Dec 312018

If you are in Palm Springs for New Year’s Eve, take some time and visit Robolights. This is the last year it will be at its current location on an estate in the Movie Colony area.

Robolights is an ongoing work created by artist Kenny Irwin Jr., at his childhood home. The sprawling installation incorporates Christmas holiday themes, robots, aliens and, of course, numerous lights. The various creations are made from found, recycled, and donated objects.

There are some Disneyland influences, seen in a castle similar to the It’s A Small World Castle, and a boat with creatures singing holiday songs (you see it while crossing a bridge over the water), reminiscent of the Pirates of the Caribbean ride. There are also merry-go-rounds, animatronics, video games, and music which give the place the feeling of an amusement park.

Also worth mentioning are the Islamic details seen around the installation, adding to the uniqueness of the space. The artist converted to Islam as an adult.

Robolights is a maze of larger than life creatures as well as little details that become more and more noticeable on each pass through. It’s eccentric, fun, chaotic, a little bit dark at times (so many skulls and skeletons) and well worth spending some time exploring.

Keep in mind if you go that there is no neighborhood parking around Robolights- only for residents. Parking is located a short walk away at Ruth Hardy Park.  Robolights will close on January 2nd, 2019.




Apr 162017

This is a great weekend to take a road trip to see the super bloom going on in Southern California. It’s so big you can even see it from space! One of the best places to go at the moment is Carrizo Plain National Monument, east of San Luis Obispo. A shorter distance away, if you are traveling from Los Angeles, is Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve, which still has some flowers in bloom. You could also check out desert flowers blooming at Joshua Tree National Park which, like all National Parks, is free this weekend (4/15-4/16) and next weekend (4/22-4/23).

For more information on the wildflowers, the best places to see them, and current images- check here.

Oct 132015



In downtown Los Angeles off of Winston Street is Werdin Place, unofficially known as Indian Alley.  From the 1970s to 1990s, the building adjacent to the alley, 118 Winston, housed the United American Indian Involvement Center which aided Los Angeles’ Native American population, which at the time was one of the largest in the country.

In recent years, several street artists have painted murals in the alley that recognize its history, including images of famous Native Americans like Chief Plenty Coups (pictured above), Toypurina, and Quanah Parker. The creation of this project is due in large part to the hard work of the current resident of 118 Winston, Stephen Zeigler, who organized the artists for the project, and who along with his wife Jodi owns the gallery and store These Days, located in the building. He also coordinates other street art projects in the area, including the painted utility boxes located around Winston that were done by a group of artists known collectively as Winston Death Squad.

Although there is a gate on both sides of the alley, Ziegler is often there to let you in and even give you some information about its history while you check it out. Definitely a great way to see a bit of Los Angeles’ street art and learn about an important part of its interesting past.

For more information-

-This article on Stephen Zeigler is really good-

-The LA Times did a profile on Indian Alley last year-

-This article has a time lapse video of the artist Votan painting the Chief Plenty Coups mural in the alley (seen above)-

Also worth checking out- Jaque Fragua, who painted the left half of the above collaboration with Shepard Fairey, is part of the artists team in the organization Honor The Treaties (Fairey is involved as well) which combines art and advocacy to give voice to the issues facing Native Americans-,s4