Black Rock Arts Foundation Newsletter – April 2013

In this Issue:

  • Bike Bridge – Opening Celebrations April 5th!
  • Help bring Aurora to Palo Alto!
  • Partner Organization News:
    • Join Burning Man Project and Earth Guardians for Earth Day San Francisco
  • Grantee Updates
    • Bartlett Events – Get involved!
    • Project SUITCASE
    • The Temple for Christchurch
    • Global Lives Project
    • Reverend Billy & The Church of Stop Shopping Choir
    • Aeolian RIde

The Bike Bridge is Ready For Its Close-Up! Come Celebrate With Us April 5th!

Join BRAF on April 5th at 6:30 pm in downtown Oakland for the grand debut and Opening Reception of The Bike Bridge! The sculpture, a collaboration with the youth of Oakland, artist Michael Christian, and partner organization The Crucible, will serve as the focal point of the exciting new Uptown Art Park on Telegraph Avenue, adjacent to the Fox Theater. Don’t miss the art, music, tours, and food trucks!

The Bike Bride in Oakland, CA.  Photo by BRAF staff.

The Bike Bride in Oakland, CA. Photo by BRAF staff.

Bike Bridge Presentation and Uptown Art Park Grand Opening
Friday, April 5, 2013
19th Street and Telegraph Avenue
Oakland, California
6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.




Help Bring Aurora to Palo Alto!

Aurora at Burning Man in 2011, photo by James Addison

Aurora at Burning Man in 2011, photo by James Addison

BRAF has signed on to help bring Aurora, the beautiful life-size weeping willow tree by Charles Gadeken (made for Burning Man 2011) to downtown Palo Alto.  In addition to providing a direct grant to the project, BRAF is acting as fiscal sponsor, allowing you to make a tax-deductible donation to Aurora Palo Alto today.  The team behind the project has already secured support and approval from the city for the installation, and other than raising the required funds to pay for the installation, maintenance, and de-installation, they also have a lot of work to do to refurbish and upgrade the piece. From the artist and lead volunteers:

In preparation, the all-metal sculpture is headed back to the Box Shop in San Francisco to be “ruggedized.” Work parties will begin in the next couple of weeks, and we’re scheduling volunteers now.  Contact charlie to get in on the action. You’ll be joined by local school-aged kids who are the impetus to getting Aurora a new home. Contact Harry or call 650-619-5108 for more information to become part of the AuroraPaloAlto team.

For more information, you can read more on BRAF’s Aurora page, the project’s  Facebook or

Get involved with some of our partner organizations!

Earth Day in San Francisco

Create Eco art? Can you demonstrate a DIY earth-friendly project? You can join Burning Man Project and Earth Guardians and dozens of other organizations, individuals, and artists at Earth Day San Francisco on April 20th from 10am to 6pm at Civic Center Plaza. This unique celebration packs a powerful day of green sustainability discussions, activism, workshops and solutions into one full day of fun and excitement for the whole family. For more information, visit To participate, contact EarthDaySF .


Grantee Updates

Check out these updates from our new and alumni grantees, with lots of opportunities to get involved!

2013 Grantee – Bartlett Events

On Saturday, May 11 bARTlett Events will kick off their season of free arts and community events with an all day art extravaganza. The day will start with dozens of artists simultaneously painting murals on two massive bus garage buildings on an abandoned industrial site in Boston’s Roxbury neighborhood. Once finished, the site will be the home of the largest collection of street art Boston has ever seen. Wear old clothes so you can join in the painting fun!

In addition to the painting, there will be site-specific art, food trucks, and entertainment. The Floorlords b-boy/girl crew will be on hand with breakdancing, musical talents, and writing on a wall of their own, and at least five other artists will be on site installing non-mural art. Among the pieces will be two giant tapestries by Nate Swain and an installation of the globally acclaimed (and past BRAF grantee project) Before I Die.

Want to paint a mural? There are lots of garage doors and wall spaces left! Fill out our short form here to get a space!

Need a place to sit and enjoy your meal from the food trucks? Enjoy the awesome new furniture that the students at the YouthBuild Boston Designery are making for the site out of reclaimed pallets and other materials!

Bartlett Yard, 2565 Washington St, Boston, MA 02119
Saturday, May 11, 10AM to 5PM
For more information: Visit Facebook and
RAIN DATE: Saturday, May 18

Photo by Dan Rajter. Courtesy of Bartlett Events.

Photo by Dan Rajter. Courtesy of Bartlett Events.

2013 Grantee – Project SUITCASE

The first interactive “art suitcase” is making its premiere journey April 4-7 from the
Czech capital of Prague to San Francisco/Oakland to be displayed at the Burning Man
Global Leadership Conference. Project SUITCASE is now officially on the road and updates about the travels and adventures of Suitcase No. 1 will be available on Bon Voyage!

2012 Grantee – The Temple for Christchurch

The Temple for Christchurch has been stirring some spirited discussion in the New Zealand press, from the art section to the front page. The earthquake was a major emotional trauma for the city and the Temple elicits a fascinating discussion on art, healing, and community.

For more information visit


2012 Grantee – The Pool

Jen Lewin’s The Pool was a hit at SXSW and has gotten some great press! Due to popular demand Lewin is now creating a second version of the piece. Both versions will be on tour this summer, traveling to The Electric Daisy Festival NYC, Chicago, Las Vegas and Orlando, Beyond Wonderland LA, Google IO at San Francisco’s Moscone Center in mid-May, and a 4 month solo exhibit titled “Its Electric” at the Univeristy of Colorado Boulder. Check out for an updated schedule over the summer months.

2007 Grantee – Global Lives Project

Global Lives Accepting Filmmaker Inquiries for Lives in Transit

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The Global Lives Project is currently seeking filmmakers worldwide to contribute to its new series of ten 24-hour films — Lives in Transit. They accept applications on a rolling basis and welcome inquiries from filmmakers who want to work with a dynamic collective of global artists to produce this curated series of transit workers around the world today. To ensure that the Lives in Transit series of ten shoots is globally representative, they have specific needs that are high priority in our selection process. They especially encourage new submissions from Eastern Asia, specifically from China, Taiwan, South Korea, North Korea, and Mongolia.

Learn more at or

2004 Grantee – Reverend Billy & The Church of Stop Shopping Choir

Reverend Billy & The Church of Stop Shopping Choir bless the Bay Area with
“The Revolt of the Golden Toads Tour”!

Highline Tola

Sing out, clap your hands, and rejoice! This Bay Area tour gets underway as the Golden Toad approaches the 25th anniversary of its extinction. The glowing amphibian was killed by a changing climate’s hot El Nino winds in its mountain home in Costa Rica. On Easter Sunday March 31, the Stop Shopping singer/activists jumpstarted the beautiful animal’s resurrection, with a performance in the JP Morgan Chase Bank at Astor Place in New York City’s East Village. They wore Golden Toad masks performing at this particular big bank because it finances the most greenhouse gasses. The Stop Shoppers are “taking their toad on the road,” and will invite the public to invade Chase Bank branches throughout the week’s tour. The culmination of the Revolt of the Golden Toad Tour in San Francisco is the show at the Victoria Theatre, where in a previous church service Burning Man’s Steven Raspa was canonized in the Stop Shopping faith’s “Fabulous Sainthood.” Churchgoers, to encourage the toad’s resurrection, are requested to wear gold.

For dates and venues of the California tour visit
Watch the Reverend Billy Freakstorm sermon Golden Toad for Pope!

2004 Grantee – Aeolian Ride

Join the world’s only inflatable bike ride, free! Aeolian Ride is happening in Hong Kong Sunday April 28th, 2013.

Aeolian Ride is an international event where public art meets cycling. Riders sign up free online to meet and ride bicycles in sculptural costumes which inflate as they ride, transforming the landscape of the city. There are three suit shapes, a “bunny” a “bubble” and a “drop”. Aeolian Ride seeks to excite, delight and involve the rider as well as the passerby.

The first Aeolian Ride took place in New York July 04, 2004, since then there have been 22 rides in 19 different cities around the world. This project was created by Brooklyn-based artist Jessica Findley and more of her work can be seen at


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