About the Festival

All are invited to participate in the conversations and gatherings to push each other to think concretely and imaginatively about what is coming. Capitalism is on its last legs as a world-system, but what will follow? Perhaps a dark authoritarian world dominated by police and military that claims to be capitalist but is really a despotic simulacra? Or a newly liberated grassroots democracy, reinventing urban life on an ecological basis, a society that values everyone’s contribution without coercing anyone, a world in which a good life is guaranteed to all. Or something else altogether? What do you think?

On Wednesday May 2, Thursday May 3, and Friday May 4, from 12-1 pm we will host a Brown Bag Lunch discussions (outdoors at Frank H. Ogawa Plaza, Oakland CA), FREE and Open to All. The discussions aim to engage passersby and workers on their lunch break in impromptu conversation on a specific topic, facilitated by the Imagining Post-Capitalism organizers and guest artists, who will help mediate thoughts and ideas proposing a different future for us all.

Download Festival Poster and Calendar of Events: Festival Imagining Post-Capitalism

ABOUT THE ORGANIZERS:

PRO ARTS

Pro Arts is a non-profit art institution working in the visual arts, performance, music, social practice, public art, and education. Founded in 1973, Pro Arts is one of the few remaining institutions in Oakland that is artist-centered and that continues to function as a platform for experimentation, supporting the freedom to create challenging, non-commercial work in critical art context.

Our mission is to champion new art practices and emerging forms of cultural production through an institutional platform which fosters collaboration and the cross-pollination of ideas. Since the hire of a new leadership team in 2015, the programming at Pro Arts has expanded to include a wider range of genres and modes of presentation, thus broadening the scope of what is considered “art.” We work closely and collaboratively with artist, curators, and cultural producers to develop and realize contemporary work in all media, ranging from installation and performance to experimental music and public work. We balance our exhibition schedule with ancillary activities, such as public programs, community engagement projects, workshops, and interdisciplinary art series. Our gallery location in downtown Oakland serves as a vibrant meeting spot for artists and the local community, and a catalyst that sparks dialogue and opens up new perspectives. We believe strongly in supporting artists financially and in compensating them fairly for their artistic labor.

In addition to our gallery program, each year, we commission and realize over 30 site-specific public art projects, conceived and developed in a collaboration between Pro Arts and local, national and International artists. These projects take advantage of the immediate surroundings of the gallery – more specifically, its proximity to Oakland’s City Hall and Frank H. Ogawa Plaza. We often use the City Hall building as a backdrop for political art screenings, 3-D mapping projects, concerts, interventions, performance, and participatory projects.

In Spring 2017, Pro Arts incorporated The Great Wall of Oakland project, continuing in their mission to present public projections onto the exterior facades of buildings in downtown Oakland. Currently, we are partnering with Oakland-based art and non-art organizations, to take The New Great of Oakland program off-site, to different neighborhoods in Oakland.

Read more here.

SHAPING SAN FRANCISCO

Shaping San Francisco is a participatory community history project documenting and archiving overlooked stories and memories of San Francisco. We are committed to defining a new kind of public space, specifically around a shared interest in our interrelated social histories.

We mean “community” in a few different ways, and these definitions help shape our approach to promoting the everyday study of history.

First of all, we document and archive the stories and memories of the community.  This is not how history is usually taught, and we reject the notion that there is just one way to see the events that have defined our lives. We don’t accept that someone else gets to decide what those events are/were, usually favoring those who hold money and power as the agents of history.  Our roots lie in the “new social history” which emerged in the Annales School in the 1930s and was further developed in the 1960s as a way to go beyond the traditional history of “great men” which many of us were spoon-fed in public school.  We have produced three anthologies offering grassroots perspectives on social movements, significant events, and decisions that have led us to the San Francisco that we see and experience today. We also gather oral histories from ordinary San Franciscans whose remembrances help us understand the complex fabric of life at various times in history.  Some of them have dramatically affected the course of history, others have been altered by the changes happening around them, and yet others have been empowered and politicized by history as it unfolds.

This brings us to our second definition of community: that history is a participatory, creative act, a shared project of shaping our sense of life. Shaping San Francisco seeks to bring out the historian in everyone.  Naturally, each individual will have an unique take on and different experience of events of which they are a part.  Thus we welcome diverse contributions from the public, with their multiple perspectives, to the canon of history.  We administer an online archive, FoundSF.org, which is on a wiki-based platform, and open to additions, enhancements, corrections, and edits.  Collectively we are smarter than we are acting as individuals, and we hope that any gaps, omissions, and errors will be pointed out and changed by the community.

Finally, we also believe in the creation of community through a shared interest in our common history.  We think community arises in the effort to create a better future from the work we are doing in the present. We are committed to defining a new kind of public space, specifically around shared and interrelated social histories. Through a free Wednesday night Public Talk Series, Bicycle History Tours, and occasional Walking Tours, we offer opportunities for the public to come together and share ideas, inspiration, struggles, resources, and conversation.

Read more here.

FoundSF.org

Our online archive, FoundSF.org is a place to discover and shape San Francisco history. We focus on the history of the labor movement, the relationship between urban development and the natural environment, racial politics in San Francisco, land use, the history of women and feminism, immigration from many parts of the world, the emergence of gay San Francisco, the artistic life of the City, and of course, the specific history of each neighborhood. We believe that history can be a process that grows naturally from our desire to understand the world, and that history can be de-professionalized, made into a popular, participatory process.

Shaping San Francisco is an affiliate project of Independent Arts & Media.

Read more here.

 

INSTITUTIONAL PARTNERS: 

 

Beneficial State Bank is a B Corp Certified and community development bank whose mission is to build prosperity in our communities through fair and transparent beneficial banking services. We serve individuals, nonprofits, and businesses in California, Oregon, and Washington. Beneficial State Bank is owned by a nonprofit which means we have no private shareholders seeking to maximize profit at the expense of our communities our planet.

We believe that banks should nourish our communities, not extract from them, and so we commit at least 75% of our loan dollars toward a new, inclusive, and just economy. None of our loan dollars can work against our mission. Join the movement by aligning your money with your values. Visit beneficialstate.org/impact to learn more.

 

AFTER TOMORROW

After Tomorrow is a season by the French Consulate in San Francisco, the Cultural and Scientific Services of the French Embassy in the United States, French Tech San FranciscoInstitut Français and the French American Cultural Society. The season aims at confronting, in each event, the perspectives of scientists, artists and entrepreneurs, to imagine what our world will look like “after tomorrow”, with the year 2050 as our horizon.

 

OUR MEDIA PARTNERS: 

Shareable.net (A fiscally sponsored project of Tides Center) 

 

Shareable.net is a nonprofit media outlet and action network that empowers people to share for a more resilient, equitable, and joyful world. We inspire social change by publishing stories, analysis, and tools in collaboration with our global partners. shareable.net

 

Upstream Podcast

Upstream is a radio documentary and interview series that invites you to unlearn everything you thought you knew about economics. Blurring the line between economics and storytelling, Upstream inspires listeners to imagine what a more just, sustainable, and beautiful economy might look like. upstreampodcast.org