“I think it’s a great symbol of Oakland,
our vitality, our creativity, our secret sauce” – Libby Schaaf on the Golden Mean Snail Art Car
Photo by D. Ross Cameron/Bay Area News Group
It’s no surprise people are talking about Oakland’s new mayor, Libby Schaaf, but there’s one detail that seems to surprise everyone: her mayoral ride, the Golden Mean. Apparently most political figures don’t travel to their inauguration in a giant snail with flaming eye sockets.
Schaaf and I first connected during the 2013 Oakland mayoral race around West Oakland business. I agreed with Schaaf’s vision for an Oakland that supports artists, makers, and industrial businesses like mine. When she requested the Golden Mean make a campaign event appearance, I was happy to oblige.
When Schaaf won the election, we took a celebratory ride in the Golden Mean. But the greatest honor came with the last request: a ride for Schaaf and her family to her mayoral inauguration. The event was quintessential Oakland: held at the Paramount Theater, the mayor and her family arriving in the Golden Mean, Schaaf’s acceptance speech including “hella”, and protesters reminding everyone of issues to be addressed.
When we first built the Golden Mean in 2008, little did we know it would someday make Oakland history. Working on nights and weekends, the snail car my wife Kyrsten dreamed up was built by her, myself, and our Empire of Dirt crew of artist makers in my West Oakland Form & Reform shop. Since building Golden Mean we’ve made the Electrobite and Serpent Twins, but you’re less likely to see our mayor riding around in them, seeing as they’re not street legal.
Meet the Golden Mean Sunday, January 11, 2015
As part of Schaaf’s inaugural week, the Golden Mean Snail Art Car will soon make another appearance at the public event celebrating the great town of Oakland and it’s makers this Sunday, January 11. We hope you’ll join us for the “Made in Oakland” Inaugural Festivalat American Steel in West Oakland from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.
I got some great press at Huffington Post. Big thanks to Robin Wilkey for the story. I love that she printed what I said about Oakland. I really do hope Oakland get’s it right this time. I encourage you all to vote and take over this great city!
The Serpents are growing and taking shape everyday. Lots of wonderful friends and new faces showed up to help Sunday and lots got done. Still needing skilled volunteers. Contact me if you have skills in metal fabrication, general fabrication, LED knowledge, soldering, Flash animation of LEDs. car stereo installation, sewing. For people with no workshop skills – be a gopher for hardware or food runs, help us organize and mail out rewards from our sure-to-be-successful kickstarter so we can keep moving forward… I’m sure I can think of more!
The kickstarter fundraiser is going well but we still need more than $4000 to get our funding! Please tell your friends, spam the world, pitch in a $25. Less than a week left and if we don’t fully fund we lose the $6000 we have already raised!
What hoot hanging out with the Front Porch at the hootenanny! Lots of great entertainment for the kids, main stage acts, homemade BBQ and minimal crowds. This is the place to be. After hours we headed out into camping with the David Luning band and got quite a crowd! Line dancing, swing dancing and staggering cowboys wondering why this house kept moving.
The Boiler Bar crew got a chance to show off our toys and bars at IDEO party this weekend. Great event and lots of great people. So fun to hang out with such creative people. Great costumes, and the sets they made for us were over the top! Events like these remind me why I moved to the bay area and stayed! Hope to do more with the people I met last night.
Great fun to participate in a small town holiday parade! The town really appreciated us coming and everyone who approached us struggled for words and wanted to talk about how great it was to see art drive down their Main street. We will be back!
Last month, for some reason, Vito Fun decided to make a pilgrimage to the Black Rock Desert in Nevada to mingle with people who eschew contemporary hygiene practices, refer to smoking weed as “blazing,” and generally contribute very little to society at large. Somehow, Vito was able to get some nice photos out of the whole affair.