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“Los Angeles (Some)Times: A (R)evolution of Self and Environment” Jolly de Guzman
August 6 @ 2:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Los Angeles (Some)Times
A (R)evolution of Self and Environment
Jolly de Guzman is Avenue 50 Studio’s first artist-in-residence, a role that he simultaneously holds with the Los Angeles Center for Urban Natural Resources Sustainability. For this joint art residency, Jolly spent the first half of 2022 immersed in exploration of how extreme heat, drought, and wildfire are affecting some of LA’s communities most impacted by climate change, and how those communities are responding to the shifts. From exploring LA neighborhoods and burn areas of the Angeles National Forest on foot, to curating an art installation on heat equity called Shade In LA, to taking a deep dive into science and storytelling on these topics, Jolly has sought to crystallize a vision for a future Los Angeles that connects people to nature as agents of positive change during a climate-changed era.
“Los Angeles (Some)Times: A (R)evolution of Self and Environment” presents two related series documenting the twin progression of environmental crises and our awareness and engagement around them. The first series is composed of seven consecutive days of Los Angeles Times headlines dated June 2001 superimposed with an inner monologue of mundane thoughts, such as “I wonder what’s for breakfast” and “I’m running late again.” The juxtaposition of one’s routine introspection against dozens of headlines conveys a relative innocence in a time that predated world-changing events including the terrorist attacks of 9/11 and the acceleration of climate change.
The second series is also composed of seven consecutive days of Los Angeles Times headlines, but from 21 years later in July 2022. The superimposed text has progressed from monologue to dialogue — more directly confronting what is happening in one’s urban, natural, and social environment, with statements such as “It’s getting warm in here” and “I know you know that I know.” Looking closely, it’s clear that many more headlines concern drought, wildfire and climate change in this second series. The series incorporates crushed charcoal from the Bobcat Fire as pigment, a fire which started on September 6, 2020 — the day that LA County recorded its highest temperature to date of 121F — and ultimately burned over 100,000 acres in the Angeles National Forest while Angelenos experienced the first months of the COVID-19 pandemic. Each artwork also includes intricate pen drawings of burned trees and smoke, serving as a ghostly reminder of a fire in LA’s backyard that sent plumes of smoke all the way to the East Coast and Europe.
“Los Angeles (Some)Times: A (R)evolution of Self and Environment” will debut at Avenue 50 Studio August 6 – September 17 and travel to the Gateway to Nature Center at LA’s historic El Pueblo in the fall.
This programming is made possible through a grant from the USDA Forest Service and the Los Angeles Center for Urban Natural Resources Sustainability.