What is Wide Open Walls?
Wide Open Walls is a 501(3)(c) whose mission is to promote and celebrate public art. We believe that art is an integral part of the human experience, and can empower, inspire and transform lives. Wide Open Walls promotes diversity through artistic expression. We think art should be part of daily life, and want art to reach a wider audience. Our mission is embodied in Wide Open Walls - our annual festival in August that brings our region together to celebrate Art for All. The festival brings both local, national and international artists together to transform our region with amazing street art. We also produce other public art events throughout the year - including The Mural Jam, Sac Republic's Paint The Park, and the upcoming Playa Art Trail. Wide Open Walls brings underserved neighborhoods public art that encourages a sense of pride and identity; provides community gathering spaces; generates impactful, measurable economic growth for our region; and promotes greater cultural understanding and appreciation amongst diverse groups.
Wide Open Walls Staff
David Sobon – Founder and Producer
David Sobon is the owner of DSA Events - a live auction and fundraising consulting firm specializing in working with nonprofits. He has had a lifelong interest in and love for the arts, has served on the Sacramento Metropolitan Arts Commission, has juried numerous art competitions.The idea of bringing a mural festival to the capital city of California came to David while he was biking an alley in midtown Sacramento, and thought it could benefit from art activation and increased community engagement. This eventually led to the Sacramento Mural Festival, which David founded and which was produced in conjunction with the Friends of the Arts Commission in 2016. In 2017, with an even more ambitious vision, David formed Wide Open Walls, and hired Warren Brand from Branded Arts as a collaborator and curator. David is a tireless advocate for the arts and for the city of Sacramento. He is a high-energy connector of people, and his enthusiasm and drive makes things happen. At an age when a lot of people are thinking about retirement, David has no plans to slow down - he has found his passion. His motivation is his desire to showcase the diverse, innovative and rapidly evolving cultural landscape of Sacramento, while promoting the excitement and accessibility of street art both locally, nationally and worldwide.
Warren Brand – Curator
Warren is founder of the multi-platform arts organization Branded Arts, which hosts a series of unique events merging art, music and entertainment. These events also host a variety of charitable associations, including The Boys & Girls Clubs of America, UNICEF, and Vista Del Mar Child & Family Services. Branded Arts’ social reach is massive, drawing trendsetters and cultural tastemakers that bridge several communities, including the art, music, and philanthropic worlds.Over the last 6 years, Branded Arts has produced over 200 public and private art projects around the world. Branded Arts recently completed a group of murals at THE RESERVE LA, a new 20-acre creative campus in Playa Vista, housing Microsoft, Sony PlayStation and TMZ. The Reserve won the 2014 Best Office Project Award from the Los Angeles Business Journal. Other major projects include IO Playa Vista, The Sunset Media Center, The Continental Grand Plaza, and The Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. With cutbacks in public school budgets significantly impacting art programs around the country, the company’s philanthropic arm steps into that void by commissioning famous artists to paint arts at local properties, developments, youth centers and schools. Their goal is to inspire with art, to give people a creative outlet, and to always display positive imagery. Now a staple of the urban contemporary art scene, Warren Brand has established himself as a major art collector, curator, and tastemaker. He and his team have an overall vision built upon a substantial roster of contributing artists and multiple artistic platforms that will take their projects to even greater heights.
Anna Sobon - Development Director
Anna Sobon resides in Sacramento on “the grid.” She is excited to watch the city she loves transforming, and becoming a hotspot for art, recreation and innovation. She has a BS from Cal Poly in Business/Marketing and worked for many years as a Director of Human Resources for both corporations and nonprofits. She has consulted with many organizations in the Sacramento area, and loves volunteering for the various philanthropic causes she supports.Anna is a writer, event planner, and art collector, as well as a mom to three amazing adult children. Along with her husband, she has travelled extensively and enjoys seeking out street art from all over the world. Last year, she was Wide Open Walls copywriter, managed artist’s hospitality, and served as the event producer for The Wall Ball fundraiser. She is thrilled to have been working with Wide Open Walls since its inception and looks forward to continuing to help promote “Art for All.”
Patrick Harbison – Public Relations and Social Media Strategies
Patrick Harbison is the owner of Patrick Harbison Public Relations (PHPR), a full-service public relations firm in Sacramento.With more than 15 years of experience as a publicist, media consultant, publicity professional and media booker, Patrick leverages his extensive contacts within broadcast and print media to yield coverage for his firm’s diverse client base which includes marquee city-wide events, politically-minded organizations and daytime television actors. Patrick is a three-time Hermes award winner, has been voted “Best of Sacramento” in various categories by both the Sacramento News and Review and the KCRA A-List and was selected as one of the Sacramento Business Journal’s top “40 Under 40” professionals in 2014. In 2015, the Sacramento Public Relations Association named him the Public Relations Professional of the Year and in 2016 Patrick was named Influencer of the Year by the Public Relations Society of America. Comstock’s Magazine named him one of 2017’s Emerging Leaders. Patrick is a dedicated advocate for Sacramento non-profits and regularly donates his time and PR expertise to area organizations including WEAVE, the Make a Wish Foundation and the Sacramento Children’s Home. A lifelong Sacramento resident, Patrick lives in midtown with his dog Guinness.
Margaret Owens – Director of Operations
As Director of Operations, Margaret Owens is able to utilize her 30+ years of experience in accounting and contract management. From managing and auditing the books of individual companies and clients, to forensic accounting for specialty clients, and even implementing accounting software solutionsMargaret has used her BS in accounting from the University of North Dakota to support businesses and clients since 1986.
In 2012, Margaret added Fundraising and Development to her experience, by supporting one of her true passions, animal rights, through the SPCA. For 4 years, she supported fundraising efforts, chaired event committees, and worked with the event staff to help ensure success for the organization. Because of this experience, she brings a unique perspective, and a strong desire to ensure each non-profit event’s success.Margaret looks forward to supporting each charity to her best ability, and helping DSA move to the next level as an organization.
Deepak Sharma – IT and Logistics
Deepak is an Entrepreneur and Technnology Consultant with over 35 years of experience in IT and Management Consulting. He has been working with various social endeavors in Sacramento, providing technical as well as management consulting.
A long-term Sacramento resident, Deepak has now joined the Wide Open Walls team and continues to collaborate with the rest of the team members on making this artistic endeavor a success. He contributes his tech. capabilities to enable the event with cutting-edge IT support. He also manages the event's presence in the cyberspace, besides providing logistical support.
Raphael Delgado - Manager of Artists Relations
Raphael Delgado is a Northern California based artist whose work explores a broad range of styles and mediums. He is widely recognized throughout the Sacramento area for his unique approach to contemporary art through painting, sculpture, and most recently, costume design and performance art. His highly personal imagery is consistently inventive and ever-changing, but often focuses both human and animal forms, abstract designs, and universal symbols.Throughout his career, Raphael has continuously pursued new ideas and styles, which is a direct reflection of the rapidly advancing culture shift in Sacramento. Located in the heart of the burgeoning R Street Arts district, he has maintained a loyal following of collectors and patrons and is featured in numerous corporate and private collections throughout the nation. Raphael completed his now iconic version of the California Bear as part of last year’s Wide Open Walls festival. Painted in a vibrant shade of gold and in Raphael’s signature style, it shines down on 21st Street - a proud beacon of both our city and our state. The bear was based on a prior Delgado piece that was selected as the image for Sac Republic’s official 2017 renewal scarf. In addition to being a full-time artist, Raphael serves on the non-profit board of Wide Open Walls and is its Artists Relations Manager.
Roger Klein - Director of Exhibitions
For the past 30+ years has managed, guided and mentored the careers of well known visual and musical artists both in the U.S. and abroad. Roger has staged, curated and overseen sold-out art exhibitions in L.A. NYC and London having worked with a number of major contemporary artists including Chris Levine, Logan Hicks, D*Face, Charming Baker, Dan Baldwin, Miss Bugs, Richie Culver and others.Klein was involved in the planning and promotion of a number of major museum exhibitions including working with the Museum Of Modern Art in NYC and The National Portrait Galleries in the United Kingdom. He has given numerous lectures on the changing contemporary art world at both Sotheby's Institute in NYC and in London as well as being interviewed by the BBC, SkyNews, GQ Magazine, The Daily Telegraph, The Evening Standard, The Art Newspaper and Forbes amongst others. In 2017, he served as Exhibitions Director for the inaugural Wide Open Walls mural festival.
Courtney Tyler – Event Director/WOW Street Party and Live Concert
Courtney Tyler is a passionate events and marketing professional with a talent for understanding and implementing clients’ visions while executing flawlessly on every event detail. She possesses a strong enthusiasm for personal relationships and partner management. Has natural ability to engage and lead teams while maintaining a high level of organizational efficiency.Courtney has served as the Events and Entertainment Manager for The Sacramento RIvercats, the Business Development Director for the American Heart Association’s northern California Art Chase, and the Executive Event Director for the Winterfest beer and wine social. She is the owner of CT Event Management - a full-service corporate and special event planning firm based in Sacramento dedicated to creating customized and strategic event solutions that meet their client’s business goals, objectives and vision.
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