California

California Poster Child

Hannah Wichrowski, 2017

Posters are everybody’s art. They gained popularity in the mid-19th century and took off by the end of the 19th century. They announce events, advertise products, or provide information about matters of public interest. The most familiar are those that were designed to advertise absinthe or draw you into a cafe or encourage you to support the war effort.

Some go a little further to tell important stories, envision the future, or present exceptional artistry. Some of the best examples I found all happen to be a part of California history. Except one.

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East of West

6a00d83452a98069e20148c6abee07970c-800wiWhen I went to China a few years ago,  I didn’t think of Beijing as a city with a thriving arts community.  More of a temple/palace/Great Wall kind of place. So I was surprised when I got off the bus in Beijing’s Dashanzi Art Zone.  Also called “798,” the neighborhood is a virtual Disneyland of playful murals, outdoor sculptures and aromatheraputic galleries.

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California Dreamin’

Springtime in Los Angeles is gorgeous — blue skies, puffy cumulus clouds, bright orange poppies, lush green hills. Every once in awhile, you smell the syrupy perfume of orange blossoms. The traffic is famously slow on freeways that seem to go nowhere but a lot of the cars are awfully nice. Although my first loyalty is to my geographic soul mate in the north, I feel very comfortable here and even a little nostalgic. Disneyland. Vin Sculley. Olvera Street. Surfer boys. Palm trees.IMG_0531

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