Browsing Tag

art

Out and About: California African American Museum

December 11, 2017

I’ve lived in Los Angeles County for 11 years and I finally made my way down to the California African American Museum a little while ago. I know. I’ve gotta do better. But I was glad that I went when I did. I heard that the “No Justice, No Peace: LA 1992” exhibit — focusing on the 25th anniversary of the Los Angeles riots that came on the heels of the Rodney King verdict — was closing, so that seemed as good a time as any to visit. When my guy and I arrived, we weren’t prepared for the emotions that took hold of us as soon as we stepped into the exhibit. Heavy doesn’t even begin to explain it. There was a police vehicle from the era right in the middle of the floor (it’s unclear if that was the exact car involved in the King incident), and images of the King beating and news footage of the subsequent riots played on TVs across the room. There were also artifacts from some of the people, even a 13-year-old girl gunned down by a store owner, who were unfortunate casualties of the unrest. Our eyes filled with tears reading about the loss of innocent lives, and the complete disregard for black lives that’s still prevalent to this day. Maybe that’s why it was so gripping. In short, the exhibit was powerful and one I won’t forget. There was also an intriguing exhibit about black women in silent films that provided a rare glimpse of our people’s first appearances in motion pictures. The images above don’t capture those exhibits — my pictures wouldn’t do them justice. But on the lighter side of the museum were these marvelous works by African-American artists. They each evoke a sense of pride and wonderment in their own unique ways. Click through the slideshow to see a few of my favorites from that day. If you’re in LA and you haven’t been to the California African American Museum, run, don’t walk, over there. It will fill your soul and make you think.

See what other adventures I’ve gotten into by clicking here to read more Out and About posts.

ashley ♥ adores

Out and About: Sights from the Metro Expo Extension Tour in Santa Monica

May 17, 2016

I must admit that I’ve been on BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) more times than I’ve been on the Metro in Los Angeles (My one and only time was with my guy when we rode to the Wilshire iteration of CicLAvia a couple years ago). It’s a shame, too, because the Blue Line is just a few blocks away from my apartment. But I digress. Last week, I had the chance to go out and about on a tour of the Metro Expo Line extension that’s opening up to Santa Monica, which is promising because my job is a short walk from one of the new stops. Maybe I’ll use that to get into work? We’ll see, but it was exciting to observe all the sights along the way. Click through the slideshow to see all the fun things I encountered on the train ride. Starting from the Culver City stop and going all the way to the Downtown Santa Monica stop (right at the intersection of Fourth Street and Olympic Boulevard, a short walk to the pier/beach and Third Street Promenade), I was amazed by the architecture of some of the older buildings, the growing list of places I’d like to visit, the hidden pieces of street art and murals peeking out unexpectedly. It all added to the wonder and surprise of getting an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at the Metro’s new line. There was a dope Obey mural that I didn’t get to capture, and getting that on camera may be worth another trip alone. I was particularly impressed by the art adorning the different stops, each unique and highlighting a diverse subject. There were piles of artistically scattered clothes and more intricate tile works of the iconic Far East. It makes for great scenery to sit back and enjoy while on board.

To see what other adventures I’ve gotten into, click here to read more Out and About posts.

ashley ♥ adores

Fancy Things Friday

November 27, 2015

As James Wright Chanel reminded us in his review of the Patti LaBelle Sweet Potato Pie, we gotta support Black businesses. Thanks to the good people over at Blavity, there’s a great selection of a few Black-owned companies to shop. These are just five of my favorites from that list. Get your Black Friday on, folks (pun intended!).

1. Yo! “House Party” has to be one of my top five favorite movies of all time. The epic dance battle scene. Kid’s iconic high-top fade. A young Martin Lawrence spinning records. “Switch!” Countless quotables like “‘Peanut! Fix us a couple glasses of Kool-Aid.’ … ‘Grape or red?'” That’s why I was so juiced to discover The Party Clutch by Kashmir VIII. It’s bright and fun, and will definitely be a conversation-starter. Wearable art! I live! (kashmirviii.com)

2. We are who we are today because of the sacrifices of those who came before us. We stand on their shoulders. Now it’s time for us to carry them on our shoulders. Look no further than this Because of Them We Can Signature Backpack, which bears the names of greats like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, Harriet Tubman, Rosa Parks, Marcus Garvey and others. I’m a huge fan of the black-and-white patterns on the sides. I’m patiently waiting for this sold-out piece to get restocked, but way to fuse empowerment with functionality and style! (becauseofthemwecan.com)

3. You can’t tell from this angle, but this Stay Woke Crewneck in Heather Grey is “emblazoned with the Adinkra symbol, Epa, which symbolizes law, justice, slavery and captivity,” Glossrags says. The sentiment behind the symbol is captured on the back, which encourages people to “Stay Woke,” as in keep informed of all the craziness, injustices and strife going on in the world around us. (glossrags.com)

4. This “Wynn” Print from DorcasCreates is simply darling. The pop of red with the glasses is a pleasant surprise, and the subject’s beautiful natural hair is enchanting. Yay, Team Natural! (etsy.com/shop/dorcascreates)

5. Tees in the Trap is speaking truth with its The Brunch Life Chose Me Tee. Nothing brings a sister joy quite like the promise of a bottomless mimosa-laden brunch with friends over the weekend. What can I say? I didn’t choose the brunch life — the brunch life chose me. Find me at The Pink Elephant in San Francisco with this one on. (teesinthetrap.com)

To see past Fancy Things Friday posts, click here.

ashley ♥ adores

Wednesday Word

February 11, 2015

This week I’m launching a new feature called Wednesday Word, as in word of encouragement, words of wisdom. You catch my drift. I think it’s a good place smack dab in the middle of the week to get a refreshing reminder that will give you hope, make you reflect, and bring a smile to your face. With that, I now present to you Wednesday Word No. 1, courtesy of the lovely women from She Reads Truth. Enjoy!

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Thrifted Thursday: Window Shopping Along Retro Row, Long Beach

August 7, 2014

There’s no shortage of design inspiration and vintage envy on Retro Row (Fourth Street) in Long Beach. I recently stopped by the AIDS Assistance Thrift Store and the Feed Store, and saw some pretty rare items.

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I don’t hesitate to check out the art at thrift shops. The AIDS Assistance Thrift Store is known for its annual spring art sale, and apparently had some great pieces still available.

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Well, what do we have here? Yes, that would be a mirror etched with the Bee Gees’ likenesses! The “Legal Size” and arrows are a reflection from the box it’s placed inside. It was hard to use restraint (I told myself I was only there to look for stuff for my mom), but I did. On the off chance that it’s still there, it’s mine!

Keep reading to see what else struck my fancy that day.

Continue Reading…

Out and About: Brushstrokes and Beverages

April 28, 2014

There’s nothing like a little paint, canvas and wine to help you wind down. Last week I flexed my artistic muscles at a Brushstrokes and Beverages painting class, held right around the corner from my apartment at Utopia. Alongside my trusty sidekick, Zita, we created some “Abstract Flowers” masterpieces.

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It all started with a blank canvas, some acrylic paint and a brief introduction.

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Soon enough, the piece was taking shape.

brushstrokes

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In two hours’ time, I was done with this work of art. Not too shabby, if I can say so myself.

Continue Reading…

Found Objects: City Utility Box Art

August 7, 2013

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I love finding beauty in the most ordinary, mundane things. Take for instance these City of Long Beach utility boxes — nothing special by any stretch of the imagination. Or are they? These are just a few of many throughout my city that have given me pause. They’re bright, vibrant and intriguing. And they just put a smile on my face. I wonder if others have taken notice of these functional works of art.

Thrifted Thursday: Albums from The Salvation Army, Long Beach

May 2, 2013

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The legendary Bill Cosby as a strapping young lad and the incomparable Diana Ross.

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The back sides are equally visually intriguing.

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These album covers mesh so well with the pop art and images on my gallery wall in my apartment.

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In keeping with my interior design improvements, I’d like to highlight some thrifted albums that I have used to liven up my wall space. The Salvation Army’s 40-percent-off sale is no joke! I discovered the comedy records from the great Billy Cosby Revenge and To Russell, My Brother, Whom I Slept With, as well as the 1976 self-titled album by Diana Ross for a mere $1.80 each (originally priced at $3).

Not only will these albums make excellent records to enjoy on my vintage Magnavox console record player, they make amazing wall art. That reminds me, I need to buy more of these fancy album frames!

Grand total: $5.40