Public Projects
Ohlone Memorialization Project

A Public Art Commission for Bay St. Emeryville, A Redevelopment Agency
5616 Bay Street, Emeryville, CA

The developers of the Bay Street shopping complex also created a park to honor the Emeryville Shellmound, which was created by Ohlone Indians who lived in the area hundreds of years ago. The Ohlone built hundreds of shellmounds, which were composed of abalone, mussel, and clamshells and were sacred sites where they buried their dead. At the entry to the park I created a map of the Oakland/East Bay area carved into the surface of a large granite entry portal. Small orange tiles mark the Emeryville Shellmound, as well as other shellmounds in the surrounding area. Ten polished granite slabs line a walkway and form a timeline of Ohlone history. Each slab includes sandblasted text and images which note significant moments in their civilization, from a deadly measles epidemic to their first contact with Westerners.

Project Team   


Graphic design, production of stencil
Ari Salomon

Granite stone carving
Chris Stinehour

Granite sandblasting
Peninsula Sandblasting

Glass etching
Thomas Swan Sign Co.

©2012 Sheila Ghidini