11 minutes | Oct 2nd 2020

The Townfolk Project, Documenting Oakland’s Community

About two years ago photographer Scott La Rockwell started taking photos of longtime Oakland residents, and interviewing them about their roots in the Town.

He published the pieces online, calling it: the Townfolk Project.

He says he initially planned to take photos of 100 folks from a cross section of backgrounds and neighborhoods, but with COVID-19, things slowed down. He’s sitting on about 20 published interviews.

But this past summer, when store owners boarded up their buildings to discourage any vandalism that might come after peaceful protests, Scott’s project got an unexpected canvas: the windows of a building on 13th and Broadway.

Now about a dozen of Scott’s photos of artists, activists and folks who’ve been putting on for the greater good of Oakland are mounted on one of the most prominent corners of the city.

This week, we talk to Scott La Rockwell about the importance of showing the community to itself, especially at a time when people are so divided.

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