.RAW Showcases San Jose Artists, Photographers

Artists are born unionists. Theirs is a talent that requires support, because if can’t be learned, it must be protected. It’s why they tend to cloister together, in the hopes that a collective effort will yield individual growth—power in numbers and such.
The independent artists organization RAW: natural born artists is one of largest of these creative brain trusts.
RAW is intent not on mere representation but on marketing the works of a nationwide network of painters and photographers, makeup artists and musicians, filmmakers and fashionistas. This Thursday, RAW will play curator to San Jose’s artistically gifted in an evening called “Menagerie.”
Currently operating in 64 cities nationwide, the RAW showcase takes up residence at different venues to host the work of local artists. On April 26, Beso Nightclub on South First Street in San Jose debuts “Menagerie,” an evening of sights and sounds featuring both San Jose’s best and brightest, as well as the underground and rising. Some of the featured creative types include photographers SnapShot Ninja (Annalisa Hackleman, whose pics have been seen in Metro) and Joha Harrison, artists Rikki9 Merle, Jamie Berumen and WJS and stylist Susan Talamantes.
“San Jose was a logical choice,” says RAW San Jose showcase director Greg Gioia. The city already has a “massive, thriving underground art scene but no national outlets for that talent.” RAW wants to be that outlet. It’s done wonders for some places already. A Sundance Channel documentary zeroed in on the work of one Los Angeles–based RAW artist, and a designer in Philadelphia landed a clothing line deal with Macy’s.
The selection process is fairly open ended. Looking for young designers in the first stages of their career, RAW’s talent scouts both actively hunt for new talent, and accept submissions on their website. By mid-June, RAW will span the globe. Its first international show will be held in Brisbane, Australia, with more showcases to be added around the continent, as well as in Germany, where RAW debuts in the fall.
RAW Showcase
Thursday, 8–11:30pm; $10–$15
Beso, 417 S. First St., San Jose


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