Sometimes you just stumble onto a place that is so far away and so incredibly strange that you are convinced you either imagined it or it is some sort of figment of your imagination. These are places that you do not see regularly and question if you could even visit it again because it is so damn bizarrely great. Late last year we were out in Arcadia with some friends who tipped us off to a strange and magical little Japanese shopping center. The shopping area has a lot of food stuffs and souvenirs and more but the big attraction is a large room full of crane games, those frustrating yet and demanding toy winning machine that require many dollars to win something, lots of patience, but can provide some very big payoffs if you can withstand the frustration of a crane machine.
Clover Canyon is a bold Los Angeles brand that we are kind of obsessed with. We can’t wear their clothes since they are made for ladies (and are quite pricey) but–boy–are they magnificent, graphic, pattern colliding, very now clothes. They also want to be more than just “some clothes maker” as they are making concerted and beautiful efforts to go beyond their brand: they are making art. The brand released a collaboration with artist Alexandra Grant late in 2012 that sees portions of sales going to LAXART. How fabulous is this?
Alex Chow is a local furniture designer who is making some very modular things. They don’t have wheels or spin or have little drivers: they move in their own special way, collapsing or articulating themselves as a part of their job. They look like post-Danish Modern future furniture. It’s like Ikea by way of The Fifth Element.
You never want to hear about sad things when you are casually perusing Facebook. That’s always a bummer. We saw a pretty big one yesterday: the unfortunate news that young photographer and artist Jessica Lum had passed away after a long battle with cancer. Word came from KPCC’s Grant Slater, who had hired Lum to join the public radio station’s growing group of visual journalists. Lum had to resign shortly after starting at KPCC because of her illness and we’re very sad to report the loss of this talent. Wwe wanted to share a Southern California body of work of hers that examines desert dwellers–squatters, wanderers, and more–as fascinating character studies in photography and video: they are Lum’s Slab City Stories.
Tanya Aguiniga is now a Los Angeles icon. She’s a maker that we all know because her Rope Knot Bracelets skyrocketed to local fame and beyond a few years back. To simply call her “The Rope Bracelet Woman” is very much a shame because she not only has tons more accessories but site-specific works and furniture that all play into a theme of making the industrial delicate or the delicate industrial. What we wanted to focus on is a group of furniture items that take normally hard items and rethinks them as soft and comfy art/furniture mashings.