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The Rock Paper Scissors Collective

If you read Monica’s post about Workshop on Saturday, then you know that BAS loves DIY.  And the more the merrier, so here is another DIY hub in the East Bay.

In the heart of the Oakland art scene is a little hole in the wall called the Rock Paper Scissors Collective.  In a world that deceives us about most everything (of course Scarlett Jo’s singing voice sounds decent through a filter and I’m sure Rachel Zoe’s job is very hard) and can’t seem to fix things that are broken (the neverending healthcare story, the neverending war saga, the neverending America’s Next Top Model series), it comes as a pleasant surprise when someone does what they say they will.  So it is comforting that the RPS Collective is a space that actually puts its words to action by recognizing that the DIY (Do It Yourself) movement is only sustainable if we DIT (Do It Together).  Their mission statement:

pics from Church of Craft dot org

“The Rock Paper Scissors Collective
is a volunteer-run organization that fosters creativity and collaboration
in order to strengthen local communities and encourage sustainable practices
and alternative models. We promote the sharing of ideas, skills, and resources
through the celebration of art, craft, education, and performance.  RPS currently realizes this through an accessible space that offers
free and low-cost classes, curated and open submission art shows, the
retail of independently made clothing/craft/zines/music, a drop in arts
lab, community events space, and youth involvement.”

local DIY goods for sale!

local DIY goods for sale!

Despite legitimate concerns about the neighborhood’s “hipster invasion,” RPS is a beloved center for art, community, and outreach.  Overflowing with titillating installations, hundreds of zines, handmade goods, and sewing machines, it is no wonder that RPS won the East Bay Express’s Best of ’09 Awards for Best Arts Organization and Best Purveyor of Local Art (not to mention the ‘08 winner for Best Gallery).  Their calendar is perpetually chock-full of fun community events, and cheap/donation-based/FREE classes with great names (“Pilates to the People,” “mess with bikes,” “Church of Craft,” “Renegade Craft Moms”) and a myriad of DIY lessons (zine-making, knitting, origami, silkscreening, sewing, and writing workshops, to name just a few).  Want to teach a class, staff a gallery event, work the retail store, and/or more?  Go to their Volunteer Orientation this Friday at noon!

Rock Paper Scissors Collective
2278 Telegraph Ave @ 23rd St [Oakland]
Open Wednesday-Sunday, 12pm-7pm
(Closed Monday and Tuesday)

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About the author

Chloe - Pennywise Reporter

Chloe's youth was split between California and Kauai, frolicking on a macadamia nut farm in the tropics and landing finally in the Bay Area. Raised by super-Jew hippies, and the youngest of three sisters, Chloe learned early the virtues of thrift, economy, and green living. To the chagrin of her parents (who hoped, of course, for a Jewish doctor or lawyer), Chloe has put her degree from UC Berkeley to great use by becoming a folk singer. As "Chloe Makes Music" she plays shows throughout SF and beyond, donning vintage frocks, selling handmade merch, and pinching pennies as she sings for her supper. Calling Berkeley home for the last six years, you can think of Chloe as the website's East Bay Correspondent, opening your eyes to the hippie-filled, tree-hugging, organic-loving, vegan-eating, but way-overlooked and awesome assets of Berkeley, Oakland, and beyond.