July 4th Block Party / Sidewalk Potluck BBQ

It all started with a flier.  In fact, a lot of fliers.  A neighbor on my street, Occidental Blvd. in south Silver Lake, canvassed the entire block with fliers advertising a July 4th Community Block Party.  She didn’t have to ask twice.  I immediately coordinated with Graham Keegan downstairs to set up a Sidewalk Potluck BBQ and Pool Party.

But we didn’t have a pool.  But we did have Graham’s pick-up truck and some plastic tarp.  Pick-Up Truck Pool party!

I took a walk up Occidental Blvd. to see what activities other houses on the block were hosting.  

Met some of the neighbors on the street where I’ve lived for over 2 years, but have never met.  It turns out that many of the families that live on Occidental have been there for 3 generations.  Aunts live across the street from nephews, and grandmas lives next door to grandsons.  There is a real sense of community, and small town feel on this urban street.  Exactly what I’ve been looking for in a neighborhood.

Met some great neighbors, and went over to Elf Cafe for $5 Falafel night. 

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participatory figure drawing

i hosted a figure drawing class at Really Awesome Great Experiments.  But instead of spending lots of money on a professional nude model, we just all took turns drawing each other, clothed, and swapping public transportation stories, drinking mulled wine and hot toddies.

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silent movie show feat. Will Gramling

"The incredible Mr. Gramling will be improving on the piano (and other instruments) to classic short silent films. We’re picking the movie right before, he’s gonna make something totally different." @ Really Awesome Great Experiments

Buster Keaton in “Cops”

Charlie Chaplin in “One AM”

Buster Keaton in “One Week”

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8 1/2 x 11 Opening _ All-City Toy Ride

Really Awesome Great Experiments open with 8 1/2 x 11.

cards by Isis

screen-printed Furoshiki cloth

Donna, the dress-form, showcasing Graham Keegan's hand-dyed Kikko indigo scarves.

paper lamp shades by Isis.

Tyvek ceiling.

Then off to the Annual Midnight Ridazz All-City Toy Ride from East Hollywood to Downtown.  Then Downtown to a warehouse.  with Ben, Marya, and Avishay.

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Really Awesome Great Experiments

Remember when I did a small installation for sundance in the mini-market underneath my apartment building? Well, the gals have begun to hammer and bang away again.  But this time, they are transforming the space into Really Awesome Great Experiments, and the first experiment will be “8 1/2 by 11”, a pop up shop all about paper and all things flat.

Graham has been helping Carolyn and Mariana with the ceiling cover, made out of triangular folded Tyvek.

Isis’ paper airplanes cover the walls and ceiling of the best room in the space - the bathroom.

They are planning to open the space on Dec. 9, with two weeks worth of programs and events, including a possibly colab with Bruce’s Buddies.  Come on down to 604 N. Occidental.  Silver Lake, CA

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milk crate garden

Found some bright blue milk crates.  And received some free California Bay trees from LA city’s “Million Trees LA" initiative.  So I planted them in the crates, with burlap as a liner to liven up my street and apartment complex.

My complex doesn’t have a yard.  So last season, i planted some tomatoes in some crates in the back patio.  And now, it’s harvest time!

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fall sunset in silver lake

fall sunset in silver lake

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if i can’t go to heaven

let me go to L.A.

Or the far West Texas desert or an Oregon summer day
If we build a Utopia will you come and stay?
Shangri-La La La La La La La La La…

YACHT _ Shangri-La

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studio

I just realized the other day that I’ve been living in my Silver Lake studio apartment for a year now!  Thought I would post a retrospective here, showing how I’ve come to make this one room studio my own with some paint, a sander, and push pins.  More micro-projects are in the works, but for now, it’s home.

I made a conscientious effort when I moved in to buy as little “new” items as possible, and to only populate my studio with the necessities.  This forced me to buy things only from second-hand stores and pick furniture off of the sidewalk.  I’d say I’ve done a pretty good job.  Even the mattress is from Matt Maier!

Last February, I arrived to Silver Lake with only Donna, my bikes, a folding table, 2 air mattresses, and my plants.  I think I’ve filled in quite nicely.

Most of my furniture I’ve found on the street, just laying around.  I can’t save them all, but I have some pieces that fit well.  Like my rotating wooden coat rack! 

John Isaac Watter's paintings.

Bathroom

I painted the trim and took up all the fake, purple tile to reveal the original hexagonal white and blue tiles underneath.  I went through lots of razor blades.

Kitchen

Sanded & repainted all the shelves and drawers.  I also chipped off all the paint on all the fixtures and hardware, such as knobs and hinges.  The previous tenants painted over everything, including the sink.

Ice Box got some love.

Plants

repurposed milk crates -> planter boxes!

repurposed wooden book shelf -> planter box!

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