Video Interview with RAKAA from DILATED PEOPLES

RYO1 (Ghetto Dojo Crew) sat down with the legendary RAKAA from Dilated Peoples for a discussion of his music, graffiti, jiu-jitsu, and what the future holds for him and his crew. Oh and yeah of course we asked him about his favorite taco spot…

(Continued)

My Favorite Taco ~ Luke Chueh

Self-ish Banner

We’ve been fans of Luke Chueh’s since we first discovered his art years ago at Gallery 1988. At first glance it might seem easy to categorize Luke as one of a number of artists working within the chasm between popular culture and surrealism, but his work has always been both funnier and darker than his peers’. The veneer of cute simplicity draws people to his paintings, but the depth of both his colors and his hilarious depravity turns them into obsessed admirers and collectors.

Chueh’s new show, “Self-ish” (preview images below) adds new textures, colors, and juxtapositions while reprising some favorite motifs. “My work is an illustrative exploration of visual and narrative contrasts,” explains Chueh. “Drawing inspiration from comics and cartoons, my “cute/innocent” characters are juxtaposed into a world filled with addiction, illness, misery, and loss.” The opening reception for Self-ish will be Saturday, October 11, 2014, from 7-10pm at CHG Circa in Culver City. The reception is open to the public, and the exhibition is on view through November 1.

With the art stuff out of the way, it’s time to get down on what really matters here– where Luke likes to get a taco. So, Luke Chueh, what’s your favorite taco?

(Continued)

Concrete Porn ~ Q&A with Ted VanCleave

concrete porn buildings and bridges 132 web

Ted VanCleave is fascinated by concrete. The internationally renowned visual artist uses photography to explore the size, shape, texture, and overall grandiosity of concrete in his new photo series titled Concrete Porn ~ Buildings & Bridges. As most of it was shot in Los Angeles, we were very interested to ask VanCleave about the pornography of concrete, and where he gets his tacos. A gallery of his images is presented at the end, along with a reader contest…

What are the essential elements of a beautiful concrete structure?  
For me, it’s all about texture. Whatever materials are used to make the concrete forms, the molds, they are permanently impressed into the dry concrete. And concrete is one of the few exterior building materials that don’t require painting, so you see the actual building materials exposed. I’m all about texture.

concrete porn buildings and bridges 124 web

(Continued)

DEANSKII INTERVIEW

grill340

DEANSKII is L.A. born and raised, and uses his film photography and ‘zines to give the world an insight into his life in the city. We got a chance to discuss photography and tacos with a man who loves his family, his crew, and documenting the art, triumphs, and tragedies of underground Los Angeles…

What’s your favorite taco?
I have to save my dad makes the best beef and potato tacos. I add some sweet chili sauce to it and it’s fire. But place-wise, I like the carnitas tacos at Diana’s in Carson, plus they’re open 24/7 can’t go wrong with that.
(Continued)

Tacología #4 ~ Tacos Leo

Our friends from Mexico at We Are Not Zombies just published the latest in their Tacología series, starring Leo’s Tacos of Mid City.

(Continued)

My Favorite Taco with Fei-Fei, Host of Feided ~ TONIGHT at the Lash in Downtown Los Angeles

FEI-FEI_3

What can people expect at your monthly night at the Lash in DTLA?
Lots of tequila and lots of fun. And a ton of dope music. I have a pretty diverse style myself so I’m looking forward to bringing a different flavor to DTLA. A mix of all my favorite artists, friends and of course the Feided crew. It’s all about the vibe for me, whether it’s bass-house-future-indie-trap-hop-electronica. I just want people to have fun.

(Continued)

Guisados Opens in Downtown Los Angeles

photo-1

The original Guisados opened a few years ago in the beating heart of L.A.’s taco scene, Boyle Heights, where it earned rave reviews and a share of the Taco Madness title in 2012. The first expansion was to Echo Park, and now there is one roughly in the middle of the first two locations– Downtown Los Angeles. There is no doubt in our minds that this location, like the others, will be extremely popular. All photos by Chris Hei, who you can visit on his blog or his instagram. Guidados DTLA is located at 541 S. Spring St. # 101 Los Angeles CA, 90013. More info at Guisados.co.

(Continued)

Bill Esparza Brings the Taco Knowledge

bills_taco_beatdowns

L.A.’s Bill Esparza, who wrote our seminal “Tacos 101″ series, has now etched his name at the top of the highly competitive world of taco scholarship. What vaulted him to the highest echelon? An incredible article published last week on LA Magazine’s website called “Tacopedia: A Complete Taco Encyclopedia of L.A.” The subhead is “45 reasons why Los Angeles is the taco capital of America”, but it could easily have been “Mess with the Bill, get the horns,” because the ostensible inspiration for the piece was a somewhat douchey post on Eater LA entitled: A New York City Tacopedia: L.A.’s Got Nuttin’ on Us!

The Eater story could’ve been a list of good NYC tacos, but instead they took the position that it was time to school L.A. on taco knowledge and diversity, which is just silly. Frankly, most people in L.A. simply shrugged, but Bill isn’t like most people. Hes a man on a mission and doesn’t suffer fools. We’re pretty sure he’s been working on his own Tacopedia for some time now, so this presented the perfect chance to both present some solid regional research, and put a serious body blow on ill-informed Mexican food articles originating from New York, of which there have been far too many. We have a feeling there won’t be many more after New York writers realize there’s someone who’s ready to deliver a digital beatdown if they make wild exaggerations or attempt to diss L.A.’s taco scene.

Check out some samples from Esparza’s piece below and then read the entire 45 item Tacopedia, which we hope becomes a book at some point…

(Continued)

Newest Craze in Downtown L.A. is Pizza Taco Tuesday

PIZZA+TACO=TUESDAY

Instagram sensation @IMHUNGRYTHO has a unique tuesday ritual in DTLA that he wants to invite you to check out. This mad food scientist combines pizza, tacos, and booze into a food lovers orgy of meaty delights in DTLA. When reached for comment, he sent us the above photo of one of his creations and some more information…

(Continued)

Interview With Shanks Rajendran, Filmmaker Behind the “Los Scandalous” Skid Row Documentary

shanksandlavellputman

Shanks Rajendran is an Australian filmmaker who has made waves in the United States for his searing look at forgotten and ignored areas within big cities. His first documentary here, Liberty City: Miami explored South Florida’s toughest neighborhood from the inside, and was hailed as raw and searing by online reviewers. Now he’s come to Los Angeles to bring the same outsider-yet-insider point of view to our most deprived part of town- Skid Row.

What brought you to skid row?

When I first came to Los Angeles for a holiday two years ago I was sight seeing. I went to Rodeo Drive, the Hollywood Hills, Staples Center and then my friend said: “Look I know you love doing documentaries so I want you to see something.”

Two blocks down he drove and there it was.  Something I’ve never heard of or seen.  SKID ROW. It was night time so there were just tents and tents and more tents. I saw people hanging around…saw a fight, saw a fire truck pulling someone out of a public bathroom, all that stuff. It was all happening right before my eyes within the period of a good 15-20 minutes.

Coming fresh from a place like Melbourne, Australia – I’ve never seen anything like this. It was one of the most confusing moments in my life… I remember asking myself  “What is this?”

As a documentarian, I live and breathe issues concerning poverty, deprivation and failures. At that point, I knew Skid Row was something I wanted to look into.

(Continued)

Interview with Sam Sweet, Author of the Forthcoming “All Night Menu,” A Secret History of Los Angeles

tumblr_n61fstnwS61tw2j3do1_1280

Sam Sweet lives in Highland Park and has written about surfing, music, and Los Angeles culture for the New Yorker and the Paris Review. His latest project is All Night Menu, a 64-page book that is the first in a five-volume series about the lost heroes and miniature histories of Los Angeles. The writing takes to you places you didn’t know were real but are right in your backyard and introduces you to people who shaped this city in unseen ways. Created wholly in Los Angeles, the booklet is only available locally, in stores like South Willard, Mollusk Surf Shop, and Anzen Hardware. More info at the end of this interview.

How long have you lived in Los Angeles, and what neighborhoods do you like best?

I moved here in 2007. I like the usual stuff. How can you not? No amount of overexposure can diminish the greatness of driving on Mulholland, or loitering on the rim of the Venice Skate Park, or being on the top floor of the Arclight parking garage. Even so, I think you get the best of Los Angeles in places undefined by any particular attractions. I’m happiest when I’m doing nothing much in Lincoln Heights, Chatsworth, El Segundo. I love Sun Valley because it’s so fiercely unattractive but within that labyrinth of auto recyclers is a living culture that is unique to LA. In a more conventional sense, I think San Pedro is one of the prettiest towns in America.

(Continued)