Vertigo Coffee Roasters in San Juan Bautista put on the free Rose Moon Pop-up Art Show last Saturday, June 2. With about 200-250 people in attendance, the weekend event included 14 artists and two tattoo artists while a DJ played music in the background.
Showcasing different experiences and styles of art, participants could purchase a piece of art, get a tattoo onsite, and/or engage in a conversation with the artists to see where they got their inspiration to create their pieces.
Erin Lajeunesse, barista and art curator for Vertigo Coffee Roasters, organized the June 2 event.
Though this is not the first pop-up art show put on by Vertigo, all represented artists were new to the event.
“It’s exciting to see new stuff that hasn’t been here before,” Lajeunesse said. “It’s important for the artists to be able to express themselves and have their art viewed and for the audience to see things they haven’t seen before.”
Hollister artist Michaela Graves started to create art after making a New Year’s Resolution January 1 of this year to start creating art again. After participating in the San Benito Art Council’s Open Studios Tour in April, Graves decided to apply to be one of the featured artists at the Rose Moon Pop-up Art Show.
“Art is important for me because it allows me to express myself,” Graves said. “[The art show] brings people together. It allows us to have a platform to share our artwork with the community.”
While Graves uses watercolors to create her pieces, Celeste Moss of San Jose creates mixed medium art pieces. Getting inspiration from children’s books, nature, and folk art, Moss said part of the appeal of being part of an art show is having the ability to see others work.
“It’s atheistically pleasing to walk around and see something different,” Moss said.
Micahel Boehnker, who lives in Gilroy, displayed his work next to Moss at the event. While exhibiting his illustrations and photographs, Boehnker said participating in shows allows him to connect to other people.
“Events such as this are important for artists to exhibit work outside of online platforms and connect with other artists and who enjoy art,” Boehnker said.
Vanessa Davidson, who classifies her artwork as grunge art, shared this sentiment when saying, “There’s a comradery. Your automatically friends with the next person. It’s a peaceful event and people are impacted even by the smallest piece of art.”
Attending the June 2 event with friends, Patti Herrera of Hollister said she enjoyed the experience as a result of being a regular at Vertigo and being able to connect with the artists.
“They have great coffee," Herrera said. "You’re not just paying for coffee, you’re also paying for the environment. I’ve never been to a thing where you get to see the art and ask the artists the story behind the piece.”
The exposure to different forms of art and being able to allow customers/participants to connect with the artists was part of Lajeunesse’s goal when helping to put on the show. In an effort to get this diversity, participants with varying styles of art were picked so all people could have a chance to try to make a connection with a piece of art.
Stephanie Suess, who lives in El Cerritto and was a participant, stated in addition to diversity at the show, making art accessible to all people is important.
“People like having art they can connect to,” Suess said. “Promoting local art and getting the community involved is important. Art should be available to everyone and not to the perceived elite.”
Stating that the Saturday, June 2 event was the most successful of any art shows Vertigo has previously put on, Lajeunesse shared that there will be more events in the future.
More information on Vertigo Coffee Roasters or upcoming events can be found on the cafe's Facebook page or by calling (831) 623-9533.
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