OPPRESSION AND ENTERTAINMENT

February 16, 2017 2:46 PM
OPPRESSION AND ENTERTAINMENT

Former Laney student Milton Bowens presents exhibit tackling issues Oakland artist and former Laney student Milton Bowens poses questions about African Americans in America with his new collection, “The Discovery of Urban Cotton Fields” featured at the June Steingart Gallery in the lobby of the Laney Administration Building. Bowens studied illustration while in the Army before finding a mentor and changing his focus to fine art and mixed medias when he met former Laney art professor David Bradford. Bowens is influenced by the styles and works of Jean Michel Basquiat, Robert Rauschenberg, Romare Bearden, Jacob Lawrence, and Andy Warhol. Bowens […]

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THROUGH AN iPHONE, DARKLY

February 3, 2017 3:21 PM
THROUGH AN iPHONE, DARKLY

Photographer uses smartphone to capture haunting images for new exhibit “It takes an eye and a vision. Anyone can snap a photo, but if the composition and subject aren’t interesting, all the apps in the world won’t help.” Susan Parini, the Development Manager at Peralta Colleges Foundation, is also a master of visionary, often-haunting iPhone photographs. Using apps such as “Color Splash” and “Extreme Black and White,” Parini angles, blurs and colorizes her artistic path, transforming simple iPhone photos into extraordinary fine art. Her bewitching work, entitled, “Repeated Footsteps: curious iPhone images,” is on display at the Laney College’s William […]

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Zack Bateman and the Coal Minds rock Yoshi’s with dark blue treats

November 11, 2016 3:17 PM

Locals gathered in Jack London Square on Halloween night to eat sushi, drink cocktails, and rock out with Zack Bateman and the Coal Minds. The Oakland-based sextet played an upbeat, costume themed gig at Yoshi’s jazz club on the rainy evening. The band members were dressed as Beetlejuice, Nick Cave, Jessica Rabbit, Jack Skellington, Sally Stitches, Bob Dylan, and an extravagant Dia De Los Muertos figure. The Coal Minds opened with an original tune called “Bourbon and Bones.” They performed a medley of original tunes and covers from notable artists Tom Waits, Screamin’ Jay Hawkins, Nick Cave, Bob Dylan, Cab […]

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Tourettes Without Regrets

November 10, 2016 10:59 AM
Tourettes Without Regrets

Update 11/23/16: From the Tower staff This photo essay raised some eyebrows throughout the district. It has been brought to our attention that the essay’s graphic— and some accompanying language—might have offended some of our readership. We apologize if we have done so. The Laney Tower stands behind its editorial content—researching, reporting and editing stories for accuracy, fairness and transparency, as per the Society of Professional Journalists Code of Ethics. While we can’t always please everyone, we are committed to reporting about the district and community-at-large—always working to maximize accountability and minimize harm. Thanks for your support.   Oakland’s longest-running […]

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Laney College Graphic Arts students celebrate Halloween

October 27, 2016 9:00 AM
Laney College Graphic Arts students celebrate Halloween

Dreamscape by Lauren Zimmerman by Gloria Esquivel by Ashley Salaz

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Echoes

October 13, 2016 11:46 AM
Echoes

Oakland exhibit traces history of Black Panthers Party Oakland, fifty years ago: two visionary students at Merritt College joined together and started a revolutionary organization. These students were Huey P. Newton and Bobby Seale. They called their organization the Black Panther Party for Self-Defense, and they fought militantly, at times controversially, for the civil rights of minorities. From now until Feb. 12, 2017, the Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) honors the legacy of this bold movement created in 1966 with their exhibit, “All Power to the People: Black Panthers at 50.” MANY HISTORIES There are many tributes being paid to […]

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Keeping the beat going

11:12 AM
Keeping the beat going

Oaktown Jazz Workshop’s Ravi Abcarian inspires a new generation of musicians Oaktown Jazz Workshop’s founder, Khalil Shaheed, was only 13 years old when he painted a moustache on his face and slinked into Chicago’s jazz clubs to see America’s greatest jazz musicians. It was the 1950’s in Chicago, and the iconic Blue Note jazz club was hosting musicians like Louis Armstrong and “King” Oliver. Soon Shaheed would interrupt his classical music education to tour with the Woody Shaw and the Buddy Miles bands. After he tired of touring and was ready to settle down, Oakland—which had a thriving African American […]

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Imperial Teen youthful as ever

10:57 AM
Imperial Teen youthful as ever

Bottom of the Hill celebrated their 25th anniversary on Oct. 8 by having indie band Imperial Teen headline for their first Bay Area gig in three years. Imperial Teen got its start in San Francisco in 1994. The set was a special one for them, since 2016 marked their 23-year-anniversary as a band. The night drew a full club of excited fans who all seemed to know each other. Over 150 people had paid by early evening. Additionally, 33 people were already inside and on a guest list that usually only held ten names. The energy was good, and people […]

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ART AND COUNTRY

September 29, 2016 9:08 AM
ART AND COUNTRY

KOREA DAY AT THE SAN FRANCISCO ASIAN ART MUSEUM A large and enthusiastic crowd at San Francisco’s Asian Art Museum joined in celebration for the Eighth Annual Korea Day on Sept. 25. The Asian Art Museum is the first Western museum to have a department dedicated exclusively to Korean art. After eight years of putting on Korea Day, the museum continues to draw more and more people to the celebration. There were many families of different ethnicities at the museum. There were Korean Americans and Korean nationals in attendance, but also a diverse group of people interested in Korean art […]

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Dreamweavers: Local museums stitch together big names and high art

September 15, 2016 12:42 PM
Dreamweavers: Local museums stitch together big names and high art

Across the street from the UC campus stands the audacious new home for the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (BAMPFA). It has transformed Center Street from a corridor between two campuses into a cultural center of Berkeley, with its galleries, hip cafes and restaurants. It unites the scholarly world with the community, with its study rooms and interactive rooms, rooms for the public to learn about and create art. BAMPFA is unique in the world as being devoted equally to both art and film. BAM’s acquisitions include over 19,000 art works. The PFA, with a collection of over […]

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Dreamweavers: Local museums stitch together big names and high art

10:49 AM
Dreamweavers: Local museums stitch together big names and high art

“Altered State: Marijuana in California” looks like a pot-smoking teenager’s bedroom that has been reconstructed and glorified on a museum’s walls. Zig-Zag rolling papers, which can be purchased at almost any gas station, sit behind museum glass, along with creative bongs made by museum staff. The tools of a pot-smoker suddenly feel like artifacts, and the famous stoner characters from television and cinema seem like a timeline of the mystique surrounding marijuana. But what really deserves attention, besides the flair of pot paraphernalia—is data the museum has gathered that fuels educated conversation about the impact this plant has politically, socially, […]

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