Highlighting artists, community and cultural events in Bakersfield, CA.

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Monday, November 23, 2009

The New Face of Bako Part I

The face of Bakersfield is changing. It really is. I hope you’re taking advantage of this transitional time in Bakoland to become part of that change—to become part of the new culture—in all its abstract, awkward, last-kid-picked, stumbling, groping-in-the-dark and awakening in Oz renewal. Parts of downtown are being revitalized as I write and as you read. New art galleries are taking shape. Progress is making strides. Diversity is coming to town. What are you doing to become part of the contemporary urban landscape? Or do you want to belong but don’t know how to join? Psst..here’s a little secret, “It’s easy.”

The following are a few options which you can do now to get “in” on the up-and-coming Bako art scene. (Tomorrow I’ll give you a few more to take you to the next level.)

SOCIALLY NETWORK.  Do you want to meet artists working in various media? Would you like to be the first to find out what events will be happening before the general public gets a whiff of the action? Social networks such as Twitter, Facebook and Bakersfield’s own Bakotopia.com are abuzz with artists who are constantly updating their “friends” with news about their art, their events and even their personal lives. This is a great arena to meet people who share common interests and who will inevitably be at the kinds of events you will want to attend. Speaking of….

ATTEND EVENTS. Now that you know about First Friday, that great new exhibit opening at Surface or Metro or Younger Galleries, the ribbon-cutting for the new restaurant opening in the Arts District, or that writing class your new Twitter friend, Nick Belardes, is teaching—GO! Take part, become a regular face about Bako. You’ll see there are a lot of us, and we’re always looking for new members to join the ranks of our very non-exclusive club. So….

JOIN. If you are an artist in Bakersfield (or want to be an artist in Bakersfield) you NEED to join BECA (Bakersfield Emerging Contemporary Artists). This welcoming and accepting non-profit organization, which you can find on the web at www.BECA.ws, meets regularly to network, plan and attend art events in Bakersfield. With BECA, you get to choose when and how much to participate, so if you’re interested in actively creating the Bako scene, get to know the leaders of BECA—your input will be appreciated! Then….

CREATE. You write poetry. You draw cartoons. You create YouTube videos. You make your friends weep (in a good way) with your culinary skills. You knit your family Christmas gifts each year. You are an artist. Do not fear the “A” word. Embrace it. Create. Create. Create. And then share. Share. Share! Use that Bakotopia account to post a blog, or upload your photography. Now that you know that the Arts Council of Kern (www.kernarts.org) posts their call to artists regularly, get your best work together and try your hand at a juried art show. Or, submit work to BECA’s annual Burn the Witch all-women art collaborative. Don’t just be a spectator—Bako needs your creativity.

Simple, right? Meet me back here soon for a few more tips to take you further on your path to BakoArtistConnect-ing.

1 comment:

  1. Very cool post! Grateful to have you letting Bakersfield know what is up around town. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!