San Francisco is known around the world for its quirky, colorful aesthetic and rich history. Just across the East Bay, Oakland is also bursting with creativity, with one of the highest concentrations of artists in the United States! If you’re an artist looking for places to show your work in the East Bay area, here are some 5 great resources that you should definitely have on your radar.
Note: We are not affiliated with these organizations nor did they ask us to mention them. We do think they would be helpful to great number of our local community!
1. Oakland Arts Enthusiast
Oakland Arts Enthusiast is a regularly updated home for arts journalism, covering contemporary artists, events and gallery openings, as well as calls for artwork. The directory page lists dozens of independent galleries and studio spaces in Oakland and Berkeley. Search the calendar for events and openings, browse the gallery section for photo coverage of recent shows you may have missed, or contact them with your own press releases.
2. Oakland Art Murmur
Oakland Art Murmur is a beloved East Bay non-profit institution, comprised of a network of member venues. According to their website, member venues in the OAM network exhibited over 1200 artists in more than 400 exhibitions in 2012, to an estimated 84,000 visitors. Find out about open studios, social events hosted by and for artists, and free walking tours. Their mission? To “ignite and nurture a lifelong love and appreciation of art”!
3. Free Oakland UP
The project of curator and artist Jocelyn Meggait, Free Oakland UP is “a multi-purpose art space focused on building community by offering art and objects for free and focusing on socially activated art projects.” For artists working in assemblage, mixed media, sculpture or collages, the listings on this website can be a treasure map to your next amazing materials. They offer a wonderful array of items, opportunities and best of all, space, all for free.
4. California Arts Council
The California Arts Council (CAC) is an organization dedicated to “advancing California through the arts and creativity.” Their grand mission statement proclaims a desire to enrich the lives of all Californians “by access to and participation in a diverse spectrum of artists and arts and cultural experiences” as well as increase public support for the arts and arts education.
Of course we have to include FIGMENT! You may already know that there is an annual FIGMENT event in Oakland, but it’s actually a global non-profit organization with a deep network of artists, volunteers of all kinds and community organizers.
So what does that mean for artists? It means that if you’re an artist, a maker, or a DIY enthusiast looking to connect with like-minded creators, FIGMENT can be a great starting point. Check out our website, Twitter and Facebook groups to start networking with other artists and organizers of FIGMENT events, and tap into a welcoming community all around the world.