For most, Valentine's Day is a day of chocolate and love, but for Oakland's new Victorian Rat Gallery, it was all about art. Local artist Brianna Brandow celebrated the day of love with her one-of-a-kind showing of paintings and collages about love. The converted garage, now art gallery with violet and pink walls made for a great setting for her work. At the end of the narrow space, her piece "Love Letters" captured the signatory "I love you's" exchanged between her and her fiance, co-founder/curator of the Victorian Rat, David Seilar.
When I was in the Bay Area, I made it a point to visit this boutique gallery before returning to Los Angeles, and it was totally worth it. As I approached the sweet neighborhood home, laughter rolled out of the gallery. Brandow's artwork, which featured roses, notes and hearts hung with elegance on the walls. But painting was not the only art to be seen. They had invited JenJen Wong of FeatherLuxe, the original feather hair extension system that is sweeping the nation as the latest fashion trend. Simple rooster feathers that are fastened into hair, requiring no heat, no glue, or chemicals. I was so excited to get an extension put into my hair, but as I approached the FeatherLuxe station, I could tell I wasn't the only excited one. JenJen had just purchased a piece of art and was clearly more excited than I. And she didn't just purchase any piece, she chose the featured "Love Letters" collage! You could clearly see how in love she was with her purchase. It got me thinking that perhaps Valentine's Day isn't just for relationships between two humans, but, in fact, it could be about our relationships to art.
So this Valentine's Day, art was my Valentine.