SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – A mechanical engineer in his 30s, with top tech firms on his resume, and an artist in her 70s have come together at a unique collective space in San Francisco, where the art and tech world have found common ground.
Tech startup workers and artists are sharing space at a collective at 15th Street and Potrero Avenue in San Francisco despite the many differences between the two sides.
Just ask artist Marlene Aron, who is as fiery as her red hair. She said she’s a regular protester of Ellis Act evictions. “Oh, I’m very involved in that. I was down at Civic Center on Saturday, absolutely,” she said.
Aron said she doesn’t like when riders of the corporate shuttle buses, for companies like Google, Apple and Genentech, are so absorbed, that they can’t even say hello and chat at a bus stop.
Engineer John Yi said he has seen techies and artist butt heads. “And yet, I know my colleagues from Facebook and at Pinterest, and none of them would say, we don’t need the art,” he said.
With that in mind, Yi is one of four tech entrepreneurs, with an appreciation for the arts, that has formed a collective called Code & Canvas, where tech startups help subsidize the cost of artist studios.
“We believe strongly that art and technology are symbiotic, and then secondarily, that businesses ought to improve lives,” Yi said.