Love is LIVING LARGE in Los Angeles
Love is LIVING LARGE in Los Angeles was created as part of the Studio for Southern California History's exhibit of the same name and highlights different sites and activists from our history. This incarnation was created in 2010 and on display at its gallery until 2012.
This exhibit was inspired by "Love is...", a comic strip created Kim Grove in the 1960s and later produced by her son Stefano Casali. The strip is currently syndicated worldwide by Tribune Media Services. "Love Is..." (the title includes the ellipsis mark), started as a series of love notes that Grove drew for her future husband, Roberto Casali. Within each cartoon was an answer to “Love is ...” that included responses like as “a warm puppy.” While love is certainly a warm puppy, we decided to apply this idea to the Studio’s mission to critically chronicle and disseminate the region’s social history (the history of every day life and people) in order to foster sense of place and social responsibility. At the Studio our love for Southern California is tempered with a sense of duty in recognizing this place’s history of struggle and cooperation in order to provide models of future behavior.
The map is a compilation of added images and entries. Its base is a 1932 map called “Greater Los Angeles: the wonder city of America” designed by K.M. Leuschner for Metropolitan Surveys and made available by the Library of Congress. The map inset in the lower right hand corner is also from the Library of Congress and is a 1909 “bird’s eye view” by Worthington Gates for Western Litho Co. Throughout this map are history entries and some hidden features for a scavenger hunt of icons related to Southern California.
Profiles were authored by a variety of individuals who represent "experts" in different ways and show the different relationships we have with people and history and that we all are historians. Thank yous go to many people for their entries: Jose Alamillo, Michelle An, Nancy Bautista, Tomas Benitez, Lucas Benitez, Victoria Bernal, Martin Cox, Catherine Gudis, Marilyn Hileman, Darryl Holter, Lanla Gist, Joyce Jacob, Hillary Jenks, Marie Masumoto, Rosa Mazon, Janet Owen Driggs, Monica Pelayo, and Linda Vallejo. Other sources include oral histories, local newspapers, monographs, and images from private and public collections. Martha Nakagawa’s work in the Rafu Shimpo provided information on the Fair Play Committee.
All of the individuals and groups profiled expressed a sense of responsibility to Los Angeles and the people who live here. This exhibit does not merely celebrate these actions but also examines individuals in the midst of struggle.