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FutureStarrFrogtown Los Angeles
The next-next-next-big thing in development centers in san francisco and la and smells like $10 million. Welcome to frogtown los angeles, the exciting new arrival where quirky, diverse and cutting-edge meet wild, lush and authentic. But walk just a few blocks in any direction and the neighborhood transforms into a less enchanting and more dystopian scene, a quick 45-minute drive from the city by Metro rail. The reason for this is that recent growth, a booming technology and creative industries and builders are reinventing San Francisco's South of Market neighborhood and transforming it
Turn onto the wrong street from Riverside Drive and you might never find it. You’ll hit the 2 or the 5 freeway, or maybe wind up at a side entrance to Home Depot. But once you do enter this neighborhood of single-family homes and low industrial buildings, nestled along the curving, soft-bottom section of the L.A. River, you’ll know that you’re in a part of Los Angeles like no other—secret and self-contained, where the hum of industry is quieted by a blanket of tranquility that seems to emanate from the river. This is Frogtown. The name comes from the frogs that used to emerge from the grassy banks, and it was later adopted by local gangs that gave the area a dangerous edge and kept most except locals and intrepid artists away. But things have changed over the past few years—dramatically in the last year alone—and a genuinely thriving creative community has blossomed.
Artists like Shepard Fairey; Mark Grotjahn and Jennifer Guidi; Amy Adler; and Thomas Houseago discovered this longtime maker community’s wealth of disused industrial spaces years back, and while all keep low profiles, Houseago’s was raised considerably when he invited a post-breakup Brad Pitt to try some art therapy at his complex last year. (Word on the street says that Pitt has been looking to buy in the neighborhood.) For Houseago, a multimedia practitioner who bought the first of his four buildings in 2008, it was when collectors could suddenly find his studio that he realized his secluded haven had become a destination. “It used to be they’d be an hour late,” says the transplanted Leeds native. “Now they’ll be like, ‘Oh, I had lunch at Salazar, it was excellent.’” (Source: www.latimes.com)
Currently under construction and scheduled to open this summer, Wiseman Studios will have separate work spaces and a gallery, plus gardens featuring species related to David’s work. All of his exquisitely detailed creations are inspired by the natural world, from delicate branch-and-blossom chandeliers and ceiling installations to a standing screen with abstracted organic patterns to a single cast-bronze pomegranate, seed pod or bird. In this unique environment, he will be able to share his process and his finished works in a manner that can’t be accomplished in a typical art studio or gallery. “There’s so much interaction and dialogue that needs to happen outside of the context of a gallery,” says David. “Collectors who are commissioning a major work find their way to my studio and we can talk about different patinas or casting techniques, and that really informs the end result, having that direct dialogue with the artist. This is a place where we hope to introduce a wider public to my work, but also to the process.”
is a neighborhood in Central Los Angeles, California, adjoining the Los Angeles River. It has two parks, both maintained by the Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority (MRCA). The Frogtown Art Walk is a biennial event managed by the Elysian Valley Arts Collective to celebrate local area artists. Knightsbridge Theatre is a repertory theater company located in the neighborhood. (Source: en.wikipedia.org)