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Indybay Feature
Thu Jul 16 2015 (Updated 07/27/15)
Rock Paper Scissors Being Displaced After More Than Ten Years on Telegraph Avenue
RPSC Community Arts Space to Close as Result of Continuing Wave of Oakland Gentrification
Founding member of the First Friday Oakland Art Murmur, Rock Paper Scissors Collective writes: Eleven years ago, downtown Oakland was home to mom and pop shops, socio-economically diverse, occasionally dangerous; a sometimes eccentric, sometimes wonderful, and always dynamic community. A group of artists, crafters, organizers and makers found a vacant little storefront among a sea of vacancies. With a little volunteer elbow-grease and fundraising effort, the Rock Paper Scissors Collective (RPSC) was born — a destination where the community could come together, organize, share skills, knowledge and create. ALL were welcome in the space.

Now, after more than a decade in the same location, we are being forced out of our space on Telegraph and 23rd to make way for a new vision of the transforming neighborhood. The Collective’s long time landlord plans to charge market value for the space, well beyond what we can afford as an all-volunteer run nonprofit. Eleven years ago we could afford market value for the space, but thanks to our success in building a vibrant community in downtown, market rate is now far out of reach. The increase will more than triple our current rate.

As of August 31st, RPS community arts space will be without a home. Our lease is being terminated after ten years at the same location. Only with the help and support of the community can we continue to ensure a safe and open space for everyone.

photo Read More | Rock Beats Paper: On the Connections Between Art and Development | A Defense of the RPS Collective and a Critique of the Critiques | Another Contribution to the Dicussion of the Artists' Role in Gentrification
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