Author: Paul Webster
ART SHOW FEEDING/ PREPARATION
Hello beautiful people,hope all is well in your life! This is a little recap on how our last art show went, before getting into depth about the event, I'm going to explain some of the process that made it.
Initially, Justin and I knew it was time for another fundraiser event; since our funds were running low, we had minimal stuff to give out to our unhoused neighbors. So we decided to start working on a new project to fuel our Renegade movement-spread awareness about the homelessness crisis in an artistic way.
This art show was different from the previous one we held at my place in one particular way! Catalina,(one of our Renegade members) suggested to have a feeding where we make art with our unhoused community and have them displayed in an art show. This was to bring more awareness to the public about how someone on the street is no different from anyone with a roof over their head. In this sense it exposes them more, where their spirit is more visible to the whole and encourages less dualism. We thought this idea would be reviving for them and also it would help us be more intimate with them, beyond typical conversations. We planned to have this feeding September 15th and the turn out was more potent then expected, initially I thought the Unhoused community would be resistant to doing art with us, because it's an intimate practice but unlike my original thoughts they were fierce/courageous when it came to painting; absolutely no fears hindered this sessions beauty. Some pieces though did show fear, mostly from this particular group we feed at Corey lakes, most of their original painted images got covered up with a blob of paint; it hid the authentic side towards the piece but at the same time it truly didn't. Art itself is about the representation of emotions on a physical/ time plane and in this moment it showed truth, vulnerability to the fearful side within these Unhoused neighbors. I found in this session a deeper understanding to my Unhoused neighbors and I'm grateful art shined upon this.
The first picture is a person's name we didn't get, middle slide is Santos and Denise
and last slide is Jerry!
Flyer done by Paul Webster for the artshow
The day of the art show Oct 26th I started it off at posh bagel with my lovely friend Gia; this spot is my favorite deli in Fremont mostly cause they serve Thai tea there! This was a calming way to start a busy day. Proceeding this lunch I went home to prepare everything for the show such as speakers, audio equipment, lights, etc. The speakers we had were provided by my friend Benny , which till this moment im grateful for; speakers can cost a lot to rent, I was really appreciative for Benny allowing us to use his. When getting prepared we did a couple sound checks on the speakers to make sure they sounded good and also made sure everything else was in place!
An hour passes and the show is coming to a start with Nate (ovrrsrrr) as the first performer, during mid-way in his performance I got a call from another artist (Ayla) telling me the group (Ketoret) they were gonna play but unfortunately got into a car crash; but Ayla still planned on coming to the show. This news made me unhappy knowing Ayla wanted to perform, but this night wasn't completely a lost in creativity for her, Jesse filmed it and she got chance to edited it! Since two performers were no longer attended we extended Nate's set.
As for physical media all the artist were positioned, near entrance was Signal boost ( a Bay Area Art Collective) and also Eli with her tie-dye shirts , some of them were made for proceeds in a previous event out of Eli's own generosity!Walking towards my front door Shelly and Donovan were on one wall with paintings/ drawings and across from them was Nick (Causing The Lost) with his customized hats and clothing. Inside after the front door Khris' photos wear near the window besides it and Siannas paintings across from him! Then walking into my living room Wednesday was sitting down selling stickers and had digital work displayed behind her! Next to the bathroom door was Alex drawings that he caried for many years on the streets regardless of the struggles. On the opposing wall Kye and Catalina had drawing/paintings displayed. Walking into my room , my art engulfed most of the space including painted walls and lastly our Unhoused friends on the blank wall in my room with the paintings they created from the previous feeding. All these physical media artist made this night visually appetizing and complemented the music at another beat, with each unique entree filled with color. My house was a canvas filled with beauty!
First photo is Wednesday, middle is Donovan and last is some of Catalina's art!
Musicians had their own unique beauty complementing time! Nate the first performer as a DJ brought different beats / songs with a mellow vibe into this atmosphere. My cousin Greg played a couple of his own rock songs after, also some hits. Aaron followed with a couple written hip-hop pieces! And in between Aaron and Kiyomi we had a discussion about the homeless crisis and how a individual can make change within themselves that'll initiate change everywhere, right below this paragraph I'll go more in depth about this! Kiyomi came in passionately with a couple of her beautiful songs, she was an amp to the crowds movement, it just got more lively from this point on. K-stuntin rap did the same as Kiyomi and Lost Atlas with the boys Chris Caballero, Benny and Leonard executed their performances , I personally was devastated cause somehow I missed Benny but I know he did beautiful! Shelly came on Right after Lost Atlas with no microphone but her own voice echoing into people's hearts while playing acoustic, this moment to me was a break from hype to collect ourselves and enjoy the simplicity. A big contrast to Shelly was the cherry to this night and was the last DJ (knstalGIA) I love Gias sets cause she knows how to get the crowd to dance and in a more up mood. All these artist spiced up the dishes , with physical media displayed around my house, music created a inner-motion towards the viewers experience while looking at art and hearing the artist and for those who were focused solely on the musicians it gave them a place to spread their bodies widely and dance/ move with the crowd; this created a collage of different personalities body expressions overlapping each other from moment to moment.
Lost Atlas on the left and Shelly on the right :)
THE UNHOUSED CRISIS DISCUSSION
After Aaron's set, Justin and I made a space for us to talk in depth about this fundraiser and what it's intent was-beyond having a good time and enjoying each other-we wanted everyone their to know more about the Unhoused issue that's consistently growing with housing prices arising due to too much people in one area. Justin focused more on this in a manner where he reminded the crowd that we could all get to this position in life , so why not support a system which will sustainability uplift everyone! In my speech I went more in depth with my own experience and reminded the crowd to initiate change and growth within and everything will naturally follow besides it. This promotes self-compassion and encourages them to do it. Most people often feel worthless in this world because of how small they are, but I wanted to remind them that their not at all, since matter is connected by frequency if one atom chooses to uplift its standards the rest will follow; by doing this locals who surround this person will also change their ways. Eventually this could prevent many issues from deploying into this universe and that's what Renegade Feedings is trying to remind people about-their true worth-not the worth they have gained through trauma but the authentic beauty they are.
MAYOR OF FREMONT, LILY MEI: ADVOCATING FOR CHANGE
Lily Mei, the mayor showed up later in the night, I remember one of my friends coming up to me to let me know that she was at the front gate; so I proceeded to go their and introduce Lily to the show and mostly the art our Unhoused neighbors created! While in my room looking at this art we have here a in-depth story about each piece and the person who created it ! Eventually after a couple moments we lead into conversations about programs such as the navigation center , hygiene unit that are coming into tuition to helping the the Unhoused community of their missing needs. Lily mentioned her gratitude of these programs and wants them to grow! I was amazed that the mayor is focusing on this issue with a open heart, I'm so used to people dehumanizing the Unhoused community and pushing them to the peripheral of their mind and seeing this made me warm.
Justin and Paul with Lily Mei (:
GRATITUDE FROM RENEGADE
The art show overall was a success; our focus on the Unhoused issue was primed in other people's mind to think more in-deathly about and we gained a large amount of funds for future feedings! Including from one of our guest (Stafon) which donated a check of over 300$ from a over summer program. With all these funds including the ones from the show we were able to buy food, hygiene supplies, stoves, merch and blankets. I'm thankful for all the artist who contributed their energy to create this night so beautiful and the guests who emerged their energy with this experience. Without all of you, there would be more hungry/ cold nights for the Unhoused which = more stress and possible violent/risky actions to meet their basic needs(this isn't fully true for all); but with more actions of love we prevent dualism to manifest in this world and bring each other more intimate spaces , so Renegade Feedings is very thankful for your helping fund this movement.