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Victorian Homes Highlight Two Downtown Exhibitions

By Ed Fuentes
Published: Saturday, February 23, 2008, at 03:51PM

The Victorian homes of Downtown are often portrayed as a tragic story of form and function lost to a city blinded by the future. The story of residential urban living at the top of Angel’s Flight is more complex. Much of Bunker Hill was a slum, with buildings nearing their death knell in the 50s and 60s when the hilltop was razed. It's the first part of that memory that tends to live on with artists, even if they never really experienced it themselves.

Two shows running right now hearken back to the Victorians. After the jump, info on Simone Gad's "Buildings" and Leo Politi's "Bunker Hill."


Simone Gad uses hard edged brush strokes in a fury of energy as a response to lost colors of mansions, recalled mostly by black and white photos. Her current exhibit “Buildings” at L2kontemporary is her 2nd solo show for the gallery, and most of the pieces are interpretative portraits of old Chinatown Plaza and old Victorian homes. It runs until March 8, 2008.

Pink Victorian

“Buildings”by Simone Gad

L2kontemporary
990 N. Hill St., #205 (upstairs)
Los Angeles  / Chinatown 90012

When Bunker Hill was about to be plowed under, Leo Politi scrambled to complete sketches of the old Victorian homes. In 1964 he published his first book for adults, entitled “Bunker Hill, Los Angeles” and then in 1965 sold the paintings, including outtakes, to the City of Los Angeles. For a series of events celebrating what would have been Politi’s 100th birthday, those sketches and finished works are on display at the Los Angeles Public Library until June 14, 2008. The illustrations are gentle, and come with Politi’s observations, like how there were rumors of an art colony on the smaller enclave of Clay Street.

Last 7 Days

“Bunker Hill by Leo Politi”

Central Library – First Floor Galleries

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