Tag Archives: #UrbanLight

Joy in Discovering Vermonica in Los Angeles

Did you know that LA had more than 400 different types of streetlights, having one of the most diverse streetlight ecosystems in the country? Yep. This was true.

However, with changes overtime came new lighting structures and the old unique lamps were taken away and replaced, and discarded.

BUT Sheila Klein, an artist, collected 25 of the vintage lamps and created Vermonica (at the insertion of Vermont Avenue and Santa Monica Boulevard). Vermonica has been called an “urban candelabra” capturing dozens of LA neighborhoods and 70 years of lighting history. The 25 older lamps still light each evening – a beautiful sight, thanks to the efforts of Klein.

Go check the lights out, or google it online at la.curbed.com. I was pleased to recently learn this history of LA lighting, including the Urban Light exhibit (202 lamps from 1910-1930) at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

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A Sacred Eve Before the Dawn of Day

#UrbanLight is a landmark in Los Angeles at #LACMA by the artist #ChrisBurden in 2008. It is free!

The lights are from the 1920’s. There is repetition. There are lines of lights like “toy soldiers” lining up. Burden says the lights are “about imagining something”, a “societal responsibility”. What holds the work together? What do you feel when the lights come on at dusk and turn off at dawn? What do you relate to with regard to the repetition of the rows of lights and the on and off of the lights?

Today is the end of the #GeorgeFloyd murder case with the verdict of guilty. During this eve, I wonder what will the societal responsibility be tonight? Will people consider this eve as a sacred time for gratitude and thankfulness; will people consider this eve as a point of anger towards others? What will be the societal impact tonight? The recent mass shootings, the constant violence, the repetitive cycles of killings, court cases, protests, and discussions of racism continue on and off like the 1920’s lamps at the museum. The fear of citizens and communities to travel during the day as well as during the night re-emerges again and again after each act of violence.

This is a sacred eve before the dawn of day. Will people feel #joy, or #happiness, or #gratitude? Time will tell us… tonight when the people reflect will they be imagining something new, a change, hope, or will they not? I do not know how to feel about this sacred eve.