Some features from the West Adams architecture tour

The Doheny Manshion in West Adams sits in the heart of the lovely campus of Mt. Mary College. It was the home of LA’s first (but not last) oil magnate. It has a turret! And that campus is magically pretty!

AMAT mansion, picture here, home of Roscoe Arbuckle, silent film star and after a terrible event at one of his wild parties, the first celebrity trial of the 20th century as an accused rapist and killer. Theda Bara also lived there.

The John Tracy clinic at my beloved USC, founded by actor Spencer Tracy and his wife, to help teach their son, who was deaf, to communicate. It still open today.

Voila Capture109

Out the Window: Art on the Bus

Artist Anne Bray’s Out the Window Project is featured in LA Weekly here.

Bus Screenings June 13-19 Launch Mobile Community TV Network

WHAT 40 short videos by LA youth will be shown on all 2200 L.A. Metro buses

WHERE all routes of LA Metro buses over 4000 sq miles of LA County

WHO 75 high school students recently made the videos with artist teachers at Echo Park Film Center and with Public Matters at East Los Angeles Renaissance Academy and Pilipino Workers Center; coordinated by Freewaves with the conceptual and technical direction of UCLA REMAP

WHEN 45 minutes of every hour over Saturday June 18 and Sunday June 19, 2011
and 5 minutes of every half hour, every weekday June 13-17, and

HOW Transit TV is donating use of their interactive TV system for the youth to screen their videos and question 1.2 million daily riders via text messages.

WHY because art could be everywhere

Public Screening at Inner City Arts

Sun. June 12 @ 3pm See all the youth-produced videos in Out the Window at Inner City Arts, followed by a reception. Everyone Welcome! ( Inner City Arts: 720 Kohler St. in downtown LA. Enter on Merchant St.)
Here’s an idea: take the bus to the following program and watch videos along the way!

WE ARE HERE: We Could be Everywhere
Media, Arts and Activism in Los Angeles and Beyond
Panel Discussion at ALOUD

Tue. June 14 @ 7pm Are the media arts a sensitizing force? What is media art’s capacity to respond to political conditions? Cultural practitioners and scholars explore the role artists play as innovators of media technology and instigators in the public and media art realms. Panel discussion at the Los Angeles Central Library ALOUD program. Panelists: Aniko Imre, Henry Jenkins, Reed Johnson, Fabian Wagmister. Moderated by Kenneth Rogers, Media and Cultural Studies, UC Riverside. Program is free but registration is required.
( Los Angeles Central Library: 630 West Fifth St. Los Angeles CA 90071)

The Transport Politic on Philly’s plan to sell station names

SEPTA has a proposal on the table to rename its Broad Street Station to AT&T station, along with Detroit’s plan to corporate sell a name for its street car. Yonah Freemark remarks:

But Philadelphia’s decision could be going further because not only does it remove the current name entirely from maps, but it does so to existing stations that have retained their current names for decades. Even worse, the names have no relevance to the areas they serve — it’s not like AT&T has a major facility at Pattison Station. The whole situation raises the frightening prospect in the near future that, instead of riding the Broad Street Subway from City Hall to Pattison, people will take the Coca-Cola Trolley from Pizza Hut to AT&T. Moreover, five years later, considering the current rate of changes in corporate names and sponsorships, all of those names may have to be modified! There are two fundamental problems with the idea that station names can be sold to the highest bidder: One, doing so challenges a fundamental element of transit service provision, that it is a public service; and two, that the names provide an important connection between the line-based geography of transit systems and the street or neighborhood-based geography of the city around stations.

link: Philadelphia May Accept Money to Privatize Station Naming; Pittsburgh Considers Similar Move « The Transport Politic

I don’t really have much to add to Freemark’s discussion other than expand it on this somewhat. He notes that it is confusing to riders and tourists to have to deal with an “AT&T station” in every city they encounter. But it’s also depressing. You get to a point where the built environment of cities gets so homogenized with corporate clutter than it doesn’t matter if you are in Boston or in New York or Shanghai: you’ll see the same brands all over. So instead of Candlestick, we have AT&T park, and instead of naming schools after luminary scholars, we name them after rich people who aren’t satisfied with having their companies and foundations named after them.

I wonder if anybody will ever give a naming gift for a bus seat?

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