Fleeing Babylon

on Melrose

Tomorrow the movers arrive, our worldly possessions Chicago bound.

After sixteen years living in Los Angeles ( with a brief stint in San Diego ) I am left with mixed emotions, mostly just eager to get out of Dodge.  LA has never been a good fit, we moved here for David’s career and I have tried, mostly unsuccessfully, to appreciate Southern California . It would be churlish (and predictable ) to gripe about LA’s unsurprising superficiality , increasing squalor and existential decadence … churlish but fun.

Instead I will focus on fond memories, of which the many studios I have been lucky to work (and often live in) I place near the top of that list.

My current studio (now crated) was/is in a mid rise office building I shared with my psychoanalyst husband. Perched 1o stories up it was a peculiar home for an art studio, yet it was close to our apartment, possessed attractive amenities and A/C- not a given in the art studio market, and in scorching  LA most essential.

6404 Wilshire Blvd. suite 1030
Wilshire Blvd.
Wilshire Blvd.
Wilshire Blvd
Wilshire Blvd.
Adios Wilshire Blvd .

Mentioning A/C, my previous studio was the largest , most sprawling and allowed me to expand my scope of my work, my solo show Fairyland wouldn’t have been created if it hadn’t been in this rather dismal factory space in the heart of hot as Hadesville North East LA-without A/C. Grateful for the experience but boy oh boy it was hot.

LAIAC
LAIAC
With Robin Goodfellow and my sweet Chihuahua Speck
LAIAC

At one point I had tried working from our little hillside cottage, the Little Hermitage …little being the operative word and it became apparent rather quickly that I needed actual work space.

Rose, Robin Goodfellow @ the Little Hermitage

Previous to the industrial heat pit I had a smaller yet air-conditioned studio, the former work shop of the fellow responsible for fabrication of the clown costumes of Ronald McDonald …or so my landlady told me. It was a charmingly squalid place.

Colorado Blvd., Eagle Rock
Colorado Blvd.
Colorado Blvd.
The Unholy Trio & Hellmouth
Colorado Blvd., Eagle Rock

Before we purchased our Little Hermitage on LA’s NE side we lived (where we once again live) in what is known as MidWilshire. We rented a sweet little duplex, with a pretty little garden, charming light and quite a crazy Marxist Feminist landlady-all perfectly fine aside from her tyrannical harping. But it had good light!

Carmona Ave.
Carmona Ave.
Carmona Ave & pups
Carmona Ave.

In spite of our crazy landlady that apartment had been most welcome for we had been living in San Diego, which sounds lovely , and is , but we were living in what is known as East County, El Cajon specifically. It truly was Hadesville , and our reason for living there was to tend to David’s Mater- quite the SheDevil.

anyway, I spent quite a bit of time sequestered in one of the bedrooms repurposed as a studio…it had A/C AND good light.

In ElCajon with Miss Viola
Naptime in El Cajon, ever faithful Miss Rose
El Cajon
El Cajon

Moving to El Cajon was made drearier for we left what had been our favorite home up to that point ( our current place in Chicago now vies for that distinction), a work/live loft, on the top floor of Factory Place in LA’s Arts District. It was so well suited to our needs , a joy to call home, well lit and with very good A/C.

It broke my heart to leave. Pardon the plethora of photos.

Factory Place, 2010
Factory Place
Factory Place
Factory Place
Factory Place
Factory Place
Factory Place
Rose @ Factory Place
Speck @ Factory Place
Factory Place
Factory Place

When we moved  to LA sixteen years ago, we purchased, in the midst of a devastating bubble an outrageously overpriced condominium on a very pretty street , Havenhurst Ave., in very pretty West Hollywood. It was a period of great optimism and hope. The condo, though small, overpriced, far outside our budget, seemed a beacon of opportunity. And there was opportunity, David began establishing his career, my decorative arts career was blossoming, friends were made easily…we were married in our condo’s backyard. Yet the recession hit, and it hit hard, we were far too overextended, borrowed time, borrowed money , we lost our proverbial shirts and the condo . I truly thought we were lost, all of my prudent savings squandered. Yet sixteen years later we have rebuilt and now we approach this new chapter, our Chicago chapter. 

Symbolically perhaps  I can locate NO photographs of that sweet little West Hollywood apartment or that period aside from our wedding.

Wilshire Blvd.

So onward, boxes packed, awaiting what the good Lord places on our path. I do have a studio waiting for me in Chicago, I am very eager to see what develops.

Cornelia Arts Building

 

Wish me luck!

on Melrose

 

 

Author: babylonbaroque

I am a painter and printmaker working towards creating a body of work that reflects my own developing aesthetic. New work ,first link. The second link is an on-line portfolio.

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