San Diego

Around the Counties: Traversing San Diego County and Tijuana with Misael Diaz

Avenida Revolución - Nathan Gibbs

Columnist Misael Diaz contibutes to this week's edition of Around the Counties.

A frequent commuter between both San Diego County and Tijuana, Diaz tells us about his favorite art places and spaces, as well as emerging art trends displayed in both areas.

Lastly, the founding member of an art collective recommends an ongoing event taking place in a small but active location of San Diego.

What makes San Diego County so attractive?

The intense juxtaposition of military bases and utopic artificial environments--aka theme parks--and the amazingly beautiful beaches.

Coronado Beach. | Photo: Pauleon Tan/Flickr/Creative Commons License

What's attractive about Tijuana?

[The] Intense juxtaposition of militarized border and utopic artificial environments, plus the eclectic pastiche culture and resilient people.

Tijuana | Photo: Nathan Gibbs/Flickr/Creative Commons License

What are some of your favorite art venues in San Diego County?

  • Periscope Project: Great space with very innovative projects relating to public space, urban development and architecture.

  • Double Break: Lovely bookstore and gallery showcasing 2D work by amazing artists from the region.

Which Tijuana art venues do you enjoy?

  • El Grafografo: Amazing bookstore supporting the booming local literary scene by hosting readings, conferences, festivals and publishing quarterlies.

  • Espacio Cognado: A must for me (because I work there), the workshop/residency space I co-founded with Amy Sanchez as part of cognate collective, in an artisan market at the San Ysidro Port of Entry.

    Mercado de Artesanias, La Linea Garita de San Ysidro, Tijuana

Which art event did you last attend in San Diego County?

Slab. Sand. Cloud. Grid. exhibition featuring new work by Sam Kronick and Hermione Spriggs and Perspectives: Mexican American Art Today at MCASD La Jolla.

MCASD La Jolla. | Photo: Brandon Shigeta/Flickr/Creative Commons License

What about Tijuana?

The premier of Polen's wonderful documentary "Felix: Autoficciones de un traficante", and the inauguration of El Grafografo's foray into publishing "La Corte de Pergamo" journal.

Do you see any art trends in San Diego?

New gallery/residency hybrid spaces, supporting interesting work, much of it in "public" space.

Do you see any art trends in Tijuana?

Lots of community oriented collaborative artistic practices, and the development of independent cultural infrastructure to provide alternative forms of citizen engagement to strengthen civil society and confront the consequences of violence and corruption.

Can you recommend an art event to the Artbound audience that's taking place this weekend?

The exhibition Good Grief by Matt Coors and Louis M. Schmidt at Double Break Bookstore/Gallery.

Good Grief at Double Break (June 22 through July 21)

Double Break | Still Image: Double Break Grand Opening/Courtesy: Youtube user/Product Etcetera

1821 5th Avenue, San Diego, CA 92101 619-238-2325

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Top Image: Avenida Revolución | Photo: Nathan Gibbs/Flickr/Creative Commons

About the Author

Melody Soto is a journalist living in the San Fernando Valley.
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