Generation Bloom cultivates creativity

From the outside, the rustic brick walls of the Los Angeles warehouse hardly appear as though they could house anything beholding an ounce of creativity inside. However, an open doorway exposes just enough fluorescent light to intrigue an onlooker to investigate what lies indoors. Within a minute of entering the space, one finds themselves enshrouded with light, color, and an endless display of originality.

On August 31st, a newly-established art collective known as Generation Bloom put on their first event, cultivating a simple warehouse space into a hub for creativity. Hosting a duel fashion show and art exhibition, Generation Bloom kick-started their initiative with hopes to provide a safe space for lesser-known artists to display any and all types of work.

Created by two California Polytechnic Pomona graduates, Generation Bloom comes about at a time where more and more people are choosing to channel their inner creative. With so many artists tapping into their potential, the current artistic scene is presenting a mixed bag of opportunity and competition for the spotlight. Co-creator Rialyn Espinosa hopes that her project will generate an all-inclusive, collaborative community among artists where they can feel encouraged to share their crafts.

“First and foremost, I think a lot of people…get discouraged after a while of things not happening with their art and I kind of just want people to not give up on that aspect,” said Espinosa. “I think in this day and age, a lot of people just want to create communities and a way to support each other and feel comfortable in an environment where they’re not judged, and I think that’s really important.”

The organization’s first-ever event incorporated a fashion show and an art exhibition into one space. As inclusivity is the overarching goal of Generation Bloom, every work of art and line of fashion differed from the next. Just as intended, many featured artists received a sense of safety and support when putting out their art.

“It’s just such a cool, by-artists-for-artists group…we need more of that,” said artist and graphic designer Margaret Salazar. “For this event, what it did really great was just having a bunch of different booths…Like I’m doing this book[making] stuff, and then I’m right next to these lovely skin care ladies and then we’re right next to an air plant person…It feels like a very safe space to just be in…everybody’s welcome.”

Around 8 p.m., the crowd was directed into another room, where the most immersive portion of the night began: the fashion show. Featuring six unique designers, no artist’s collection seemed to tell the same story. From diverse fabrics to diverse models, the show seemed to embody exactly what Espinosa sought out to create through her art collective. Some models were Santa Monica College (SMC) students, who chose to get involved after Espinosa reached out to SMC’s fashion department seeking their involvement.

Considering that this was Generation Bloom’s first event, the turnout was quite impressive. Because of both Rialyn’s and co-creator Sarah Sutton’s passion for art and design, any profit made off of the event will be donated to either public schools or arts education programs around Los Angeles county.

Because the project strives to allow a space for local and unknown artists to feel seen by fellow artists and the greater surrounding communities, Espinosa hopes to attract all different types of creatives from all different backgrounds. She does not simply want to cater to her friends or to those who already have an established following; rather, she is open to collaborating with anyone who has a desire to display their talents.

“There’s events like this, but you have to know someone or something and that’s kind of a hard aspect of it, or it’s kind of focused on a very specific type of thing, and that’s not what I wanted to do with this type of group,” said Espinosa. “Whatever type of art you want to express, whatever you want to do, we’re here, we’re open, as long as you find us.”