Category Archives: Uncategorized

Artist Opening: Petal Power – The Art of Louise Chen

Join us on Friday June 4th we are excited to offer the work of Louise Chen.  Petal Power, Louise Chen’s newest installation of drawings and paintings, evokes rejuvenation, renewal, and refurbishment. From a pile of compost – discarded materials; an apple core, coffee grounds, last night’s pasta – flowers erupt and insist a beautiful contrast between light and dark, between life and death. The ability for nature to renew itself is amazing. Chen’s drawings apply the same attitude towards life and human interactions; transformations, from jealousy to admiration, from break up to break through, from violence to embrace, and our ability to get up tumultuous and steep hills with our own “petal power”.

Petal Power:  The Art of Louise Chen
June 1st-30th
Artists Reception Friday, June 4th, 5-8pm
SubRosa, 703 Pacific at Spruce St

Louise Chen is a Los Angeles based artist currently living in Santa Cruz. Her work has been featured in galleries across the United States, including Giant Robot galleries in New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. Her artwork is inspired by botanical and scientific drawings, vintage floral patterns, antiques, the universe, animals, and the people and artists that move around her. Her work plays with positive and personal reflections as well as universalities, sometimes conveying adult hardships through childish fantasies.


A Statement from SubRosa concerning May Day

SubRosa was not involved in the events in downtown Santa Cruz on May Day. SubRosa is a community space that offers literature, art, coffee and performances. Like many businesses downtown, SubRosa provides a public bulletin board for people to post fliers. Jimi Haynes is not and has never been a volunteer at SubRosa.

We know it is a terrible feeling to feel under attack, as some of the downtown business owners and employees must feel right now. We care about the suffering of the people who were affected. The fear of violence and attack is something that many of us, especially women, youth, people of color, political dissidents, and poor people, feel on a regular basis in Santa Cruz and the world at large. None of us, especially anarchists, are working for a world dominated by fear. As an anarchist space, we strive to create a venue for the free association of autonomous people working together as equals to create a world without domination through direct action and mutual support.


The following is not an official statement, but some ideas of ways that individuals can reach out and support other individuals who are being impacted by these events, and also foster more understanding in our community:

  • Call or visit someone you know has been impacted, just to let them know you care and are thinking about them.
  • Have nuanced discussions with your friends and neighbors about the atmosphere downtown both before and after May Day, listening to other people’s feelings with an open mind.
  • Speak with someone who is from a different walk of life than you about how these events are affecting them. Maybe ask them what their experiences being downtown are like.
  • Be careful about repeating things that you do not know are true. Rumor and accusation can be very harmful to people.

Ideas for creating a supportive atmosphere in Santa Cruz

Thank you for your support so far. This has been, and will continue to be a rough ride.

I know that friends are looking at the accusations in the paper, and they
probably don’t gibe with what you’ve experienced of anarchist projects, if
you’ve taken a Free Skool class, if you’ve seen a free community movie with
Guerilla Drive-In, or if you’ve sat in SubRosa enjoying a performance or a
cup of coffee with a friend. In the world I want to see, people work
together to create community, support each other, solve problems without
domination and reliance on outside authority.

I suspect supportive people are standing on the sidelines hoping to help, but
not knowing where the best places to put their energy are. So I made a list
if it will help. Please don’t feel obligated to do any of this unless you
are personally compelled to. Here are things you can do:

  • Going to SubRosa to support staff.  We are trying to make sure that no one staffs alone.  While the space has been visited by threatening aggressive people, we have also been visited by curious, open individuals who came to show support.  Bring friends.
  • Write letters in support of people and organizations who are being targeted.  Letters might go to nearby projects, landlords or threatened projects, employers of those targeted, letters to the editors, and just other friends in the area.
  • Call and support people who are going through a lot or working doubletime to help others through the shitstorm, not just people who have become the focus of media, but the people around and supporting them.
  • If you know someone who was hurt or scared by what happened downtown on May Day, take a moment to express your compassion to them. 
  • Teach anyone you can about the true meaning of anarchism, maybe even expressing this in public forums to further understanding.
  • Contribute to what might end up being a long and expensive legal defense ,

SC Weekly: Anarchists Aren’t Evil

Check out this Op-Ed piece from the Santa Cruz Weekly!

Statement RE Jimi Haynes

Jimi Haynes has never staffed nor volunteered at SubRosa.  No one in the SubRosa collective recognizes seeing Mr. Haynes in or around the community space.

We note that at first Mr. Haynes volunteered to the police that he saw a flier on SubRosa’s public bulletin board.  Now Mr. Haynes claims he worked at SubRosa for a year.  To be clear, SubRosa has no connection whatsoever to Mr. Haynes.

SubRosa was not involved in the events of May Day.  SubRosa is a community space that offers literature, art, and performance.  Like many businesses downtown, SubRosa provides a public bulletin board for people to post fliers.

SubRosa under attack for being an anarchist space

SubRosa needs your support– and I don’t mean financially, this time. We are getting blamed for the May Day dance party that resulted in broken windows in downtown SC. Individuals involved with SubRosa are having their physical well being threatened. People are using what was a huge dance party with a few acts of vandalism as an excuse to attack SubRosa and anyone in any way associated with it. There are accusations that SubRosa organized the May Day event, that the event started at SubRosa and a ton of other things that aren’t true. SubRosa had nothing to do with the event, except that there were fliers for it here, as there were allover town and allover the internet.

This is a time for us all to band together, to show support and solidarity with each other in the face of a police state that has always blamed anarchists for everything destructive, while actively trying to prevent people from exercising creativity that would create alternatives to capitalist relations. The people who make this town a fantastic place to be are far more important than the walls and windows of businesses that suck our souls away for their profit.

Most of the accusations leveled at SubRosa are coming from two places (which may actually be the same place). One is Take Back Santa Cruz, a group of white, upper-middle class, vaguely conservative people who wrote an almost completely inaccurate email to its email list conflating every DIY community event in Santa Cruz with the May Day vandalism. The other source of misinformation comes from the ever virulent Santa Cruz Sentinel online forums. There is a lot of inaccurate information posted there, partly due to inaccurate reporting in the Sentinel’s article and partly due to a bunch of ignorant jerks who get to write whatever they want without having to sign their name to it. A lot of the comments have been incredibly racist, and incredibly violent, calling for doing injury to SubRosa collective members, and even posting their addresses, or, even more offensively, blaming the vandalism on illegal immigrants, which just shows you the true ignorance of the people posting.

It seems incredibly ironic to me that people who are so appalled by “violence” done to buildings would call for physical harm to be done to real people.

This town does not just belong to the rich, the white, the business owner. It also belongs to the artist, the street musician, the worker, the homeless. It also belongs to the anarchist and the anti-authoritarian. We live in a place where business owners and the police try to control our every move, where you can sit, what you can say, and they give us nothing in return, telling us to move along so that the rich tourists who come to spend money won’t have their pure eyes tainted with the sight of our ragged clothes.

The SubRosa collective has created a space that challenges the commercialism and rampant capitalism of downtown Santa Cruz, and we have tried to balance that with setting boundaries towards people who come in to our space to create a safe and welcoming atmosphere for people to share ideas and create friendships and alliances. It isn’t easy and we do struggle with maintaining a space that feels positive for us all to be in. But the people who frequent SubRosa do not deserve less respect just because they don’t have a lot of money or drive fancy cars.

Let’s continue to show solidarity and support for each other and plan community events, because that is what actually makes this town worth living in.

Folk-punk at SubRosa! Sunday, May 2nd at 6:30pm

Folk-ish show at Subrosa this sunday! featuring two amazing local bands and two amazing touring bands from Canada. Doors at 6:30, show starts at 7 and ends at 10! Five bucks at the door, but, as always, no one turned away.


Nessie and Her Beard


Cud Eastbound

Pale Robin