San Bernardino Art Walk displays potential of city

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By Adriana Lopez

Residents, artists, and food vendors local to the area gathered in downtown San Bernardino for
the San Bernardino Art Walk on September 10.

With a wide perimeter consisting of E street, 4th street, D street and 3rd street, attendees were able to visit participating art galleries, Viva La Boba and The Enterprise Building for a screening of “Pan’s Labyrinth”.

The event first came to life in 2021 due to the efforts of Kristopher Gonzalez. Gonzalez was
inspired to create the event after joining the Downtown Neighborhood Association Council, an
organization dedicated to improving communities. Now president of the association, Gonzalez
saw the San Bernardino downtown area as an ideal location to create an opportunity for unity.

“I gave myself the task to unify small businesses, to promote small business entrepreneurs and
bring life to downtown,” Gonzalez said. “I see it as a blank slate, it’s the perfect canvas to create whatever we want.”

Growing tired of commuting to other cities for art events, Gonzalez decided that the perfect
canvas would become the San Bernardino Art Walk.

“I figured if we don’t have it, let’s create it,” Gonzalez said.

The main attraction of the night was a lot on the corners of E street and Court street. Featuring
a stage where comedians performed, classic cars, table games, food and art vendors, the lot
transformed into a cultural hub.

With local artists selling a variety of products, attendees had a wide array of original creations to browse through. Including paintings, yarn bucket hats, beaded jewelry, incense, handmade
plushies and clothing, the products displayed the talents of local artists.

One of the vendors who displayed their work is Susana Escobedo, a San Bernardino resident.
Escobedo’s work consists of bookmarks, patches, pins, polymer clay earrings and prints of her
artwork.

Escobedo heard of the opportunity to vend at the art walk through the Trans Unity Center of San Bernardino. Part of the organization’s commitment is to find opportunities for queer artists.

“They pay for my entrance here, I’m one of the queer artists that gets supported and I was
recommended to set up here,” Escobedo said.

Escobedo first set up at the art walk last month, and the experience showed her that there is
more to San Bernardino than some may think.

“For a long time I thought it was really scary down here, so coming last month was really great, seeing the community that I didn’t know was so well put together,” Escobedo said.
Attendees share this same sentiment, they believe it is important to support the growth and
potential of the city.

Among the attendees is Cathy Segura, who brought her granddaughter Maya to the art walk.
Segura believes children should visit cultural events to boost creativity and expose them to the
community.

“They can be the next famous artist or writer, get involved with their community and know what’s out there,” Segura said.

The next event will be held on October 15.