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Cover | Karen Pearle

Let’s Dance (2007, mixed-media mosaic; selected from hundreds of submissions from more than 50 local artists as the winner of The Monthly’s “Summer Theme” cover art contest done in conjunction with Pro Arts Open Studios.) Long intrigued by the passion of the tango, Pearle expresses the joy of partnership and life itself as a dance. Her work explores color and form in the ancient, newly revived medium of mosaic. Upon seeing a contemporary mosaic several years ago, she says, “a bunch of nerve cells must have fired in my being” because she hastened to study at the Institute of Mosaic Art in Oakland and has been making mosaics ever since. Pearle’s innovative approach to mosaic comes from her background as a painter and combines with her exploration of materials including stained glass, ceramics, mirror, shells, gems and recycled glass. Now an Oakland resident, Pearle received a Master’s of Fine Arts in painting from Queens College in New York. She is also a trained body worker in the practice of Chi Nei Tsang. For more information, go to or contact her at


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August 2008 Issue:
Table of Contents

|  The New New Freight
The Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse, the beloved 40-year-old Berkeley folk venue, has broken ground on its new space in the downtown Berkeley arts district. The multi-million dollar endeavor for the always-modest Freight has some worried about the risk and others elated about the possibility of bringing folk and roots music to more of the masses.  By Andrew Gilberts

UP FRONT | Digital Art and Soul
A Berkeley-based nonprofit called the Center for Digital Storytelling has taught more than 10,000 people around the country how to edit short movies, dubbed digital stories. But the Center’s mission is less about Cannes and Final Cut Pro and more about the power of personal storytelling.  By Autumn Stephens

IN GOOD HEALTH | Taking It Slow
The Slow Food movement may be the food trend of the future, but it’s taking us back to the fruits and nuts of our ancestors. As tens of thousands prepare for the Slow Food Nation event in san Francisco, we look at the health virtues of this diet and peek at one mom who’s growing her own.   By Noelle Robbins

FIRST PERSON | Berkeley Lineup
She hailed from Roswell, N. M., a town best known for its UFO incident, but when she arrived in the East Bay decades ago, she felt like the alien when she spotted locals lining up for everything from coffee to poetry. Some things never change. By Jane Hammon

Shopping Around  |  Built to Last
The East Bay is a bastion of green builders. Whether you’re remodeling a bathroom, shoring up the foundation or simply swapping some light fixtures, here’s an eco-friendly 411.  By Andrea Pflaumer 

Shop Talk  |  Four inviting shops in your neighborhood
Ring of Fire Imports sells handpicked artisan crafts from Bali at a unique University Avenue shop.
It's a Party is a new shop on College Avenue that has everything kids and grown-ups need for parties of all kinds.
Glamour Paws in Montclair sells high-end togs for dogs and many more treats for your pampered pets.
Spanish Table is the "Spanish cooking headquarters" in the East Bay where you can find many kinds of pans for your paella.

The Kilduff File |  Derique McGee
Unique Derique’s hambone body percussion routine draws upon a rich African-American tradition.  By Paul Kilduff

Available only in print:

Editor’s Note:
a look at this month’s issue and commentary on life in the East Bay

Letters: reader responses to The Monthly’s stories
Be East Bay: an introduction to interesting people, places and events in your community

Critics Choice: highlights of this month’s happenings in art, theater, film, dance and music

Boutique Bazaar: distinctive small shops in the East Bay

Food for Thought: local caterers and food and wine purveyors

Dining Guide: a selection of East Bay restaurants

Marketplace Home: a catalog of services for your home and garden

Marketplace Services: a catalog of personal and creative services

Kartoon Korner: editorial cartoons to entertain and agitate

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