Bench Projects

0001BenchProjects_FeaturedonGrid
1. Seyed Alavi, “Bench Marks”
2. Seyed Alavi, “Bench Marks”
3. Seyed Alavi, “Bench Marks”
4. Andrea Brewster, “Beauty Virus”
5. Andrea Brewster, “Beauty Virus”
6. Lori Fischer, “Oakland Through the Windows/Oakland Woman Walking”
7. Lori Fischer, “Rise”
8. Ronnie Sampson, “Three More Roadside Chairs”
9. Ronnie Sampson, “Sign Language: Point of Departure, Sign Language: Please Hold On”
10. Steve Briscoe, “From the History of Everything”
11. Steve Briscoe, “From the History of Everything”
12. Lynn Beldner, “Never Give Up”
13. Lynn Beldner, “Never Give Up and Don’t Think Too Much”
14. Bench Warming Parties

1. Seyed Alavi, “Bench Marks” - 2015, MLK Jr. Way/between Aileen and Arlington Street

Seyed Alavi’s site-specific installations and public art projects often engage with the poetics of language and space and their power to shape reality. His Bench Marks project consists of a number of posters for the public bus benches that have been created in response to the idea of travelling as a passenger on a bus. Each poster proposes a question that can be read/interpreted either literally in terms of travelling from one spot to another, or metaphorically, in relation to the concept of life as a journey. http://here2day.netwiz.net/

2. Seyed Alavi, “Bench Marks” - 2015, MLK Jr. Way/between Aileen and Arlington Street

Seyed Alavi’s site-specific installations and public art projects often engage with the poetics of language and space and their power to shape reality. His Bench Marks project consists of a number of posters for the public bus benches that have been created in response to the idea of travelling as a passenger on a bus. Each poster proposes a question that can be read/interpreted either literally in terms of travelling from one spot to another, or metaphorically, in relation to the concept of life as a journey. http://here2day.netwiz.net/

3. Seyed Alavi, “Bench Marks” - 2015, MLK Jr. Way/between Aileen and Arlington Street

Seyed Alavi’s site-specific installations and public art projects often engage with the poetics of language and space and their power to shape reality. His Bench Marks project consists of a number of posters for the public bus benches that have been created in response to the idea of travelling as a passenger on a bus. Each poster proposes a question that can be read/interpreted either literally in terms of travelling from one spot to another, or metaphorically, in relation to the concept of life as a journey. http://here2day.netwiz.net/

4. Andrea Brewster, “Beauty Virus” – 2015, MLK Jr. Way/between Aileen and Arlington Street and Shattuck/55th Street

Andrea Brewster’s most recent works are centered within the contemporary art/craft context, while also examining issues of identity, gender, and biomorphic form. Looking at biological processes and forms, Andrea finds the structures of cells and the complexity of proteins endlessly inspiring. For Bench Projects, she created a series of drawings, imagining Beauty as a virus. These Beauty Virus panels ask what if Beauty were contagious and could replicate itself and spread, infecting every one of us, with its magic?

5. Andrea Brewster, “Beauty Virus” – 2015, MLK Jr. Way/between Aileen and Arlington Street and Shattuck/55th Street

Andrea Brewster’s most recent works are centered within the contemporary art/craft context, while also examining issues of identity, gender, and biomorphic form. Looking at biological processes and forms, Andrea finds the structures of cells and the complexity of proteins endlessly inspiring. For Bench Projects, she created a series of drawings, imagining Beauty as a virus. These Beauty Virus panels ask what if Beauty were contagious and could replicate itself and spread, infecting every one of us, with its magic?

6. Lori Fischer, “Oakland Through the Windows/Oakland Woman Walking” - 2015, MLK Jr. Way/ Arlington Street.

Lori Fischer is a designer/artist and has lived in the same home in North Oakland for 21 years. She has received several grants through the City of Oakland’s Cultural Arts Funding for work creating hand-sewn dolls and creatures with children in long-term care at local hospitals. Her illustrations are bold, high contrast, simple designs.

7. Lori Fischer, “Rise” – 2015, Shattuck/55th Street

Lori Fischer is a designer/artist and has lived in the same home in North Oakland for 21 years. She has received several grants through the City of Oakland’s Cultural Arts Funding for work creating hand-sewn dolls and creatures with children in long-term care at local hospitals. Her illustrations are bold, high contrast, simple designs.

8. Ronnie Sampson, “Three More Roadside Chairs” – 2015, MLK Jr. Way/Aileen Street

Ronnie Sampson is a graphic artist/illustrator/animator/painter/printmaker. He and his wife have their own creative services business in Oakland, CA. For Bench Projects, Ronnie created two bench panels, side-by-side Sign Language: Point of Departure and Sign Language: Please Hold On, intended to suggest different ways we define time, place and direction. Ronnie’s third bench Three More Roadside Chairs is an invitation to sit and think about objects for which aesthetics outlast usefulness.

9. Ronnie Sampson, “Sign Language: Point of Departure, Sign Language: Please Hold On” – 2015, MLK Jr. Way/Aileen Street

Ronnie Sampson is a graphic artist/illustrator/animator/painter/printmaker. He and his wife have their own creative services business in Oakland, CA. For Bench Projects, Ronnie created two bench panels, side-by-side Sign Language: Point of Departure and Sign Language: Please Hold On, intended to suggest different ways we define time, place and direction. Ronnie’s third bench Three More Roadside Chairs is an invitation to sit and think about objects for which aesthetics outlast usefulness.

10. Steve Briscoe, “From the History of Everything” – 2015, MLK Jr. Way/Aileen Street

For this project Steve Briscoe wanted to extend the vocabulary of his graphic work into public space. On two bus bench panels titled From the History of Everything, 2015.001 and 2015.002 , images of words, DNA, planets, symbols are connected into a pictographic flowchart that begs and yet resists deciphering. http://briscoestudio.com/

11. Steve Briscoe, “From the History of Everything” – 2015, Shattuck/55th Street

For this project Steve Briscoe wanted to extend the vocabulary of his graphic work into public space. On two bus bench panels titled From the History of Everything, 2015.001 and 2015.002 , images of words, DNA, planets, symbols are connected into a pictographic flowchart that begs and yet resists deciphering. http://briscoestudio.com/

12. Lynn Beldner, “Never Give Up” – 2015, MLK Jr. Way/Aileen Street

Lynn Beldner describes her creative process like journal writing, but more visual, makingart in response to something that just happened to or around her. For Bench Projects she creates affirmations. These particular affirmations, Never give up and Don’t think too much were in response to neighborhood violence a year ago. Other influences in Lynn’s studio work: potatoes (only russets), handkerchiefs, laundry, laundry lines, pillows, collections, organizing, fossils, anthropology, archeology, biography, and cartography. http://www.lynnbeldner.com/

13. Lynn Beldner, “Never Give Up and Don’t Think Too Much” – 2015, MLK Jr. Way/Aileen Street

Lynn Beldner describes her creative process like journal writing, but more visual, makingart in response to something that just happened to or around her. For Bench Projects she creates affirmations. These particular affirmations, Never give up and Don’t think too much were in response to neighborhood violence a year ago. Other influences in Lynn’s studio work: potatoes (only russets), handkerchiefs, laundry, laundry lines, pillows, collections, organizing, fossils, anthropology, archeology, biography, and cartography. http://www.lynnbeldner.com/

14. Bench Warming Parties

Each time we change the Bench Projects artwork we have a bench warming party, a community gathering at the bus stop celebrating local artists and public art.

0001BenchProjects_FeaturedonGrid thumbnail
0002_SeyedAlavi_Benchmarks thumbnail
0003_SeyedAlavi_Benchmarks thumbnail
0004_SyedAlavi_Benchmarks thumbnail
0005_AndreaBrewster_BeautyVirus thumbnail
005_AndreaBrwester_BeautyVirus thumbnail
006_LoriFischer_BenchProjects thumbnail
007_LoriFischer_Rise thumbnail
008_RonnieSampson thumbnail
009_RonnieSampson thumbnail
010_SteveBriscoe thumbnail
011_SteveBriscoe_2 thumbnail
012_LynnandSteve thumbnail
013_LynnBeldner thumbnail
014_BenchWarmingParties thumbnail

I started Bench Project in 2015 as an artist-led public art platform that rents advertising space at AC Transit bus stops to create ‘bench galleries’ in my North Oakland neighborhood with funding from Southern Exposure’s Alternative Exposure Grant Program. The project commissions Oakland-based artists to create new site-responsive work and encourages community members – including public transit riders, pedestrians, cyclists and drivers – to engage more deeply in their surroundings. Support for Bench Projects is cuurently provided by The City of Oakland Cultural Funding Program, Keep Oakland Beautiful, and The Clorox Company Arts Mini-grant. If you live in North Oakland and are interested in participating, email me at ellen@ellenlake.com

To read more about the project click here.

Bench Projects / Richmond is currently working with NIAD in Richmond, CA. Thanks to California Arts Council Artists Activating Communities for funding this collaboration with NIAD.

 

 

239

All content © Copyright 2017 by Ellen Lake.