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A-MUSE-ing Video of Me by The Skinny Gorillas!

Happy to share this “a-MUSE-ing” video by The Skinny Gorillas of me talking about my photography.

This video was produced for my exhibition as the “February 2014 Featured Artist” for the Los Angeles Downtown Art WalkSpecial thanks to Qathryn Brehm and Jeremy Quant of the Los Angeles Downtown Art Walk plus my new friends from The Skinny Gorillas: Rashid Belt, Wiola Marek, Tom Colley and talk show host Ashley Iola!

Downtown Muse Publishes New Cheech Marin Art Book

Image: “City at Night” by Frank Romero, 2010. Courtesy of Cheech Marin Collection.

Chicanitas book coverMany of you already know that I proudly work with Cheech Marin — I have worked side by side with him on many independent projects associated with his amazing Chicano art collection since 2003. We’ve worked together to produce the groundbreaking The Chicano Collection archival limited-edition print series (printed by none other than the master printer himself, Richard Duardo of Modern Multiples Fine Art Editions; sets from which have been donated to major museums across the country such as the Smithsonian, the DeYoung and LACMA), numerous museum exhibitions, a documentary film, several classical music concerts for his talented wife Natasha Marin, salons featuring artists and musicians, and other related arts and cultural projects. Since 2007, I have also researched, catalogued, photographed, and now manage his artworks.

I guess it seems now I have officially become an independent publisher as Downtown Muse through my Arts District-based firm CauseConnect. This Friday’s release through Amazon of Chicanitas: Small Paintings from the Cheech Marin Collection is our latest art book together featuring works that he selected for this publication and for our national exhibition tour. In 2007, I produced and edited his Papel Chicano art book, the winner of the 2008 “Best Design” International Latino Book Award. While I also served as the producer and editor of Chicanitas, this work represents my expanded role as an independent publisher as well. We have more planned … for example, in 2014, keep an eye out for a book featuring Cheech’s essays, which will reveal his unique and always humorous take on Chicano life and culture, accompanied by works specially selected from his collection to illustrate his words. I also have my own book scheduled for release later this fall.

Produced to accompany our nationally touring Chicanitas exhibition, the companion book includes 70 full-color images of small paintings by 27 artists, many from Los Angeles. For details and a tour schedule of the exhibition, visit www.CheechMarin.com/Chicanitas. To download a full press release, click HERE. To buy our book, keep scrolling!


BOOKSIGNING EVENTS: Want a signed book? Stay tuned for our full schedule of upcoming events in Los Angeles and other cities. For an updated list, stay tuned to my website or visit www.CheechMarin.com/Chicanitas.

ChimMaya-Logo-2009THU 10/3 @ 7:30 PM to 9:00 PM
ChimMaya Gallery
5283 E. Beverly Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90022

Buy a pre-signed book in advance of the event at ChimMaya Gallery and get VIP treatment! The FIRST 75 people who purchase one or more books receive admittance to an exclusive reception with Cheech and some of the book’s featured artists Yolanda Gonzalez, Margaret Garcia, Cici Segura Gonzalez and Jose Lozano from 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM. For details, call (323) 219-3260.


Okay, I did this obligatory plug for our book … so ORDER YOUR COPY OF CHICANITAS TODAY!




To purchase books, click the PayPal button above. You can also buy online on Amazon and through the Cheech Marin website in addition to my Downtown Muse.


WHOLESALE ORDERS & GROUP SALES: Email me by clicking HERE.

TODAY in the AD and DTLA: Parachute Market, Cornerstone Block Party, Beat Swap Meet

SAT 6/22 & SUN 6/23 – Arts District
Parachute-300pxPARACHUTE MARKET @ 12:00 PM to 7:00 PM (SAT) &  12:00 PM to 6:00 PM (SUN)
405 Mateo St., 90013 (in historic Maxwell House Coffee building)

Don’t miss this seasonal design fair themed “Psychedelic Summer,” goods for sale from Handsome Coffee Roasters, Rachel Craven, Scout Regalia, Tracy Wilkinson, Moon Canyon, and lots, lots more.

ADMISSION: $6 ONLINE // $8 ONSITE (proceeds benefit Inner City Arts)


SAT 6/22 – Arts District

Cornerstone-Bday-300pxCORNERSTONE BLOCK PARTY @ 11:30 AM to 5:00 PM
708 Traction Ave., 90013 (next door to The Pie Hole)

Kick off the summer and celebrate 27 years of theater by Arts-District-based Cornerstone Theater Company. This community event features local artists, live music, food vendors, and more. Schedule includes a story circle (11:30 AM to 1:00 PM) followed by festivities during 1:30 PM to 5:00 PM

ADMISSION: FREE!!!


SAT 6/22 & SUN 6/23 – Chinatown

Beat-Swap-Meet-300pxBEAT SWAP MEET @ 12:00 PM to 6:00 PM (both days)
943 N. Broadway St., Los Angeles 90012

Over 20 invited record collectors and dealers from all over the West Coast and beyond. Buy, sell and trade music on vinyl (45s and LPs) in genres such as blues, boogie, funk, hip hop, jazz, Latin, new wave, psych, punk, rap, rock, ska, soul and world. Event features three music areas and Djs spinning rare selections from their personal record collections plus an artisan vendor village with jewelry, clothing, and more.

ADMISSION: FREE with a canned good!!!

EAT: Lonely Hearts Day in the A.D.

Aw, the life of a new singleton. Never been a big holiday person, so even when coupled up, Valentine’s Day hasn’t meant much to me … unless there’s chocolate involved, then it becomes my FAVORITE holiday (ha!). Well, 2013 V-Day is looking much brighter this morning because I just found out the following:

Traxx square logoBEST BET: Chef/owner Tara Thomas of Traxx at Union Station has created special Valentine’s Day cocktails tonight from 6 PM to 9 PM. Tell her or a bartender that “a woman walks into a bar …” and you’ll get 50% off your first drink!

Traxx at Union Station
800 N. Alameda St., Los Angeles 90012; (213) 625-1999

The Lonely Pie (photo credit: abclocal.go.com)

photo: abclocal.go.com

LONELY? The Pie Hole is stocking up on a mini-version of its ever-so-popular-but-rarely-available Lonely Pie (chocolate, potato chips, chunky peanut butter and an Oreo crust … I’m in!). Even better, co-owner Matt Hefner tells me that there’s two NEW pies just for today: My Bloody Valentine (blood orange cheesecake) and Black Heart Whoopie Pie (chocolate cake, marshmallow, and pretzel filling).

The Pie Hole
714 Traction Ave., Los Angeles 90013; (213) 537-0115

Date bar by Ziv Wagner NEED A DATE? Get a date bar at Bread Lounge. Manager and baker Ziv Wagner made special date bars just for today that seem like they might go well with coffee, or at least, with that bottle of wine that you might chug at home tonight while watching re-runs of “The Bachelor” (might be my plans!).

Bread Lounge
700 S. Santa Fe Ave., Los Angeles 90021; (213) 327-0782

Church & State Val Day 2013 His & Hers Cocktails

WANT TO DRINK? Even if you don’t have a reservation for chef Tony Esnault’s saucy aphrodisiac dinner, drop by Church & State to see if you can wiggle up to the bar for His and Hers specialty cocktails. Take your pick: “His” includes whiskey, rum, and beer; “Hers” contains gin, house-made grenadine, fresh thyme, and sparkling wine.

Church & State
1850 Industrial St., Los Angeles 90021; (213) 405-1434

P.S. The featured photo in this post is one I took this morning when I discovered a newly installed artwork on the wall of the former Bloom’s General Store by street artist EENCH … it is a red painted Valentine with a REAL heart pierced by an arrow.

SHOP: MADE by DWC

Handmade dolls from MADE

Handmade dolls from MADE

Check out handcrafted goods, vintage items, organic coffee, and more at MADE by DWC. This social enterprise was created by the Downtown Women’s Center (DWC) to break the cycle of chronic unemployment and homelessness by empowering women to discover talents and development skills through vocational opportunities. Read more

SHOP: DTLA Organic Produce

ProduceDowntown residents still have limited options for quickly and easily getting organic fruits and veggies. I’m all about supporting local small businesses, so here’s where I currently buy mine:

Summerland Produce Co.: Founded in 2012 and based in the Arts District, this Downtown L.A. organic produce delivery service launched last summer. I get a “Mostly Fruit” box delivered every other week.

Better Life Organics: To supplement my biweekly deliveries, I get my vegetables at this stall in the Produce District (ironically, located behind McDonald’s near Central Ave. and Olympic). Prices are reasonable — I can typically get a 25-lb box for under $20.

Read more

Riding my bicycle again after a flu/cold hiatus! @TernBicycles #artsdistrict #dtla #losangeles (at Arts District – Downtown Los Angeles)

Downtown-bound train on 1st St., New Year’s Day

Sign of the cross in the skies over the Arts District

Cleaning up after the rain