Friday, July 21, 2017

The Summer Venice Art Crawl - Venice At Its Best

The Summer edition of the Venice Art Crawl was held last night all over town, and it was the best. I think I loved it even more than normal because I've been staying in Inglewood this week, feeling very removed from my home in Venice. I came back for the VAC, and my heart was full with all the Community love, excellent art, and the ocean breeze that we tend to take for granted when we're near it all of the time. It is a Heavenly gift, as was last night.

It's funny ... I've been getting looks all week in Inglewood like I might be a nasty gentrifier, and I just want to yell to everyone that I swear I'm not! I get it! I got booted from my home! One Love! It's pretty cool over here, but I just want to get back to what I know ... so I did. I began my evening at Hama Sushi, where I snagged a VAC map, and checked out the bright colors of Todd Goodman's work being shown outside on the sidewalk in the golden hour light. I especially dug the Jimi.

I stopped into Surfside to see who was there, and saw the excellent work by Mark Satterlee (who I saw up the road at a restaurant in Inglewood a few nights before! He also got priced out of Venice and relocated to the 'Wood), featuring a great piece of Larry Bell. It was still pretty early, so I headed out into the evening sunshine.  

The sunset is always a work of art unto itself, and I took the opportunity to stroll down the Boardwalk and soak up all of what I've been missing this week (I know it's just been a week. Still.). Bikers were heading to the Santa Monica Pier in droves to check out Eric Burdon (The Animals), but I needed to see my Venice people.

I got to see plenty of them at the very fun Park Place Block Party ... so many, in fact, that this stop wound up hogging a lot of my Crawl time. I didn't get to see as much of the art as I usually do, but the faces that I saw more than made up for it. There was art and fun in pretty much every yard along Park Place, all with refreshments and good vibes for all. I was very impressed by the stunning photography of Tanya Rogers, that felt as if you were inside of the photos, they were so vivid.

Steve Cheng was set up with a table of his whimsical art, and little characters that could be used as key chains or necklaces or whatever you feel like, and were adorable.

There was a whole bunch of ceramics up and down the block, all very great, especially the pottery by Kris Hansen being shown outside of Maureen Cotter's house. Mo was there being her usual gracious hostess self, and plugging her upcoming one woman show at Beyond Baroque (August 19th) that no one should ever miss.

Live music was provided by Apryll Aileen in a front yard set-up, and it created a groovy atmosphere.

 I spent the majority of my evening in her yard, telling my tales of late, and being buoyed up by the friends I have made in our Community over the last two decades. I'm consistently overwhelmed by the greatness and generosity of the real people of Venice. You're all something else and I love you forever! Thank you!

I knew the clock was ticking, and that I still had a lot of ground to cover, so as hard as it was to leave the now packed and bumping Park Place, it had to be done.

I met up with some crew back at Surfside for some libations, and to check out the "Eat Your Art Out" interactive art experience put on by Queen Dakota Rayfield. People could sit and make up their own art pieces, and I wish I'd had more time to sit and create. How fun!

I had to crack the whip as I had that missing out feeling, so then we all traipsed over to Paper, Scissors, Rock for the music and the blast that we had at the last Art Crawl.

We blew it and missed the tunes - bummer - but still got to dip inside and see the art real quick. Josh Bagel Klassman had his awesome pieces of Venice history on display, and I once again made a note of which ones I need when I once again have walls to decorate. His stuff is top shelf (like the Calavera tequila he'd just been gifted by Jim Robb!).

The party raged on in the parking lot, so we didn't have to feel like we missed out on too much. The whole night was a big Neptune Reunion (it's just been a month, but hey! Needed.) and all of myself and King Jeremy's royal subjects were still in the mood to party, thankfully. Love you all!

We zoomed by the Canal Club to see what we could see, and were impressed by the incredible watercolors by Louisa McHugh. You need to see them in person, but wow. A real talent.

As a writer, I also very much liked the typewriter pieces on display from Krista Nassi. Hooray for words!

My fellow Queen, Miss Jessica, was my co-Crawler, and a more stunning art aficionado you'd be hard pressed to find. We needed to get a move on to go hear her husband, Johan, get down with The Gumbo Brothers back at Surfside, so off we raced down Speedway.

A quick pit stop at C.A.V.E. Gallery was not to be, as we missed them by minutes. Kid Acne's great work was on the walls, so we sneaked a peek through the window, and will be back.

The good times were rolling hard by the time we rolled back up to Surfside (getting to be our new headquarters already!), with the Gumbos in full swinging mode. Dancing, dining, drinking, and getting down was all under way, and I looked around and felt home once again. After soaking this all up for as long as I could I had to get back to Inglewood to avoid being a lame house guest. But I didn't want to.

I had a blast with all my Venice homies, and as I rode back across the 405, I was reinvigorated. I know where I belong, and who my people are. The Venice Art Crawl is truly Venice at its best, celebrating what we're all about. Showing off, really. This is the thing you want to bring people to in order to help them get what real Venice means. Art. Music. Creativity. Fun. The Real Deal.

Oh, I love you, Venice. But you knew that.

*See you at the Afterburn Art Crawl September 21st!

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