Friday, June 7th, 2013, from 6pm to 10pm, Oakland art appreciators will gather in the Temescal Art Center (511 48th Street, Oakland, CA 94609) to enjoy a night of local music and affordable artwork called “Oakland Under $100.”
2013 marks the fourth anniversary of “Oakland Under $100,” a biannual arts and crafts market that provides a place for both entry level and mid-career artists and artisans to share their works with the public in a price range that is easy on the pocketbook. With works ranging between $1 and $100, the event makes art ownership accessible to Oaklanders from a wide range of economic strata, bringing artwork home to the people.
“I book 10-12 local artists and craft folks. I try to keep things interesting with a mix of different mediums and offerings. There is something for everyone. To highlight a few artists showing in the upcoming event: Bird of Virtue (hand crafted jewelry), Wade O’Connor (photography), Jasper Thomas (leather goods + visual art). You can see more examples of the artists from past years on the website. I frequently book local musicians as well. This time around I booked The Artichokers, The event has a mix of crafts and visual art. You can find anything from handmade pillows, paintings, sculpture and handmade jewelry.” said Emily Coker, founder and curator of the event.
The hard-working Ms. Coker puts in the brunt of the work when it comes to organizing and promoting the event, with some help from her varied and talented group of friends, which include Anne Harris nee Pinkowski, who created the memorable images for the postcards used to promote the event. Coker’s association with other artists helped to inspire her to create this event, which give back to both the creative community and the art lovers who support it. The enthusiasm of the artists involved in the event is easy to see when visiting its Facebook page. Every new addition to the line-up of artists has been greeted with excitement.
“I started ‘Oakland Under $100’ in an attempt to empower myself and other artists to learn how to represent themselves, and their work in a casual setting,” Coker explained. “I noticed that most people roaming around the first Friday events in Oakland enjoyed the art, but could not afford it. I wanted to create a space where the artist give the community an opportunity to purchase work at affordable prices while also challenging the artists.”
Artists either create new works or mark down previous works to provide the wares for the exhibition, but the challenge the artists are presented with is to maintain a high level of artistry and quality for works that are created in the $1 to $100 price range. If the crowds that were seen at the Temescal Art Center last year are any indication, Oakland Under $100 has certainly succeeded in pleasing the public.