May 3, 2024 — South FIRST FRIDAYS #ArtwalkSJ

Please join us Friday, MAY 3rd for an inspired evening of arts, culture, and community at the First Fridays ArtWalk SJ in SoFA District (& beyond!).   

Enjoy new exhibitions opening with artists in attendance, live music performances, and an amazing creative community!

All ArtWalk venues are open 5–9 pm, free admission, and family-friendly. 

SoFA District

ANNO DOMINI // the second coming of Art & Design – 366 S. First St. map

Anno Domini is proud to present:

Artist’s reception: Welcome Home Mike Egan solo exhibition

For many years my artwork has been tied to themes of death and dying. I’ve kind of become known as “the skull guy.”

Although this new show with Anno Domini still has all of the skeleton characters that we all know and love, I feel like I wanted to do something a bit different in this work.

This show “Welcome Home” explores themes of what home actually means to me. I always enjoy being home, I work at home, my loved ones are here.

Home is a place of love, security and protection and I wanted to make art that represents that. Home, in a way, can also represent what’s inside of us as well. I feel like I always need to protect my heart and that my head always needs a good cleaning.

No matter what “Home” means to you, I’d like to invite you into mine and sit for awhile. Let’s play music and talk about art.  ~Mike Egan, 2024 A.D.

About the Artist:
Mike Egan grew up in the suburbs of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  As a kid, he started drawing cartoons, skateboard graphics, and had a new found interest in skeletons and devils. Through high school he continued to draw and decided to study art after graduation.  Egan received a bachelor of fine arts from Edinboro University where he focused on printmaking. After college, he didn’t have access to printmaking tools, so he taught himself to paint.  After a few years, Egan attended the Pittsburgh Institute of Mortuary Science and became an embalmer/funeral director. Continuing to paint, he developed a style that incorporated his surroundings as well as his influences: folk art, the day of the dead, horror films, religion, Halloween and German Expressionism.  

Since 2006, Egan has continued to show his work in galleries throughout America and the UK. “Welcome Home” is Mike Egan’s fifth solo exhibition with Anno Domini // the second coming of Art & Design in San Jose, California.

KALEID Gallery – 320 S. First St. map

Artist’s reception: A Life in Notes and Color Gianfranco Paolozzi solo exhibition

I’ve created this new series of paintings because I’m continuously inspired by music and color and I wanted to show the connection between them.

When I was about 4 years old, I remember being glued to my parent’s radio when I heard classical music; unable to do anything but listen intently. Musical notes are always with me. 

Color has always inspired me as well.  Around the age of 5, I received a trophy for a very colorful drawing I made. So music and color have been a part of my life and, of course, my art, since they are my very first memories as a child. I have used them to tell the stories of my life and create something from all the feelings we go through. 

I am honored to now show you these pieces of my life, in notes and color.  ~Gianfranco Paolozzi

About the Artist:
Gianfranco’s life began in San Pietro Avellana, a small town in the mountains of Central Italy. During the ’60s and ’70s he participated in exhibitions and art contests in the region. In early ’74 he moved to California following his girlfriend.  After marrying, the couple moved to Sunnyvale and had 3 children, then went on to have 7 grandchildren. For the last 5 decades, Gianfranco has exhibited his artwork and performed his accordian music widely throughout the Bay Area.

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

Pictured artwork: Lace & Color Harmonies: Green by Pilar Agüero-Esparza

MACLA’s 2024 Latinx Art Now! Exhibition & Auction, annual curated exhibition surveys the very best of contemporary Latinx Art from the Bay Are and beyond. Check out incredible work by 30+ Latinx artists culminating with our Live Auction, May 18, MACLA’s signature fundraising event. 

MACLA presents the premiere of Pizza Monster, a film by Javier Mendoza Jr. 

Pizza Monster will be screening May 3rd at 7:30pm and 8:30pm, accompanied by short films from local filmmakers, with a special DJ set by Cruzita.

PhantomGalleries at The Pierce – 2 Pierce Ave. map

Artist’s reception: The Cloud Weaver Jemal Diamond solo exhibition

The Cloud Weaver is a new collection of paintings by artist Jemal Diamond. The experimental collection combines the abstract nature of visual language with his intuitive abstract portraits, creating imaginative symbolic tableaus.

As always with Jemal’s work, there are contrasting and complementary shapes. Both mechanical and organic, masculine and feminine, abstract and representational, there lies embedded intentional dichotomies to create a playground of visual cues and possible meaning. All titles for works in this collection are given by viewers like you, including The Cloud Weaver title by Erin B.

About the Artist:
Jemal Diamond is a south Bay Area-based artist and designer. His work is playful, improvisational, and most importantly – interactive. Here in San Jose, California, he works from his studio at Visual Philosophy, is a member artist of Works San José, and resident artist at KALEID Gallery. 

Sacred Heart Community Service – 550 S. First St. map

Affordable Housing Month featuring life-size sculptures by Ramon Franco Arambula

Join us for an exclusive look at sculptures by artist Ramon Franco Arambula! Arambula is a designer and sculptor based in San José. Arambula is the owner of ARAM Studios. He has exhibited sculptures for the San Francisco Symphony, the City of San José, the City of Redwood City, and the Redwood City History Museum.

To kick off Affordable Housing Month, join us for a brief program focused on the origins of the housing crisis and what you can do about it! 

San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art– 560 S. First St. map

P L A C E : Reckonings by Asian American Artists 

Participating Artists:  Phung Huynh, Adrienne Pao, Robin Lasser, Ranu Mukherjee, Wanxin Zhang, Mail Order Brides/M.O.B. (Eliza O. Barrios, Reanne Estrada, and Jenifer K. Wofford), Namita Paul, Related Tactics, Bruce Yonemoto, Stephanie Syjuco, Valerie Soe, Christy Chan, and Christine Wong Yap.

The ICA San José and Montalvo Arts Center jointly present an exhibition entitled P L A C E: Reckonings by Asian American Artists. Selected for their powerful voices, all of the participating artists have been artists-in-residence of the Lucas Artists Program at Montalvo Arts Center. Villa Montalvo was the former home of California Senator James Duval Phelan who is remembered for his nativist and racist politics, especially his virulent opposition to Chinese and Japanese immigrants, and his active endorsement of multiple Asian exclusion acts. This exhibition intends to honor and uplift the diverse voices of contemporary artists of East Asian, Southeast Asian, South Asian, and Pacific Islander ancestries who have had to contend with this racist history. Each artist in the show considers their complex relationship and their own agency in association with the spaces that they have inhabited, embedded with histories of exclusion or violence, and how this in turn affects, challenges, transforms, or inspires their artistic practice.

San Jose Jazz – 310 South First St. map

Live music by Jesse Fischer @ SJZ Break Room with opening set by U19s

Join us at the SJZ Break Room from 6-7pm on the First Friday of May to hear the SJZ U19s Combo B playing some of their favorite tunes. Their repertoire now features classic jazz recordings from legends like Wayne Shorter and Dave Holland, as well as modern takes on compositions from Summer Fest ’17 artist Kamasi Washington and even a tune from the Metal Gear Solid soundtrack!

Then, at 8pm, critically acclaimed New York pianist Jesse Fischer plays a FREE set at the SJZ Break Room. Known for his warm, soulful touch and emphasis on melody, groove, storytelling and emotion, his unique voice combines elements of his own Jewish heritage with music of the African diaspora, jazz, hip-hop, and singer-songwriter genres. Giles Peterson and Marcus Miller have played his remixes on their radio stations, and Spotify frequently includes his music in jazz playlists like State of Jazz and Butter.

San Jose Museum of Quilts & Textiles – 520 South First St. map

Printed & Stitched

Printed & Stitched, a traveling exhibition examining the overlap between the hand pulled print and the art quilt, highlights recent work from members of the California Society of Printmakers and Studio Art Quilt Associates.

SoFA Market – 387 S. First St. ma

Anime Influenced: The Art of Richard Hoffman

Richard Hoffman makes art inspired by comic books, cartoons, neo-expressionism, and Black culture. Typically with acrylic paint, and mixed media techniques, Richard attempts to delve in between “pop art,” “expressionism” and “traditional animation.

Fountain Alley Area

Chopsticks Alley Gallery – 38 S. 2nd St. map

Opening reception: Flora & Fauna by Phuc Van Dang

Flora & Fauna features two site-specific installations created during Phuc Van Dang’s residency at Chopsticks Alley Art.

Dang’s depiction of the “long-lost monster” as a manifestation of our suppressed inner nature is a powerful metaphor for the inherent connection between humanity and the natural world. Through his playful imagery, Dang encourages viewers to embrace their inner monsters to reconnect with the innocence and wonder of childhood. He empowers the viewer to rediscover a sense of awe and reverence for the natural world and embark on a transformative journey of alignment and coexistence with the environment.

7:00pm Artist Introductions
7:15pm & 8:00pm Dance Performance

Works San Jose – 38 S. 2nd St. map

Opening reception in the main gallery: Transformations: sjsu animation/illustration bfa 2024

Works collaborates with nearly eighty graduates in this program to present experimental work in story development, character design, visual development, 3d modeling, and moving images in the areas of animation for motion pictures, gaming, and a multitude of video adventures. 

Pictured artwork by Nick Johnson

Closing reception in Works’ pop-up space: Ripple: Creating an Impact: sjsu graphic design bfa 2024

This 4-day exhibition closes on South First Friday! Ripple is a culminating exhibition showcasing the diverse works of the 18 designers in San José State University’s BFA Graphic Design graduating class. Over the last two years, this class has worked tirelessly to develop their design skills and create meaningful work that makes an impact in the world. This exhibition is the final chance to celebrate the ripples made in the classroom, as this group of emerging designers prepare to make more ripples in the world.

Martha Gardens District

Art Ark Gallery – 1035 S. Sixth St. map

Fused… A Celebration of Encaustic Art

Participating Artists: Karen Buttwinick, Jenn Doyle Crane, Katie C. Gutierrez, Rinat Goren, Mira M. White, Lonnie Zarem 

Curated by Rinat Goren, this exhibition features work by encaustic artists.

FUSE presents at the Citadel Art Gallery- 199 Martha St. map

Opening reception: A Lovely Day featuring Magic Sean Gill and supporting artists

An art exhibit featuring artist Magic Sean Gil along with supporting artists from the Citadel Art studios. The exhibition captures the essence and nostalgia of a beautiful, warm late spring day. This weekend is also a very joyous and significant day in San Jose history. Cinco de Mayo weekend is a weekend of cultural celebration and a time to create unforgettable memories. Each day of this exhibition will be a lovely Day, full of lovely Art.

MACHU PICCHU Gallery of the Americas, Est 1974 – 199 Martha St. map

HUICHOL Beaded Masks, Beaded Ceramic boxes. Beaded Wood Paintings, Beaded Gourd Bowls

Featuring: Leocadio Vázquez De La Cruz from Zacatecas, México

The artist’s intricate designs are made by tiny beads on gourds, ceramic boxes,  animal shaped wood or masks that have been previously covered with bee’s wax. 

The precision of the hundreds multicolored beads are a work of art. It is said in each Huichol lives an artist and through the art their spirituality is shown.

The symbols most commonly expressed in the art are deer, rain, eagles, corn, snakes, and scorpions. The correct name of the HUICHOL people is WIXARIKA which means “person with a deep heart who loves knowledge”.

KOOZA – Under the Big Top – Santa Clara County Fairgrounds, Apr. 18 – May 26, 2024

KOOZA is a return to the origins of Cirque du Soleil: It combines two circus traditions – acrobatic performance and the art of clowning. The show highlights the physical demands of human performance in all its splendor and fragility, presented in a colorful mélange that emphasizes bold slapstick humor.

South First Fridays Family/Friends Offer: Use this link to save up to 20% off select seats/dates. Groups of 10+, save 25% and reduced handling fees, contact for details.

SAVE THE DATE: SubZERO Festival June 7th & 8th from 5-11pm

South FIRST FRIDAYS ArtWalk SJ is produced by CURATUS in partnership with the participating galleries, museums and independent creative businesses.

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366 S 1st Street
San Jose, CA  95113