Someone once said to me “I only buy art from living artists because they need the money more than dead ones.” Of course, I wholeheartedly agree with that statement. But there are also really important benefits to buying art from living creatives! They drive culture and independent and innovative thinking. Importantly, they express the issues and stories of our times in our communities. Also, they ensure that we live in dynamic and unique communities. In short, they enrich our lives.
The good news is that Oakland has a vibrant artist ecosystem and dozens of art galleries that support them. And, the news that we wish we could give you is that Oakland will continue to nurture it’s vital art scene. Indeed, we have concerns about the ability of Oakland to sustain its creative engine given the skyrocketing cost of living and a host of other challenges.
So we should all go and support our artists while we still can! To that end, 25th Street in Uptown Oakland is a good place to start. Like many things in Oakland, the street has more to offer than what appearances immediately reveal. But be patient, and look closer. In fact, there are several art galleries, artists cooperatives, artist studios, and Two Mile Wines and their tasting room. Wow.
Each of them hosts all sorts of art exhibits, receptions, artist talks, and other happenings. As well, there are the 1st Fridays Art Walk events.
What We Discovered
We recently went and visited a few of the galleries. It was an eclectic mix of approaches, perspectives, and art-y vibes.
Local Language: Is an art, design, and fabrication studio that makes custom things. It’s a collaboration between artists, designers, makers, consultants to bring creative concepts to life. But, on top of that — and what we saw — was a cool exhibition of an Artist in Residence. It’s a large, warm warehouse casual feel. The bonus is that the Two Mile Wines tasting room is housed right inside this building. Yay.
477 25th St, Oakland, CA 94612
Manna Gallery: A commercial Art Gallery that specializes in featuring talented Bay Area artists who work in paint, sculpture, and collage. It’s best to reach out to them to find out about current and upcoming shows and events.
473 25th St., Suite C, Oakland, CA 94612
Mercury 20 Gallery: Is an artists run gallery in which the members exhibit, promote, and sell each other’s work. As well, they host many different events from artist talks to receptions and participate in First Fridays.
475 25th St, Oakland, CA 94612
Roscoe Ceramic Gallery: A gallery with a completely different flavor and focus on ceramics.473 25th Street, Oakland, CA 94612 (415) 515-3174
Slate Contemporary: Women-owned and operated! Years of experience in art dealing and they host lots of exhibitions of artists who will delight and stimulate the mind.
473 25th St, Oakland, CA 94612