This vintage Japanese pachinko machine sits on the floor in the corner of a small conference room at the L.A. office of a global advertising agency. It’s used as a decorative objet d’art and is the only colorful presence in a space that is otherwise plain and minimalist to extreme.
This street artwork of two rabbits in flagrante leaves nothing to the imagination. The relationship between the creatures is raw and natural and strictly an instinctive biological transaction between animals. Rabbits are often depicted as cute and innocent in popular culture. But here they’re engaged in sex, an uncute physical act. It’s rude, but it’s also terribly funny. The indelible graphical image and comic-book style the bunnies are depicted in is in stark contrast to the otherwise utterly forgettable graffiti tags on either side. Find this on a wall next to a vacant lot along Lincoln Blvd. in Venice, Los Angeles.
We — and possibly you, too — are a big fan of large coffee-table art books by the likes of publishers Taschen, Phaidon and Rizzoli, to name but a few. Among our favorite stack of these large tomes is a book by a lesser-known German publisher. It’s a book of photographs by the artists Peter Fischli and David Weiss titled “800 Views of Airports.” And that’s exactly what you get, literally 800 photos taken in airports by the artists over several decades of international air travel. There’s no accompanying text, no explanations, no captions. Just photographs of airports, airplanes, tarmac vehicles, control towers and views looking out of windows from air-terminal boarding lounges around the globe. The book is a mesmerizing document of the airport’s cultural landscape. For those who have traveled widely and often by air, the images in this book may feel in their own way comforting.
Wait … what? The Cobra Snake van is parked on ultra-luxe Ocean Avenue in Santa Monica, in Los Angeles? Actually we’ve seen the van parked here for the past year. ( Our HQ is a few blocks away in the NOT ultra-luxe part of Santa Monica.) Who knew the Cobra Snake was so bougie?
These pink-and-gray Nike sneakers, as worn by our colleague M., are FIRE! Fire, we tell you! Sick! We have a birthday coming up, so if you’re thinking of getting something for us, these would make a perfect gift. Just sayin’. 😉
The Aero movie theater on tony Montana Avenue on Santa Monica’s northside is a Los Angeles treasure. A working cinema and a venue for retrospective film events, the Aero is a perfectly intact example of classic art-deco architecture and style. It’s a landmark that at night lights up its marquee and neon lights, a look that harkens back to a bygone era of L.A. and classic Hollywood.
The electrical utility box is a feature of the built-up urban landscape in many U.S. cities. These boxes tend to be rectangular gray objects standing upright on sidewalks and are mostly featureless, neutral occupants of public space. What better a blank canvas is there for street artists to showcase their work, illicit or commissioned. In parts of Los Angeles, especially in the westside neighborhoods of Venice and Mar Vista, it appears almost every utility box is covered with street art or graffiti. The art is often colorful and inoffensive, adding a dash of color to the gray and black hues of the city streets and pavement.