COMMUNITY CELEBRATIONS & COLLABORATIONS
Clarion Alley Mural Project regularly hosts community events to celebrate new CAMP murals by artists who share CAMP’s vision for social and economic justice. These works are often created in conjunction with community-based organizations partnering with CAMP to provide a platform in support of social, economic, racial, and environmental justice. CAMP also collaborates with community organizations to host events and performances.
Community Gatherings, Celebrations and Events in 2020 included:
Wall + Response
On November 20, 2020 Clarion Alley Mural Project (CAMP) presented the first event of our Wall + Response project, featuring sixteen Bay Area poets responding to the social/ political/ racial/ justice narratives of four murals on Clarion Alley, hosted by Booksmith and The Bindery.
Curated by CAMP artist and organizer Megan Wilson (wall) and poet Maw Shein Win (response), the first event in the series featured Heather Bourbeau, Aileen Cassinetto, Tongo Eisen-Martin and Chris Stroffolino responding to the mural Justice for Luís D. Góngora Pat by Marina Perez-Wong and Elaine Chu, working with Justice4Luis.
Justice For Luís D. Góngora Pat (2018) is a memorial to Luís Demetrio Góngora Pat, a 46-year-old man – a father, husband, son, brother, and friend to many – from the Mayan village of Teabo, in the Mexican province of Yucatán. Góngora Pat was killed by two San Francisco police officers in an act of police brutality on April 7, 2016 at the encampment he was living on Shotwell Street following an eviction. Perez-Wong and Chu presented the mural to Luís’ family and their supporters in an emotional ceremony on the two-year anniversary of his death. The Justice4Luís campaign has continued its work towards justice and restoration in the name of Luis Góngora Pat through their advocacy and organizing efforts.
ABOUT THE AUTHORS
Heather Bourbeau’s fiction and poetry have been published in 100 Word Story, Alaska Quarterly Review, Cleaver, Francis Ford Coppola Winery, The Cardiff Review, and The Stockholm Review of Literature. She is the Chapman University Flash Fiction winner and has twice been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Her work has been featured in several anthologies, including America, We Call Your Name: Poems of Resistance and Resilience and Respect: Poems About Detroit Music (Michigan State University Press). She was a contributing writer to Not On Our Watch: The Mission to End Genocide in Darfur and Beyond with Don Cheadle and John Prendergast. She has worked with various UN agencies, including the UN peacekeeping mission in Liberia and UNICEF Somalia.
Aileen Cassinetto is the Poet Laureate of San Mateo County, California. Widely anthologized, she is the author of the poetry collections, Traje de Boda and The Pink House of Purple Yam Preserves & Other Poems, as well as three chapbooks through Moria Books’ acclaimed Locofo series. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in the Asahi Shimbun, The Banyan Review, Moss Trill, The Nonconformist Magazine, the San Francisco Chronicle, and Vox Populi, among others. Aileen is the curator of the social justice-themed reading series “Power to the Poets” and the forthcoming Peninsula virtual book festival featuring new releases from SF Bay Area writers.
Tongo Eisen-Martin was born in San Francisco, California, and received an MA from Columbia University. He is the author of Someone’s Dead Already (Bootstrap Press, 2015), which was nominated for a California Book Award, and Heaven Is All Goodbyes(City Lights Publishers, 2017), which received the California Book Award and an American Book Award. A poet, movement worker, and educator, his latest curriculum on extrajudicial killing of Black people, We Charge Genocide Again, has been used as an educational and organizing tool throughout the country.
Chris Stroffolino currently lives in Oakland, California and teaches English at Laney College. He’s published several books of poetry and essays, and may sometimes be heard—but not seen (in the social distancing era)—playing trumpet in a hidden location at Lake Merritt.
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
Elaine Chu and Marina Perez-Wong are the co-founders of the mural collaborative Twin Walls Mural Company. Since 2013 they have painted over 30 murals together. Their murals are brightly colored and semi realistic, using symbology related to nature, women, spirituality, justice and community to manifest changes they wish to see in the world. Inspired by a long history of amazing women muralists in the San Francisco Bay Area, Elaine and Marina aim to also inspire young women to become future muralists and represent a strong and unique Asian American and Latinx influence in the Street art world.
Justice4Luis.org is a grassroots coalition founded by the family of Luis Góngora Pat and supportive San Franciscans who together seek justice for Luis and to repair the harm caused by SFPD officers to his family, his encampment community, and our community at large.
ABOUT WALL + RESPONSE
Wall + Response features 16 poets responding to the social/ political/ racial/ justice narratives of four murals on Clarion Alley, curated by CAMP artist and organizer Megan Wilson and poet Maw Shein Win.
- Poets Heather Bourbeau, Aileen Cassinetto, Tongo Eisen-Martin, and Chris Stroffolino responding to the mural Justice for Luís D. Góngora Pat by Marina Perez-Wong and Elaine Chu, working with Justice4Luis;
- Poets Karla Brundage, Jennifer Hasegawa, Tureeda Mikell, and Kim Shuck responding to the work What We Want! by Emory Douglas/Black Panther Party / remix by CUBA D8, Mace;
- Poets Celeste Chan, MK Chavez, Paul Corman-Roberts and Tim Xonnelly responding to the mural Affordable Housing/Vivienda Asequible by the SF Print Collective working with the Western Regional Advocacy Project (WRAP).
- Poets Youssef Alaoui, Jason Bayani, Genny Lim, and Michael Warr responding to the mural The Arab Liberation Mural by Art Forces, Arab Resource Organizing Center (AROC), and Arab Youth Organizing (AYO).
The project was originally conceived to culminate in four quarterly public events to be presented on Clarion Alley. However, due to the pandemic the poets will instead be filmed by videographer Mahima Kotian reading their work in front of the murals on Clarion Alley. Kotian will be creating videos for each series that will be presented as part of live online events (of which this is the first). All the events are free and open to the public.
The poets are creating new poems in response to the murals, and will be reading those and other selected works at the events. The specific dates for each of the following events will be announced in the month prior to the event – December, February, May.
Wall + Response is made possible by the generous support of the San Francisco Art Commission and the Zellerbach Family Foundation.
You can read more about CAMP and Wall + Response here.
ABOUT THE CURATORS
Megan Wilson is a visual artist, writer, and activist based in San Francisco. Wilson has been an artist and core organizer with Clarion Alley Mural Project (CAMP) since 2001. In 2018 she co-directed and co-organized (with Christopher Statton and Nano Warsono) CAMP’s second international exchange and residency project, Bangkit /Arise between artists from Yogyakarta, Indonesia and San Francisco/Bay Area in collaboration with the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco. The second phase of the project will take place 2021-22.
Maw Shein Win is a poet, editor, and educator who lives and teaches in the Bay Area. Her poetry chapbooks are Ruins of a glittering palace (SPA/Commonwealth Projects) and Score and Bone (Nomadic Press). Invisible Gifts: Poems was published by Manic D Press in 2018. She was a 2019 Visiting Scholar in the Department of English at UC Berkeley. Win is the first poet laureate of El Cerrito, California (2016 – 2018), and her poetry collection Storage Unit for the Spirit House will be published by Omnidawn in October 2020.
ABOUT THE VIDEOGRAPHER
Mahima Kotian is a freelance photographer and videographer. Originally from Mumbai (India), she moved to San Francisco to pursue a Master’s degree in Communications. She loves all things art, from painting to reading to filming. Mahima aspires to be a videographer and video editor, and narrate great stories through her content.
ABOUT THE EVENT PRODUCER
Evan Karp is the creator and executive director of Quiet Lightning, recognized by the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts as one of the 100 “people, organizations, and movements who are shaping the future of culture”, and the founding editor of Litseen, recognized by the New York Times as a go-to, near-comprehensive source for Bay Area literary events. He’s written columns for the San Francisco Chronicle, KQED, SF Weekly, SF/Arts and The Rumpus, and his nonfiction and poetry have appeared in Guardian UK, BOMBlog, Eleven Eleven, Omniverse, Vertebrae, and a fading constellation of other places. With his brother Miles, he combines music, words, and other sounds as Turk & Divis; with Maw Shein Win, as Vata & the Vine. Evan is the events manager for Booksmith, The Bindery, and Berkeley Arts & Letters.