March 1, 2019—South FIRST FRIDAYS Art Walk

South FIRST FRIDAYS presents ArtwalkSJ

First Friday, March 1st from 7–11pm
SoFA District (& beyond) downtown San Jose
RSVP on our event page here.

The South FIRST FRIDAYS Art Walk is a self-guided, nighttime tour through galleries, museums, and independent creative businesses featuring eclectic art exhibitions and special performances.

All Art Walk venues are FREE admission & great for all ages.


Anno Domini // the second coming of Art & Design – 366 South First St. map

Opening reception galleryONE: “Grand Grey” by Faring Purth (NY)

“Grand Grey” is a collection of works on paper completed between 2016-2019, ranging in medium and scale, from hand held to larger than life. This exhibition integrates pieces created in both city landscapes (St. Louis, Berlin, NY, Montevideo) and the most wild of natural setting (the back-country of Uruguay and the Catskill mountains;) touching upon my personal experience of the great distances crossed internally/externally over the last few years, as well as the spirited energy I encountered along the way. 

The most recent of this collection was created in the “Tablada Studio,” our new home in the Catskills mountains, that once hosted the late Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo. The presence in these walls is undeniable and, I believe, nourished the work in many ways. This exhibition is a celebration of work that is not often seen in a gallery setting, pulp and scrolls that accompanied me on a epic chapter in my life. Now leading up to what will undoubtably be one of the greatest I will experience, the birth of my first child. May these pearls touch you as they have carried me. In exactly the way they are meant to….   ~Faring Purth, 2019

On view in galleryTW: “Is this the sign you’re looking for?” by Bortusk Leer (UK) 

Since bursting onto the art scene in 2007 his work has appeared on and livened up numerous streets, gallery and home walls in places around the world and beyond.

Fed up with people being angry, disappointed, sad and disillusioned with life, Leer sees it as his duty to brighten up the world and spread some happiness.
Over a decade Bortusk has developed a signature voice and style, creating manic, euphoric creatures (his monsters) plus other lively abstract pieces, videos, TV shows and numerous psychedelic assemblages of Neo-Pop-Art-Brut.

Fascinated by Picasso and the CoBrA-movement, inspired by futuristic heroes and influenced by all the children of the world, Leer became the founder and leader of Art Comedy.

He’s still the only member though as far as we know. His aim is not only to create as much art as he possibly can, but also to put a smile on everyone’s face and spread some positive emotions whilst doing so.

“I jusT waNT To cheer peopLe up a BIT, as There’s Far Too maNy mIseraBLe BasTards ouT There!”

Art Ark Gallery – 1035 South Sixth St. map

Opening reception: “Ambient Dew Point” 

Participating artists: Allison Leigh Holt, Cheryl E Leonard, Christian Farrell, Jim Haynes, John Davis, Keith Evans, Kerry Laitala, Lisa Mezzacappa, Loren Chasse, Mark Wilson, Rae Diamond’s Long Tone Choir, Suki Okane, Thingamajigs Performance Group, Syrnx

Ambient Dew Point is the temperature needed for condensation of atmospheric water vapor to occur; the changing of state and phase. This exhibition includes a number of primarily media performance artists and groups showing works that are an extract of some process or outgrowth of their time based performance work. 

Gallery Suha Suha – 45 E. Williams St. map

On view: “Portraits I: In One’s Element” by Hae Lee Choi

Looking at Haelee Choi’s wood panel paintings makes it seem as though happiness is not so out of reach, after all. It avails itself to the viewer’s enjoyment in its simplest, perhaps most pristine form. Frozen in time by her brushstrokes are women in their elements–women from all walks of life, both young and old. They radiate ease; their gestures accord perfectly with their surroundings. They command the space they inhabit, not a bit dominated by it. It is as if they pervade the scene by some magical osmosis. Choi seems to suggest happiness is being one with one’s self, and is a contagion.

KALEID gallery – 88 South Fourth St. map

KALEID Gallery is proud to present two new feature exhibitions by gallery resident artists Matty Heimgartner and Rose Margaret.

Artist’s reception: “Things Unsaid” by Matty Heimgartner

“Things Unsaid” is a visual narrative about the anxieties that we suppress by overconsumption of alcohol and drugs. It is a nostalgic tribute to the life that I lived, with watercolor and ink illustrations capturing feelings that I had and scenarios that I saw. Each painting is its own story, but together, they represent a lifestyle. Things Unsaid is a combination of biographical and autobiographical scenarios and situations, with hand-written text inside the paintings to speak the words that my anxious mind could not.

I started taking party drugs at eighteen years old and became dependent on alcohol at nineteen. Anytime that I had to deal with something even remotely stressful, I would drink until I no longer cared, or more so, remembered. Getting kicked out of my childhood home, flunking out of college, break-ups and identity struggles were some of the heavier triggers that I was eager to forget. It got to the point that some of my friends knew I would not remember the night before, so they would call or text me with a recap. At twenty-two, I recognized that I had a problem. I quit drinking for nearly three months, but as I felt “healed,” I resumed drinking. By twenty-three, it was out of control again. One week after my twenty-sixth birthday, I realized that no one could help me but myself. My body has been alcohol-free since May 2017. Every day is a new page, but for now, I am enjoying the chapter that I am in.
Matty Heimgartner is a twenty-seven-year-old San Jose native with undergraduate degrees in English and Art. For many years, Matty considered himself a writer who also enjoyed drawing. In 2017, that changed. He held his first solo Art show as a student at San Jose State University. His show, The Life of Antinda, featured eight one-page short stories and seven related illustrations about a character that he has been developing since he was seven years old. Since then, four of Matty’s short stories have been published with Defiant Scribe Literary Magazine and he has shown his artwork in San Jose and Oakland. Matty has been a resident Artist at KALEID Gallery since February 2018 and is currently extending The Life of Antinda into a full-length novel.

Artist reception: “Pollinators”  by Rose Margaret

I pay tribute to the Earthlings that keep us in balance—the beings who pollinate food, ideas, and abundance. May these artworks be a prayer for us to re-unify our fragmented ecosystem. May we act in Truth, and bloom.    ~Rose Margaret

MACLA Movimiento de Arte y Cultura Latino Americana – 510 South First St. map

In the DMC Studio: Youth Culture Open Mic

Join the DMC Studio students as they present their original music, film, photography, and poetry. There will be an opportunity for youth ages 11-19 to perform at our Open Mic from 6:00pm – 7:00pm. Sign-ups begin at 5:30pm.

Elizabeth Blancas, “The Future is…,”, acrylic on wood panel 2018

In the MACLA gallery:  7th Xicanx Biennial

MACLA presents the 7th Xicanx Biennial taking inventory of the critical edge and aesthetic interventions within Contemporary Xicanx/Latinx Art. Muxeres Rising focuses on a cross-generational survey of art by self-identified Xicanx/Latinx womxn inspired by current waves of collective uprising, disruption, and empowerment.

In the Castellano Playhouse: Danza Venezuela Bay Area
Danza Venezuela Bay Area is a group of passionate dancers whose purpose is to expose the Bay Area to Venezuelan music, dance and culture. Directed by “Chiquy,” Danza Venezuela Bay Area showcases a variety of new and traditional Venezuelan dances through audience participation.

Phantom Galleries at Culinary Corner Bistro – 321 South First St. map

On view: “8-Bit “by Claudia Blanco

I create pixelated portraits with the use of grids and acrylic paint, drawing inspiration style from Chuck Close. My fascination with his work began when I was younger, after attending one of his exhibits at the San Jose Museum of Art. I take famous portraits of women who have inspired me and then run them through programs such as Photoshop or Illustrator and play around with the image. Once the pixelated image has been rendered, I grid out the canvas and paint each square one-by-one. Although the process can be very tedious, it is very calming. I love stepping back and seeing the portrait take shape. 

This Phantom Galleries exhibition curated by Robert Ragazza.

PhantomGalleries at The Pierce – 2 Pierce Ave. map

On view: “San Jose Journals” by Gianfranco Paolozzi

Gianfranco’s works are considered “journals” because they are never finished until they are sold. In this way, Paolozzi’s work is ever-evolving… until it is yours; once you have it, it is completely evolved…or…back in the studio they go where they continue to be added to or edited.

The works also have no “correct” top, bottom or sides when it comes to hanging the work. Paolozzi designed the frame with hardware so the collector can hang a piece in any orientation they’d like. Use your imagination.

Works San Jose – 365 South Market St. map

Bill Gould, installation detail

Artists’ reception: “Evocation Made Real”

First Friday opening night reception! An immersive installation by Bill Gould with paintings by Gloria Huet and Judy Rookstool reveal conscious and unconscious collections of memories and reminiscences from parts of their lives to demonstrate the lasting power of stored images and experiences. Each artist evokes elements of reminiscence to focus on the importance of the past to their everyday actions and interactions. The combination of the artists’ recollections is designed to create responses to those memories and to generate recollections of the viewer.

Caffé Frascati – 315 South First St. map

On view: “Manhattan Walkabout” by Grant Clark

Manhattan Walkabout is a series of photos I shot as I explored Manhattan on foot. I traveled to Manhattan to visit my daughter and fell in love with the place. I have returned numerous times and each time I spend quality “alone” time shooting in a city of millions. Manhattan is a place where you are able to melt into the background and watch as the city goes by, allowing me to shoot and naturally capture the city and its people. 

Grant Clark is an artist who gravitates towards street photography. Spreading his time between San Jose, San Francisco, and New York City, he enjoys blending into the background to be able to experience the cities and their people in a truer form. Having studied photography at San Jose City College, he is working on his passion for black and white photography, embracing Andri Cauldwell’s philosophy, “To see in color is a delight for the eye,but to see in black and white is a delight for the soul.” Working with his instructor/mentor Terri Garland to develop a deeper understanding of the printing process, he has also studied photographers Robert Frank, Diane Arbus, Edward Weston and others. Mr. Clark follows up-and-coming artists the likes of Logan C. Norton, Aldolfo Doring, Brian Kerrigan and many others who navigate the social media medium. 

First Fridays is Caffe Frascati Opera Night presented by First Street Singers, with the Bay Area’s finest opera singers performing your very favorite classical arias and duets live in the cafe! for the South FIRST FRIDAYS Art Walk.

LGBTQ Youth Space – 452 South First St. map

The LGBTQ Youth Space has partnered up with volunteers from Santa Clara University, who come weekly to lead different art projects. The art featured this month will include collaborative pieces done by youth who participate in our programming. Pictured, is an example of our most recent class, alcohol oil paints.

SJSU Muse Night at Hammer Theatre – 101 Paseo de San Antonio map

SJSU Muse Night

Our upcoming event will be focused around the theme of Arts and Activism. We will be inviting several clubs and organizations to bring in any artistic content they have about activism and social justice. 

Social Policy – 200 South First St. map

Opening reception: “Does It Spark Joy?”

Participating artists: Laura Guerin, Chihiro Hashimoto, Elizabeth Patterson, Sophia Rie, Elora Cuenco, Jennifer Zink, Joanna Jian, Nicole Dalager, Annie Hu  Curated by Laura Guerin.

A collection of personal works that ‘spark joy’ from Bay Area illustrators, painters, and designers. Prints and zines for sale!

Live music by: Diffusion at 8pm.

SoFA Market – 387 So. First St. map

On view: “Diverse State of Mind” by Suneet Bhatia

Art collective showcasing a great deal of variety of art forms such as abstracts, florals, and Indian mythological & modern figures, born out of sheer love and dedication for art.

Suneet Bhatia is a San Jose-based professional commercial artist who has worked with commercial advertising agencies, fashion boutiques as designer, and primary schools as an art educator in India before moving to California. A modern art enthusiast, important aspects of her work include texture, depth, colour, and design intricacy. Her collection is often a result of mix of learning from experiences, observation, and simultaneous experimentation in practice. 

Studio Climbing Gym – 396 South First St. map

On view: “A little bit of digital, a little bit of film, a whole lotta stoke.” by Lizzi Meyer

A collection of photos taken while traveling and exploring. Shot on 35mm film and digital cameras.

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The South FIRST FRIDAYS Art Walk is produced by Two Fish Design in partnership with the participating art organizations and independent businesses.