2017 Arts in Parks

"Where do you belong?"
"Where do you belong" features porcelain squares hung in the Peter Strauss Ranch aviary.

Patricia Yossen

Arts in Parks Exhibit

(May 14 through September 9)

Explore the grounds of Peter Strauss Ranch to see the park through the eyes of artists.
BEN ALLANOFF: The Peace Factory is an architectural installation that incorporates elements of a labyrinth, an amphitheater, and an altar. Built using logs culled from the Santa Monica Mountains, it is intended to be a place for people to come together, in an organized or impromptu fashion, to manufacture peace. The central altar is available to collect any tokens people might want to leave there. (No candles though!). See below on June 17 for a live immersive art experience with Mr. Allanoff.
members only
KB JONES: Inspired by Roman caryatids, this installation depicts figures engaged in the everyday labor critical to creating and maintaining a “Members Only” club. Using green privacy fence and durable, weather resistant nylon, the painted surfaces represent men and women working on the property. As elegant caryatids hold classical architecture together, this installation suggests that maintenance workers and everyday materials are both essential and beautiful in their own right.
Orange tent
BRITTANY KO: The students of Moved by Mountains, an after school program at St. Thomas Apostle in Los Angeles, collaboratively created two separate large-scale paintings inspired by the students’ collective interests within nature: animals, space, sea, food, and imagined landscapes and creatures. These paintings have been stretched over PVC pipes to create arches for visitors to interact under. The goal was to make a place and experience that converges the reality of our physical surroundings at Peter Strauss Ranch with our imagined worlds.
OLGA LAH: Bloom is a temporary installation consisting of 6,000 marking whiskers placed across the terraced hillside at the Peter Strauss Ranch. The accumulation of the whiskers across the hillside is meant to bring a burst of color and vitality to the area and refer back to California’s most recent super bloom. The bloom is here reimagined as staying on through the dry and arid summer, inviting a new perspective of the surroundings. The experience of this expansive installation points to ideas on transcendence, time and memory.
trail sign

NATALIE SMITH: “I’ve come to believe that a trail sign has the potential to signify what is truly invaluable about our protected public lands: accessibility. Inspired by years of living and hiking in the American west, these works will emphasize the value of sharing pathways as an act of community—a way to connect and share not only with nature, but one another.”

pool exhibit
KIM WEST: In the abandoned 650,000 gallon pool, painter Kim West installs Lake Enchanto: a fragmented 115-ft. mural of abstracted poppies that uses the park’s landscape views as canvas and negative space; in the shallow end, a large, colorful structure inspired by the nostalgia of geodesic-dome play equipment acts as easel, with West’s multi-layered paintings attached. West’s installation explores creating, documenting, and capturing memories of memories after the initial, clear memory has grown fuzzy.
Where do you belong?
PATRICIA YOSSEN: “Where do you belong?” That question was put to kids, young adults, college students, and families. The answers came in a variety of languages, reflecting the rich diversity of Los Angeles. The many answers are transcribed on paper-thin porcelain squares, which are then arranged to serve as a compass or topographical map within an abandoned aviary. This is a Room Without Walls, a place where visitors can enter and watch how sunlight illuminates the squares, and take in the many statements about belonging.

Summer 2017 Schedule

Music Playlist for Tiny Porch Concerts (Spotify)

Rose’s Pawn Shop (
Tiny Porch Concerts)
May 14, 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Nominated in three categories for the 57th Grammy Awards, this band is armed with an arsenal of guitars, banjo, thumping upright bass, fiddle, and drums, all delivering neo-classical-sounding melodies and lyrics. Their sound is a wholesome mishmash of creek mud, rusty nails, and your mom’s cookin’. It’s sincere, straight-forward, and sexy, effortlessly combining such disparate musical styles as rock, country, bluegrass, and punk to create an incomprehensibly smooth and accessible sound for true believers and skeptics alike. Special Guest: Pretty Polly.

Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre
June 3, 7:30 p.m.

As the sun dips below the trees at Peter Strauss Ranch, shadows elongate. When vintage bathing suit-clad dancers propel through the space, for a moment it ceases to be 2017. Then the ritual begins, and into the “lake” the dancers go, dragging with them their memories, and, literally, setting them ablaze.
Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre is thrilled to partner with visual artist Kim West and experimental musician Davy Sumner for Lake Enchanto at Peter Strauss Ranch. West’s installation—including a 115-foot mural—of the same name will open at the ranch on May 13, 2017. During the site-specific performance, Duckler’s dancers will permanently transform pieces of West’s installation, while activating different parts of the site. An original composition by Sumner will accompany the dancers. Sumner will manipulate and exploit the location’s natural sounds to create an aural piece entirely unique to Peter Strauss Ranch.
Reserve seats at lakeenchanto.com.

Kuika (Tiny Porch Concerts)
June 11, 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

All four members of Kuinka grew up running around wooded areas of the same small town in the farthest northwest corner of Washington state. Kuinka captures the wind, the streams, and the mountain air in their songs. Their beautiful vocal harmonies take you down a well-beaten path in the wilderness accompanied by rhythm and melodies from the classic Americana folk instrument family…This quartet of incredible musicians have lassoed the Northwest spirit and infused it into their own brand of storytelling lyrics and deep and passionate hearts for the land they grew up. The quartet revamps classic string band instrumentation with heavy percussion and the unique integration of electronic melodies, six-string ukulele and Jillian Walker on cello. With their widely varying influences, four distinct vocal styles and copious amounts of foot-stomping, they demonstrate a sound and presence that’s at once original and familiar, appealing to audiences of all generations and genres. Special guest: Steps of Doe.

Peace Factory
June 17, 10:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.

The Peace Factory is an architectural installation that incorporates elements of a labyrinth, an amphitheater, and an altar. Designed by artist Ben Allanoff with the intention of nurturing peaceful states of mind, it is composed of logs recently culled from the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area and was assembled with major contributions of creativity and labor from Charlie Whitman, Forestry Technician for the National Park Service, and California Department of Corrections Camp 13.
Please join in as the Peace Factory is activated for the first time as a place for people of every description to come together and manufacture peace. We will be doing sitting and walking meditation and immersing ourselves in powerfully calming music performed by Danielle and Kamal Brown.
You are also invited to place any object of your choosing on the Peace Factory altar, and of course to enjoy Peter Strauss Ranch and the rest of the recreation area before and after the event.
RSVPs not required but appreciated. Please write the number of people in your party in the subject line and send to makingpeaceatpsr@gmail.com.

Artist Talk, Tour, and Plein Air Event
July 9, 3:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Artist Natalie Smith will give a short artists talk about her trail sign paintings that are installed along the Peter Strauss trail. Natalie will then lead a trail walk where participants will be encouraged to become more aware of their experience of moving through nature by witnessing it and responding to it. Plein air drawing materials will be provided.

The Alchemist Ballet
July 9, 4:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

The secret to happiness is to see all the wonders of the world while keeping the flowers on the spoon. The Alchemist Ballet is a sisterhood journey of cultivating a relationship with oneself through movement, language barriers, voice, and live music. Loosely based off of the writings from The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho, the dancers embrace vulnerability, courage and compassion, unity, and unconditional love towards each other to fuel the Soul of the World. Chasity Ramsey, choreographer and director of The Alchemist Ballet, says it is fluid, open-ended, and allows for space to spark a flame that is inside your heart.

Moonsville Collective (Tiny Porch Concerts)
July 9, 5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.

Moonsville, named after a home in the sky, is a band that writes songs that are trimmed from the fat of the American experience. During a time of high saturation and modern pace, the band draws from a slower and simpler time with the belief that good songs can still save, move, and speak. With multi-instrumentalists and several songwriters in the band, they keep their Americana style variable, always allowing for experimentation and the blurring of genre lines. One of the songwriters, Ryan Welch, says; “Each song has a different feel but the consistency lies in the history of us playing together and the trust we have in each other to make good decisions.” Special guests: Feisty Heart.

Experience Bloom
August 20, 4:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Bloom artist Olga Lah and performance artist Kiyomi Fukui will host a collaborative event that engages with the hillside installation. Visitors will be invited to experience a participatory activity that will include conversation, performance and consumption.

Sam Outlaw (Tiny Porch Concerts)
August 20, 5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.

Sam Outlaw is a Southern Californian singer-songwriter steeped in the music and mythos of West Coast country, absorbing the classic vibes of everything from ’60s Bakersfield honky-tonk to ’70s Laurel Canyon troubadour pop and refashioning them into a sound that’s pleasurably past, present, and future tense. “I’ve made it a personal mission to remind people how great country music is,” he says. “And specifically, I want to remind them that Southern California has a really rich history with country music. Even though there hasn’t been a scene here for a long time, there has been a noticeable resurgence. If I can be involved in some kind of revival in the spirit of this music, that would make me very proud.” Special guest: Lydia Luce

The Way Down Wanderers (Tiny Porch Concerts)
September 9, 5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.

The Way Down Wanderers are equal parts fast-paced and soulful and five-piece modern-folk Americana act. They draw listeners in with energy, originality, and soulful generosity. Playing, performing, and writing together for just three short years, the Wanderers have built an enthusiastic and fast-growing following. Youthful and professionally trained, these young men captivate audiences with soaring instrumentals, foot stomping sing-alongs, and a lively stage show and have created a buzz for themselves with their unplugged, off-stage encores and propensity for performing self-titled, “restSTOMPS” – free acoustic sets at rest and truck stops along their tour routes. Special guest: Which Country? Feat Lenny Goldsmith

Last updated: May 24, 2017

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