Jet Martinez says “Beauty” is the End Game in Oakland

Athen B. Gallery in Oakland just produced a field of flowers with decorative muralist Jet Martinez in Oakland, California and if you were looking for something floral to look at, it will interrupt your view on this Downtown landmark.  He says that beauty is necessary for this area that was ravaged by crack and high crime in the 80s and 90s.

brooklyn-street-art-jet-martinez-athenb-gallery-oakland-ca-07-16-web-1

Jet Martinez in Oakland, CA for Athen B. Gallery. (photo © courtesy of Athen B. Gallery)

“The I Magnin building for me has always been one of the most beautiful buildings in Oakland.  A green tiled, art deco beauty, this building is a symbol of golden era from yesteryear. After the devastating effects of the Reagan drug wars and the crack epidemic, downtown Oakland became a shadow of the vibrant space it once was. Now, as downtown Oakland is experiencing a rebirth of sorts, I really felt a real responsibility to add to rather than subtract from this beautiful building and the downtown skyline. ”

brooklyn-street-art-jet-martinez-athenb-gallery-oakland-ca-07-16-web-6

Jet Martinez in Oakland, CA for Athen B. Gallery. (photo © courtesy of Athen B. Gallery)

Motifs come from the artists Mexican heritage, folk art, Amante paintings, textiles, and of course mural painters like Diego Rivera, who frequently featured the calla lily in his socialist commentaries. Now of course these murals are privately financed and are part of a business improvement district initiative and the presentation is strictly one of beautification.

But sometimes beautification is also cool, though to say that in the Street Art world today might get you chased out the room for encouraging gentrification or not being “real” street.

A. This is not Street Art, it is a commissioned mural.

B. Martinez is an accomplished painter AND a family man who talks about his kids and feels strongly that men can make a positive contribution to community by doing just that, creating beauty. “It is a way for me, as a man in society, to be able to contribute beauty and not just destruction. I think it’s really important in our time for men to embrace the making of beautiful spaces and I hope this achieves that goal.”

C. Be happy, people, life is really short.

brooklyn-street-art-jet-martinez-athenb-gallery-oakland-ca-07-16-web-5

Jet Martinez in Oakland, CA for Athen B. Gallery. (photo © courtesy of Athen B. Gallery)

brooklyn-street-art-jet-martinez-athenb-gallery-oakland-ca-07-16-web-2

Jet Martinez in Oakland, CA for Athen B. Gallery. (photo © courtesy of Athen B. Gallery)

brooklyn-street-art-jet-martinez-athenb-gallery-oakland-ca-07-16-web-3

Jet Martinez in Oakland, CA for Athen B. Gallery. (photo © courtesy of Athen B. Gallery)

The mural is located on 20th and Broadway in Downtown Oakland.
Mural Title:  “There’s More to Green than Money

 

Please follow and like us: