The Storefronts Initiative

Art and artists have never been more valuable – or more endangered – than in 2021

Beginning in October 2020 and through March 2021, Oakland Art Murmur, in partnership with Immersive Arts Alliance, The City of Oakland and local property owners, activated empty storefronts with art created by Bay Area artists.

A Storefront creates an identity for a location, and tells us what is for sale there. Art creates a transaction where money may not change hands. We expect from art something less fungible, harder to quantify, occupying a special place in the sphere of human invention.

“We are lucky to have so many artists that reveal Oakland’s creative and resilient spirit. In these unprecedented times, we must consider how we support meaningful and safe interactions in public spaces. The Storefronts Initiative engages local artists with our commercial districts to create socially responsible and provocative encounters within our city,” said Roberto Bedoya, the City of Oakland’s Cultural Affairs Manager.

“Great program! We are excited to see Oakland’s storefronts serve as canvases for artistic expression.The Storefronts Initiative will bring beauty and illumination to Oakland, at a time when the arts matter more than ever.” said Kelley Kahn, Policy Director, Office of the Mayor, City of Oakland.

Past Exhibitions

Chadwick Heath Moore

Chadwick Heath Moore, Trying to Hold Your Shit Together, 2016

Chadwick Moore’s intensely elaborate work shifts between drawing, painting, collage and sculpture. Using a wide range of components – from discarded infant formula bottles and abandon furniture, to collage imagery from both found and personally taken photographs- he builds a dense palette to create psychological landscapes.

Special Thanks to Julie Armistead for her generous support of this installation.

Clive McCarthy

For Storefronts Initiative

Aggregate Space Gallery collaborated with artist Clive McCarthy to bring this fresh, new work of art to you in this new pop-up space. Engineer turned artist, Clive McCarthy writes his own code to recreate painterly versions of photographs, juggling three mediums in the process. This set of work comes from an eleven thousand portrait Facial Recognition Technology database sponsored by the United States Department of Defense Counterdrug Technology Program. The “painting” is happening in slow motion, one panel at a time, overwriting the last image presented permanently. These works never materialize as the program that runs the projection works in random sequence indefinitely; what you are seeing right now is the only time it will ever be seen. McCarthy spends most of his time researching master painters’ techniques in order to reproduce a specific brushstroke as an example. Coding is McCarthy’s brush and his “paint” is entirely synthetic.

Sally Weber, FLUX

Oakland Artist Sally Weber creates light installations and artwork using holography, large-format photography, dimensional imaging, computer graphics and video. Weber received her Master of Science from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Center for Advanced Visual Studies. Her work is featured in museums and collections throughout the U.S. and abroad. For more check out our Interview with Sally Weber.

Special Thanks to Maria Alderete for her generous support of this installation.