August 21, 2008

Dill and Ruscha to lose the alley behind their studios, not the studios themselves

I've been pretty swamped lately, so when I glanced at the headlines about Dill and Ruscha, I thought they were going to lose their studios. In fact, they have threatened to leave their warehouse studios if the city takes a fenced-in alley behind their building and turns it into metered parking spots. In the LA Times Elina Shatkin writes that plans have been drawn and ribbons have been cut for the much-needed new parking spaces. "When Laddie John Dill, known for his paintings and large cement and metal sculptures, signed a lease on a warehouse on Electric Avenue in 1983, that stretch of Venice was known more for vagrants and heroin dealers than high art. He was joined two years later by fellow Chouinard Art Institute alumnus Ed Ruscha, and the pair fenced in an area in the back alley to use as a work space. In the two decades since, that small plot of city-owned land and several other nearby parcels have become hot property. In 2006, Councilman Bill Rosendahl began pushing an idea that had been on the council's agenda for roughly 20 years: transforming several parcels into metered parking spots." I can't imagine they'd actually leave their studios over this.

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