Mission4All, the organization funded by the developers of the proposed 10-story 380-unit development at 16th and Mission streets, is hosting an event at 16th and Capp this Saturday, in which some 30 local artists, musicians and craftspeople will showcase their work.
But already some are dropping out.
Some neighborhood groups are also crying foul, saying that the event – called “Made in the Bay” – is misleading and an attempt to divide the community.
“We feel what they’re doing is using colonization tactics to divide and conquer the community,” said Chirag Bhakta, an organizer with the Plaza 16 Coalition, a network of neighborhood activists who are staunchly opposed to the project that would rise at 1979 Mission St.
In January, Mission Local reported that Mission4All may have misled a local teacher into participating in an ad campaign promoting the project at the 16th and Mission BART station.
Bhakta said some 10 groups have dropped out of the event, although he declined to say which ones.
On Friday, a small drama played out on an Instagram post by Dying Breed, a Mission-based clothing brand.
“There is a group of people trying to Boycott this event by spreading false statements about this event being funded by a major developer, saying that they are using us and our talents to make people favor a building that is being built on 16th and Capp. St., coined Monster in the Mission,” the post says.
“Many people in the community are caught up in a state of mind about choosing sides about going or not going to this event or even participating in it as vendors,” the post continues. “Over all, this is FOR US BY US!”
Ari Cruz, owner of local crafts business Sew Frisco, whose logo was on an initial flyer for the event but was absent from a more recent version, appears to have dropped out.
“By not vending is no disrespect to the brand or every1 working hard to make the event poppin’,” she wrote, emphasizing that she wasn’t against participants. “At the end of the day there still isn’t enough affordable housing for the people. If in the end I’m hurting my own pockets then that’s on me.”
Mission Local attempted to reach out to artists participating in the event, but they did not respond to requests for comment.
Joe Arellano, a spokesperson for Maximus Real Estate, said that Maximus is providing space for the event, as well as funds for security guards, portable bathrooms and safety renovations to the building.
Arellano said the event was conceived when Maximus had been looking for artists to paint a mural on the Burger King wall facing the plaza, in an attempt to abate graffiti. When artists and the developer were not able to agree on a price, he said, a well-connected local artist volunteered to organize the event, who he could only identify as “Adan.”
Arellano said Plaza 16’s assertion that Maximus is attempting to divide the community through the event “falls flat,” because “one of the main points that Plaza 16 likes to use is they want this space for the community, and that’s what we’re doing.”
He confirmed that some artists had dropped out of the event.
“Some artists have decided not to (participate) because it has been highly politicized and [they] don’t want to get involved,” he said.