Cheap Wine, Free Cheese

Our critics review local visual arts exhibitions.

October in Boonville — Considering many galleries don’t even have Sunday hours, the Boontling boys know how to draw. This month’s show reflects a forward-thinking outlook, with lots of graffiti and comic-book styles juxtaposed against less-T-shirt-ready stuff. CCA instructor and local artist Jose Guinto’s $600 “Untitled”/”Bombs” uses black-and-white watercolor, pen, and ink on 28″x15″ white paper to make a chaotic, contrast-heavy piece with war overtones. Bombs fall on record players and wheelchairs and other domestic objects, while the bottom 40 percent of the work is smeared in explosive black. It lacks the intriguing levity of street-trained graffiti tactician Ajene Moss, an Oaklander obsessed with this region’s ubiquitous taco trucks. Mirthful and colorful, he uses ink and paper for a series of “Pimp My Taco Truck” studies. And stay tuned for the “99-Cent Show” in December. It’ll be a cash-and-carry experience where everyone can take art home. (Through October 29 at 4224 Telegraph Ave.; or 510-295-8881.)

Overlooked — Local career photographer Ralph Granich used to get busted by his art teachers for taking what he calls “nothing shots” — mundane slice-of-life pictures with no clear action or narrative. Here, he decorates the perimeter walls of the former gas station turned Urban Blend Cafe with a dozen untitled shots in an untitled exhibit that studies form, pattern, and texture. “Detecto” contrasts the blurry condensation on the inside of a gas meter with the gritty, red rust of the meter’s exterior. “Nozzles” lingers on a shelf full of different hose attachments, while “Gas Meters” gazes at a series of the latter. Granich’s eye stops where many other photographers would keep searching. He celebrates the neutral, yet aesthetically pleasing, surprises hiding in the everyday. (Through October 31 at 333 Broadway, Oakland; 510-444-4648.)

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