We're starting our mural!

First, introductions: We are Debbie Koppman and Amanda Lockwood, two Dimond neighborhood Oakland artists , both teaching art at Sequoia Elementary School. We've been working for years to create a sustainable art program at our school ( A very special Oakland public school at that) and we want to create a large mural honoring the diverse history, culture, flora and fauna of the Dimond Neighborhood. The Dimond is a great little secret spot in Oakland, nestled against the hills and loaded with wonderful creative people... and it really does deserve honoring.
We've been struggling to find funding in these uncertain times, and recently received word that we are being granted the Innovators' Award from Oaklandish! Which means we've got enough money for one panel of the mural. It's to be painted on the Fruitvale wall of Farmer Joe's at Macarthur... and as of now it looks like we are good to begin painting in September! We'll be collaborating with our students in the classroom, and incorporating their vision of our community into the mural to create an exciting interpretation of one of Oakland's many unique neighborhoods, as seen through the eyes of its youngest inhabitants....

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Thanks so much to oaktownart.com for publishing a great little announcement about our mural in progress this November, and if you haven't checked out their site, please look at it. They've got all kinds of great info on the arts scene in Oakland. To read up on our progress , look at their article at

Also, we've begun our second panel! We're working on early images of the neighborhood from the 1920's- 1940's now and our students have loved drawing from old photographs of the Dimond. Lots of neighbors are stopping by to tell us about their memories of the Dimond Theater, the candy store, the bowling alley... and we've had huge amounts of input about Ann's Cafe! Stop by and tell us a story sometime! And you can thank Jean Quan for funding the next section of our mural. Congratulations Jean!!!!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

We've started the mural! You can see us out there painting on Fruitvale & Macarthur on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and some Saturdays. There has been so much positive feedback and neighborhood cheers around the mural project! Check out the link below to see Tim Chapman's documentation footage of the painting in progress , he got some great images that explain a little bit about how we're using Sequoia childrens' drawings in our mural.


Suggestion Box

We want our mural to be as interactive as possible, not just for our Sequoia students but for the entire community. Tell us something about the Dimond that is special to you ; we'd love to hear your ideas and suggestions! You can put it in a post, or e-mail Mandy at amandalockwood9@gmail.com.
Links to the artists' websites:


Please contact either one of us if you have questions, suggestions, or would like to make a donation towards one of the "unfunded" panels .