Graphic Art by Melanie Cervantes and Jesus Barraza

A number  of Oakland artists, now showing at the Galería de la Raza at 24th and Bryant streets are working to pass down the tradition of screen printed posters learned by the the masters such as Juan Fuentes the former director of Mission Grafica founded in 1977 at the Mission Cultural Center.

Melanie Cervantes, Jesus Barraza opened their Oakland studio last weekend, but can be found all until August 15th  at Galería de la Raza on 24th Street. They’re working there in the afternoon, printing up fresh screens that visitors are welcome to take for free. The next stenciling workshop will be Saturday, July 25th from 2-4.

Watch Steve Saldivar’s video meet Cervantes and Barraza to see how it’s done.

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I’ve been a Mission resident since 1998 and a professor emeritus at Berkeley’s J-school since 2019 when I retired. I got my start in newspapers at the Albuquerque Tribune in the city where I was born and raised. Like many local news outlets, The Tribune no longer exists. I left daily newspapers after working at The New York Times for the business, foreign and city desks. Lucky for all of us, it is still there.

As an old friend once pointed out, local has long been in my bones. My Master’s Project at Columbia, later published in New York Magazine, was on New York City’s experiment in community boards.

Right now I'm trying to figure out how you make that long-held interest in local news sustainable. The answer continues to elude me.

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