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Audience Location:

Lake Merritt, steps by the bridge across from Oakland Museum

Date and Time:

June 24, 2017 at 6:00pm PST

Water Locale:

Lake Merritt

lake Merritt


Laura Godla
is a performing artist interested in the ways in which environmental and social justice can serve as a bridge to each other.

How can the outdoors, adventure, art, and performance transform the way we understand unity? The way we understand Justice? The ways we connect with our fellow human beings? The ways we connect with our own body, our own senses. The ways we connect with plants, and water, and wind, and fire, the elements of our earth.

She studied dance at UC Davis, graduated in 2012, and has spent the last 5 years teaching, performing, exploring and learning about movement, people, water, and the Earth.

History of Site and Related Water Issues:

A gem at the heart of Oakland, Lake Merritt has been many things.

For most of the past ten thousand years, it has been a tidal lagoon where the waters of several East Bay creeks met the brackish tides of the Bay. Ringed with mudflats and tidal marsh, this lagoon was home to an abundance of native wildlife, including hundreds of species of birds.

“This changed dramatically in 1869 as Oakland Mayor Samuel Merritt dammed the channel connecting the lagoon to the Bay. Later becoming the 12th Street Bridge, the lagoon’s water was forced through narrow culverts on its way in and out of the Bay, significantly reducing circulation and largely disconnecting the waterway from the rest of our great estuary.

Over the next century, the lake was inundated by raw sewage and considerable amounts of pollutants. 62 storm drains were routed straight into the lake, bringing with them car oil and other toxins from the city’s streets. To this day, the majority of these storm drains remain unfiltered. All of this has resulted in poor water quality, low oxygen levels, algae blooms, and numerous massive fish kills.”


Give me Water, Valarie June

The Performance:

Nicole Casado, Kristen Rulifson, Lauren Godla, Maribel Lopez


Environmental Impact:

I plan to partner with Clean Water Action in Oakland to raise awareness for local water issues.

Directions to the Site of Performance:

The steps just west of the bridge at the south tip of the lake across from the Oakland Museum.

Email for more information:

How can I get involved?

I would love for anyone and everyone that is interested in water rights and issues to come create, set up, and organize a walk around the lake where different art exhibits (in the form of words, images, stories, and movement around the lake) are performed, staged and shared for the public to tour.
A moving, flowing, living performance dedicated to water, the element that keeps us alive.

Local Website:

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