In a rapidly gentrifying city, the construction of a luxury condominium threatens a local mural, forcing the artists and a neighbourhood to rally to protect its history, voice, and land.
Stick around after the screening of Alice Street (2020) for a thought-provoking debate with several community organizations and city developers about Hamilton’s current redevelopment and what that means for artists and creative spaces in the Steel City.
AGH Member $13.50
General Admission $15
In Alice Street (2020), Two Oakland artists, Pancho Peskador, a Chilean studio painter, and Desi Mundo, a Chicago-born aerosol artist, form an unlikely partnership to tackle their most ambitious project to date, a four-story mural in the heart of downtown Oakland. Their site is situated at a unique intersection where Chinese and Afro-Diasporic communities face the imminent threat of displacement and gentrification. Prior to painting, the mural faces numerous obstacles: complex negotiations with profit-minded property owners, satisfying a community of diverse residents, and resolving the artists’ own aesthetic conflicts.
As the mural takes shape on the wall, Oakland’s unique cultural legacies come to life through historical flashbacks. Past exclusionary policies replay themselves in the present as gentrification threatens to uproot long-term residents. The mural is fraught with its own challenges. A disgruntled neighbourhood resident launches a vendetta against the artists, unleashing a blizzard of letters to city officials and newspapers. Simultaneously, the property owner of the mural site schemes to demolish it and construct the city’s largest luxury condo.