Best Art Space 

Babilonia 1808

Located on the first floor of an actual house, rather than in a typical storefront-type commercial space, Babilonia 1808 is a literally homey, comfortable place to look at art. It hosts rotating exhibitions of artworks by international artists, many of whom address political and ecological issues in their work. Past shows have featured Kenji Yanobe (Japan), Manuel Ocampo (Philippines), and Ray Smith (Mexico). Just two years ago the space was run-down and almost uninhabitable, but recent renovations to this 1878 landmark have made it beautiful again, and totally eco-friendly. A large cistern stores roof water runoff for summer irrigation, solar panels lighten the load on the city's power grid, and many of the house's new beams, columns, and other structural elements came from demolished warehouses and department stores -- and even old barns. Part of the Babilonia Wilner Foundation, this nonprofit gallery owes its existence to the success of a founder's Silicon Valley software firm. A new exhibit begins on May 18 titled "Brown Man's Burden: Selected Works from the Babilonia Wilner Collection."

1928 Telegraph Ave., Oakland. 510-451-1932

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(Sorry, no information is currently available for other years in this same award category.)

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