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Thought Provokers: Downtown & Little Italy

San Diego has always had an artistic soul.  The culture and heritage of our city, like most great cities, owes a tremendous debt to the arts community.  Supporting local art is something we care deeply about and we’d like to do everything we can to help the local arts community thrive.  Unfortunately, too often media attention is monopolized by corporate interests and tabloid gossip – but culture doesn’t come from a focus on celebrity breakups it comes from a focus on the arts.

Below, you’ll find some incredible artists and creative professionals from in and around Downtown & Little Italy that we hope you will check out, follow and support.

Kat Dion

Music helped me so much in my life. I had no other choice but to be an artist. I then ended up moving to California at the age of 18, where I studied acting. And here I am now, at 20 years old working on some super exciting musical projects. Read more>>

Joshua Kmak

There’s something about the idea of “the unknown” and “the unexplainable” that has always fascinated me. I suppose its something I never really grew out of. The hope that somewhere in the world, magic still exists outside of the day to day that we all fall into so easily. Read more>>

Shani B.

I began to take my craft more seriously and released my freshman project “Mixed Signals.” After a few years of performing and collaborating around Boston, I was ready to go big or go home. And for me, that meant making the decision to move to Los Angeles to further pursue music. Read more>>

Danie Cansino

Art was always heavily discouraged in the low-income community around me. I was taught to make money, support myself— survival overall. Out of fear of being a “starving artist,” I attended Cal State Long Beach for English, creative writing instead of visual art. Read more>>

Michele Pruyn

While I do use traditional canvas, my main focus right now is functional pieces. Bringing the beauty of the ocean to everyday pieces for a celebration or a gift makes me happy to share a piece of paradise with my collectors. Read more>>

Eric Don Yoshimura

It really is where my art is evolving towards these days. After having very negative homophobic experiences and feeling like a misfit, I love celebrating who I am through art. I enjoy sharing it with men and women that identify as LGBT and those that love and support our community. Read more>>

Kristina Gatta

Another great inspiration are my clients. Being able to listen to what someone has to say and express that through a tattoo can be a process, but it is certainly a rewarding one. I truly enjoy the challenge of taking someone’s story and making it a piece of art. Read more>>

Savannah Lee Simmons

I am very young, but at the age of only nineteen, I have lived an existence ample enough for an entire lifetime. I graduated high school years early, at the age of fifteen, due to my chronic health issues and pining to fill my time with something less trivial than halls of lockers and science projects. Read more>>

Gisel Barrett and Edgar Flores

And this is our story; we have shared responsibilities, you’ll find my husband at the store since he knows a little bit more than I do of the healthy lifestyle, from product history to their impact of what these companies are doing in the communities where they source their products from. Read more>>

Jesse Valadez

Art and music have always been a constant in my life, but I had no interest in a career of tattooing until I did my first one almost 11 years ago now. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever attempted to do, and all this time later it hasn’t gotten much easier, haha. Read more>>


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