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Art in San Jose: Memorable cities make art a priority

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This is one of the worst things about San Jose: the civic culture can be so rationalistic and robotic that they create an efficient but undelightful city. It's a shame too because I think there is a tremendous amount of creative energy in the area... but it has been difficult to harness the "underground" of T-shirt artists, nightclub dancers and DJs, muralists, cyclists and skaters, and found-object sculptors with the stiff "official" culture of the city. Also for some reason San Jose creatives are bizarrely TERRIBLE at using social media to promote their own work.

I remember a few years ago when a big tech conference tried to move from Portland to San Jose, and had to go back after one year because of a massive spontaneous revolt. Even the most technical group of people in the world were saying with their dollars that Portland is delightful and they want every conference to be there, in the land of cheap eats and dive bars and old movie theaters and used bookstores and free public transportation -- not in downtown San Jose, whose most characteristic feature is the electronic billboards telling you how many parking spaces there are in the various parking garages.

What will it take for San Jose to become a cool tech city? Maybe we can help them.

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