Celebrate Art, Music, and Dance in May

The inaugural Oakland Art Month hosts visual and performing arts events all month long throughout The Town.


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Photo courtesy Visit Oakland

This is for all the kids who didn’t listen to Mom to follow a nice, safe career as an accountant or a lawyer, didn’t heed that hoary, old warning about 100 starving artists for every Picasso, and needed to follow the exhortations of the soul and forge their own creative path. Oakland dedicates a full month to celebrating all facets of that misunderstood and underappreciated genius, the artist.

The Oakland Art Month festivities kick off on Fri., May 4, at 5 p.m., with a special Women in Art themed First Friday event in the Koreatown-Northgate district. On Sat., May 5, noon-7 p.m., witness live painting from DJ Agsns and La Cocina Loca as well as epic dance battles when the TURFinc Cinco de Mayo Festival hits Jack London Square. Also Sat., May 5, at 3 p.m., 4 p.m., and 5 p.m., vertical dance troupe Bandaloop will take to the heights as part of the Fiesta Sin Frontieras at the Great Wall in Uptown. Sat., May 12, is the premiere of the city’s first Oakland Mural Festival in which the biggest names among professional muralists — and eager young hopefuls — paint the walls of Jack London Square, creating murals right before visitors’ eyes.

Also on tap is Blurry Vision, a two-day festival of hip-hop and R&B that will feature headlining performances by SZA, Migos, and Oakland’s own Kamaiyah at Middle Harbor Shoreline Park. The Oakland Symphony also gets into the act with a special presentation of Bernstein and Tchaikovsky that every aspiring creative can appreciate, titled The Artists’ Struggle.

Events take place throughout May in various locations in Oakland. For more information and a full schedule of events, visit VisitOakland.com/oakland-art-month

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