Discover 12.0

Page 1

ISSUE 12.0 Jan/Feb 2020


Silicon Valley’s Innovative and Creative Culture


Harumo Sato


Featuring: Nicholas Knopf Teatro Visión Pippi Boards Linda Gass Mild Monk CONTENT MAGAZINE, SAN JOSE $9.95

A digital agency focused on web. We build elevated webites for the Silicon Valley brands that drive technology and culture forward.


houbenrenchenxiushan.pdf 1 2019/11/3 下午3:46










Winter Fest 2020

FEB 14 - MAR 1

Miguel Zenón Quartet: “Sonero” • Stacey Kent • Aaron Goldberg Trio Quincy Jones Presents Sheléa, w/ SJSU Jazz Orchestra • The Revelers Georgia on My Mind: The Music of Ray Charles • International Guitar Night Halie Loren • Aaron Abernathy • Los Hermanos Arango • Shayna Steele SJZ Collective Plays Weather Report • Black String • Yuko Mabuchi Trio


Photography by David Hill

Photography by Brandon Magnus/San José Sharks

Oleg Lobykin, NO SWIMMING The City of San José Office of Cultural Affairs in partnership with Burning Man Project proudly presents a new work by Bay Area artist Oleg Lobykin as part of Playa to Paseo, an initiative bringing art from Burning Man to Downtown San José. Appearing through May 2020, No Swimming is located at SAP arena at West Santa Clara Street and Cahill Street.

C CONTENT ISSUE 12.0 “Discover” Jan / Feb 2020

Cultivator Daniel Garcia Editors Elizabeth Sullivan, Rah Riley Linnea Fleming, Yale Wyatt Esther Young, Grace Olivieri Community Partnerships Kristen Pfund

Photographer Daniel Garcia Writers Gillian Claus, Daniel Codella Michelle Runde, Chris Jalufka Johanna Hickle, Grace Talice Lee Yale Wyatt, Isaiah Wilson Brad Sanzenbacher, Kevin Marks Rah Riley, Taran Escobar-Ausman


“Discover” is about curiosity and connection. I don’t like discovering new things merely to be “that guy” who knows something others don’t-- I enjoy when others share their knowledge and insights with me. Nor do I want “new” because I am bored. I am quite content living in a one-mile radius where quality art, dining, and entertainment are consistently accessible. No, I am drawn to newness because I am curious. Moreover, with the magazine, I enjoy helping others receive the recognition that they deserve. I know this stems from when I first launched my photography career. As a creative myself, I noticed that those of us in the South Bay weren’t sought out or recognized for our art as much as those from other regions. But as I became involved in the creative community, I stumbled on (and still do) more and more influential and talented people. Just like Come Up San Jose says, “San Jose’s not boring, you are.” And that holds for Santa Clara County or Silicon Valley, or as I have always called us, the South Bay. There are fabulous jewels in our region, not to be found just on the surface, like panning for gold. Underneath the facade of pedantic social-media-influencer-culture, there are riches, treasures of connection, meaning, and creativity. But just like all great discoveries, a little digging, a little effort is required. Content is here to assist you in your excavation. And I think you will dig what is in this issue. If there is one thing I have learned through my years and experience, it is that whether you are in the South Bay or the world at large, in life, if you seek, you will Discover. Enjoy. Daniel Garcia THE CULTIVATOR

IN THIS ISSUE Stephen Longoria | Urban Community | Gabriel Edwards | Studio by Terra Amico To participate in CONTENT MAGAZINE: Subscription & advertising information available by contacting


CONTENT MAGAZINE is a bimonthly publication about the innovative and creative culture of Silicon Valley, published by



Jan / Feb 2020 San Jose, California

ART & DESIGN 10 Pippi Boards. Christina & Tyler Zagarino 14 Urban Community, Gary Dillabough

18 24 32 40 46 56 62

Harumo Sato, pg. 56

& Jeff Arrillaga

Furniture Design, Studio by Terra Amico Artist, Gabriel Edwards Artist, Lind Gass Artist, Stephen Longoria Artist, Nicholas Knopf Artist, Harumo Sato Artists, Paul Pei Jen Hau and Susan Chan

.MUSIC & THEATER 68 Teatro VisiĂłn, Rodrigo Garcia & Leigh Henderson 72 Mild Monk, Henry Stein 76 Album Pick, Needle to the Groove 78 Calendar 80 Contributors

Linda Gass, pg. 32

All materials in CONTENT MAGAZINE are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published, broadcast, or modified in any way without the prior written consent of Silicon Valley Creates, or in the case of third party materials, the owner of that content. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of this content. For further information, or to participate in the production or distribution, please contact us at

Pippi Boards, pg. 10

CONTENT magazine’s production is powered by

Urban Community, pg. 14

artists: participate!

works is your all-volunteer community art and performance center

open call for art!

43 years of supporting new artists and new ideas in san josé: visit! make an exhibit proposal!

january 2020 CALL for artists: exhibition: “foresight: 2020” runs january 31 to march 8 what will the future be or what should the future have been? wall artwork must fit within a 20x20 inch area up to 3 pieces, no fees, no jury, open to all artists! work can be for sale or not, art drop off deadline is january 19 for art drop off times and details works/san josé, 365 south market street, facebook, twitter, instagram: workssanjose

works is member and volunteer supported, and is funded, in part, by a cultural affairs grant from the city of san josé, by a grant from applied materials foundation, and by silicon valley creates, in partnership with the county of santa clara and the california arts council. photos and design by joe miller’s company

Tyler Zagarino


Discover 12.0

Christina Zagarino

Pippi Boards When Christina Zagarino thought about a better world to raise a daughter in, that world included girl gangs on half-pipes and women’s art on skateboard decks.

Written by Rah Riley Photography by Daniel Garcia Available at Bill’s Wheels 1240 Soquel Avenue Santa Cruz, CA 95062 Instagram pippiboards

“I asked for a woman writer. It was my way of vetting if Content had a woman writer on staff. I want a woman to tell our story, but also, I want the editor to know it’s important to have a woman tell stories.” That’s Christina Zagarino— she shoots straight—a Santa Cruzian born in the Bronx, co-owner of Pippi Boards. The company is made possible by the partnership between Christina and her husband, Tyler, and wouldn’t exist without the two of them working together. But the brand is also about being a woman and empowering other women. “Tyler is home watching our this is not anti-man, pro-woman; it’s just that there is something missing in this world, and if you can advocate for it in an effective way, then you should.” Tyler is a skateboarder, and before the inspiration for Pippi was conceived, Christina was getting comfortable getting on the board and moving, but any skate shop she walked into did not feel comfortable. Skateboarding is a male-dominated industry with shops sporting floor-to-ceiling skate decks

adorned in boobs and skeletons. “You want to pick a board that’s a reflection of you. I didn’t feel like I had a place in that shop.” Two years ago, Christina got pregnant and was very excited. For a while, she was convinced that she was having a girl. She really had to ask herself, “What does it mean to raise a girl right now, and how do I make the world better for this little girl that I’m going to raise?” So she pitched the idea: “Let’s make skateboards, but they have to have art exclusively designed by women.” Then they found out that they were having a boy. “I was definitely not having a girl! But I was already so invested in making something and pulling women into this world, so I thought, ‘Well, what’s a great way to raise a boy in this world?’ ” It occurred to her that learning how to be a great partner, learning how to be empathetic to underrepresented people, learning that people should have equal representation may be a great way to start a boy’s life. Though she wouldn’t recommend starting a company when you’re having a baby, Pippi

Boards launched in September 2019 at the Art Cave and became available at Bill’s Wheels, a local spot to Santa Cruzians and one of the biggest skateboard shops on the West Coast. A month after launching, Christina answered a phone call from the skate shop and braced herself to hear that none of the decks sold and they wanted the stock space back. She instead heard that the shop had just sold out of Pippi decks. The next milestone for this mom and pop will be a website with a way to ship boards that doesn’t include packing boxes by hand from their living room. The challenge in 2019 is the common expectation that when a brand launches, it should be everywhere with plans for scaling and domination and disruption. There’s a sentiment that you’re a failure if you don’t have a social media strategy. “But that’s not us. Pippi Boards is literally a mom and pop company; it’s part of our every day and our family. We’re going to build it slowly and make it right. Yeah, I don’t have an Instagram campaign because my kid stole my phone. It’s more about continuously 11


2 3 THE ARTISTS OF PIPPI BOARDS While Christina doesn’t identify as an artist, she trusts the art she is drawn to. “I started sharing the idea of Pippi Boards—fairly audaciously actually—with artists,” she laughs. “And I heard ‘no’ quite a bit. It was totally fair, and it was good to hear ‘no.’ It’s always good to hear ‘no’ and make the decision to move forward. And then somebody finally said ‘yes’ to me.” These were not to be just-forhire artists; they were approached specifically because Pippi wanted their art on the boards. So, there was an element of wanting to see what the artists were going to make for Pippi Boards, how they envisioned their work on a skateboard. 1 LLAMA BOARD: SARAH REBAR “Somebody finally said ‘yes’ to me, and that woman was Sarah Rebar. I think having Sarah be so enthusiastic about what we were making gave me a little bit more confidence to push forward. We went through some concepts together and ultimately landed on the llama.” 2 STRAWBERRY SURFER BOARD: KRIS GOTO “I was very nervous to ask the final artist, because it was somebody I had been a fan of for a really long time. I approached this artist named Kris Gato. She’s Japanese and lives in Hawaii. I had way too many mai tais on the plane and…with all my bags, I’m running around trying to find the mural she painted…I wanted to ride a Kris board. And she was down. She’s the kind of person you feel connected to her when you first meet her—she draws you in, and her art is very much that way too.” 3 ABSTRACT COLOR BOARD: DANIELLE PETERS “We’re based in Santa Cruz, so how do we employ someone from our own community? Dana’s art is three dimensional. That’s essentially cut paper. I shared the idea with her and she said, ‘Yeah that’s really cool, but how do I take my art that’s three dimensional and put it on a board?’ And I was, like, listen: I don’t know. But I want to figure it out. That’s a fun problem to solve.’ She shared five different options, and if Pippi was an established company with unlimited funds, we would have made all five of them—there wasn’t one that wasn’t beautiful or striking in some way.”


Discover 12.0

checking in with Tyler, like, ‘Do we still want to make this? Is our relationship still solid to be business partners?’ At the end of the day, that’s the foundation of our family and the foundation of the company.” The two met in New York. And while moving from the Bronx to San Francisco to Santa Cruz (home for Tyler and all new for Christina) was a drastic and difficult change, the pace of the South Bay’s coastal city can also be a relief. If you’re going to make it work, you need to slow down. “What I’ve found in Santa Cruz is really a place that feels like home. There’s definitely an element of entrepreneurship in Santa Cruz that doesn’t exist in Silicon Valley. I think here [in the valley] it’s about playing the Silicon Valley game—how do you scale and how do you disrupt—and in Santa Cruz, to me, it’s like, ‘I have this great idea for something that I think would make this place we live in better—I’m gonna do it.’ Every-

thing feels possible here.” One lifelong influence and source of inspiration is Jack O’Neill, who lived in and based his global brand out of Santa Cruz. When O’Neill died two years ago, there was a paddle out at Pleasure Point for him– thousands of surfers and boats came out and the Coast Guard flew in. “You see this guy who made a product that fulfilled a need, did it well, and cared about where he lived. The kind of impact that can have on a community is really special. So I think that’s been really inspiring—how you build something that makes change for people.” Women are carving their own path in skate culture, and female skateboard groups are popping up all over the country—Brujas in the Bronx, Girl Swirl in Southern California, and the Lady Lurkers in Santa Cruz—with, essentially, this idea of getting together to skate, make each other better, and hang out and have fun. “I

wish that existed when I was, like, 15 years old. I think as a woman, this is a sport where, yeah, you’re going to fall down and scrape your knees, and you’re going to have to get back up and do it again. I think that’s super important to tell girls and boys, but especially girls. And having community around you encouraging you to get back up is so empowering.” It’s empowering to know that there is a place within a community of women cheering you on. It is empowering to know there’s a skateboard made for female skaters by female artists. And it’s empowering that when skateboarding debuts as a new sport in the 2020 Summer Olympics, women will have equal representation in those competitions. There are going to be girls around the world who see competitive women skateboarders. Pippi Boards hopes that every girl walking into a skate shop for her first board will feel like the sport was made for them. C 13

Gary Dillabough


Discover 12.0

Jeff Arrillaga

Urban Community Shaping Downtown


couple of phrases that have been thrown around over the last few years are “community” and “placemaking.” Just like the stereotype of tech entrepreneurs looking to “change the world” with their “disruptive app,” you can begin to have a distaste for these phrases. Now, mix that with the stereotype of landowner/developer and two middle-aged, white investors/developers talking about community and placemaking, and many San Joseans will be cynical, having so often heard the promise that “now is the time for downtown.” Now, let’s introduce Jeff Arrillaga and Gary Dillabough of Urban Community. These long-time friends, neighbors, and business associates have now partnered to focus their development expertise on community and placemaking in downtown San Jose. By their own admission, they know their actions will demonstrate their real intent. And their actions have already been evidenced by many in the Downtown San Jose arts community. Their long-term civic commitment to downtown has already benefited not only Content and SVCreates but also Local Color, Kaleid Gallery, San Jose Jazz, and the preservation and remodeling of the Improv theater and the Bank of Italy. These actions point in a great new direction for San Jose’s urban community.

What is it that got you guys initially into real estate and development? Jeff Arrillaga: My uncle was one of Interview and Portraits by Daniel Garcia Instagram urbancommunitydtsj

the original developers. My brother was and a lot of people that I went to school with got into it. I think what I like about it is, you’re an independent contractor, so you don’t have a boss’. [Laughter] You can kind of do whatever you want to do, find your own niche market. So, that’s why I originally got into it.

Gary Dillabough: My dad, we used to buy houses. We’d remodel them, or we lived in them. And, we always kind of dabbled in real estate, and I just loved it. And then there’s just something that’s tangible about it. A bunch of my buddies were civil engineers as well, so I’ve watched their careers, that they’ve been building buildings, and I’ve always been drawn to it.

What was the reason for a downtown area? What was the reason for more of an urban focus?

GD: We were doing some stuff in Sunnyvale, and then we said, “Hey, why don’t we look at downtown San Jose?” We were looking for a downtown market. We knew that San Francisco was crazy. Oakland was just too hard for us to get our arms around, and we started focusing on San Jose. And that’s how it kind of started. So, we put together a group of friends of ours to buy a handful of buildings. That was kind of our first few steps. JA: Doing brokerage in the Valley for 30 years, most of the work was always in the 101 corridor. And then you start hearing about why San Francisco is taking off. All the millennials wanted to be there. So, we actually ended up taking a WeWork office in San Jose and spending time down here, and saying, “Hey, you know what? Instead of just going to, like, a Togo’s or a Pizza my Heart in Santa Clara, I can go to, like, 15 different taquerias in downtown.” So, from a 50-year-old standpoint...just being more in an urban environment is pretty cool. So, I think it’s starting to resonate more and more with people. Again, spending more time down here, seeing several data points, and seeing more women in downtown, seeing kids in downtown, made it a little more comfortable going into it. And we had probably nine to ten months before Google announced, so that was more reassuring. The 15

255 W JULIAN ST | 227 N 1ST ST | 12 S 1ST ST (BANK OF ITALY) | 300 S 1ST ST (AMERICAN TITLE) | 240 N 1ST ST (ARMORY) | 62 S 2ND ST (SAN JOSE THEATER) | 201 S 2ND ST (AMC THEATER) | 152 N 3RD ST | 180 PARK AVE (MUSEUM PLACE) | FOUNTAIN ALLEY LOT | 150 E SANTA CLARA ST | 2 WEST SANTA CLARA ST | 30 E SANTA CLARA ST | 409 S 2ND ST (BO TOWN) | 26 S 1ST ST | 30 S 1ST ST Adobe building, another building, also made it more reassuring. And seeing Jay Paul [Company] coming down to downtown: all these data points made were finally coming to a point where it’s like, “OK, this is something...” and where else can you really build of scale in an urban environment between here and San Francisco? In essence, this is it. GD: Yeah. I think in addition to that, there were a few other kinds of telltale signs. If you look at the Valley, you can’t build in Palo Alto anymore, really can’t do much in Mountain View, not much in Sunnyvale, a little bit in Santa Clara. Nothing really in Redwood City. So, if you’re looking for a place, you can go vertical; San Jose is a pretty natural step. But also—it isn’t anything that’s surprising to people—but, you know, this is where millennials want to go. And it’s funny because the millennial thing makes sense to us, and that’s why we focused here. But then, as we spent more time, we go, “Shit, we like this.” That this is a much better experience for us as well. And then you add other factors, like this kind of density and all these different constituencies like the political system here, the mayor, the city manager, and the council people were great. And then you look at these restaurant owners and bar owners; you find these likeminded civil people. Then, it’s like, this is the first time in my life that I’ve felt like I’m really part of a community that is trying to take care of one another and just trying to get at someplace. It’s like what Jeff says: he doesn’t know the mayor really in any town he’s ever worked in. You know, here, he knows Sam extraordinarily well. I know Sam extraordinarily well, and I think the reason being is that this is kind of a large city that acts like a small town. JA: It was going to be one or two buildings, and then, the other opportunities arose that we thought were too good to pass up, and that just continued to go.

And it’s up to like 21 different properties. Is that correct? JA: Yeah. Urban Community mentions placemaking in its mission statement. How has that come about? GD: As

we started down this path, and we’re trying to figure out what we were doing, a lot of it kind of 16

Discover 12.0

led back to the experience you have on a college campus. When you’re on a college campus, it feels like there’s a community there, it feels youthful, it feels inspiring. It’s a place that you’re learning, and you have lots of connections. So, “campus” was an idea that we thought was fascinating. So, for a while, we thought about “Urban Campus” as a name, and then we really started to look more into just how important “community” was to us. So, we felt in our minds that urban is critical, the community is critical, and that’s where those two things combine to help tell the story of where we’re going. Yeah, it was kind of as simple as that. JA: I think it’s a lot easier for us because we’re only focused in downtown San Jose. We’re not spread across Silicon Valley, so you really can be part of a community picture. Here every day, you’re walking the streets. You see the same people. You see the same people that kind of have the same ethos as you do and really want to help. So, it’s all not like, you know, how much money am I going to a make, but how can I make downtown a greater place to live, learn, and play?

How does what you are doing help build community?

GD: When we started, the partner that we had came to have look at a higher level urban plan, and said, “Hey, if you want to create…you take this 475 acres and you break it down to smaller neighborhoods, and then those neighborhoods start to brand themselves.” This is the way that vibrant cities are created in Europe or in places like the United States, like Nashville or Portland, or Seattle or Austin. So, it might be a neighborhood for younger kids coming out of college. It might be a place for young families. It might be kind of a technology center. It might be an arts and food district. And when we started to come downtown, we broke this into eight different neighborhoods in our mind and started buying properties, one or two properties, in each one of those neighborhoods. A lot of people look at the acquisitions that we’ve made, and they think we are all over the board. But, in reality, we’ve been trying to buy a few buildings in each one of those neighborhoods to do something catalytic. Hopefully, other developers will say, “You know what? It’s a pretty good idea.”

“This is the first time in my life that I’ve felt like I’m really part of a community that is trying to take care of one another and just trying to get at someplace.” -Gary Dillabough A lot of people have a bit of a negative view of developers, like the Monopoly game character, buying up land, knocking things down, building up, and raising rents. How are you different? GD: We didn’t con-

LIST OF PROPERTIES: 255 W Julian St 227 N. 1st St 12 S 1st St (Bank of Italy) 300 S 1st St (American Title) 240 N 1st St (Armory) 62 S 2nd St (San Jose Theater) 201 S 2nd St (AMC Theater) 152 N 3rd St 180 Park Ave( Museum Place) Fountain Alley Lot 150 E Santa Clara St 2 West Santa Clara St 30 E Santa Clara St 409 S 2nd St (Bo Town) 26 S 1st St 30 S 1st St

sider ourselves the developers. We really do consider ourselves these guys who are trying to create these nice places to be and things that are focused around community. But to us, you still have to follow a process where you can make money, because if you don’t, it’s non-sustainable, right? But we don’t look at making money as a bunch of individual parcels, and how do we get a building? And then, how do we get out of the building? Our real belief is we want to be here for the long term, and we want to make sure the real estate that we work on is adding to the community. Often times, when you build the building, that building takes away a lot from the community that existed. It creates traffic problems. It takes sunlight away from the area. It creates construction issues for 18 months to three years. It creates drag on the utility system. There are lots of things. It requires more water, right? And if you look at ecosystems where your people’s initial inclination is to take away, those ecosystems don’t thrive. But when you’re part of an ecosystem where people’s first intuition is to say, “I want to give,” then things can actually, I think, begin to run and thrive. So, for our buildings, we want to make sure that when we put them on the grid, there are things that they will help create, that will be better for the whole ecosystem. So, how do they address social issues? Current buildings can put together funds where we can actually help pay for homeless programs. Are there things where we can create ownerships? So, if you work on a project, you can own a little bit of that building. Then, you’re going to have a greater connection if the other businesses buy that building, and you have some ownership in that building. Can that building start to create its own power so that it’s not taking so much energy from the grid itself? And, then, can you make sure you work with your neighbors to make sure that there are things there that can be kind of 1+1=3? So that, that’s what we’re hoping that our buildings ultimately do.

That’s a tall order. GD: I do think it’s one thing to talk about this stuff. And listen, Jeff and I have a lot

to prove. I mean, there’s a lot of things that we’ve talked about that we haven’t executed. It’s easy to talk about, hard to execute. But we do believe that actions speak louder than words. And we hope that people look at what we’re doing with, you know, Valley Title or what we’re doing with Armory. We are really trying to demonstrate that we care about this community. We have a few parking lots in downtown, and we’ll go to our neighbors of the lots and to the business owners and give them parking passes. And it’s funny when you give a parking pass, they kind of go, “What are you doing this for? Do you want free beers or free food or...?” [Laughter] And it’s like, “No, you guys are our neighbors, and this is kind of what neighbors do for one another.” And so, we’re just hoping that those kinds of things start to lead in directions where it really does reinforce this is a focus in community. And what we found is a lot of our neighbors are equally generous and equally thoughtful. You just need to open up that dialogue. Sometimes it’s as simple as a parking pass kind of leading to that kind of interaction. JA: Hopefully, as we worked with Adega to their pastery cafe [Pastelaria Adega at 30 E Santa Clara St.], and our plans for the old Bo Town location with Level Up [rolling out later this year], we are helping generate a food area that people are looking for. People realize we are invested in this area. And with the arts is another thing. Though, personally, I don’t have much experience in the arts, but every building we have, we say, “Go ahead. You can paint it.” We can see the impact the 100 Block Mural on the Valley Title building has had. With Local Color, SVCreates/Content Magazine, and Kaleid Gallery (along with others) being in that space, there is a central area where different groups can go and congregate. I think that’s been really important in aiding community. GD: We want to bring it back to life. As we work with the Non Plus to start to create more vibrancy in Armory, we could make a lot more money on the space if we just leased it out, especially where the market is at today. But our belief is that it wouldn’t be the best solution for the longterm health of the community. We want these to be places that the community will benefit from. C


“Our vision for this place has evolved into wanting to showcase all the different possibilities of reclaimed materials.” Taylor West

–Trevor Raineri, Project Manager

Frank Scott Krueger

Studio Terra Amico by

Studio by Terra Amico is, among other things, a proving ground for the ongoing versatility of reclaimed wood. About three years ago, everybody got wood.

Written by Kevin Marks Photography by Daniel Garcia Studio by Terra Amico 460 Lincoln Avenue, Suite 55 San Jose, CA 95125 Flickr: terraamico Instagram: terraamico

It’s true. It’s like we woke up one morning and suddenly there were exposed beams of black walnut holding up our offices, roughhewn pine tabletops beneath our coffee mugs, and miles and miles of exposed wooden slat walls in every restaurant. It was like the gods of architecture suddenly found every pile of disposed redwood fencing from every job site in history and threw them all back at us, refinished, arranged just so, and looking very earthy, urbane, and mysteriously timeless. What’s more, tables weren’t just tables anymore. They became hulking, steampunk-inspired assemblages with huge metal legs and rusty unliftable heft, adorned with heavy maritime alloys and edging—as if all the ancient tall ships of the high seas had taken a wrong turn at the Cape of Good Hope and smashed into West Elm instead of the West Indies. Everything became big, brown, and heavy. There was even an exposed wood wall on the set of SportsCenter. Then the Edison light bulbs came! How can we forget? And the hipster beards—it was like Frontierland for the new millennium. And it actually looked pretty great. We have San Jose’s own Terra Amico to thank, at least in part, for the triumphant return of wood. Back in 2008, construction professionals Joe and Lisa Raineri found themselves in a challenging financial moment as the economy began to pitch and yaw. Their usually stable business of flipping Bay Area homes hit a wall thanks to the subprime mortgage crisis. Facing the possibility of a holiday season without enough money for Christmas presents, Joe got creative. He built a table out of some old wood that had been laying around in the backyard and posted it on Craigslist, where it sold on the first day amidst a frenzy of interest. Thus, Terra Amico was born—incredibly crafted furniture built from reclaimed wood sources. 19


Discover 12.0

“What we’ve seen is that everybody wants to be able to say that a piece is salvaged or reclaimed, but they don’t want it to look necessarily super rustic anymore.” –Trevor Raineri

Fast forward to 2019. Reclaimed wood—or what looks a lot like reclaimed wood—is everywhere and seems like it has been for quite a while. Chip and Joanna Gaines, HGTV, and the urban farmhouse aesthetic are on the top of the mountain, and on cue, customers’ tastes are changing. “What we’ve seen is that everybody wants to be able to say that a piece is salvaged or reclaimed, but they don’t want it to look necessarily super rustic anymore,” says Trevor Raineri, project manager for Terra Amico. This shift in taste led to a rethinking of their San Jose showroom and birthed “Studio by Terra Amico.” “Our vision for this place has evolved into wanting to showcase all the different possibilities of reclaimed materials,” says Trevor. Terra Amico means “Earth friend,” and the central mission of the company flies in the face of planned obsolescence—making meticulously crafted heirloom furniture pieces that will be passed down from generation to generation, using materials that would have otherwise ended up in a landfill. Certainly a slam dunk business model when everyone wants their home to look like a Napa County tasting room, but harder to pull off when preferences shift back toward the modern. Studio by Terra Amico is, among other things, a proving ground for the ongoing versatility of reclaimed wood and an effort by the company to embrace actual lines of furniture—a shift in tone for an outfit that has been primarily custom-build since the beginning. In their airy, semi-industrial space in the Midtown Arts Mercantile building on the edge of Willow Glen, Terra Amico displays their wares alongside carefully curated lamps, chairs, décor, and artwork that enhance and augment their style. It’s a place where consumers can catch a glimpse of how these pieces might work in the real world. The Studio space showcases three different furniture lines, which Terra Amico classifies as “standard designs.” This is still hand-built craftsman furniture, but fashioned to pre-made specifications and designed for the three different product families. “Urban Homestead” is the most rustic—channeling the farm-totable look and feel, but in a wholly tasteful and mostly subtle way. “Rugged Earth” is Terra Amico’s take on warm industrial meets 21


Discover 12.0

Bohemian—lots of concrete slabs, exposed steel, and rugged patinas. The Terra Amico “Midcentury” line is perhaps the most interesting. It contains many of the trappings that have made the retro look popular of late—tapered legs, minimalistic lines, and starburst motifs—yet done with materials more rustic and woodsy than traditional midcentury-modern materials. It may be the best example yet of the possibilities of the company’s creativity. The designs reflect an ability to stay true to their original goals and vision, but flex and move with tastes and times. Most businesses chase this unique ability to pivot but find it hard to actually pull off. The Studio space demonstrates Terra Amico’s unique expression—artisans dedicated to working with reclaimed materials, yet progressing and growing. Customers have noticed. Terra Amico has a large and loyal consumer following and boasts a long list of South Bay food and drink establishments outfitted with their singular furnishings, including Orchard City Kitchen, San Pedro Market Square, Paper Plane, and Original Gravity. Terra Amico’s style doesn’t just resonate with hipster watering holes and urban farmsteads. One of their largest clients is Google—further proof that their designs have a lasting resonance. C


GABRIEL Edwards Giving Books & Movies a Second Life

Written by Michelle Runde Photography by Daniel Garcia Instagram: gabrieldedwards


Discover 12.0

“I don’t like reading books so much as I like having read them. And maybe that doesn’t make me a true reader.” –Gabriel Edwards


abriel Edwards, who goes by Gabe, is a full-time artist and dad, living with his wife and daughter in San Jose, and with a son on the way. Over the past six years, Gabe has been working on two large, ongoing projects: drawing collages of objects from horror films using a style called “knolling,” where the artist arranges various objects in parallel with each other on paper, and recording his own audiobooks on cassette. At their core, both projects are about transforming content from one medium into another, with Gabe putting his own interpretive twist on the original book or movie. Gabe graduated from the San Francisco Art Institute with a master of fine arts in painting. It was there that he created some of his earliest collages and audiobooks, starting with self-recorded audiobooks complete with hand-drawn cover art for each cassette. It started when he decided to record Jonathan Livingston Seagull, by


Discover 12.0

Richard Bach, on cassette. He then drew reproductions of the book’s cover art for the cassette case cover in black pen. Gabe realized that he’d really enjoyed the process, and he wanted to keep doing it. “In grad school, there was a guy that started making ceramic masks in the seventies, and because he had a group of collectors, whether he loved it or hated it, for the sake of the collectors, he still had to make them,” said Gabe. “So I thought, maybe if that’s what being an artist really looks like, what’s a project I can do that I’ll be glad to keep doing? I really wanted to just read books and be really well-read; that sounded awesome.” Hundreds of recording hours after that moment, Gabe has an honest perspective on reading: “I don’t like reading books so much as I like having read them. And maybe that doesn’t make me a true reader. I know people who for fun will curl up all day with a book. For me, it’s like, ‘Gotta go to work


A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors Opposite page:

Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter



Discover 12.0

Left: Get Out Above: Multiple Maniacs

now; gotta spend an hour reading this.’” Gabe has completed 85 books on tape, though with a new baby coming, he plans to tackle shorter books next year. As with his audiobooks, the first inspiration for drawing the horror film object collages came in grad school. “The film drawings are part of my compulsive list making,” said Gabe. “The first time I did this in grad school, some money was supposed to come to me, but it hadn’t yet. And I was making a list on my wall in my studio of things I wanted to buy once that money came in. And then I started to make a list and draw all the things I’d regretted buying.” A few years later, Gabe started drawing objects from horror movies using knolling. “When I started making these, I got about 10 deep, and then I thought, ‘Well how many more of these am I gonna make?’ I think numbers are important, so it was either going to be 13 or 666, and since 13 wasn’t enough, 666 it was,” said Gabe. He’s completed 134 horror film

drawings so far, which he’s sold at various events and zine festivals along the West Coast. To make these, Gabe takes notes on key objects that appear in a film, such as the hockey mask in Friday the 13th. Using pen and marker, he then draws a collage of the items to represent the movie as a whole. He deliberately does not include the name of the movie, leaving it for the viewer to deduce on their own. Having completed 134 horror film drawings so far, Gabe plans to create one single printed collection when he’s finished. Gabe brings an original touch to interpreting movies and literature. It’s rare to find an artist who finds new ways to pay homage to someone else’s art, but Gabe has achieved that with his work. While he’s exploring future shows in galleries along the West Coast, Gabe’s main focus is to keep creating new audiobooks and knolling drawings and to prepare for the newest member of his family. C



Discover 12.0


LINDA G A SS Stitched Paintings

Written by Johanna Hickle Photography by Daniel Garcia Social Media: lindagassart 33

San Joaquin Merced Revival

Owens River Diversion

“I use the lure of beauty to look at the hard environmental issues we face.” –Linda Gass

There’s a significant amount of abstraction in flying by plane—after all, you’re hurtling through the air in a metal tub at 30,000-plus feet, but the most surreal moment of your flight is that first glance through the plastic cabin window at the terrain far below. From an aerial angle, the landscape is broken down in a patchwork of shapes and condensed colors like a massive, earthy quilt. Linda Gass captures that feeling through her map-like “stitched paintings,” art that addresses water and land-use issues in California and the American West. Although she also works with glass, Gass has an obvious soft spot for textiles. “With textiles, they tend to have a comforting feeling to them,” she describes. “We’re used to wrapping ourselves in them. We sleep under them.” Her intricate designs are fashioned by drawing with

the sewing machine, guiding the fabric with her hands while controlling the speed and movement of the needle. Averaging a mile’s worth of thread per year, she coalesces teeny tiny stitches into textured patterns that reflect their environment—rolling grasslands curve and loop, rows of crops form neat lines, rivers and oceans coil and ripple. The highlight is certainly the water, not just in texture but in color. Through silk painting, this artist commingles an ever-changing blend of aquamarine and turquoise, cyan and seafoam. Her H20 interest was initially fostered by her mother. Gass recalls her mom frequently warning her that if she didn’t finish her salad, it would rain the next day (a superstition carried over from her own childhood in the particularly rainy country of Luxemburg). But the threat didn’t carry the same

heft, considering LA’s stubborn lack of rain. “We have all these lush green lawns and swimming pools,” Gass remembers pondering. “If it doesn’t rain here, where does our water come from? I had no idea. You know… it comes from the tap!” Later, she was shocked to learn that none of LA’s water came from local sources. Gass’s enthusiasm for maps also started at a young age. The artist’s face softens with nostalgia when she speaks of hours spent whirling her Rand McNally globe. “I’d play this game where I’d spin the globe, and I’d close my eyes and put my finger on it, just to see where it landed,” she smiles. “Mostly it landed in the ocean because it’s mostly water. Which also left this big impression on me of how much of our planet is water. It was this process of discovery.”


Fields of Salt

Wetlands Take Over 36

Discover 12.0


Wetlands Dream Revisited 37

Severely Burned: Impact of the Rim Fire on the Tuolumne River Watershed

THIS PAGE: Severely Burned: Impact of the Rim Fire on the Tuolumne River Watershed, 2014 Dimensions: 54” h x 70” w Media: Silk crepe de chine, silk broadcloth, cotton batting, cotton and polyester thread Techniques: machine quilting, hand stitching Photo credit: Don Tuttle Statement: The Tuolumne River Watershed provides 85% of the water used by 2.7 million residents of the San Francisco Bay Area. In 2013, 96% of the devastating Rim Fire burned in the Tuolumne River Watershed. Fire is a natural and essential process in the forests of the Sierra Nevada. Centuries ago, wildfires burned slowly and low to the ground, thinning out excess brush and smaller trees, and leaving larger trees to thrive without competition for resources like water and sunlight. The 19th and 20th century policy of fire suppression to save forests and human lives resulted in the unintended consequence 38

Discover 12.0

of allowing fast-burning fuel to build up in the form of dead and dry vegetation. Decades of well-meaning forest mismanagement coupled with the consequences of climate change in the form of drought and unusually high summer temperatures resulted in the megafire known as the Rim Fire. In Severely Burned: Impact of the Rim Fire on the Tuolumne River Watershed, Gass overlaid the vegetation burn severity map from the Rim Fire on 7.5 minute topographic maps for the region and traced the topographic lines only in the areas that were severely burned. The Tuolumne River and its major tributaries and reservoirs are stitched in blue thread and the light grey stitched topographic lines represent the severely burned areas, highlighting just how much of the Tuolumne River watershed was reduced to nothing but ash.

PAGE 13: Dogpatch: the Sea is Rising, 2019 Dimensions: 35¼ “ x 18”, 35½” x 18, 35¼ “ x 18” Media: Silk crepe de chine, silk dyes and water soluble resist, polyester or wool batting, silk broadcloth, rayon embroidery thread, polyester thread Techniques: Silk painting, digital scanning, digital image manipulation (Adobe Photoshop), digital printing on silk, machine quilting Photo credit: Don Tuttle Statement: Sea level rise, caused by the thermal expansion of warming ocean and the melting of land ice as the Earth warms, is a significant climate change threat to the coastal regions of California. Global sea- level has risen by 7-8 inches between 1900 and 2016, and the rate has increased in recent decades. In 2014, global sea level was 2.6 inches above the 1993 average and continues to rise at a rate of about 1/8” per year.

The most recent scientific estimates for San Francisco Bay were released in 2018 by the California Ocean Protection Council (a State Government appointed council). Projections for 2050 are relatively modest, with a likely increase of 1-foot. However, by 2100 the likely projection puts sea-level rise at between 3 to 6 feet on average. The range of projections is affected by whether carbon emission levels fall significantly or if they continue at current levels. Using sea-level rise maps published by the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA), Gass has created a series of artworks that show the present cityscape and the impact of three feet and six feet of sea level rise on the Dogpatch neighborhood of San Francisco, where this museum is located. You may recognize familiar features such as the new Chase Center in Mission Bay and Oracle Park to the north.

Dogpatch: The Sea is Rising

COMING EXHIBITION: December 19, 2019–May 3, 2020 Linda Gass: and then this happened… This exhibition will examine the human-made and natural water infrastructure affecting the greater Bay Area, considering present and future challenges with respect to climate change. Museum of Craft and Design 2569 Third Street, San Francisco, CA

A few years later, Gass’s time at Stanford continued to cultivate her valuing of sustainable living. “I lived in a co-op house where we ate vegetarian,” she notes. “We did recycling, we didn’t use paper napkins with our dinners, we baked our own bread and granola…all those good hippie things!” Today, her advocacy-fueled artwork features in a number of magazines and books, including a National Geographic publication on unusual maps and the cover of an environmental science textbook. One of her favorite pieces to date will be included in a solo show addressing climate change at the Museum of Craft and Design (featured until May 3rd). The stitched painting, Severely Burned, reveals the crippling damage of the Rim Fire in the Tuolumne River Watershed area through an artisti-

cally rendered vegetation burn map. It’s a personal piece. Gass has regularly visited and backpacked Yosemite National Park ever since a week-long class trip in 8th grade taught her an appreciation of the area’s ecosystem (from its plants and animals, to the glaciers that carved its valley). And she witnessed the fire in person. “There was this cloud, like one I’d never seen before,” Gass recalls of an intense moment staring out the bus window at the horizon. “It was this cauliflower in the sky. It was not a rain cloud. And the underside of it…the whole cloud was grey. There was no white.” The fire burned so hot it had created its own weather, condensing the moisture from the atmosphere into an unnerving pyrocumulus cloud. Gass vividly recollects the flurry of ash later falling like snowflakes, some crusting on

the zoom lens of her camera. Although her work wades through some harsh realities, Gass takes a surprisingly gentle approach. “I use the lure of beauty to look at the hard environmental issues we face— rather than make artwork that may be more ugly like the subject matter that I’m dealing with that people might not want to look at. Or live with.” Visually pleasing images make unappetizing truths a little more palatable. “Otherwise they might want to stick their head in the sand because it’s overwhelming,” she observes. Moreover, this artistic choice reveals an optimism in the restoration of natural beauty. Catching a bird’s eye view with Gass reminds us we can aim higher. Rather than settle for a flawed standard, we can choose to be better stewards of the planet we inhabit. C



STEPHEN LONGORIA DRAWING WHILE ANGRY AND LAUGHING ALL THE TIME Written by Brad Sanzenbacher Photography by Daniel Garcia Instagram: skullonfirestudio



Discover 12.0

The first thing you may notice about Stephen Longoria is his gentle Texan accent. In his friendly manner, he’ll be quick to tell you about the craft of printmaking, his love of drawing his cat—or a one-eyed version of it—or his affection for his Texas hometown just north of the Mexican border. While he doesn’t display anger on the outside, he says it drives his creative process. “Sometimes I get angry, and I just need to draw.” His stark black drawings tell the story about the sardonic state of mind in which he creates his art. Today, Stephen is the San Jose–based owner and operator of Skull on Fire Studio, a printmaking shop downtown specializing in producing T-shirts and totes for artists and musicians. He describes his business as a punk rock business that operates more like a tattoo shop than a print studio, and he keeps his prices low to support his clients. “I try to keep it non-commercial,” he says before checking himself. “I guess that sounds pretty hipster.” Screen printing is a complex process and supplies are expensive. It involves applying a photosensitive emulsion to a fine mesh and repeating the process for each layer of color added to a print. One mistake can cause your profit for a project to shrink drastically. Because of its cost, it’s a dying art in the Bay Area. On-demand digital printing is cheaper and faster, but it lacks the craftsmanship and vibrancy of hand-screened prints. The craft, he says, motivates him more than the money. While his business takes up most of his time these days, Stephen still finds time to draw and make prints of his own art. His Instagram feed reveals his stylized approach to snakes, eagles, and ancient warriors. There’s no real inspiration behind his art— he just draws what he feels. “I try to draw what makes me happy. Sometimes I wake up and say I’m gonna draw snakes today, and that’s what I do.” There’s a fantastical style to Stephen’s art that’s reminiscent of both Aztec pictographs and traditional Japanese illustration. While he doesn’t actively emulate these styles, it makes sense that a kid who grew up in a Texas border town in an age in which pop-culture was dominated by anime may subconsciously blend these aesthetics. In one drawing, a sharp-cornered cactus grows from a clay pot. In another, a roaring Godzilla emerges from the sea. 43

44 Discover 12.0

What he is actively trying to create is art that resonates with music from his teenage years. He says bands like All-American Rejects and Death from Above were defining for him as a young artist, and the feeling of that music is something Stephen tries to capture in his art. His drawings—at least the ones he’s shared—are mostly monochrome, which makes them easier to print. While they look like they’re drawn in deep black ink, these days Stephen is entirely digital. “I’ve given up on ink,” he says. Now he draws in pencil, then traces the drawings in Illustrator and prints directly onto a film that can be transferred to a screen. While Stephen is humble about both his art and his business, he has a lot to be proud of. Making a living as an artist in the South Bay is an impressive feat, and Stephen knows where his motivation comes from. “I’m pretty motivated by resentment,” he says, again with a friendly laugh. “Being told I can’t do something has gotten me to where I am today.” C



Discover 12.0

NICHOLAS KNOPF “Surfing is very dynamic…if you pay close attention, you can find glimpses of emotion ranging from euphoria to rage.”

Written by Taran Escobar-Ausman Photography by Daniel Garcia Instagram: kn0ffy

Though artist and craftsman Nicholas “Knoffy” Knopf has been immersed in creating art since a third grade writing project entitled “Attack of the Melting Zombies,” it wasn’t until this past year that he found the courage to share his work with others. Those admiring his work today, however, are given a look into his journey through a palette of creative experiences and influences that still inform his bold and surreal yet relatable work. Without formal art education or training, Nicholas has become a man of many talents and has built his skillset over the years through his own dedication to evolving his craft. All these skills have played their part in developing the artist Nicholas is today—from realizing his love for creating surreal and unconventional drawings at a young age to studying pottery as a teenager, which taught him to be patient with the process; from working under his dad, a painting contractor, where he learned the art of making a smooth, clean line with a brush

to learning the art of shaping surfboards. Each experience has granted Nicholas more freedom to create his own vision and share his imagination. Nicholas’s recent pieces are vivid, dynamic meditations on the Monterey Bay surfing culture that he has been a part of for the last 18 years. His clean line work and simple color palettes give way to wavy, bendy characters with oversized appendages that echo both expressionist and surrealist styles. The most prominent and signature element of his pieces, however, are the dynamic facial expressions of his subjects, who are predominantly surfers in wetsuits. They are the primary element that dictates the subjective interpretation of the piece. Interestingly, the expressions are not posed; rather, they capture a fleeting moment of thought, either deep contemplation or a slight, minuscule transition of a moment—a mere flicker of a thought or a nuance of a passing feeling. It is Nicholas’s knack for noticing these moments that gives 47



Discover 12.0

A Fine Time



Getting Loose



Discover 12.0

Face Half Empty




Discover 12.0

Swim with Yourself 53

Left: Blue Man Portrait Above: Mirror

him his inspiration. “Surfing is very dynamic, and a lot of the time people aren’t paying attention to what is happening around them. But if you pay close attention, you can find glimpses of emotion ranging from euphoria to rage.” These emotions are characterized and changed by the simplest of lines. Nicholas approaches these lines as he does when shaping and building surfboards, slowly refining them over time to retain meaning in the simplest of forms. Surfing culture is the central visual motif found in Nicholas’s current work, yet its thematic gestures transcend typical coastal beach art. Surfing serves as an entry point into something deeper, surreal, and imaginative. In one piece, in front of a red sky, a languid, angry looking white shark rests upon a reef like a walrus and balances a surfboard upon its nose while glaring mockingly at a surfer wading in the water. In another, a young surfer enters an Escheresque staircase to come out the other side aged, walking out upon a cloud with surfboard in hand. Nicholas moved to Santa Cruz as a teenager and became

part of the surf scene, which obviously had a great influence on his artistic vision and aesthetic. Growing up as an artist and surf enthusiast in Santa Cruz, he naturally felt the influence of legend Jim Phillips, the artistic mastermind behind the Santa Cruz skate brand. Nicholas soaked up the work of Phillips, who himself added elements of surrealism and abstractionism to his work. Nicholas extends these local traditions from Santa Cruz’s past into new, untamed paths where his methodical process dictates a lessis-more graphic style. Nicholas is currently taking elements he discovered in recent graphic design classes and experiments with mixed media to further elevate his style and bring new meaning to his fluid, clean lines. He relates, “Mixed media feels the most rewarding at the end because the resulting product is more interesting. The process can be tedious and involves a lot of problem solving, and the pieces certainly don’t always come out as planned, but it is always fun to experience the result. Art is a lifelong journey for me—like making surfboards. It is always evolving, and I’m always trying to make it better.” C 55


Discover 12.0

Harumo Sato Painter, Illustrator, Muralist

Everything about Harumo Sato attains a critical mass of joy, color, and wonder. You can see it in her paintings and murals, where every character she draws could be your otherworldly spirit friend. You can see it in her wardrobe: glitter eyeshadow, sparkly leggings, and lime-green rosebud earrings, all at once. And you can see it in her animated body language, hands flinging wildly overhead and shoulders bouncing up and down. But most of all you can see this sense of magic in her life story—a fantastic journey of spiritual crisis, impossible healing, and happy discovery.


Written by Grace Talice Lee Photography by Daniel Garcia Facebook: fineart.harumosato, harumobakery Instagram: harumosato, harumobakery Twitter: harumosato

Harumo graduated college with a degree in international relations and jumped right into a job as a planner at an advertising agency. Creative fulfillment was a luxury she could not afford. Every move she made was a struggle for survival, for independence. So she stuffed down every artistic dream, told herself to embark on such ambitions maybe a decade later, as a hobby. But she still made drawings for fun, once in a while, and one day she doodled a girl with a snake arm—an omen for the inexplicable events ahead. Later that evening she went to Chinatown for dim sum, and a friend suggested they visit a fortune teller down the street. The psychic advised Harumo to change her job, or else her body would break. Then on the way home, her right arm started tingling and stiffening, but she thought nothing of it. When she woke up the next day, the whole limb was dead and a deep shade of purple, swollen twice its usual size, with no mobility, sensation, temperature, or blood pressure. She rushed to see doctors—at least 10 of them— but no one could explain her sudden paralysis. They said it was an unknown condition—perhaps the first of its kind—and nothing could be done.

They advised Harumo to keep her job, because no one else would hire her again. Then they sent her home with a thick stack of bills, because disability insurance programs refused to cover her mysterious disease.


After the initial waves of panic, Harumo remembered a childhood art teacher named Shusei, a stroke survivor who recovered fully from onesided paralysis, despite all medical opinions that he would never again move half his body. She reached out, and he agreed to coach her through rehabilitation with his unorthodox self-taught methods. For their first class together, Shusei duct-taped a pencil to Harumo’s dead hand and told her to write with it. She stared back at him blankly. He said, “If your brain thinks that your body can’t work, you’ll never use it again. Convince yourself that your arm can move.” So she did. She grabbed her swollen, purple limb with her working hand and dragged it around the page. Every inch was agony. But Shusei said, “Pain is not a big deal. It’s a necessary stage to endure, an illusion from your brain. Just don’t believe it!” After a few torturous months of this training, Harumo started seeing results—woefully gradual results. Her paralyzed arm started gripping onto newsprint and holding down rulers, so she could tear paper pieces and draw straight lines again. She built these skills slowly, eventually reaching a point where she could draw for hours every day. It took a total of three excruciating years as Shusei’s disciple, but she managed to recuperate almost all of her mobility and strength. And when she did, she immediately quit the advertising agency—to attend art school instead. 57

Animal Power



Discover 12.0

Survivors Peace

“Art really changed my life. It saved me— really cured me. So I want to enhance the positivity and make people happy. I want to draw a peaceful world.” –Harumo Sato



Harumo decided to study art in the United States because of the time efficiency and creative freedom of American programs. In the States, she would only need three years to graduate with a bachelor’s degree, rather than the six years required merely to complete the portfolio application for Japanese schools. And she yearned for a place to explore her personal vision and purpose as an artist, instead of a conveyor-belt education that would force her to conform with someone else’s aesthetic. Soon, Harumo matriculated as a studio art major at the University of Buffalo, starting over as an undergraduate because 60

Discover 12.0

her degree in international relations offered no transferable art credits. All by herself in a foreign country, living off meager funds borrowed from family, she took on her studies with a sense of haisui no jin—the grim determination of soldiers who must either win their battle or die in a ditch—or, in her case, graduate and support herself as an artist or forever face her parents with shame. Even though she realized, halfway through her first semester, that she wouldn’t be able to afford much more tuition or living expenses, what she lacked in monetary resources, she made up in talent and drive. She won a school-wide grant competition with her work and invited

the art department chair to attend the reception and view her piece. There, she managed to persuade her way into skipping several classes ahead—earning a bachelor’s degree in only oneand-a-half years.


In 2016, Harumo moved to Mountain View in hopes of finding a vibrant Bay Area art community. She moved to California with only as much furniture as could fit into a Toyota Scion and only as much knowledge of the local art scene as she could find from Google searches. In her first few days on the West Coast, she made a list of 10 art galleries in San Francisco and took the Caltrain up to tour them. Out

Mural photo by Anthony Roberts, courtesy of FB AIR Program

of the 10, six had closed from rising rent costs, and the other four only featured world famous painters such as Chagall and Picasso. She sank into depression, wondering if her ambitions would only wilt from then on. Luckily, a new friend soon brought her to a South First Fridays Art Walk in downtown San Jose, introducing her to a throng of local artists and creatives. Harumo was overwhelmed with relief and glee at finding likeminded thinkers and makers. There she met Cherri Lakey of Anno Domini, who invited Harumo to sell illustrations at future art events; Kevin Bigger of San Jose Made, who asked Harumo to design the poster for their annual holiday craft fair;

Genevieve Santos of Le Petit Elefant, who showed Harumo how to print her own products and file her small-business taxes; Juan Carlos Araujo, who now acts as Harumo’s art agent and mural production director. The past three years of California living have been a nonstop success story for Harumo. She gained local and national recognition by selling art at print fairs and street festivals. In 2018, she landed a series of group and solo shows through Art Attack San Francisco, and then painted the side of Dac Phuc restaurant as part of POW! WOW! San Jose. In 2019, she produced murals for both Facebook and Target. And coming up in 2020, she’ll show illustra-

tions in a group show at Classic Cars West, and she’ll exhibit paintings in a solo show at Luggage Store Gallery—and a few other exciting projects that she can’t talk about just yet. As for her ultimate goals and dreams, they have nothing to do with corporate clients or namebrand galleries. Harumo hopes to specialize in creating murals and installations for hospitals, rehabilitation clinics, and hospice centers—to cultivate joy for those who need it the most. “Art really changed my life. It saved me—really cured me. So I want to enhance the positivity and make people happy. I want to draw a peaceful world.” C


A teacher must cultivate the potential of his students—a little like the master sculptor must transform raw rocks into intricate, new shapes.


Discover 12.0

Paul Pei Jen Hau

Wooden sign with Mr. Hou Beiren’s studio name. Translation: Old Apricot Hall

Written by Johanna Hickle Photography by Daniel Garcia Exhibition:

A Refined Pair: Lotus and Plum Blossom Painting December 15th to January 5th Silicon Valley Asian Art Center 3777 Stevens Creek Blvd Santa Clara, CA 95051

For Paul Pei Jen Hau (also known as Hou Beiren), painting and having a pulse are equivalent. It’s even more impressive considering he’s living it out at the respectable age of 103. His upcoming exhibit at the Silicon Valley Asian Art Center—A Refined Pair: Lotus and Plum Blossom Painting—will feature both Hau and his student of 10 years, Susan Chan. Both artists will show abstract expressionist oil paintings of two heavily symbolic flowers to Chinese culture. “Lotus grows from mud,” Hau says of the plants that float on the surface of ponds like an armada of delicate white boats. He pauses as he internally translates his native tongue into English. “After it grows up…very, very beautiful, very clear—like people. Doesn’t matter what background they come from. When we grow up, everything clear with our spirit.” Following her teacher’s explanation, Chan motions at the trees peeking through the back window. “Méihuā,” she calls them, explaining that plum trees flourish in the February chill, their tiny pink and white buds stippling across black branches like goosebumps. “All the [other] flowers are still sleeping, but [Méihuā] start to blossom,” she describes. It’s nature’s way of reminding us we can achieve grace and growth even through bleakest adversity. In fact, Hau identifies with these trees on such a level that he christened his Los Altos home and studio “The Thatched Adobe of 100 Plum Trees.” An embodiment of both flowers, Hau minimizes his struggles throughout the conversation. When asked what it was like studying sociology and literature abroad in Japan during WWII, he smiles softly and summarizes, “Wartime was hard time. People’s lives, very difficult. It was…chaotic. But after the war over, everyone go to peace.” Then he sits back and folds his hands. 63

“Each person moves the brush…different spirit, different style, different way.” -Paul Pei Jen Hau

Lotus Paintings by Paul Pei Jen Hau


Discover 12.0

Opposite Page: Plum Blossom Paintings by Susan Chan

He’s equally discreet about his experience during the communist takeover of most of mainland China (the result of an intense civil war) as well as his strategic choice to move to the British-colonized territory of Hong Kong. And he dedicates all of two sentences to the transition of moving to the United States in the ’50s after our country lifted the Chinese Exclusion Act—an almost certainly jarring transition, considering the culture shock. “Little bit of tough time,” Hau states simply. “I could not speak English.” He’s quiet about his accomplishments, too, though he’s achieved many. Over his lifetime, Hau’s art has found its way into the National Art Museum of China, the Nanjing Museum, the Liaoning Provincial Museum, and—a little closer to home—the de Young Museum. He founded the American Society for the Advancement of Chinese Arts (ASACA) to promote Chinese art in the States and explore the integration of Eastern and Western art styles. There’s an art museum in Kunshan, China, that bears his name. And he’s made considerable contributions to contemporary Chinese painting. Hau continues the Chinese tradition of applying a poem directly to the painting’s canvas in beautiful, swooping calligraphy—a way of expressing his perspective and feelings about the piece. However, he transfigures the minimalistic colors of traditional art by exchanging black-ink-heavy designs with rich mineral-based paint. “He started a color revolution,” Chan affirms. She is one of hundreds upon hundreds of art students who have trained under Hau—some seeking his guidance for decades. A time-honored tradition in China, the student-master relationship extends far beyond the wizened kung fu practitioner and young trainee you’ve seen in movies. The legacy of passing one’s knowledge on to the next generation spans many spheres, including art. Hau himself studied under Chinese masters Huang Binhong and Zheng Shiqiao. A teacher must cultivate the potential of his students—a little like the master sculptor must transform raw rocks into intricate new shapes. For this reason, Chan’s style continues to mirror Hau’s own— even though her work is featured at well-known art museums and she resides as the current ASACA president. “My teacher is here, so I have to listen,” she affirms. “So when you look at [our paintings], it might seem like they’re pretty much the same. But inside, they are not the same.” And although the vivid colors of both artists bloom across canvas, each favors different hues. Chan herself gravitates toward reds and greens, green for the grassy highlands of Malaysia where she grew up, red for its association with good luck. Hau motions at a painting with white over reds and yellows—swaths of color that signify the clouds and the mountain overlooking his own hometown in the Liaoning Province. “Each person moves the brush…different spirit, different style, different way,” Hau adds. The two of them are like the lotus and the plum blossom: as different as if one floated serenely on the surface of the water and the other embraced the sky from tree branches, yet intrinsically similar in their desire to display beauty. C 67

68 Dine 10.5

Artistic Director Rodrigo Garcia (L) and Managing Director Leigh Henderson (R)

TEATRO VISIÓN Changing the Narrative


Written by Gillian Claus Portrait by Daniel Garcia Teatro Visión Facebook: teatrovision Instagram: teatro-vision Twitter: teatro_vision

t was the end of July 2019—just days after a mass shooting at the Gilroy Garlic Festival. Monday morning ICE deportation raids in Chicago were dominating the news—and Teatro Visión was about to present Raíces, a theatrical piece focused on the boundless human journey of immigration. Artistic Director Rodrigo Garcia and Managing Director Leigh Henderson sat together, talking about what they were going to do. How should they proceed with the event? Could they talk about an art project based on migration and still allow space for people to mourn and to grieve? “It was really powerful because the people who came really connected,” said Garcia. “They wanted to say something, but they just didn’t know what to say.” That is a core part of Teatro Visión’s purpose: providing opportunities for people to change the traditional narratives that have been imposed upon them. For 35 years, they have been making Chicanx communities visible and conscious of their own power to resist. Garcia maintains that the power resides in individual stories. By changing the perspective, the stories can be retold and reimagined in a fresh way. This approach appealed to Henderson. “It’s very deliberate; every project we undertake and every show we do is very conscious about impacting the world. I think that is really special.” When she arrived in the Bay Area as an undergrad, Henderson didn’t know what to do with herself. She was living with her sister and started sending out resumes, looking for freelance design work. Dianne Vega, who is still Teatro Visión’s pro-

duction manager, called her in to paint scenery for The True History of Coca Cola in Mexico in 1999. The first show she designed for them was Kiss of the Spider Woman. Coming back to San Jose after pursuing an MBA and PhD at the University of Wisconsin, she was working on a dissertation and not looking for full-time employment. Henderson wouldn’t have taken a job with any other company. “Teatro Visión has a very clear understanding of why we do what we do—not something I necessarily see in all theater companies. It’s not just about making beautiful art. Although we do make beautiful art, it’s not about that. This art is meant to do a specific thing in terms of building community, creating connections, and advocating for social justice.” This challenge motivates Garcia, who has been involved in some capacity with Teatro Visión ever since he came on board as an actor. In 2006, he acted in his first show, La Victima, directed by founder Elisa Marina Alvarado. Although acting is his trade, he has been directing since 2013. He came on board as artistic program manager in 2008 through a fellowship with the Theater Communications Group and took on the role of artistic director in March 2017. “Like a lot of us living south of the border,” said Garcia, “there is a great need over there and a perception that you can make it here. And certainly you can make it after a while, but nobody tells you everything you have to do to accomplish that. But I was willing to take the challenge.” After studying modern dance and theater at the National Institute of Fine Arts and Literature in 69

“This art is meant to do a specific thing in terms of building community, creating connections, and advocating for social justice.” –Leigh Henderson

Luz photography by Cristal González Avila courtesty of Teatro Visión. 70

Discover 12.0

“We saw the power of the stories themselves and the need to take those stories out.” –Rodrigo Garcia

Luz will premiere at the School of Arts and Culture on January 11, 2020.

Mexico City, Garcia immigrated to San Jose back in 1996. For 10 years he was undocumented, working a variety of fast-food jobs as he put himself through San Jose State—studying English. “I am still learning, but one of the greater challenges is understanding the culture and the values of Chicanx and Latinx art,” said Garcia. “I had a great mentor who has shaped my artistic vision, and now I am leading from those values.” Garcia took over from his mentor, company founder Elisa Marina Alvarado, as artistic director in 2017. Following their impactful performance of Raíces, Teatro Visión invited their collaborators La Quinto Teatro to continue the dialogue by facilitating a series of conversation circles. Garcia was worried about attendance but hoped at least five people would come. “My God, we had more people than we thought because of this need, with mostly the same people coming every single day,” said Garcia. “At the end, you could see this big circle of sharing the importance of being together and people being very thankful for having found that space that is not often provided.” Sharing stories forms the basis of Luz, a new show building on the success of past productions as the next phase. Luz grew out of a playwright working with elders to get their stories out in the form of engaging one minute pieces—an initiative funded by a Silicon Valley Creates Audience Engagement grant. These stories were read out during Evelina Fernández’s Departera, as part of the Day of the Dead. As always when staging a play, Teatro Visión tried to devise something related to its production that allowed theatergoers to participate creatively in the experience. The full text of each piece was displayed in a lobby kiosk, inviting audiences to respond. When staff saw the powerful potential of those stories, they decided to try to expand the project with an XFactor grant. Because putting together a new show takes lots of resources, Teatro Visión wanted to solve technical and budgetary issues by producing some-

thing manageable. So they came up with the idea of using shadow theater—an ancient form of storytelling—and just two actors. They hoped to create a minimalist production, ready to pack into a trunk and easily adapted for a short library presentation or a full-length school assembly. “We saw the power of the stories themselves and the need to take those stories out,” said Garcia. “What better way than to take them out to younger audiences?” Henderson noted that, in terms of age, Teatro Visión has always served a pretty wide demographic, with audiences skewing a lot younger, overall, than those of most other theater companies. Drawing in school groups and college classes means a wide range of ages and an underlying effort to make sure everything is accessible to families. “The reason we were interested in seniors, initially, is because Departera is about intergenerational sharing of knowledge and passing on of wisdom and experience to the next generation,” said Henderson. “But the stories the seniors told us were so important that we wanted to keep sharing them beyond the people who saw Departera.” Accessibility is something Teatro Visión continues to value. Their productions are bilingual and Garcia himself does much of the translation. Many of their performances include ASL interpretation. Keenly concerned about affordability, they price their tickets to be radically inclusive—offering 10-dollar introductory tickets that level up to arts-patron pricing at 40 dollars. Fortunately, noted Henderson, two-thirds of the company income is donated rather than earned. With funders like Hewlett and Applied Materials, Teatro Visión can continue to develop new work. The School of Arts and Culture at the Mexican Heritage Plaza provides them with office space and performance opportunities for shows like Macario, their annual Day of the Dead musical folktale which now features more young performers than adults. C


D L I K M MON Mild Monk Strives to Transcend Time and Genre


Written by Isaiah Wilson Photography by Daniel Garcia Facebook mildmonk Instagram mildmonkmusic

enry Stein, a.k.a. Mild Monk, can cover a lot of ground. Lately, he enthuses about Japanese city pop, works of Haruki Murakami, Ella Fitzgerald, Tennis (the band), Studio Ghibli movies, and the composition of skate videos. “I want to be like a YouTube suggestion box,” Stein jokes. He wears his eclectic tastes on his sleeve, and all his projects seem methodically arranged and curated—from his album art to the videos he edits for his songs. Even his moniker, Mild Monk, is a synthesis of contemporary lo-fi indie rock (Mild High Club) and the unorthodox musicians who defined modern American music (Thelonious Monk). The name also aptly describes his recent period of self-imposed exclusion from the local art scene, opting to stay home to experiment with visuals and sounds in his apartment-turned-studio space. “I struggle with finding a balance, to be honest,” Stein confesses, discussing an all too familiar act of balancing work, music, and fun. Social anxiety—along with a need to focus more on his music—encouraged his seclusion and gave him time to recharge his social battery. “I really value time for reflection, and I think that requires solitude.” This is not to imply that Henry Stein is a misanthrope. He has a warm, laid-back presence, a byproduct of someone comfortable in himself and his joys. Stein’s organized and placid lifestyle is juxtaposed with his wild imagination, inundated by his influences. After releasing his infectious surf-rock album Love in December 2017, followed by the synth-laden project Orbit in Spring 2018 and a slew of singles, Stein decided not to release a major project in 2019. “I find the more time I allow to pass between music, the more time there is for me to take inspiration,” Stein says. He took up meditation during his ascetic absence, and it shows in his music. While his earlier production on songs was busy and saturated, his new work feels more focused, and the instrumentation feels more fleshed out. His newest single, “Theme for Ame,” takes lush, mellow synths that act as the soundscape over chords from an acoustic guitar. Mild 73

“I like not being able to describe what I do. That’s really exciting to me.” –Henry Stein

Monk’s recent work is reminiscent of ’70s Italian and French film score composers and early synth-pop music, a far deviation from his work only a year ago. His music feels like love letters to works that feel both unfamiliar and nostalgic. Stein’s recent single “Ode to Plantasia” is an homage to the cult classic Mother Earth’s Plantasia album by Mort Garson, a synth album meant to help your plants grow. “How many influences can I fit into a release?” Henry asks rhetorically. “What kind of music can I make?” Recently, Mild Monk has delved into lo-fi hip-hop and synth-inspired instrumentals. He uploads tracks and Instagram videos of himself playing on instruments such as the SPX404 sampling machine used for beats and a Teenage Engineering Op-1 for synths and sampling. These tracks, immersive in their thoughtful, campy production, offer a look into Mild Monk’s head. Stein mentions that the universal messages in his favorite works are what affects him. “I want to give the same effect to someone who may find my work one day.” He strives to sustain a purity in his work, an essence in his music that transcends time and genre. These topics include love, loss, gratefulness, and cell-phone addiction. “There’s going to be one underlying feeling behind it. At the end of the day I am still a fan.” Stein seems to be among like-minded company. Aside from his solo pursuit, he is now the keyboardist in the rising San Jose–based band Swells and The Lünatics. Collaboration is still something Stein is continuing to work on, but he feels humbled by his peers and artists within the scene. Stein hopes to dabble in more genres, but no matter the sound, it will still be authentically Mild Monk. “I like not being able to describe what I do. That’s really exciting to me.” C 74

Discover 12.0

Mild Monk is available on Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes, Bandcamp, and Soundcloud.

ALBUM PICKS Curated by Needle to the Groove Instagram: needletothegrooverecords

Blanck Mass

Animated Violence Mild

(Sacred Bones) Release date: August 16, 2019 Written by Chris Jalufka Benjamin John Power’s first recordings, outside of his successful group Fuck Buttons, was 2011’s eponymous Blanck Mass album, an oozing slab of ambient slime. The albums that followed (2015’s Dumb Flesh and 2017’s World Eater) welded that ambient nature with a strain of noise and pop that falls back to ’90s-era industrial clang. Hummable chaos. Animated Violence Mild goes further into the extreme noise and sludge to pull out hypnotic earworms distilled from blast beats and mangled synth lines, as if Al Jourgensen of Ministry remixed Janet Jackson’s classic Control album. The track “Death Drop” is a prime example of what Power achieves within his world of Blanck Mass—seven minutes of stoic and rigid beats, each sound distorted and swirling in primal grease. A dissected voice sings throughout, wordless, yet all too human. There are no introductions, and there is no common verse-chorus-verse structure here: Power starts off each track at its zenith and pushes beyond until it breaks out into pure, expansive bliss. A touch point for Blanck Mass is its connection to early video game music. “House vs. House” is a mini-adventure, tonally linked to the early 8-bit noise of Nintendo bullied through the home studio of the Soundcloud bedroom artist culture. With Animated Violence Mild, Power does away with the ambient and experimental nature of his early releases to deliver his clearest album yet, a tightly coiled collection of Brutalist dance music. Favorite Track: “House vs. House”

Black Midi Schlagenheim

(Rough Trade) Release date: June 21, 2019 Written by Yale Wyatt Does groundbreaking music stand with or against the times? With Black Midi, the answer seems to be both. On their debut record, Schlagenheim, the London-based group ties the speed of our era to an ethos against the retreading traditionalism of other contemporary rock acts. Black Midi proves that while rock music may not be the dominant commercial force it once was, the drive to innovate is still in full force in the underground. If anything about Black Midi harkens back to an older period of rock music, it’s their ability to assemble an absurd amount of genre touchpoints and mix it into something altogether unrecognizable. The band’s strength is found not in their heightened musical literacy and technical ability, but in the speed with which they introduce a particular motif and run with it. As a result, it’s the shorter tracks where the band’s ambition is on full display. Take “Speedway,” which builds itself over a synth line that sounds like an error message, or “Near DT, MI,” an enraged outcry over the Flint water crisis. Both are a perfect distillation of the band’s approach—pushing one idea to all its possible endpoints at a breakneck speed. The longer cuts, while not bad, are certainly less concise than the band’s best material and spread their talents a bit thin. Even with the space to lay it all out in a seven or eight minute track, Black Midi seems to move through the same amount of musical ideas in their shortest songs but to less thrilling results. Even so, everything about Schlagenheim points to a band centered around relentless ambition for its own sake, a quality achingly missing from contemporary rock. If Black Midi has a say in the matter, the future is now, as long as we’re searching for it. Favorite Track: “Speedway”

BLANCKMASS.BANDCAMP.COM Socila Media: blanckmass


Discover 12.0

BMBLACKMIDI.COM Instagram: bmblackmidi

— Discover 12.0 —

David Berman

Ghost Funk Orchestra

Purple Mountains

A Song For Paul

In the wake of a tragedy, often the only comfort available is music. Nearly a month after the release of his new band’s debut record, David Berman left our world by suicide. In the following weeks, the only consolation for this event I could find was listening to Purple Mountains—not to find any sort of explanation, but for the comfort that suffuses a record as warm and humanizing as this one. In that sense, Purple Mountains serves as a fitting capstone to the career of indie rock’s poet laureate. Part of what gives Purple Mountains its emotional weight is Berman’s new lyrical approach, swapping his distinguished, painterly surrealism for something much more direct and autobiographical. Comparable to the work of other indie folksters, like Sun Kil Moon and Mount Eerie, Purple Mountains acts as a condensation of the various happenings in Berman’s life during his musical hiatus, set to a broader sense of existential alienation that comes with depression and old age. He cycles between rollicking honky-tonk and crushing dirges, and while this isn’t territory unknown to Berman, it’s certainly reached a new level of compositional and emotional maturity. It’s these subtle adjustments to Berman’s usual style that make Purple Mountains seem like a necessary addition to his long career, but that alone isn’t what makes this record such a powerful listen. Each track is imbued with a layer of tenderness and sincerity unmatched by any other singer-songwriter of this decade. Berman tells many stories on this new record, but each one cuts to the heart of a flawed individual realizing they need to change if they are to survive. Purple Mountains will forever be connected to Berman’s untimely death, but hopefully, it will stand as a reason to hold out and know that pain is temporary, tragedies will pass, and things will get better.

Funky by design, mysterious by nature, Ghost Funk Orchestra easily sucks the listener into their ambiguous, opaque world of gritty, psychedelic soul. Originally a one-man recording project by Brooklyn-based, multiinstrumentalist Seth Applebaum, it has morphed into a 10-member (currently) collective of musicians with Applebaum as bandleader. A Song for Paul is their first full-length album for Colemine Records’ free-form subsidiary label, Karma Chief. What makes the new record so enticing is the band’s ability to create elusive sounds with a list of disparate influences, while still remaining sonically cohesive and mature. At the heart of their sound are dirty, heavy drums, spaced-out fuzz guitar melodies, and tightpocket grooves accompanied by ominous, echo-drenched female vocals. This base recipe is then mixed and blended with a medley of genres. Everything from jazz, Afrobeat, stoner rock, and Latin rhythms creep in and take you by surprise. The lead single, “Walk Like a Motherfucker,” struts like a 1960s beatnik taking in the California sun while trippin’ on stoner rock as funky, fuzzy guitar lines ride waves of soulful horn interplay. “Skin I’m In” marches forward with an Afrobeat guitar rhythm slinking between a staccato bass line, giving way to female vocals straight out of a David Lynch film. They sing, “Tell the keeper to tend the dirt / And when there grows a flower / Let its thorns be sharp enough to hurt.” The album is ghostly indeed, funky throughout, and wrapped in cinematic motifs with orchestral expressions. Spin this record for dinner guests when you want the conversation to veer off into dark and ominous themes while keeping everyone’s head nodding to the beat.

Favorite track: “I Loved Being My Mother’s Son”

Favorite track: “Broken Boogaloo”

(Drag City) Release date: July 12, 2019 Written by Yale Wyatt

(Karma Chief Records) Release date: August 23, 2019 Written by Taran Escobar-Ausman

GHOSTFUNKORCHESTRA.COM Social Media: ghostfunkorchestra


JAN/FEB #ContentPick







Discover 12.0

Happy New Year 2020

San José Chamber Orchestra Concert featuring jazz pianist Taylor Eigsti and friends. Music by Evan Price, Dave Brubeck, and new works by Eigsti. 1/5 2:30pm McAfee Center for the Performing Arts




The Princess Bride Quote-Along


Winter Deal Days Happy Hollow Park & Zoo


Ray Furuta: SCU Faculty Recital




“The Rock star of the Flute” Ray Furuta, is joined by pianist Michelle Cann in a recital featuring works originally for Violin and Piano by Mozart, Brahms, Franck, and Bach. 1/10 7:30pm Music Recital Hall, SCU

A unique shadow puppet play created by local playwright Cristal González Avila based on real stories gathered from seniors and elders in our community. 1/11 8pm School of Arts and Culture at the Mexican Heritage Plaza

Seeing this fan-favorite adventure tale on the big screen with R.O.U.S.? Aaaaas...yoooou...wiiiish! 1/17 & 1/18 7:30pm 3Below Theaters

Receive 50% off regular admission and discounted parking. Enjoy family-friendly rides, puppet shows, zoo animals and more. 1/21 & 2/18

Stephanie Metz: InTouch

Comprised of alluring human-scaled, handson sculptural objects, this exhibition invites viewers to touch the art her biomorphic interactive sculptures. 1/9 Reception 7pm The de Saisset Museum

The Come Up’s annual museum concert produced by SJ Made and The San José Museum of Art. Tickets are $5. 1/16 5pm-9pm San José Museum of Art

Outside Looking In

Explore photographs by John Gutmann, Wright Morris, and Helen Levitt that observe the public lives and, occasionally, private spaces of others. 1/22 - 4/26 Ruth Levison Halperin Gallery

Think Bigger:

Escape the Scarcity Mindset Join Thaddeus Squire of Cultureworks Commons and consultant Alyssa Byrkit to explore the scarcity vs. abundance mindset. 1/23 9am-3pm School of Arts and Culture

The Museum of Sentimental Taxonomy

This is a roving exhibition showcasing Bay Area artist Kija Lucas’s ongoing photographic investigation of objects of sentiment. 1/26 - 4/26 Opening 1/30 7pm Montalvo Art Center

MON 8:30PM Jazz Jam at Five Points Weekly Jazz Jams curated by Oscar Pangilinan and in partnership San Jose Jazz. Five Points

TUES 7PM–10PM Caffe Frascati Open Mic Open Mic Night! All styles welcome. Happy Hour all night. Caffe Frascati

THURS 9PM The Changing Same This excursion keeps time with the future of soul, R&B, and jazz through guest DJ sets and live performances. The Continental Bar

MON 7PM–9:30PM Red Rock Open Mic Night A family-friendly open mic experience that welcomes people of all talents to share and perform their art. Red Rock Coffee

WED 9PM The Caravan Lounge Comedy Show Comics from all over the Bay Area and the world perform, hosted by Ato Walker. The Caravan Lounge

FRI 8PM Comedy Sportz The award-winning interactive comedy show where two teams of players compete for laughs and points. 3Below Theaters and Lounge


Flow: Open Conversation of the Creative Process


Laurie Anderson : The Art of Falling


Panel of Adobe creatives moderated by Toni Vanwinkle, featuring artists Jacquelin Deleon and Nicholas Knopf. Presented by Adobe and Content Magazine 1/28 4pm-6pm Adobe - West Tower



Anderson is one of America’s most reknowned creative pioneers--as varied as visual artist, composer, poet, electronics whiz, vocalist, and instrumentalist. 1/29 7:30pm - 9:30pm Bing Concert Hall

The Fantasticks!

Celebrate the 60th anniversary of this long-running musical love story. A mysterious fair comes to a small community in the countryside, which could make real the illusions of two kids. 1/31 -3/1 3Below Theaters


In roaring twenties Chicago, Roxie Hart lands on murders row along with famed nightclub star Velma Kelly. 2/5 - 3/15 San Jose Stage Company

Ten Japanese-American Concentration Camps work by Renee Billingslea

Photos juxtaposing the current and mostly abandoned sites of the former Japanese incarceration camps, with stitched in photographs of the camps in use 75 years ago. 2/7 Reception 6pm-8pm Triton Museum


New Ballet’s Fast Forward during Facebook First Friday

Preview a work choreographed by Naomi Sailors about encountering an alien species, using dance as a method of interspecies communication by Douglas Vakotch of METI. 2/7 San Jose Museum of Art


The San Jose 408K Run/Walk


San Jose Jazz Winterfest


Jacqueline Kiyomi Gordon: Sound Sense Gordon has been working with the


Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Pt. 1 In Concert Symphony Silicon Valley

Whirling: Exploring Sense of Self


Starting in downtown San Jose and finishes at Santana Row. This fun and fast point-topoint course features “Mariachi Mile” and “Memorial Mile.” 2/2 8am - 1 pm Downtown San Jose

intersection of sound, sculpture, and performance since 2002. The artist will provide an overview of her career as well as discuss specific, recent projects. 2/4 5pm - 6pm SJSU Art Building, Room #133


Learn the fundamentals of turning and how it enables you to find a sense of self and a connection between body, mind, and spirit. 2/4 6pm-8pm Villa Montalvo Art Center

The “cool” counterpart to Summer Fest, Winter Fest presents jazz, blues, Latin and related genres in intimate venues in San Jose with 20-25 events in 20 days. 2/14-3/1 various venues

Witness the beginning of Harry’s most important battle yet, with the full film accompanied by a live symphony orchestra. 2/22 & 2/23 Center for the Performing Arts

Content Pick-Up Party 12.1 Device

The release of issue 12.1 Device celebrating local art and innovation with some friendly competition at the arcade. 2/25 7pm-9:30pm MINIBOSS


*Events are subject to change. Please confirm event details with the presenting organization or venue.

3RD TUES 7PM–10PM Two-Buck Tuesday The gallery hosts $2 art sales, along with a combination of performances, live painting, and/or art-making activities. KALEID Gallery

WED 8PM TO 1AM Jan 22 & Feb 26 Wax Wednesday Monthly residency features free live music and local DJs. 8pm to 1am Cafe Stritch

1ST FRI 7PM-11PM South First Fridays Artwalk Self-guided, nighttime tour of galleries, museums, and creative spaces featuring eclectic art exhibitions and performances. SoFA District

3RD WED 7PM–10PM Meeting of the Mindz 2 artists randomly selected, work on one painting. Citadel Art Studios IG: @meetingofthemindz

2ND WED 8PM-10PM Cafe Lift Open Mic + Canvas Play music and/or create a painting. Or, enjoy a cup of coffee and music with friends. GateWay City Church

2ND SAT 5PM–8PM Songwriter Saturday Showcase Coffee is served while local songwriters perform. Crema Coffee #3 songwritersaturday


CONTRIBUTORS The production of CONTENT MAGAZINE would not be possible without the talented writers, editors, graphic artists, and photographers who contribute to each issue. We thank you and are proud to provide a publication to display your work. We are also thankful for the sponsors and readers who have supported this magazine through advertisements and subscriptions. Be a part of the CONTENT community. Contact us at:

RAH RILEY Rah is a writer, editor, designer and marketing consultant collaborating with empowering brands and people while exploring the globe via dive bars and morning markets. instagram: rahriley

KEVIN B. MARKS Kevin is a writer, musician, and collector of weird lounge and surf vinyl. He is working on his first book—a memoir told through pop music. You can find him jogging on the Los Gatos Creek Trail with his wife or at home telling his two sons, “STOP THAT!” instagram: iamapollo13

GILLIAN CLAUS Gillian is a freelance writer and editor, based in the Bay Area. She is also the director of Sunday Assembly Silicon Valley. When not behind a laptop or podium, she also works as a celebrant–designing rituals and ceremonies to celebrate life’s most significant moments. twitter: gillianclaus

GRACE TALICE LEE Grace Talice Lee is a writer and educator. Her current project is a book of essays on social policy called Every Body, Every Dream. instagram: gracetalicelee

LINNEA FLEMING Linnea is a lover of literature and the wilderness. When she isn’t reading or backpacking in Yosemite, she is enjoying her days as an enthusiastic middle school English teacher and private writing tutor. instagram: jklinnea

Beginning with this issue, the Come Up will be shining a spotlight on San Jose’s rising music talent, curating and featuring local musicians in an ongoing 2020 CONTENT Magazine series. The Come Up was started by three friends and the idea for just one show. Since its debut in February 2018, the Come Up has grown into a major force in San Jose’s growing music scene: presenting over 60 unique live acts, across eight different venues, distributing more than $18,000 to performers in San Jose and the greater Bay Area. The San Jose area is severely lacking in quality mid-size, all-ages music venues. But there is no shortage of talented and hungry performers, looking to reach people with their art and make their mark on a rapidly changing city. TARAN ESCOBAR-AUSMAN Taran is an educator, author, record collector, and cerebral vagabond who is completely driven by inquisitiveness and curiosity in search for any revelational serendipity. Instagram: taran_ea


Discover 12.0

We at the Come Up is are an open platform, always eager to collaborate with other artists and creative people—if you’re interested in getting involved, please hit us up via email:! Instagram: sjcomeup

Photo by Chris Conroy

2019-2020 Season Resident Ballet Company of the Hammer Theatre

The San Jose Nutcracker December 13-24

Fast Forward March 28

Season tickets available now!

Swan Lake

May 16-17

join subscribe

CONTENT Magazine [subscription_membership]

Name/________________________________________________ YES! Sign me up for Content Magazine

address/______________________________________________ city______________state_______zip______________

email/________________________________________________ 6 issues $42.00

12 issues $80.00

With your membership, not only do you receive each print issue delivered to your door, but access to the digital version and invites to members-only promotions and events.

cash check [please enclose payment] card___________________________ security code#_______ type_______exp.date____/_____

signature_____________________________ Please mail form & payment to: Content Magazine, 310 South First St San Jose, CA 95113


. Artisan-Crafted . Made From Scratch .

award winning whiskies CRAFTED in san jose



Matured in Ex-Bourbon Barrels

Matured in Shave-ToastRe-char (STR) Barrels


Nose: Citrus, peat


Color: Light golden

Nose: Caramel, butterscotch

Palate: Creamy vanilla and dark red apple peel, balance of fruity and smoky notes

Color: Light golden Palate: Cherry-like sweetness, vanilla bean, nutmeg, and clove

Finish: Full bodied, buttery, with a lingering peaty finish

Finish: Smooth and round, flavors of candied fruits


. Local Clover Dairies . Central Milling Flour .

Your Mini Dessert Destination for Every Occassion

Stellar Food. Seamless Service. Sustainably Produced. | 415.701.0001


Linens to Lighting

Tables to Tents 415.570.0470 Los Angeles • West Los Angeles • Santa Barbara • Orange County • San Diego Palm Springs • San Francisco • Sonoma • Saint Helena • Healdsburg • Phoenix

Check your balance between bites.

Life moves fast — with Tech CU banking on the go, your money is always at your fingertips! MORE REASONS TO LOVE TECH CU:

• FREE Checking (no minimum balance) • 65,000 fee-free ATMs worldwide — More than Chase, Wells Fargo and Bank of America combined (AllPoint and CO-OP networks)

• Competitive rates on auto and home loans To learn more: CALL:

(800) 553-0880



One of our branches

©2019 Technology Credit Union. All rights reserved. Federally insured by NCUA.



CULTURE made in san jose, ca


Tech 12.1 Save the Date

Pick-Up Party 2/25 7:00pm-9:30pm at MINIBOSS


WWW.CONTENT-MAGAZINE.COM social media: contentmag