equality in America than the previous 350 years had produced. Dr. King is widely regarded as America’s pre-eminent advocate of nonviolence and one of the greatest nonviolent leaders in world history. Martin Luther King, Jr. used the power of words and acts of nonviolent resistance, such as protests, grassroots organizing, and civil disobedience to achieve seemingly-impossible goals",King Center website.
Urban Releaf in partnership with numerous groups will honored D. Martin Luther King Jr's legacy by planting 40 Street Tree's in West Oakland, on this national day of service. Community members of all ages and ehtin back grounds, pitched in to suppor the effort. If you needed to fulfill community service hours, this was a great oportunity to get some hours.
The event was held on 27th and Alecia near Market St in Oakland, CA. The streets were be blocked off, like a block party. The Tianextli Tiacopan Aztec Fire Dancers shared traditional authentic Aztec Dancer from Mexico City. Paradise Free Jah Love, an outstanding poet as well as president of the Oakland chapter of International Black Writers and Artist will blessed the crowd with a performance. Brotha Chaz Walker & The Peaceful Vibes will got everyone dancing to their conscious reggae hip hip. Their new tune Be A Better Dad, seemed to really connect with the people.
Plus, local visual artists Malik Seneferu and Refa Senay will displayed some of their work. Malik is a self-taught and extremely prolific African-American artist that has created more than 1,000 different pieces of artwork, including paintings, murals, and mixed media projects in the past 25 years. Refa Senay, aka Refa 1, an Oakland-based artist with a long history of community involvement and engagement.
One thing for sure, we all know that trees take carbon dioxide out of the air. Trees are natural filters. In urban area like Oakland California 10,000's of children and adults suffer from respitory illnesses like a asthma.
Urban Releaf is an urban forestry/environmental non-profit 501(c)3 organization. Established 1999 in the City of Oakland, California to address the needs of communities that have little greenery. Studies show that increasing the number of trees in an area improves the psychological well being of residents. Urban Releaf understands that tree planting is an important service in continuing the effort to beautify our communities.
According to the Sount Carolina Forestry Commission, Trees and other plants make their own food from carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere, water, sunlight and a small amount of soil elements. In the process, they release oxygen (02) for us to breathe.
SOMArts Cultural Center presents Speak Your Peace, a group exhibition opened January 4 and runs through 24, 2013, curated by Gallery Director Justin Hoover. The exhibition brought together Bay Area-based painters, digital, video and installation artists ranging in age, ethnicity and nationality to explore intercultural communication and social justice and propose new iconographies of peace through visual art. The opening reception also featured live non-violence-themed music by Brotha Chaz Walker and the Peaceful Vibes as well as a poetry performance by Iranian-born visual and literary artist Nathera Mawla depicting sexuality and identity from a Persian female perspective.
More than 20 artists and organizations presented art depicting cycles of destruction and reconstruction. Including Japanese-American symbols of identity, draw upon traditional and symbolic Persian and Iranian cultural iconographies, debate on the value of the prison-industrial complex in the United States, reinterpret historic narratives relating to Salvadorian military histories, expose stories of radical, personal self-expression in the face of persecution through Persian-influenced graffiti installations and discuss the manifold ways popular media informs the way we envision and discuss peace.
“Seeing Peace,” an ongoing project by featured artist, activist and San Francisco native Richard Kamler, inspires the curatorial concept as well as satellite and gallery components for the exhibition. For Speak Your Peace, Hoover builds upon Kamler’s practice of pairing established contemporary artists with highly visible public space in an effort to collectively, publicly and imaginatively define peace.
Five newly commissioned, large-scale, digitally printed banners feature new work by Victor Cartagena, Ala Ebtekar, John Halaka and Taraneh Hemami as well as Evan Bissell, whose image was selected through a public open call issued by SOMArts in October 2012 to artists living in San Francisco, Alameda or Contra Costa counties.
Additionally SOMArts funds the printing of two images for public display in billboard advertising space donated by CBS Corporation. This pair of billboards (pictured above) at the intersection of 4th and Brannan Streets in San Francisco will exhibit “Ascension” by Ala Ebtekar and “Can I Tolerate Intolerance” by Uzi Broshi, December 10, 2012 through January 10, 2013.
In the gallery Kamler’s “Last Supper” a sculptural table made of lead and gold leaf is inscribed with quotes from religious text.
Kalmers "Waiting Room" a large-scale lead and acrylic sculptural installation with projected video, investigate capital punishment in the United States prison-industrial complex and communication failures both personal and societal. The peice is perhaps the powerful offering in the show.
As you sit in the waiting room formed large lead panels with the rules for visiting the prision and a record of a condemed man's last days. I was moved. You can feel a heaviness.
A highly chromatic graffiti installation by Iranian born artists reinterprets peace through the lens of Persian graphic and street art.
Berkeley artists Betty Nobue Kano's “Seeing Peace”, is a mixed media painting with origami overlays in which broken promises, remembrance and forgiveness take the form of torn and mended canvas.
“Meditations,” a series of four oil paintings by Evan Bissell, depicts hands clutching symbolic prayer beads created from corn, shells, pennies, bottle caps and worn pencils.
South African-born artist Clinton Fein, whose video screens in the gallery annex, uses actors and staged sets to recreate infamous torture scenes from Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, and asserts that violence must not be ignored or forgotten in the pursuit of peace.
Additionally Speak Your Peace includes photography and text-based installations from local arts education projects through Institute on Aging’s Center for Elders and Youth in the Arts, managed by Jessica McCracken. Featured in the exhibit are works created in IOA arts classes led by Silvi Alcivar from The Victorian Manor Poets in collaboration with Creative Arts Charter School, Coronet Center Philosopher Poets and 30th Street Poetas. Also on display are visual art prints created in IOA arts classes under the lead of artist Kelvin Ming Young at TODCO, a South of Market senior community.
Exhibiting artists include:
Kwanzaa Album Teaches The Teachable
Powerful uplifting music written and produced by one the founders of Minister Mxolisi T. Sowell Wose Community Church of the Sacred African Way.
This is a really great well put together album. Along with a song for very principle of Kwanzaa, there are songs to consider for a good wholesome life. Everyone needs to learn the title song - Kwanzaa Time.
Each songs examines one of the principals of Kwanzaa, the African American Cultural Celebration observered each year from December 26-January 1. Dr. Maulana Karenga created Kwanzaa and the Nguzu Saba in 1967. Kwanzaa has seven core principles (Nguzo Saba): Unity, self-determination, collective work and responsibility, cooperative economics, purpose, creativity, and faith.