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We invite you to explore the content of this site through the categories of historical time, communal and personal spaces, the artists as individuals, and the issues and ideas that inform their art.

Each division tells a different story of Oakland. Click on “Early 20th Century” under the “Time Period” tab, and you’ll see that Ina Coolbrith and Isadora Duncan were contemporaries; read the article about Coolbrith, and you’ll discover that she was Duncan’s teacher. Click on Jack London Square under the “Neighborhood” tab, and you’ll find Jack London, of course, but also Pharoah Sanders and Pete Escovedo, whose jazz performances at Yoshi’s restaurant dazzled audiences nearly half a century after London’s death.

At the core of the site are the portraits of each artist, written by Mills College students and indexed under the “Artist” tab below. These artists’ creative voices define the Oakland arts scene, and are, in turn, shaped by the past and present, and the public and private spaces, of this vibrant city.

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