In Heroes We Trust is the (great) name of the great new shop I just discovered right around the corner from Abbot Kinney Boulevard on Westminster. You can't miss it because the street art on the sidewalks leads you right to it.
There may be artists right there on the sidewalk making their art when you stroll up, as there was when I did. That's because owner Neely Shearer wants her store to be an interactive experience, a place to see art and fashion and the people that make it.
Shearer, a native Californian, spent most of the 90's in Japan, living and working in design. When she returned, she had a store in West Hollywood called Xin (pronounced "sheen") for years, which she closed when that nasty recession hit. That enabled her to spend more time on her own (gorgeous) design company, Parade.
The itch to re-open a place of her own arose again, and she found the space for In Heroes We Trust on Westminster, and opened this past June.
Heroes (the theme inspired by the David Bowie song) range from Mighty Mouse and Michael Jackson to Frida Kahlo and Nelson Mandela ... illustrating perfectly the point that anyone can be a Hero to anyone else. Each of these heroic designs will be showing up in Shearer's In Heroes We Trust t-shirt line coming soon. And you'll want one.
These aren't idols, they're heroes - there's a difference. Heroes are an example of what is GOOD, and we can all aspire to be that. Shearer mused that these days, street artists are heroes themselves, which is certainly true enough. "We're in a time where we really can do and be what we WANT," she explained, adding that some of her designers are single moms, working hard, but doing what they're passionate about. That alone is heroic, in my view.
Shearer told me that, like Venice itself, the shop is a creative vortex. People stop in all the time with instruments for impromptu jam sessions. Artists leave easels there to paint the next time they come by. Newcomers stumble upon the shop from Abbot Kinney and are surprised and delighted to make this discovery of their new spot. Friends came and went as we sat there chatting, and it wasn't long before a stylish friend of Shearer's came by with a bottle of champagne to pop, for no good reason other than being there together, like-minded people appreciating art, a great store, and a sunny day.
There will be a party/art opening/celebration of all things heroic this Thursday evening, December 4th. Music, hula hooping, live art, gift shopping, and fun is the occasion. A great time to stop by and make this wonderful discovery for yourself - a very Venice-minded shop in the heart of Venice. Exactly what we need more of these days.
Because, remember ...We can beat them, just for one day, We can be Heroes, just for one day.
Or every day.
In Heroes We Trust
300 Westminster Ave.