L.A. Icons: Urban Light and Watts Towers

Charles White Elementary School Gallery
October 15, 2010–March 31, 2011
Images: Watts Towers © Jo Farb Hernandez Urban Light © Jhonna-Lyn Estioko.

As part of Art Programs with the Community: LACMA On-site, LACMA presents L.A. Icons: Urban Light and Watts Towers at Charles White Elementary School. The exhibition features historic photographs of Watts Towers, a selection of images from LACMA's Celebrating Urban Light contest & online exhibition, a sculpture by Ball Nogues Studio, and artwork by students from Charles White created in collaboration with Los Angeles-based artist Pato Hebert. A space for art making is also part of the exhibition.

In spring 2010, forty students in grades 3, 4, and 5 worked with Pato Hebert to explore Los Angeles icons. They participated in field trips to LACMA to view Chris Burden's sculpture Urban Light, to Simon Rodia's Watts Towers, and to their neighborhood park, historic MacArthur Park. During these field trips, students talked about monuments, how to capture and express ideas through photography, and their own responses to the places that they visited. Their photographs, drawings, and collective poems are on view.

About the Program

LACMA launched Art Programs with the Community: LACMA On-Site in 2006 as a multiyear partnership providing art programs and materials to schools, libraries, and community organizations throughout LAUSD Local District 4. The program includes artist-led workshops in classrooms, local libraries, and community centers; curriculum materials; professional development for teachers; and free youth memberships to LACMA.

Charles White Elementary School opened in 2004 on the former campus of Otis College of Art and Design. The school is named for the artist Charles White (1918–1979), who lived in the area and who taught at Otis for many years. The exhibitions SWAP and Journeys | Recorridos, also organized by LACMA, were on view at Charles White in 2007 and 2008 respectively.

This exhibition was made possible through the Anna H. Bing Children's Art Education Fund. Images: Watts Towers © Jo Farb Hernandez Urban Light © Jhonna-Lyn Estioko.