Los Angeles – the Cultural Playground

Los Angeles – the Cultural Playground

Photographs by Dawn Garcia | Cover Photo by Neal Stephenson



Have you ever really dove head first into the City of Angels? I don’t mean the cool obscure clubs or the sophisticated plethora of gatherings. I mean just gone off, explored, walked into a gallery, Museum, restaurant, wine bar, clothing store, oddity find, or simply plodded along, pulled up a chair in the middle of a crowded spot and just people watched? Well then, then this is your invitation to do precisely that.


Food | Art | The Every Day



Los Angeles is called the City of Angels and while it is a city with bumps and bruises and stolen ideas, it is a city rich in culture, brimming with big dreams, and an oasis of creativity. With more restaurants than this happy dinner can handle, I dive in feet first to just about anything. Put it on a plate, make it look pretty, fill my belly with love and I’ll make sure I tell everyone I know about it. Granted that also works the other way – BUT – I’m here to make businesses thrive. I want chefs, restaurateurs, home cooks, culinary curiosities to swell and succeed. The world needs good food. LA needs fantastic food. And truth be told, nothing is more intimate than a plate of food. It is, in essence, the thing that nurtures us. Emotional? Why yes, it is. Imagine eating a meal when you’re devastated. Or angry. Or feeling tremendous pleasure. Or you are youthfully curious. Food feeds our feelings. And while it takes a vast amount of control – it’s quality – its story, they matter. So, rather than go into long reviews, this week I am just taking you along some of the fun places I’ve gone to – by sheer proxy. Not a planned outing or a scheduled tasting. Just me, an #Angeleno, exploring the city for a week.



LUNA VINE – Burbank


LUNA VINE – Burbank


La Brea Bakery Cafe – Los Angeles


Ebanos Crossing – Downtown Los Angeles


SweetSalt – Burbank


Bennetts Ice Cream – The Grove, Hollywood


TART Burger – TART, Los Angeles


Ahi Burger – BURGER LOUNGE, Brentwood

L'OCCITANE Australia pty



Art? Well, in my opinion there is no greater investment in the world. Art is our link to the entire human race. It is our moral compass, our subconscious guide, our humor, our hope, our truth, our – well – it’s the one truly most beautiful piece of all we are. And it will live on long after we’re gone. Like #Beethoven. Or #MilesDavis. Or 80s glam rock (which ultimately I will stand and cheer the day that fades away). The difference is – it is the answer to existentialism. The age-old question of why we are here and what is our purpose. #ART is the answer. It applauds the human spirit and gives way to the miraculous beauty that nourishes the soul. True art has no boundaries and that is precisely why it will tell our story infinitely.



The Last Book Store – Downtown Los Angeles


The Last Bookstore – Downtown Los Angeles


Calder Exhibition – LACMA Los Angeles



L'OCCITANE Australia pty



I am one of the rarities that is born and bred in Los Angeles. Somehow, in spite of smog and an endless sea of wasted minutes stuck in traffic, I still find so much beauty in the every day. When I was young, my grandfather was the one that would encourage all of us kids to live in the moment, to dream big, and to appreciate the simplest things in life. I would go outside and swing on the old swing set and listen to the birds chirping or notice the slight breeze blowing the leaves in varying directions. This week I went on walks, noticed the littlest of things and it was absolutely wonderful.



The GROVE – Los Angeles


NATURE – Toluca Lake


Signage – TART, Los Angeles


A Storm is Brewing – Los Angeles


The Getty Museum – LOS ANGELES




Below is a video I made that epitomizes the purity of youth, the power of art, and the reason LACMA is one of my all time favorite Museums in the city. It is basically TEN museums in ONE locale. Los Angeles has something for every culture, every family, every single – aka serial dater, every artist, every “foodie” (a term I still hope is going away soon), every music lover, every personality and while there are some things about the city I think we all wish would cease to be, there is tremendous beauty, unending potential, and rather spectacular finds. So avoid the weirdos, the egotists, the entitled implants – and instead – just open your eyes and dive right in (Just do it cooler and less neurotic).


In addition, check out this article about 10 FREE things to do in Los Angeles by DISCOVER Los Angeles.



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